Hand signal for blind retrieves?
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Thread: Hand signal for blind retrieves?

  1. #1
    Senior Member Labradorks's Avatar
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    Default Hand signal for blind retrieves?

    When marking a blind retrieve (in field work) the arm/hand signal is above the dog's head. In obedience, it's along the side the dog's head. In obedience we use the signal for the glove exercise which is a dead/stationary retrieve where the dog has to retrieve the correct glove out of three in a line. I also use the signal for marking the go out, which is like a blind retrieve except the dog doesn't retrieve, he just runs away from you, straight out, until you tell him to stop, turn and sit (it's for directed jumping which uses similar hand signals to handling in the field).

    My obedience trainer, who has done a little field work for fun, suggests that I use the same hand signal for blind retrieves and I don't see why I shouldn't.

    Thoughts?

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    So, I think I understand your methodology. If I am off the mark, I might not totally understand your technique. In a short sense, I use the same "signal" in either case. My pinky is just above the dogs head, regardless of it’s a blind or mark. I have no idea why you would put your hand next to the dogs head. To me, that seems like a distraction, and something that will cause an asymmetry. What exactly is an obedience trainer by the way?

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    Senior Member John Robinson's Avatar
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    Are you talking about the initial lining up of the dog as he-she sits buy your side?

    The reality is that we really don't line the dog up with our hand over his head, through training we teach the dog to kook out and pick a line. We also work hard to line the spine up, "here" - "heel", tap out thigh here, snap our fingers outside, heel. It starts out rough with wagon drills and other drills, but over time you and your dog become a team and things get finely tuned. I only put my hand down over my dog's head when everything is perfectly lined up and I'm read to send on "back".

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    Senior Member John Robinson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Windjammer View Post
    So, I think I understand your methodology. If I am off the mark, I might not totally understand your technique. In a short sense, I use the same "signal" in either case. My pinky is just above the dogs head, regardless of it’s a blind or mark. I have no idea why you would put your hand next to the dogs head. To me, that seems like a distraction, and something that will cause an asymmetry. What exactly is an obedience trainer by the way?
    Obedience is a whole sport by itself, and they have their trainers just like we have ours.

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    Senior Member Tobias's Avatar
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    It makes no difference. Use the method your dog is used to. Hand down is just another 'confirmation' cue to the dog.

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    Senior Member Labradorks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Windjammer View Post
    So, I think I understand your methodology. If I am off the mark, I might not totally understand your technique. In a short sense, I use the same "signal" in either case. My pinky is just above the dogs head, regardless of it’s a blind or mark. I have no idea why you would put your hand next to the dogs head. To me, that seems like a distraction, and something that will cause an asymmetry. What exactly is an obedience trainer by the way?
    An obedience trainer/instructor teaches formal obedience for competition obedience. I guess she's technically my instructor as she does not train my dog.

    I don't think the hand signal next to the head is a distraction or causes asymmetry. It works for us and the thousands of people who use it for competition obedience. As weird as it seems, have a person use both signals on you. Or try to do it yourself. It's not a big difference, I don't think. But then again, I'm not a dog...

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    Quote Originally Posted by John Robinson View Post
    Obedience is a whole sport by itself, and they have their trainers just like we have ours.
    Gotcha. I didn't realize that was a separate discipline. You learn something new everyday on this forum.

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    So I just had a friend try it on me, and I automatically looked at which ever side the hand was on. But, I also looked up when his hand was above me. I guess I totally misunderstood the question, not understanding your training style and objectives. If it works, I'd say go for it.

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    Senior Member Labradorks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Robinson View Post
    Are you talking about the initial lining up of the dog as he-she sits buy your side?

    The reality is that we really don't line the dog up with our hand over his head, through training we teach the dog to kook out and pick a line. We also work hard to line the spine up, "here" - "heel", tap out thigh here, snap our fingers outside, heel. It starts out rough with wagon drills and other drills, but over time you and your dog become a team and things get finely tuned. I only put my hand down over my dog's head when everything is perfectly lined up and I'm read to send on "back".
    No, I'm talking about the send. Though I realize my initial post was confusing as I talked about marking.

    The lining is similar in obedience except the here, heel, tap, snap stuff. Most are taught starting as puppies to snap to heel, spine straight, etc. as a default. So, it's a pretty strong auto-behavior.
    Last edited by Labradorks; 08-04-2016 at 12:52 PM.

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    Senior Member Tobias's Avatar
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    The dog is used to the hand next to his head... so keep using your hand that way. Ever seen a UK handler send their dog? Dog's pick up on the cues they are trained with. Heck, I don't even think the hand is even a necessary part of running a blind. Just line em up (here heel good) and send on back. LOL

    Juli

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