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Help #7838032 05/13/20 07:21 AM
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DryFire Offline OP
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So I thought about just posting on my old post but figured it'd be better to start a new one since this is a different topic for the most part. Put a lot of thought in to a decision that I made about my pup's name (as you can see on a previous thread about whether to change "Nova's name or not). And I will probably still get butchered by some for making the decision that I did... but, I stuck with the name Nova. We have been using "stop it" like Sniper John suggested and it is working fine. Yes I have another dog obedience trained with "no", but, he is mature enough to not have to use "no" much, if at all with him.

That being said.... (here goes nothing).... the above mentioned older dog is a year and a half old 3/4 choc. lab and 1/4 GSP. He has adjusted well to the new pup being around and has almost seemed to be reinvigorated by her. She has actually brought more of the hunt drive out of him than I have seen in a while. This gives me hope because I've always thought he's had the potential to hunt but with starting a job with night hours, it was hard to get day time training in. There are a few concerns I have... here me out and give advice please. I have a long way to go to be decent at training.

1) I would love him to retrieve upland birds and ducks. He loves water, so thats a plus.

2) He retrieves but does not bring it back to "me". Its mostly near me or around my vicinity. How do I correct that? I've offered treats but then he drops the bumper/ball 2 feet in front of me so that he can get the treat. He has a pretty soft bite, also a plus since I didn't specifically train it.

3) We just got on a new lease in the panhandle that has potential for quail, dove and a few ducks but nothing extravagant. Worth trying to train him even if the in field opportunities are limited?

4) Its hard to get his attention when he's playing with the new pup. There is confusion with who commands are for, which I guess is to be expected with a new pup in the house. He gets extremely excited anytime a new person or dog comes around despite being socialized with other people and dogs as a puppy.


I know this is a long post.... I again would appreciate any insight. Is it worth trying to self train a year and a half year old with limited hunting opportunities? (not saying I wouldn't find other day hunts). Would you train one with those goals in mind and those existing habits in mind? Too late to gun train if he's scared of the garbage truck at home?

If you respond to this I will consider your post gold.. I know it was a lot to read. If anyone with some experience wants to call and talk to make the conversation easier, please PM me. I work nights so please understand if I don't get immediately back to you. Just lookin for some good guidance.

Thanks y'all

Re: Help [Re: DryFire] #7838033 05/13/20 07:22 AM
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DryFire Offline OP
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Yikes... that was way longer than I thought eeks333

Re: Help [Re: DryFire] #7838239 05/13/20 03:19 PM
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rioman42 Offline
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Originally Posted by DryFire
So I thought about just posting on my old post but figured it'd be better to start a new one since this is a different topic for the most part. Put a lot of thought in to a decision that I made about my pup's name (as you can see on a previous thread about whether to change "Nova's name or not). And I will probably still get butchered by some for making the decision that I did... but, I stuck with the name Nova. We have been using "stop it" like Sniper John suggested and it is working fine. Yes I have another dog obedience trained with "no", but, he is mature enough to not have to use "no" much, if at all with him.

That being said.... (here goes nothing).... the above mentioned older dog is a year and a half old 3/4 choc. lab and 1/4 GSP. He has adjusted well to the new pup being around and has almost seemed to be reinvigorated by her. She has actually brought more of the hunt drive out of him than I have seen in a while. This gives me hope because I've always thought he's had the potential to hunt but with starting a job with night hours, it was hard to get day time training in. There are a few concerns I have... here me out and give advice please. I have a long way to go to be decent at training.

1) I would love him to retrieve upland birds and ducks. He loves water, so thats a plus.

2) He retrieves but does not bring it back to "me". Its mostly near me or around my vicinity. How do I correct that? I've offered treats but then he drops the bumper/ball 2 feet in front of me so that he can get the treat. He has a pretty soft bite, also a plus since I didn't specifically train it.

