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Thread: Cornfields, young dog, and pheasant hunting

  1. #1
    Senior Member uplandbird's Avatar
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    I know the obvious, try to keep them away.
    However, I had a scare this weekend when my young Fin went from the CRP into a hundred acre cornfield next to it. (I like to think he was tracking a bird) saw him disappear into it and I should have called him right back but I did not. He was gone for over an hour, the wind was howling so I couldn't hear him nor him me.

    Would you stay in last spot you saw him or go crazy like I did until my friends calmed me down? I got a lot of exercise running around like a chicken with my head cut off blowing the here whistle and not knowing what else to do. My friends continued on down the CRP field and back to the suburban to try to circle the field and look for him.

    I finally crashed and cried right were I had last seen him. While my friend circled the cornfield as best as they could to look for him. Suddenly I heard crashing in the corn and I hoped it was a 70 lb lab crashing through not a whitetail deer.

    Yes, it was him, seemingly unshaken but glad to see me! Wow, I never want to go through that again. Please if anybody else has some suggestions, I hope to hear them. I don't like corn but there is still acres and acres of it still up due to rainy fall. FYI, can't afford the gps collar, I wish! I just don't know how to get him to circle back a lot sooner!
    Thanks so much, hope all are having a great fall, Maria
    Last edited by uplandbird; 10-21-2013 at 11:36 AM.

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    Try putting a cow bell (seriously, they make em for dogs) on him, or invest in a gps collar tracker if your going to be losing site of him on a regular basis

    ETA: Sorry just saw GPS collar not an option, but a suggestion for others in similar circumstances
    Last edited by freezeland; 10-21-2013 at 11:49 AM.

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    Senior Member HNTFSH's Avatar
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    Do you have recall control on a running bird?
    We shoot dogs with a Canon

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    Senior Member HNTFSH's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by freezeland View Post
    Try putting a cow bell (seriously, they make em for dogs) on him, or invest in a gps collar tracker if your going to be losing site of him on a regular basis
    That'll make hard pressed birds run even harder.

    If I didn't have control on recall I wouldn't hunt the dog within 2 miles of a road. The alternative is training on a Tone most collars have to be a recall command.

    I use mine for Sit but would consider HERE if I hunted big windy water.
    We shoot dogs with a Canon

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    I would suggest training for TONE on the collar.

    My dog was collar conditioned and retriever trained for a couple of years before I installed an underground fence. When I was training for the fence, I walked along with him, and everytime the tone went off, I jerked him back and ran about 10 yards back from the fence line. SOMEHOW, he now thinks that means run to my side.

    SO, whenever I am in the yard, or I have let him out at night, and I do not want to get on the whistle, I will hit the tone on the receiver, and he comes running.

    I have also been out in the field, just letting him roam. If I hit the tone, he immediately comes running.

    Now, with all of that being said. If he did not see me, would he come running to me (like in your situation of him being in a corn field)? Not sure, but it would help save your voice, and whistle lungs....

    THANKFULLY, he returned to you unharmed, and ready to go out again.

    Good luck

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    Senior Member twall's Avatar
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    I have hunted around and in standing corn a lot, started long before I used an e collar. I have never had a dog disappear in cover that long. I tend to like my dogs to work close to me and they tend to keep track of me since I am prone to changes directions when a piece of cover looks birdy. I don't consciously train dogs this way but, it is how I like them to work.

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    Short of GPS tracking, collar tone sounds like the way to go. I have as question for those who suggested it. Can a dog, like us, lose a sense of direction in high cover? When your within sight I see the tone option as being the best, but if they lose sight of us for long and become disoriented possibly as the OP's dog did, can they still associate the direction to which to return if they only hear a tone eminating from there neck, then what? Thats why I was thinking a cow bell, if they cannot find us, then potentially we can find them.
    Last edited by freezeland; 10-21-2013 at 01:43 PM.

