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Thread: Single Bark when leaving line on blinds

  1. #1
    Senior Member Jerry Beil's Avatar
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    Default Single Bark when leaving line on blinds

    I have a 2.5 year old Lab that is somewhere between master and senior level. He does great marking and his blind work has tightened up quite a bit the last few weeks.

    We have one issue that I'd like to fix that I'm not sure how best to approach. When leaving the line on blinds, he will bark a single bark, and occasionally spin with the bark.

    I think it's a pressure reaction or release. He loves to work, and loves blinds. It seems to be worse when it takes me a bit to get him lined up.

    I am considering the following approaches:

    1. No, Quiet, Call him back, and put him up and run it later. I think this would probably take a long time, and it would likely make it worse. I am pretty sure he'd feel even more pressure on the line if I do this.
    2. No, Quiet, Call him back, heel him back off the line and set him up again. Again I think more pressure and it might be worse, but I could repeat it enough times to have success.
    3. Keep running him and as he gets better and better on blinds, he's going to get more comfortable, feel less pressure, and the bark will perhaps go away. If not, it's just because he's happy to go and he'll have enough of a comfort level with things that he would understand for sure why he got called back to the line.
    4. Take him to the line, line him up, change the target, line him up, heel him off the line, bring him back, line him up etc, with lots of praise when he lines up how I want him, until he gets kinda bored with it, then send him. (Basically get him more comfortable with lining up and desensitize him to the pressure.)

    I've not done the first couple before because when sending him, and he's on the right line, I want him to roll on out there because he's doing it right on a decent line, and if I call him back, I'll have a harder time (thus more pressure) getting him lined up because when he took a good line I called him back.

    Any thoughts?
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  2. #2
    Senior Member John Robinson's Avatar
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    It's not a problem, let it go. Most judges love seeing an eager dog launch hard on a blind with a little yip. If you try to fix it with any kind of pressure, and withholding the retrieve is pressure, you will only make things worse.

  3. #3
    Senior Member HNTFSH's Avatar
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    Agreed. Mine growls a little. Must be the Cosmo in him.
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    Senior Member Sharon Potter's Avatar
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    Solution: Line him up, then stand up straight and wait. How long? Until he settles and relaxes. Then send.
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  5. #5
    Senior Member Mary Lynn Metras's Avatar
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    Lardy has a dog on his DVDs and he calls him back. If you don't do something and the problem becomes bigger then what?? Just curious. IMO
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  6. #6
    Senior Member Good Dogs's Avatar
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    Little problems can become big ones. My guy went through a phase, especially when I took what he thought was too long to get him lined up, with a loud bark on the send. Then it started with barking out in the field anytime I cast him. So, back to correcting the problem at the line, and eventually he settled down in the field. A firm "no noise," reheel and a quick send seemed to get the message across. No retrieve unless he was quiet, but a quick reward (the release) when he was quiet. If I were you I'd try to correct the issue now rather than risking future, larger issues.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Duckquilizer's Avatar
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    The concern I would have is the spin...that will possibly turn to a pop if not taken care of.
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  8. #8
    Senior Member Scott Adams's Avatar
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    I would not recall. If he spins or barks I would say sit, move up to the dog, say quiet, (or sit if he spins) in a normal talking voice. (don't yell) send again. I would do this using the Bird boy drill, on very short blinds on grass.
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  9. #9
    Senior Member Jerry Beil's Avatar
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    It is a full on bark, not just a yelp. He also will do it the first time, and then maybe the second time, but if I run more blinds that day it seems to get better/go away, unless more pressure is involved. Pressure in this case being a long time lining up, or recalling him for a bad initial line. He kicks up dirt on the way out on blinds like he does on marks.

    He only spins when he's especially amped up. He spins and barks - like saying bleep you, it's about time you let me go.

    I think if I take longer, or let him wait until he's calm, it would make it worse because that is the pressure he's feeling. Since he doesn't seem to do it on marks, I'm thinking it's something he's got in his head on blinds. He has occasionally barked when cast field, but usually in more pressure situations, but those situations are pretty few now - he's taking my casts very reliably now, so not much attrition or collar pressure in the field. Kind of the Catch 22. More pressure and work through it, or less pressure and finesse it.

    I think, on blinds, that if I get him set and send him quick (suggested by one of the guys I train with), and don't worry so much about the line when working on blinds, it will help him get past it.

    Then work on improving the initial line through other drills.

    Kind of related, we're working on blinds up to 200 yards sometimes a bit longer (lots of times shorter). I was talking to one of the guys I train with, and we decided to dress field trial style while training (white coats (or black depending on the situation), black gloves, black hat with white inside. The thought being that while training, we want to be 100% sure the dog sees the casts clearly. I gotta say that after only a couple sessions this way, his handling at distance has improved dramatically.
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    Rebel's Ruffian Hank - Hank - 6/05/2001 - 2/3/2011 - Profile Picture
    Blue Ridge Pot O Gold - Sťamus - 1/22/2011 -
    Old North State Queen Anne's Revenge- Annie- 3/21/2013-

  10. #10
    Senior Member Jerry Beil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Adams View Post
    I would not recall. If he spins or barks I would say sit, move up to the dog, say quiet, (or sit if he spins) in a normal talking voice. (don't yell) send again. I would do this using the Bird boy drill, on very short blinds on grass.
    99% sure I'd never get him to do it on short blinds on grass. It's the lining up pressure that I think is getting to him when he's not sure where he's going.

    I'll try to take some video today and post it.
    <><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>
    Donway's Dixieland Delight - Dixie 2/24/1997 - 2001
    Rebel's Ruffian Hank - Hank - 6/05/2001 - 2/3/2011 - Profile Picture
    Blue Ridge Pot O Gold - Sťamus - 1/22/2011 -
    Old North State Queen Anne's Revenge- Annie- 3/21/2013-

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