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Thread: Looking for training suggestions

  1. #1
    Senior Member suepuff's Avatar
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    Default Looking for training suggestions

    Training with fliers and live birds has always been a problem for my small little training group. If we find birds to buy, we have no where to keep them. We do have shooters. I do have options to train elsewhere occasionally, but for the most part, frozen, dead birds and bumper boys are it.

    So, now to the suggestions needed:

    We routinely train retrieving marks and blinds through the area of an old fall, with dead birds and bumpers. This weekend, at the test we participated in, both my girls got through, easily, the blind through the walk-up/dead bird, but got hung up to the point of no return on the blind through the area of the fall of the flier.

    The live bird scent, blood, feathers was definitely the issue. They just KNEW there was another bird there. The wind was perfect to keep them right in the fall. I need to recreate this to teach them the correct thing to do. I can set this up with scent and dead birds and have had success. The dead birds are still great to them, but not being like live birds, as we all know.

    What suggestions do you have for us to try? Poison bird blinds? How many can you do without causing problems? Again, will have to use dead birds. I can definitely set up so that the wind is blowing the scent through the line of the blind. I think I'll have one day of fliers this month.

    They are definitely saying screw you and blowing me off in this exact blind/flier scenario. But how can you correct it in training if you can't recreate it? I need them to ignore their nose and listen to my command.

    Looking forward to some discussion....

    Sue Puff
    Sue Puffenbarger
    Wirtz, VA
    www.boynelabradors.com

  2. #2
    Senior Member ks_hunting's Avatar
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    Is it possible to switch species of birds? Perhaps a different scent would be useful?

  3. #3
    Senior Member Brad B's Avatar
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    When I still lived in an apartment I used a mesh bag of dead birds and ran marks and blinds all around it. May not be the cure to your issue exactly but might help.

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    Senior Member crackerd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by suepuff View Post
    The live bird scent, blood, feathers was definitely the issue. They just KNEW there was another bird there. The wind was perfect to keep them right in the fall. I need to recreate this to teach them the correct thing to do.
    It ain't what the dog's nose knows, it's who the dog's ears BELIEVE.

    When you tell the dog "Dead bird...dead bird...BACK!" that's "teach(ing) them the correct thing to do" - to run a blind, not look for (or smell) an unseen mark.

    "Dead bird...dead bird...Back!" - the connotation (and comprehension by the dog) of that simple sequence is really all a dog needs to be taught (and taught and taught) to get out of an old fall, whether it's a flyer one series earlier, or gobbler flushed two days ago that previously inhabited the area.

    The dog's got to believe you, not its nose, and work with you in "translating that belief" into action - in casting out of old (or fresh) scent to the blind.

    MG

  5. #5
    Senior Member Breck's Avatar
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    If you have trouble getting live ducks try to at least have 1 or 2 training days per month where each dog gets 1 or 2 flyers shot. Plan to buy birds so you don't have to keep them.
    For training through scent there are many things you can do. Do you use ecollar? On path to blind spread some duck scent in an area dogs will run through but not so large an area. Get bucket of water, dip duck in, and spread scented water around. Then pluck some duck feathers in the area. When running blind if dog gets hung up in scent, stopts, hunts, refuses cast then a good back/burn/back will be in order.
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  6. #6
    Senior Member suepuff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by crackerd View Post
    It ain't what the dog's nose knows, it's who the dog's ears BELIEVE.

    The dog's got to believe you, not its nose, and work with you in "translating that belief" into action - in casting out of old (or fresh) scent to the blind.

    MG
    Yup, MG, I'm SURE that is part of the problem. With the one girl in particular. She's with a trainer until next month. I only get to train with her 2 or 3 days a month. If he were handling her, she would have done it. But that's not the point, I want to do it. So, repeat, repeat, repeat blinds. We are still building our relationship. But part of it IS the fresh bird thing.

    I wish I was home and could train 7 days a week. But then I'd have to give up my day job which is paying for my habit.

    The wet bird thing is a fantastic idea and yes to the e-collar. Thanks!

    Sue Puff
    Sue Puffenbarger
    Wirtz, VA
    www.boynelabradors.com

  7. #7
    Senior Member crackerd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Breck View Post
    When running blind if dog gets hung up in scent, stopts, hunts, refuses cast then a good back/burn/back will be in order.
    Sure could be in order, Breck - and plenty of folks far smarter and more adept than I am have done just that with great success. Personally I prefer to save on my electric bill, and hope (and trust in my power of persuasion) for the best.

    MG

  8. #8
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    In times when our group does not have live fliers but we still want to train running by or behind or over the fall of a flier station we make the station look as much like a flier station as possible. We put two gunners in the field with bird crates, place the gunners out in the field in the open(no holding blind), have one gunner throw the bird and the gunner shoot(shot gun if possible). Use fresh fluffy ducks and or pigeons if possible.

    The deal is to make the flier station appear like a real flier station. In addition we run the senerio in the same format as a real test, at least two holding blinds, call for dog etc...

    By following this approach we can usually get the training we looking for.
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  9. #9
    Senior Member crackerd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by suepuff View Post
    ...one girl in particular. She's with a trainer until next month. I only get to train with her 2 or 3 days a month. If he were handling her, she would have done it. But that's not the point, I want to do it. So, repeat, repeat, repeat blinds. We are still building our relationship. But part of it IS the fresh bird thing.
    What's your pro telling you? What's s/he doing with the dog to get it ready for this scenario with you as handler?

    MG

  10. #10
    Senior Member suepuff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by crackerd View Post
    What's your pro telling you? What's s/he doing with the dog to get it ready for this scenario with you as handler?

    MG
    Sure, that's easy. She's getting fliers and shackled birds. Earlier I stated that she would have done this for him, thus the need for relationship building with her still, which is improving. I'm sure she would have a leg if he had run her. But that's not the point.

    So, my reason for posting this is I still have two more dogs at home to train, along with a training group, that needs to figure out how to train for this scenario. I asked here as I know there are others in similar situations that may have found something that works. I don't want to over do the poison bird thing. We can and will do more drills to improve relationships.

    Breck, we're trying to get fliers. I might be able to get them for myself if I go south 2 hours to another group, but that doesn't solve the local need.

    A Team, thanks. That is certainly possible. And if we use a wet duck and scent the area that might make it real tempting.

    Pheasant are easier to get. But how much scent will there be in comparison to ducks?

    Sue
    Sue Puffenbarger
    Wirtz, VA
    www.boynelabradors.com

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