It appears that you believe that the correction you give your dogs by using a sharp tone is more fair than the correction I give my dog using an even tone of voice. I rarely need to press the button on the ecollar because my dog is in the habit of behaving, and my goal is to have my dog perform consistently without threatening her.
Good discussion, Kennel Maiden. Please don't take the biased comments personally. It happens when people are passionate about what works for them. And admire you for trying to get organized and more structured for the new year! I'm doing the same and it's a fun project.
I'm glad you have had so much success in the past and I know exactly what you mean about the sharp tone being enough.
Renee, there are some dogs who are born wanting to follow and be good little pack members, more than others. My dog is like this and has made long eye contact with people since she was 7 weeks old or younger. Any slight body movement or different tone, immediately gets her attention and gets her thinking of how to please. It's not that they associate it with something harsh or punitive, it's that they are instinctually sensitive to the difference.
I don't believe my correction is more fair than yours Renee! I've never met or passed comment on you or your dogs? Merely saying how I correct. Each to their own....
British, Irish, American, Chinese and Indian; they are all just Labs, they are the most versatile dog in the world, and they all have come from the same foundation stock as such they all have the same capabilities to succeed in any venue in any country, selective breeding for certain traits or not. Most of all and what we often fail to remember as we continuously clump these dogs, as being show (pretty yet slow), British(calm and stoic), American Field (Driven and Hard), is that every dog is an individual, every dog has some excellent traits and some that need work, No Perfect dog for any venue was ever born perfect, they were born with potential; the overall inherit versatility of the Labrador breed, and a few extra quirks from their parents. However we fail to realize our part in all of this, we see certain dogs in certain venues, because we ourselves take that potential and develop certain traits. We utilize methods that empathize this over that, to place a dog in a mold of what it should be to succeed in our chosen venue and we often remove individual dogs that don't fit that mold. Yet the lines still cross back and forth and they still all trace back to that foundation stock.
What it all comes down to, I've trained American Field (some are hard and driven, most are normal labs), I've trained a few imports,(some are calm, but they also have the potential to be maniacs, most are normal labs), I've trained show (some are slow with no instinct, most are just normal labs, which were never been developed toward the sport side). Point of it is you want a lab for your venue you buy a puppy from that stock (stack the odds a bit), but we do the Breed and the Keepers of the Breed an Extreme Disservice clumping dogs as being this or that. They are still all Labradors, they were developed for versatility, spectacular dogs for any venue can come from anywhere. That's the Point of having a Lab.
There's Something to be said of a breed where, Joe-Blow with no real dog experience (aka Me starting out); can take a $200 penny-saver Labrador bitch, train her on the weekends (with Water-Dog ). Go out and run these HT< FT<OB<A thingies, hunt-track (birds, deer, people) Retrieve (rabbits, decoys, & beer). The dog is very capable and very happy to of do whatever is asked, sleeps on the couch, and rides in the passenger seat the other ~90% of the time.
Last edited by Hunt'EmUp; 12-04-2013 at 12:28 PM.
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Hunt'Em Up - the show and working labs in the UK are now so widely polarised they are almost two separate breeds! So, selective breeding really has taken it's toll. A few are trying for a 'dual purpose' lab again, but are not really attaining that goal. The last time there was a dual champion in this country for labs was half a century or more ago I believe? So, I don't agree a lab is a lab any more I am afraid. You couldn't take a UK show champion lab and put it into the field, and expect it to do anything purposeful. It would likely have a hard attack, and certainly wouldn't be jumping over anything. Likewise, some of our whippety, slim labs would just be laughed at in the show ring! So, I do believe we have moulded the breed for our own purposes. Otherwise we wouldn't all be seeking those special sires/dams to breed from. And the way you have moulded the breed for your game over there, I would contend, is somewhat different to how we are moulding the breed for our game over here. Of course it is. We are selecting the desirable traits for what we want in 'our' breed, be that looks, temperament or trainability...
If it is true that the harsh voice or slight body language clearly etc. etc. is effective, then one could use that instead of the nick from the ecollar to communicate with the dog. Where Lardy nicks his dog, for example, just give yours the evil eye, and you would have the same result.
In case you've not heard or read it yet, I'll repeat an old saying. The first time I ever saw it in print online, it was typed by my fingers.
(although frankly, I probably heard it, or something like it, from someone else while training years ago)
Question: What's the one thing two dog trainers are nearly sure to agree upon?
Answer: That the third guy they're talking about is doing something wrong with his training.
I have found that generally, you UK folks are masters at polite disagreement. Some of us North Americans....not so much.
"Determining and applying the criteria for when and when not to use correction is the essence of the art of dog training. I make a distinction between a mistake and a lack of effort." - Mike Lardy - Volume I "After Collar Conditioning"