3) We just got on a new lease in the panhandle that has potential for quail, dove and a few ducks but nothing extravagant. Worth trying to train him even if the in field opportunities are limited?

4) Its hard to get his attention when he's playing with the new pup. There is confusion with who commands are for, which I guess is to be expected with a new pup in the house. He gets extremely excited anytime a new person or dog comes around despite being socialized with other people and dogs as a puppy.


I know this is a long post.... I again would appreciate any insight. Is it worth trying to self train a year and a half year old with limited hunting opportunities? (not saying I wouldn't find other day hunts). Would you train one with those goals in mind and those existing habits in mind? Too late to gun train if he's scared of the garbage truck at home?

If you respond to this I will consider your post gold.. I know it was a lot to read. If anyone with some experience wants to call and talk to make the conversation easier, please PM me. I work nights so please understand if I don't get immediately back to you. Just lookin for some good guidance.

Thanks y'all


Not sure what your financial situation is but if you are serious about the dog then i would look into taking him to a pro to be force fetched.

As far as your lease is concerned, in the field opportunities are what you make of it. you can always bring birds with you to train on or hunt somewhere else.

I dont like running/training two pups at the same time. I normally run them seperate.

i dont feel like it would be too late to train the older dog. if the drive and biddability is there i would go for it. If you are not to familiar with introducing the gun i would seek help with this as well. My dogs do not like fireworks, lawn mowers, chainsaws etc. They know the difference between that stuff and training/hunting.
JUST MY OPINION

Re: Help [Re: DryFire] #7838389 05/13/20 06:07 PM
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BradyBuck Online Content
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Keep dogs separate when training..


How serious are you about having an actually well trained gun dog?

Here is the best advice you are going to get:

Buy "Sound beginnings" by Jackie Mertens and TRT2 by Mike Lardy.

Find a good pro and see if they'll let you train some with them...see how i said "good" pro. In my experience there are more bad ones than good ones.

Find a retriever club to join.

Follow those DVDs step by step.



Last edited by BradyBuck; 05/13/20 06:07 PM.
Re: Help [Re: DryFire] #7838538 05/13/20 08:14 PM
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So there's a lot there, let me try to address some of it. First off, sounds like you are really excited about these dogs and training them. I'd recommend listening to lots of dog training podcasts. Tom Dokken had a good one recently, maybe on Sporting Dog Talk but maybe another I can't remember, about a lot of what you are talking about trying to train two young dogs of different ages. You 1.5 year old is definitely not too old to train but be careful with gun intro with him. You will have to often work with them separate because, as you said, the younger dog will just want to mess around with the older dog. That Dokken podcast could sound discouraging on that point, but for you, and me, its just points to accommodate for.

On your second bullet point, about him just brining the retrieve near you, that's the pointing dog in him. Most pointing dogs that have been trained by just hunting do that and its fine with most folks. But you can learn tricks from trainers to work on it. One that I like is to run away from him backwards, so you are still facing him, while he is coming towards you, he will then chase you, then after just a few steps, slam on the brakes and intercept him and before he can think get the bumper/ball from him and then praise him like crazy. They often get that figured out pretty quick.

The main thing is for your training and your expectations to be aligned so that you and the dogs can enjoy it. If you end up just taking them out to the lease and letting them run around and figure it out, they probably will to some degree or maybe even really well, but you will have to be happy with where they end up. Or you can add more purposeful training and see how they respond. But enjoy it and do all you can so they do! Ben O Williams book Bird Dog talks a lot about this type of training and thinking.

See everything you do with them as training, you can do a lot at home and in the neighborhood. See roofing crews as gun exposure. My dogs learn to hold and fetch on command through their love of ice, they have to sit and hold and then "fetch it up." Little things like that can go a long way towards ya'll enjoying your time in the field together.


We are all in this together.
Re: Help [Re: DryFire] #7838585 05/13/20 08:54 PM
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DryFire,
I typically would not train my dogs together at the same time unless the intent of the training session was to train one dog to ignore being distracted by the other dog. Or I would have one place stayed or staked off to the side while training the other one.

#2. I train with a mix of very different training methods than most hunters, so I am not going to make any specific recommendations here. But either way I recommend to find a good training program that fits the final outcome of the dog you want using the dog you have. This could be a book or DVD. Bradybuck is spot on with his suggestion and though I have not used "Sound beginnings" or TRT2, I know enough about Mike Lardy that I am certain it would be an excellent choice to start a training program. I would also put together a sequential check list of training goals, then follow it in order. This even if your just wanting a meat dog that can get you by on a hunt or a hot rod field trial/hunt test dog. Just put together your hit list to train and problem solve each step using your training resources before checking it off and moving to the next. As Bradybuck said "step by step".

#3. Sounds like you do have some opportunities. If you train your dogs, you will probably find yourself also looking up public hunting permit hunting areas near your lease as well as other areas less than a day's drive from there like KS WIHAs for pheasant, and the new walk in hunting areas OK keeps adding to. There is never a bad day hunting when your out interacting and hunting with a trained dog. The kill becomes anticlimactic.

#4. I used to just call my dog's name to get his/her attention, followed by the command. My older dog picked up on the new dog commands without any training. I would just stick with one set of commands. Other than that it is an obedience issue and dogs will be dogs.

Any socialization and fear issues with your older dog like with the trash truck will be difficult, but you can train an older dog. IMHO, the first 6 months though is the time that a dog's brain is like a sponge sucking up every new experience and training experience that it can. That is the golden time to work with a dog. With the pup I highly recommend a socialization hit list. Expose the pup to as many types of people and animals possible. introduce him to as many sounds as possible, boat motor, garbage truck, vacuum cleaner, camp fire, thunderstorms, etc. Walks in the woods to cross streams, logs, gullys, etc. Research how to do each without creating a problem. Gunfire for example. Do it by the book or training program you choose. My youngest Vizsla was introduced to Fireworks and thunderstorms while still at the breeder via a DVD of sounds everytime the pups were fed. My dog busts out the door to play in thunderstorms and gets just as crazy happy when the city does the big fireworks display a few blocks away. It reminds him of happy times. Socialization during that first 6 months will make later dog life much more fun.

Re: Help [Re: DryFire] #7838589 05/13/20 08:56 PM
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Sniper John Online Happy
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DryFire, I don't think you ever said. What breed of dog is the pup?

Re: Help [Re: DryFire] #7839102 05/14/20 06:35 AM
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DryFire Offline OP
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All great input! Thanks a ton! The older is 3/4 Chocolate Lab and 1/4 GSP. The pup is 10 weeks old and is half English Setter, half English Pointer. I don’t intend to train them together and will be taking the older one to the lease for the first time in a couple of weeks by himself. I know there’s a ton of moving parts and I’ll definitely start looking into some of the books/DVDs y’all have recommended.

Re: Help [Re: DryFire] #7840357 05/15/20 03:10 PM
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Dryfire. Make two lists. One list of all the things you want your dog to be able to do. Second list is all the things you don’t want the dog to do. Then break each list down to the most elementary steps. Teach each facet independently and link them only after you have built a strong base and you will avoid a lot of confusion. Brady gave you very good advice of finding a good trainer to train with. A mentor can help you break your lists down so your training has a logical progression. A mentor can also help you set a realistic performance standard. Less is usually more when training a dog and a mentor can help you understand that.
Retriever training requires much more control than upland training. Upland training requires the dog to work more independently. Doing both requires balanced training so you don’t end up with a boot polisher in the uplands. The lists you make will help you select the type of trainer you want to train with.
It takes commitment to train a nice bird dog. It also takes birds to make a bird dog. If your not willing to put the required time into it, you will be better served to hire a trainer.


Smokey Bear---Lone Star State.
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