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Thread: A question on basic hand signals

  1. #1
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    Default A question on basic hand signals

    This is probably an easy one for the seasoned vets but as a noob I thought I'd ask.

    Working on the basic baseball drill teaching back and over. Pup is 10 mos old and pro trained through the basics (OBD, FF, water and land singles etc.).

    He's picked up the idea in a handful of sessions with one caveat. When I raise my hand a command back, he comes all the way to me then turns around and sprints to the bumper. He does the same on over but usually 2 steps to me then sprints to the mark.

    I put a baseball hitting net (see through) between us, give the command and he will go around the net to me then sprint back around to the bumper. It is almost like he is coming to heel before taking off but stops a few feet short of me then sprints to the bumper.

    Tonight I tossed the bumper right over his head and it landed 5 feet behind him. He watched it over his head then land behind him. I walked about 25 yards away from him, he's facing me, bumper right behind him all in a nice line. He runs 24 yards to me then all the way back to the bumper, then back to me for a hand delivery.

    Any obvious fixes on this one or does he just need more time/reps to get the concept?

    He also likes to look at the fall even on back, but doesn't move his lower body, and it seems to take 5-30 seconds for him to look at me before I can give him the hand signal. Maybe related, not sure.

    Many thanks

  2. #2
    Member DucksDogsDownriggers's Avatar
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    Sounds like you need to revisit FTP.

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    Senior Member JusticeDog's Avatar
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    It is really not a FTP issue. It is a set sit maintain issue. However, I would guess that your pro taught him a different manner and your dog is confused about what you really want him to do. The first thing I would do would be to call your pro and describe the situation and see if he was doing something similar that would cause a dog to come back into him before going out. This Does seem to be a situation of confusion that you dog was taught to do this task a different way.

    Be that as it may, I would then put a rope on the dog, see Ken Bora's notes about ropes, And teach him to sit in front of you. In other words you're going to have to take a few steps back and teach him three handed casting again. Use your rope to make sure that he does not come into you. Pick up the rope and lift it up high so that it stops him from moving forward.
    Susan

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    My opinion is simplify...Go back to pile work and start at that point were pup is sitting in front of you. Start making a small increase in space between you and pup. This may take a while to fix, like a week to three. Gradually grow the space. You may need to do 10 backs from 2 steps away for one session. The next session start at that 2 steps for a few backs, then increase a step to three steps. Make this a gradual change so pup doesn't notice. I wouldn't make a HUGE correction for a mistake, just stop and repeat. HUGE corrections will cause the balance to go the other way and then the dog may not come in when called. Always require go, stop, and, come. Remember to SLOWLY increase the distance. The only HUGE you want is "GOOD PUP!"
    Last edited by Duckquilizer; 10-02-2013 at 06:55 AM.
    Kendall Layne

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    Susan has it right ..call the pro that did the basic work and get his take on it ...Kendall has given you the advice your pro will probably give you....start over up close and help the dog to understand the whole game once again....Steve S
    "Your dog learns as much by doing his work right,by your praise and encouragement, as he does by your displeasure and correction." DLWalters

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    Quote Originally Posted by stringwise View Post
    Working on the basic baseball drill teaching back and over. Pup is 10 mos old and pro trained through the basics (OBD, FF, water and land singles etc.).
    Don't know if "FF'" means the dog has completed pile work or not, but what's confusing is that a lot of training material has these simple handling/ casting drills before pile work. And if that's the case there's nothing to "re-visit".

    If it were me, I'd definately talk to your trainer, but regardless- the dog has to be in front in order to focus and take the right cast.

    I'd simply step up, stop the dog, re-SIT the dog back on the pitchers mound, pick up the marks and re-start the drill until the dog SITS remotely and takes the cast.
    Show him what you want.

    Toss the mark over his head last and cast him BACK.
    REPS
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  7. #7
    Senior Member brian breuer's Avatar
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    I agree with the simplification and getting closer. Taking a page from Bill Tarrant, you may want to try a rope and a post.

    With the dog in a front sit the rope goes back around a post which is directly behind the back pile and then back to you. Give the cast while holding or standing on the end of the rope preventing the dog from coming forward. Reel the dog back to the pile and then let go for the return to you.


    I am guessing 2 or 3 five minute sessions will be the end of the need for the rope.

    With proper positioning you can also work on left and right hand backs using the post / rope to prevent turning the wrong way.

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    Thanks for the responses everyone.

    I honestly don't know all of the steps that the pro took in completing force fetch. Maybe that's my fault for not asking, especially so if I was going to continue the training myself rather than sending back to the pro for more advanced work. Lesson learned.


    Based on the posts above, I tried to following:

    Put down a ladder of bumpers out to about 25 yards, 5 yards for the first bumper.
    Took him from kennel to heel and let him see the bumpers
    Commanded dead and back, he went to the first bumper and brought it right back
    Repeated until he made it to the end of the bumper ladder
    Started all over again and he completed 12 retrieves with no issues
    Tried it on a pile and his only real "challenge" was shopping the pile but this was for a split second (nose vs. mouth) and he was hurrying back to me, not stand over the pile trying things on and dropping bumpers until he found the one he liked best.

    Next I sat the pup about 5 yards in front of me with the ladder set up behind him. I commanded back and he too 3 steps to me then turned and ran to first bumper.
    This was much shorter than he was traveling before as he would run all the way to me originally before heading out to the pile.

    I think I will try the rope idea as I do think he understands the command but has this "hitch" that needs to be corrected.

    I will report back after trying the rope concept for a few days, simplifying the drill until he understands that he needs to immediately turn and head to the pile/bumper ladder.

    Thanks and any additional advice is appreciated.

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    Quote Originally Posted by stringwise View Post
    Thanks and any additional advice is appreciated.
    Don't forget to start teaching proper rotations later!
    Dawgs are like Savings Accounts-
    You only get out of 'em what you put into 'em.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Howard N's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swampbilly View Post
    Don't forget to start teaching proper rotations later!
    Why would you teach correct rotation later? I have found it much easier to teach it right the first time. There is no bad habit to undo later.
    Howard Niemi

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    get your dog out and TRAIN! caryalsobrook 2013

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