  8. #8
    Senior Member HNTFSH's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by freezeland View Post
    Short of GPS tracking, collar tone sounds like the way to go. I have as question for those who suggested it. Can a dog, like us, lose a sense of direction in high cover? When your within sight I see the tone option as being the best, but if they lose sight of us for long and become disoriented possibly as the OP's dog did, can they still associate the direction to which to return if they only hear a tone eminating from there neck, then what? Thats why I was thinking a cow bell, if they cannot find us, then potentially we can find them.
    I hope this doesn't sound harsh but if someone can't manage not losing their flushing dog (let's say lab) pheasant hunting - they really shouldn't be out there.

    First - recall is key, even if running a bird. Train it.

    Second - yes...between a recall whistle and a tone command, at least the dog KNOWS it's supposed to return. Now. I think the dog hears the whistle and hollar anyway, they just ignore it. Train it.

    Third - they can find their way home from miles away - they can find their way back to a whistle. They're smarter that way than we are.

    Fourth - there's no reason to let a dog run standing corn to begin with. Unless it's smart enough to get in there and drive a bird back out to you.

    Fifth - if you really haven't trained your flushing dog to work in range then you have to buy a beeper collar with transmitter capable on/off switch so you can find your dog that blows off your recall.

    Or...you can choose to hunt preserves and let your dog go visit the other fields too. Albeit - somebody gonna get mad.
    Last edited by HNTFSH; 10-21-2013 at 01:58 PM.
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    Senior Member Joe Brakke's Avatar
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    Invest in Tritronics. Its the only thing that works when they are hot and focused on the trail of a bird or game and considering the windy situation you describe. I got it primarily due to the coyote stories. AND, I wanted to able to pull my dog off a missed bird that is heading for a barb wire fence or across a road or gliding out of site into the unknown. I've seen dogs that had met the barb wire fence and its ugly. I also have heard of dogs ran over on the road while hunting. During hunting season there are also posts of a missing dog in a certain area or a found dog wondering in the fields. I can do any of this to my dogs so I must have control at range and when out of sight.

    Also, as above noted, using tone to signal your dog to quarter or change direction is a good method rather than alerting game with the whistle of voice.

    Glad you got your pup back!
    Last edited by Joe Brakke; 10-21-2013 at 02:41 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by HNTFSH View Post
    I hope this doesn't sound harsh but if someone can't manage not losing their flushing dog (let's say lab) pheasant hunting - they really shouldn't be out there.

    First - recall is key, even if running a bird. Train it.

    Second - yes...between a recall whistle and a tone command, at least the dog KNOWS it's supposed to return. Now. I think the dog hears the whistle and hollar anyway, they just ignore it. Train it.

    Third - they can find their way home from miles away - they can find their way back to a whistle. They're smarter that way than we are.

    Fourth - there's no reason to let a dog run standing corn to begin with. Unless it's smart enough to get in there and drive a bird back out to you.

    Fifth - if you really haven't trained your flushing dog to work in range then you have to buy a beeper collar with transmitter capable on/off switch so you can find your dog that blows off your recall.

    Or...you can choose to hunt preserves and let your dog go visit the other fields too. Albeit - somebody gonna get mad.
    No, I dont take it as harsh. Was just asking a simple question on my part if a dog can get disoriented. I totally agree a dog should be recalled trained, especially to the whistle. Not all whistles are good, so investing in a good one is vitally important so they do hear it. Especially in wind. Finding their way back from miles is the exception, generally not the rule. Thats not to say they are not smarter than we think as you said. I know I can get turned around in the woods, I would think it is potentially possible for a dog too as well in high cover.

    I wouldn't let a dog run in to standing corn to begin with either, even if I thought the dog was smart enough to push a bird back out to me. I think the OP will never forget her experience with ther dog getting in to the corn. I am very happy for her that she recovered it.

    Beeper collar with on/off is great to and definitly preferable to a bell. My point was being able to find the dog, not everyone has their dogs trained to the level that we hope we do.

    Bottom line is they should be trained to recall, no doubt about it. I think we can all agree on that fact. And if not they should not be out there.

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