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Thread: Swim-by and City Living

  1. #1
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    Default Swim-by and City Living

    Iím training my first dog and have really enjoyed it so far. I sent her to a pro for formal obedience and force fetch and have done the rest of the training myself. Iím following Fowl Dawgs now and will likely switch to a more comprehensive program soon. We are finishing up double T and should be ready to start swim-by in the next week. My problem is that I live in the city and my closest access to suitable water is over an hour away. I'm wondering, can swim-by be effectively taught over a series of weekends? Don't lash me for asking about timing, but any thoughts on how many training sessions it takes most dogs to get it? Also, can I move on to pattern blinds before completing swim-by, only teaching it on the weekends? My other option would be to send my dog back to the pro and knock it out, but I enjoy training and would prefer to do it myself. Thank you in advance for any advice. I've found the RTF to be an invaluable source of information!

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    Senior Member Todd Caswell's Avatar
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    I enjoy doing as much as I can as well but if I was in your situation this is what I would do. Other wise it's going to hold you and the dog up all summer.

    My other option would be to send my dog back to the pro and knock it out,

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    I went to a golf course pond pretty close to my house.

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    In my opinion, going a week between swim by sessions will not work as well as getting it done in a week or two with nearly daily exposure, I live in a city and know of the problems of which we speak. If you already have a trainer who has worked with the dog, then send send him off to do this aspect of the training, there will still be plenty of training you can do yourself but you will have a much more enjoyable time with all your advanced water work once a solid swim by is in place.

    Others may wish to chime in, however I personally would have reservations about swimming my dog in a golf course pond because of the concentration of chemicals used to maintain greens etc.
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    Senior Member Rick S's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by blind ambition View Post
    In my opinion, going a week between swim by sessions will not work as well as getting it done in a week or two with nearly daily exposure, I live in a city and know of the problems of which we speak. If you already have a trainer who has worked with the dog, then send send him off to do this aspect of the training, there will still be plenty of training you can do yourself but you will have a much more enjoyable time with all your advanced water work once a solid swim by is in place.

    Others may wish to chime in, however I personally would have reservations about swimming my dog in a golf course pond because of the concentration of chemicals used to maintain greens etc.
    Depends on the golf course. As a person responsible for taking care of a golf course, I can say I'd much rather have my dog swim in a golf course pond than most park or neighborhood ponds. He does nearly everyday along side another golden that has been doing the same for the last 14 years. We maintain strict standards around water as a part of maintaining our Audubon certification. The days of harsh chemicals, uneducated and irresponsible applications are long gone. Like I said, it does depend on the golf course, and the people responsible for making applications.
    Last edited by Rick S; 02-13-2014 at 09:14 PM.

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    Don't know where you are in Dallas, but there is a pond in the vicinity of I35 and Sandy Lake road in Carrollton. Pond is in McKinnis (sp) park. I have used it for a couple of dogs. I haven't been by in several months but the city keeps it clean.

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    Senior Member crackerd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick S View Post
    Depends on the golf course. As a person responsible for taking care of a golf course, I can say I'd much rather have my dog swim in a golf course pond than most park or neighborhood ponds. He does nearly everyday along side another golden that has been doing the same for the last 14 years. We maintain strict standards around water as a part of maintaining our Audubon certification. The days of harsh chemicals, uneducated and irresponsible applications are long gone.
    Bravo to this, Rick!

    I've done swim-by on big box store retention ponds as a last resort - but always asked what the ponds contained first and of course for permission to use them.

    UTMallard, if you're looking for a last last resort, maybe instead of swim-by, go with the skate-by or snowshoe-by



    until you find suitable water/water temps. "Wounded duck" mileage may vary...

    MG

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    Senior Member DoubleHaul's Avatar
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    A good swim by pond is probably the toughest thing for us city slickers to find. I can do a pretty decent amount of training in office and industrial parks, but have never found a suitable swim by pond in any city in which I have lived. Lots of those retention ponds look good but they tend to be fenced off and pretty darn nasty (I know I wouldn't want to swim in something that held the detritus from the typical Wal Mart parking lot).

    I'd consider having your pro knock it out. Living and working in the city makes it hard, unless you find something very close by to do it every day. Once it is done, you can usually find decent places to train in a city--especially for HT stuff.
    Last edited by DoubleHaul; 02-14-2014 at 03:14 PM.

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    Senior Member WBF's Avatar
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    Developing strong fundamentals takes time, knowledge, and consistent training. In my opinion swim-by is one of those critical phases that takes time and consistent drilling to be fair to the dog. Swim-by can be done on many shapes of ponds. If you can't find the perfect round /oval tank look for a park or golf course pond with a cove that you can use. You will have to swap sides once you teach it one way but it will work. I believe Evan Graham illustrates this in smart works. The reward for doing it yourself is priceless but I would uses a trusted trainer if it's not even possible for you to achieve this on your own. I wouldn't skip or drag critical phases out to long, this can keep you from not only advancing but being fair by giving your dog the tools to be successful during advance training. Great post hope I helped out. Happy training!

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    Thanks everyone for the replies. Very helpful opinions.

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