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Thread: Critical Phases of Training...

  1. #11
    Senior Member Aussie's Avatar
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    I worry about my critical phases of training more. Nature and nuture.

    How dogs learn is completely fasciting to this pea brain.
    Field trial labradors, the wind beneath my wings,

    sometimes poop under my boots.

  2. #12
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    I'll tell you which phase of training is the ABSOLUTELY MOST CRITICAL! Whichever one I'm studying in the Hillmann/Lardy/Smartworks material, blogs, DVD's or Retrievers ONLINE pages in front of me at the moment. I want it all.

  3. #13
    Senior Member BJGatley's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1tulip View Post
    I'll tell you which phase of training is the ABSOLUTELY MOST CRITICAL! Whichever one I'm studying in the Hillmann/Lardy/Smartworks material, blogs, DVD's or Retrievers ONLINE pages in front of me at the moment. I want it all.
    But at one point does your dog understand all of those stuff you mention above. It is a two way street....You understand, but does the dog...

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by BJGatley View Post
    But at one point does your dog understand all of those stuff you mention above. It is a two way street....You understand, but does the dog...
    Right. So here is what all the experts appear to agree upon. The most fundamentally important phase of training is that part where you and your dog begin to relate to and read one another. I would say that is (for the time being) what I like most about Hillmann's stuff. At some point, I know I'll need the help of a good training group. I know it takes a lot of terrain, and water and people and stuff to do simulations and produce a finished product. But, in the past, I think I've been too fast to turn to others for help and not really persevered to develop a 1-on-1 relationship with my dog.

    I would hazard a guess that this is the one thing that even the world's greatest pro could never produce in your dog.

  5. #15
    Senior Member Steve Shaver's Avatar
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    Most will usually say basics and that is where you put in the foundation to build on. Cant really argue with that but I believe it starts way earlier than that. If basics is the foundation then 7 weeks to 6 months is the footing that the foundation sits on. Assuming the pup is born with all the tools the breeding can provide it starts being shaped by us as soon as we bring it home. I believe good pups are born perfect and it is up to us to build on that and not let bad habits get started. Bad habits seem to be learned a lot easier than good ones. A good comparison that I always keep in mind comes from watching a toddler pick something up off the ground. He will bend at the knees keeping the back straight. This is the way the body was designed to do it. They do it naturally the right way until they get older and start thinking a little more then the right way starts to disappear and they will bend at the waist, this is not the way the body was engineered to do it.
    Most pups at 7 weeks will naturally do things right. They will do angle entries into the water, across roads, ditches, cover etc. at a young age. If they have the prey drive to chase and retrieve then that is all they think about early on and will be focused only on the retrieve and point A to point B is the best way to get there. It is only later when they start getting a little smarter that they start thinking of ways to get there quicker and faster by avoiding cover or running down the bank and squaring into the water. I try to instill these habits before they get older and start thinking on their own. I work hard on developing habits on concepts such as this right away but the pup doesn't know it he just thinks were having fun. Starting at 7 weeks it should be all fun for the pup but at the same time I am very serious about what I am doing, the pup just doesn't know that. I actually think pre-basics is most important. Just as basics prepares them for transition pre-basics prepare then for basics. I actually think The most important time is from 7 weeks to 4 months.

  6. #16
    Senior Member Jennifer Henion's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Shaver View Post
    Most will usually say basics and that is where you put in the foundation to build on. Cant really argue with that but I believe it starts way earlier than that. If basics is the foundation then 7 weeks to 6 months is the footing that the foundation sits on. Assuming the pup is born with all the tools the breeding can provide it starts being shaped by us as soon as we bring it home. I believe good pups are born perfect and it is up to us to build on that and not let bad habits get started. Bad habits seem to be learned a lot easier than good ones. A good comparison that I always keep in mind comes from watching a toddler pick something up off the ground. He will bend at the knees keeping the back straight. This is the way the body was designed to do it. They do it naturally the right way until they get older and start thinking a little more then the right way starts to disappear and they will bend at the waist, this is not the way the body was engineered to do it.
    Most pups at 7 weeks will naturally do things right. They will do angle entries into the water, across roads, ditches, cover etc. at a young age. If they have the prey drive to chase and retrieve then that is all they think about early on and will be focused only on the retrieve and point A to point B is the best way to get there. It is only later when they start getting a little smarter that they start thinking of ways to get there quicker and faster by avoiding cover or running down the bank and squaring into the water. I try to instill these habits before they get older and start thinking on their own. I work hard on developing habits on concepts such as this right away but the pup doesn't know it he just thinks were having fun. Starting at 7 weeks it should be all fun for the pup but at the same time I am very serious about what I am doing, the pup just doesn't know that. I actually think pre-basics is most important. Just as basics prepares them for transition pre-basics prepare then for basics. I actually think The most important time is from 7 weeks to 4 months.
    Great post, Steve!

  7. #17
    Senior Member Mary Lynn Metras's Avatar
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    I think the sit command is very important. Being consistent with whatever we teach our dogs. And the Hillman DVD certainly helps "sit means sit" JMO
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  8. #18
    Senior Member John Lash's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Shaver View Post
    Most will usually say basics and that is where you put in the foundation to build on. Cant really argue with that but I believe it starts way earlier than that. If basics is the foundation then 7 weeks to 6 months is the footing that the foundatioon sits on. Starting at 7 weeks it should be all fun for the pup but at the same time I am very serious about what I am doing, the pup just doesn't know that. I actually think pre-basics is most important. Just as basics prepares them for transition pre-basics prepare then for basics. I actually think The most important time is from 7 weeks to 4 months.
    Agree! You could also say from 7 weeks on.

    All pups come with an ember inside them. Some strong some barely there. You can nurture it, cultivate it and get a roaring fire from it or very quickly squelch it and get nothing.
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    "Field trials are not a game for good dogs. They're for great dogs with great training." E. Graham

  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mary Lynn Metras View Post
    I think the sit command is very important. Being consistent with whatever we teach our dogs. And the Hillman DVD certainly helps "sit means sit" JMO
    I have said this a total of 1,374 times during various stages of training my first dog, but now that he is almost 3 I think I really have started to understand what folks mean when they say "sit means sit". EVERYTHING good starts out with a good, quick, reliable sit.
    Steve Wyatt

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  10. #20
    Senior Member MooseGooser's Avatar
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    What surprised me, was when I decided to get help with my training.
    I sure did try to follow a program,, but Goosers lack of Brain matter, and reading comprehension made it hard at best. (6th grade education that took 16 years)

    The surprise was when I was being instructed on Pile work,, T and TT. The amount of time spent there (not days, or a couple a weeks like Ive heard a good dogs get it.)
    All the issues that was worked on. Sit standard upheld to a very high level, straight going out,no flaring, straight returns, acceptable response to the collar and pressure, knowing a good time to praise. The end result was a dog happy to do this drill work,, and an easier start to cold blinds than I have ever experienced before...

    It really was the critical point in training for me. (also a ton less confusing for the dog) It showed me I am clueless.. It showed a different level of expectation of the dogs performance. (mine too)

    Being shown HOW,, in PERSON,,, by a very experienced Pro trainer is priceless..

    a good training group is a pure necessity.... Far more important than a DVD you watch while you drink and fall asleep..

    Clueless regards, but working on it,,,

    Gooser
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