Developing Memory? Help: Very Frustrated!
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Thread: Developing Memory? Help: Very Frustrated!

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Greenfield, IN

    Default Developing Memory? Help: Very Frustrated!

    Okay, I have an almost two year old YLF that I am training at the Finished level in HRC. I started training this spring on singles only to build up her marking after being off all winter. About three weeks ago I started running her on triples, because at some point she's going to have to count to three and develop a memory. Well she did outstanding for a while, lining the marks very well. Then all of a sudden she acts like she doesn't know there is a third mark out there. I have been lining her up on it and sending her on her name. She lines to the AOF very well, but she won't check up and hunt the AOF. She just keeps going until she runs into the fence or the woods Then she just pops and I have to handle her to the mark. She's also started popping really bad on marks that she has no business doing that on. Last night in training she picks up a triple that I intentionally set up short and easy, i.e. 40-50yd marks with no problem and on the next set up she totally blows the whole thing.

    So after much thought I have decided that she has confidence problems. I believe that I have pushed her too hard too quick since she was doing the work, instead of gradually building her up. She has shown this behavior on yard work drills before and I would have to back up, simply and work her through it. It's almost like she second guesses herself and her abilities to do something, even though she's already shown with success that she can do it. Do dogs really think like this, or am I just tagging her with a human attribute to put a name on it?

    I think that my next step is to back up to singles again and do triples as short marks in relatively featureless terrain until I build her confidence up again so that I can add factors to the marking set ups.

    So my question is this: do you guys think that I am thinking correctly? Am I way off base here? Any insight is greatly appreciated as I am very frustrated(mainly with myself for putting her in this situation).

    Looking forward to bouncing ideas off of someone else regards,
    UH HRCH Black Powder's Takealine Echo
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  3. #2
    Senior Member carolinagold's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Bennettsville ,SC


    I think you have diagnosed the problem- lack of confidence. Singles in hay fields and triples in featureless fields until confidence is restored. Make sure in tougher terrain to make easier triples until dog shows confidence in memory. I think you are on the right road- Good Luck!!
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    Last edited by carolinagold; 02-04-2011 at 01:35 AM.

  4. #3
    Senior Member Julie R.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Orlean VA


    I was just on Pat Nolan's website refreshing myself on teaching the whistle sit and he's got a Marking & Memory drill that is easy to do training by yourself. The marks are short so the dog remembers them easily. I have gotten my SH-level dogs easily doing 4 or 5 bumpers. It's called the M&M drill on the articles page and it does help them build up their memory for multiple marks. I've also adapted it to water using black bumpers.[/url]

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  6. #4
    Senior Member MooseGooser's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2003


    First off the Qualifyer!!

    I am NOT a Pro, or even a talented Amature..
    (in many peoples eyes a real goofball)

    That said. I think its hard to evaluate something like this on a discussion board. Without seeing the marks you are throwing, and the factors involved, I think it hard to answer your question.

    I would make sure of the backgound, and skyline of the marks you are throwing first off. Make sure they are CLEARLY visible for the dog to see---All the way to the ground.

    I would also pay close attention to her line manners. If She's overly excited, and not swinging with you well and not looking out and not concentrating, then that may be all of the problem! She may well not be gettin a good look at them.

    SLOW DOWN in training when she swings with you to see the 2nd and 3rd bird. have the BB work with you as to how fast you present the birds. Did I say SLOW DOWN!

    The Key is to make sure She is using her eyes! ---Looking at the mark!
    Even if you have to use an attention getting call from the gunners, make sure she is seeing it before you blame the problem on her bad marking .

    My inexpensive 2 cent regards

    It is far easier to spit on the work of others than it is to produce something better yourself.
    Brynmoors Prairie Sage JH ​(Sage) Just a dang fool huntin Dawg
    HRCH Calypso Seven Bales High SH (Bailey)
    HR Calypso Zoomin Loosies Mad Hader (Maddi) We loved you baby. R.I.P.
    HRCH FlatLanders Broken Pistol Ricochet MH (Flinch)

    My Christian Name is Michael Baker..
    I have gone by "Gooser" since I was a "gossling"

  7. #5
    Senior Member JS's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2003


    Quote Originally Posted by carolinagold
    I think you have diagnosed the problem- lack of confidence. Singles in hay fields and triples in featureless fields until confidence is restored. .....(snip).....
    Why would you use featureless fields? Some of the toughest memory birds can be in open fields that have no landmarks to help define the fall.
    Throw a well-defined memory mark. Near a large bush, between 2 bales, with a building in the background, etc. Let the dog have a looong look at it. Talk to him. Get him to focus as though you were going to send him. Then throw your next 2 easy birds.

    This, by itself, probably isn't the total solution but my point is, whatever your approach, to make your key bird well defined rather than in a featureless area. JMO

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