The RetrieverTraining.Net Forums The Retriever Academy
Total Retriever Training with Mike Lardy
Hawkeye Media Gunners Up Tritronics Outdoor Media
Page 1 of 5 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 48

Thread: eye contact ?

  1. #1
    Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    Mid Missouri
    Posts
    72

    Default eye contact ?

    I made a lot of mistakes with my last dog as he was the first I have ever trained. One of my pet peeves with him is that when I sit him on the whistle when he gets off line of a downed bird, he will turn, sit and sometimes he is looking at everything but me. Drives me nuts but eventually he looks, then I cast him. I did some research and found some info on training eye contact. Some use clickers and treats and reward eye contact. Anyone tried training it? The only downfall I could see is if he is looking at you when he should be marking. I was thinking of teaching it with my new pup using the command "watch". That way if his eyes wander I can use it. Maybe im over thinking it. Just curious if any of you guys have tried teaching it? Thanks for any input

  2. #2
    Senior Member metalone67's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Oh
    Posts
    2,184

    Default

    I use mark on marks. When you sit him and he is not watching you use recall then sit again. It's the same as if your dog doesn't sit squarely to you on a remote sit.
    The foundation to a great retriever is obedience.
    Firestorms Full Throttle Chevy aka Callie-Roo 7/5/2007 - 10/25/2013 I miss you every day
    Proud owner of Kona's Surfer Girl, aka Loki.

  3. #3
    Senior Member rotcsig443's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    MS during School. AR during duck season
    Posts
    120

    Default

    I had the same thing happen with my first lab and she still drives me nuts doing it. Started enforcing eye contact at 6 weeks with the pup after her and it helped a ton with her sitting square and to stare a hole through me on remote sits waiting to be casted. Additionally, it didn't cause her to look at/watch me for a mark because if taught properly she will be able to recognize the difference in being released to retrieve a mark and looking at you for a command.

  4. #4
    Senior Member T-Pines's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Northern Illinois
    Posts
    961

    Default

    PatDuck,

    I notice that a couple weeks ago you inquired about Hillmann's puppy program. If you decided to go with Hillmann then you will learn that focus is an important element of his methods, and in particular, is incorporated into the way he teaches "sit". The early sit work progresses into remote sit work as distance and duration are gradually increased. This blends into his Traffic Cop technique. Focus on the handler is a key element of all of this work. By the time you begin introducing retrieve objects and remote releases to retrieve to this sequence, you will have taught a very young puppy that he is required to be 100% focused on you before being released (cast) for the retrieve. The retrieve itself is a very strong reinforcer of this behavior.

    If you are not following Hillmann, be sure to require focus on you during your remote sit training right from the beginning. This can be reinforced with almost any form of reward that you use in your training.

    Regarding your experience with your first (older) dog, there may be two areas to consider in terms of mistakes to avoid this time around with your new pup. The first is teaching focus on you as part of all your remote sit training. The second is avoidance behavior. A dog that is looking away, avoiding eye contact, could be exhibiting avoidance, which is sign of distress from confusion or inability to deal with perceived pressure of the situation.

    Good luck!

    Jim

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Ontario
    Posts
    154

    Default

    I use eye contact in every day life. The dogs must look at me before I release them for their food, they must look at me before I let them out of the kennel and before I let them out of crates. They also have to look at me before I give them treats which is a good way to teach eye contact. Eye contact should be part of life not just an occurrence during field work.
    deb

  6. #6
    Senior Member Mary Lynn Metras's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Watford, ONT
    Posts
    3,383

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by T-Pines View Post
    PatDuck,

    I notice that a couple weeks ago you inquired about Hillmann's puppy program. If you decided to go with Hillmann then you will learn that focus is an important element of his methods, and in particular, is incorporated into the way he teaches "sit". The early sit work progresses into remote sit work as distance and duration are gradually increased. This blends into his Traffic Cop technique. Focus on the handler is a key element of all of this work. By the time you begin introducing retrieve objects and remote releases to retrieve to this sequence, you will have taught a very young puppy that he is required to be 100% focused on you before being released (cast) for the retrieve. The retrieve itself is a very strong reinforcer of this behavior.

    If you are not following Hillmann, be sure to require focus on you during your remote sit training right from the beginning. This can be reinforced with almost any form of reward that you use in your training.

    Regarding your experience with your first (older) dog, there may be two areas to consider in terms of mistakes to avoid this time around with your new pup. The first is teaching focus on you as part of all your remote sit training. The second is avoidance behavior. A dog that is looking away, avoiding eye contact, could be exhibiting avoidance, which is sign of distress from confusion or inability to deal with perceived pressure of the situation.

    Good luck!

    Jim
    Good answer. If you follow this program the focus just comes naturally. They want to watch you even when you walk away from them! I first start with the clicker and treats.
    HRCH Scaupgetters Tarnation QAA
    HR Blackie 2 CGN, WCI
    Metras's Hashtag Mickey


    "Knowing how important right timing is in accomplishing right actions"
    Uncle Ray

  7. #7
    Senior Member JusticeDog's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Illinois/Wisconsin
    Posts
    6,189

    Default

    I use eye contact from the moment I bring the puppy home at seven weeks old. And yes, I use treats to train the behavior. Every time the puppy looks at me I say the word "yes" in a happy voice and give him a treat - actually several treats. I become the human Pez dispenser. My word "Yes" is in lieu of a clicker. Too many people don't get the timing of a clicker just right. So I teach the word "yes". I start this when the puppy is in sitting. I work this to where they are not watching my hands, as they soon figure out where the treats are coming from. I can put my hands behind my back, out to the sides etc. And the dogs eyes remain on my face. I then shape this behavior by putting treats out to the side of the puppy on little white plates. I put them a few feet out and start with one side at a time. This is my intro the casting that I can do in my living room even when the snow is a few feet deep. They do not good dinner, treats etc. without making eye contact. By the time you get to the yard, It is a well-trained behavior. Everything is happy happy happy. There are no negative corrections. I make a game out of everything. Casting behaviors I stretch out and use On an abandoned baseball diamond.

    I remember Jim Van Engen calling me about gavel, asking me if I had done a lot of three handed casting with him. I asked him why he wanted to do know and his response was, well he really likes it! I had done Gav's force fetch and initial yard work. And that is what you want to see in order to progress your puppy.
    Susan

    FC Tribute to Justice, JH "Honor"
    FC AFC Contempt of Court "Ruckus"
    Medal Of Honor, QAA "Valor"
    HRCH Kirby's High Sierra, SH, QAA "Kirby"
    HRCH Niki Snowbird, SH, QAA "Niki"
    Southland Order In the Court, QAA "Gavel" July 17, 2002- March 24, 2013
    Southland Rusty Nail - derby points, qual placements "Rusty"
    www.justiceretrievers.com

  8. #8
    Senior Member Hunt'EmUp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    1,904

    Default

    Hmm dog doesn't look at me, I might try one more whistle; then cast, he doesn't do the correct cast, whistle, sit, (NO!) correction; cast again. Dog doesn't move-doesn't look; toot toot toot, whistle-sit, (No!) correction; re-cast. Dog finally takes the correct cast, whistle-sit and looks at you (Good). Once you get into this type of advanced training; The gauntlet has been thrown; and you might have to do this a bunch of times in succession, to get the point across. However This is an avoidance behavior; Dog needs to learn it's his responsibility to look, or there are consequences.

    Eye contact training etc. is puppy work; can work with puppies; but when it happens an advanced trained dog who knows what is expected and is avoiding looking at you, becuz they simply don't want to (aka blowing you off).

    If you don't feel comfortable doing this yourself, fear you might mess the dog up, or think something else is going on I'd suggest having a professional evaluate the dog, and teach you how to work your dog through this. Any intelligent dog at any level will try eye avoidance, every once in awhile; Many highly advanced dogs will do it to see what they can get away with when they run for different handlers. It's a test on how the handler will respond, fail the test and they pretty much know they can run the show.
    Last edited by Hunt'EmUp; 01-31-2014 at 11:28 AM.
    "They's Just DAWGS"
    "Hunting is a skill to be learned whether you do it early or late it still needs to be learned"
    "I train dogs, Not papers"

    GMRH HRCH Quick MH (most importantly Duck/Upland Enthusiast)
    MHR HRCH Lakota MH (most importantly Upland/Duck Enthusiast)
    SHR Storm.. the Pup (Beginning Upland & Waterfowl Enthusiast)

  9. #9
    Senior Member JusticeDog's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Illinois/Wisconsin
    Posts
    6,189

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Hunt'EmUp View Post
    Hmm dog doesn't look at me, I might try one more whistle; then cast, he doesn't do the correct cast, whistle, sit, (NO!) correction; cast again. Dog doesn't move-doesn't look; toot toot toot, whistle-sit, (No!) correction; re-cast. Dog finally takes the correct cast, whistle-sit and looks at you (Good). Once you get into this type of advanced training; The gauntlet has been thrown; and you might have to do this a bunch of times in succession, to get the point across. However This is an avoidance behavior; Dog needs to learn it's his responsibility to look, or there are consequences.

    Eye contact training etc. is puppy work; but what your describing is an advanced trained dog who knows what is expected and is avoiding looking at you, becuz he doesn't want to (aka blowing you off).

    If you don't feel comfortable doing this yourself, or think something else is going on I'd suggest having a professional evaluate the dog, and teach you how to work your dog through this.
    I was thinking of teaching it with my new pup using the command "watch". That way if his eyes wander I can use it. Maybe im over thinking it. Just curious if any of you guys have tried teaching it? Thanks for any input

    This is what people are responding to.... he doesn't want to create another dog that avoids looking at him.
    Susan

    FC Tribute to Justice, JH "Honor"
    FC AFC Contempt of Court "Ruckus"
    Medal Of Honor, QAA "Valor"
    HRCH Kirby's High Sierra, SH, QAA "Kirby"
    HRCH Niki Snowbird, SH, QAA "Niki"
    Southland Order In the Court, QAA "Gavel" July 17, 2002- March 24, 2013
    Southland Rusty Nail - derby points, qual placements "Rusty"
    www.justiceretrievers.com

  10. #10
    Senior Member Hunt'EmUp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    1,904

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by JusticeDog View Post
    I was thinking of teaching it with my new pup using the command "watch". That way if his eyes wander I can use it. Maybe im over thinking it. Just curious if any of you guys have tried teaching it? Thanks for any input

    This is what people are responding to.... he doesn't want to create another dog that avoids looking at him.
    I guess I loss that in the different people with dogs not looking at them and the developed habit... not enough coffee

    In any case sure go for it; do it with a pup, everything is exciting and fun with a youngster that wants to learn; any game-training increases their awareness and brain development. Still understand eventually eye contact will have to come with enforcement, it's a natural avoidance behavior that pops up at all levels, whether you've done eye contact training or not.
    "They's Just DAWGS"
    "Hunting is a skill to be learned whether you do it early or late it still needs to be learned"
    "I train dogs, Not papers"

    GMRH HRCH Quick MH (most importantly Duck/Upland Enthusiast)
    MHR HRCH Lakota MH (most importantly Upland/Duck Enthusiast)
    SHR Storm.. the Pup (Beginning Upland & Waterfowl Enthusiast)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •