Last edited by Duckquilizer; 09-08-2012 at 04:22 PM.
HR(2xHRCH) Ashland's Big Black Ruby to Go SH
Dorie's Lady of the Lake(1K bird club)
Never play leap frog with a unicorn.
I think the biggest question is what are your goals for you and your dog.
I have had 4 Goldens and now I'm on to training a lab, Peyton, and her 9 week old daughter, Bindi. The lab has been so much easiler for me, so I think it all depends on the individual dog more than the breed between the two. (Two of my Goldens loved hunting the others didn't even want to get their feet wet in the rain... Damn Fluffies)
I, like you wanted to do the training myself vs. sending her away to a trainer. I have gone for help with some aspects of training and for advice to a pro as well as members of this forum. That being said, my goal in the begining was to have a well behaved hunting companion, not a FC/AFC by the time she was two. Peyton was at that point by 11 months and has gone further then I ever though possible.
The next question you need to ask yourself, is how much time are you or can you put into the training? It sounds like you have the time and are willing to put in the work so I think what you are wanting to do is definately do-able. Just decide what your goals are, and like others have said, find like minded people for help... a HRC and you should be fine.
There are also a number of training programs you can look into on here that are meant for people wanting to train. (Smartworks, Total Retriever, etc.)
Just to kind of dove tail on duckquilizer said...
If you were to find a pro that you were comfortable with and was relatively close, you could send the pup to them at around 6 months old. After about a month (pros usually like some time to let the pup settle in and get used to the routine of training) or so you go visit on Saturdays and/or Sundays. This allows you to see the progress your pup is making and, once at a point the pro is comfortable with, start handling your dog while the pro is there to train you to handle them correctly. This way the dog is getting trained on a daily basis so they make good progress and you are being trained on how to handle and continue the training of the dog once they leave training.
The pro that I used for basics has allowed me to come train with them basically anytime I wanted. I help set up, tear down, throw birds and sometimes get to handle some of his client dogs in exchange for me being able to handle my dog on his setups while he gives me tips and is there to help if I/we get into trouble. Based on what he see's and what we're working on, he then will often times teach me drills to work on or make other suggestions for what to work on, and how, while I'm training on my own.
It is invaluable for the dog and has been even more so for me. And you have nothing to worry about as far as bonding issues with your pup. They will settle right back into family/home life when they come back and you will have a happy, well behaved house dog for years to come.
Rick Curtis ~ Currently in Ontario, CA by way of Spokane, WA and Northern CA.
Little Man Caught It On The River SH ~ "Ace"
Handlers Handle, Dogs Dog, Judges Judge
"If you train a young dog for momentum, precision will arrive. If you train for precision, demanding perfection, momentum will depart."
Your dog is going to grow a lot faster than your training acumen is. Your dog is going to mature a lot faster than your trained-by-the-trainer, training maturity will.
If you won't run hunt tests a club probably won't be a good fit. Clubs train for testing and while it is similar to hunting skills, aren't the same. In addition, clubs by nature of what they are expect participation from the members to run and work hunt tests.
A good trainer will train you when they return your dog. They train you how to maintain and possibly advance what they've provided the dog.
Training a good hunting retriever is a lot of fun, a lot of work, and require more than watching DVD's. You've asked about day trainers but as has been suggested - probably hard to come by and actually be effective.
And while you think the dog is special (as we well think our dogs are) I would ask where you got it? Was this truly a field bred Golden and if so who's it out of?
It's a dog. I wouldn't spend much time assuming highly trained field dogs in tests, trials and the field aren't every it the 'family member' yours will be. If you get advice from someone that seems very experienced I'd suggest you ask for clarification when not agreeing. There's a lot that goes over a lot of heads. It's worth understanding the perspective.
If you have never trained a performance dog you have a ton to learn about behaviors, motivations and corrections in general.
Last edited by HNTFSH; 09-08-2012 at 08:38 PM.
We shoot dogs with a Canon
I know a few people that are dedicated to training a dog for the first time and take once or twice a week lessons from a Pro and do the rest of the training on their own time. This isn't the fastest and most efficient or even best way to train a dog, but it is a good way to train the owners and teach them about training retrievers. By the way if you read the Mission Statement of most retriever clubs they say something about training retrievers to improve the retriever breeding stock and to promote conservation of waterfowl thru the use of trained retrievers. I have never read a Mission Statement that has said the pupose of the club was to put on tests or trials.
Dogs Dog, Handlers Handle, Judges Judge
HRCH Greenwoods Sealion Tsunami MH QAA
I got my puppy from a member of this forum (Maple Hills - Leslie B.) - she is from Sam & Ruby's recent litter. HNTFSH, I have no intentions of becoming a professional trainer...nor doing field tests, etc. - I was just inquiring as to if anyone knew of alternatives to the traditional - send-my-dog-away-for-months-training. I never presupposed that the way I am seeking is the more effective way or the most acceptable way in the eyes of the majority. I'm sure I'm not alone, but I've been hunting with plenty of dogs who were sent away to professional trainers - and unfortunately there have been plenty of bad experiences due to the owner not knowing how to control/manage/use their well-trained dog. I'm in no way trying to undervalue trainers - in fact I find them to be invaluable and that is why I posted originally - because I'd love to find one in my area that understands my goals and priorities. Some of you have provided me with referrals - and I hope to find one soon.
I truly appreciate the responses I received from open-minded people. I'm glad to hear there are others who have had success in not sending their dog away for training.
Perhaps I am overanalyzing, but it feels like there is some sort of undertone with some posters. I was not trying to insult anyone's methods - just seeking newbie advice - friendly advice. It seems as though many people on this board send their dogs away for training - and that's great. And as I've been told, there are many trainers on this board who will naturally advocate sending a dog away for training because thats how they make money. But it also appears that not everyone here chooses to send their dogs away- some choose to train on their own or with assistance. I have the time and the desire to work with my puppy daily (and have been thus far) - I'm educating myself (& no, I am not just some idiot - I have a BS and a JD - so I am capable of comprehending the basics) and reaching out for supplemental assistance. Most importantly (for us)...my dog enjoys her new family and our family enjoys her. Again, I appreciate the advice and hope I will find this website to be of value and not just a plethora of closed-minded opinions and passive insults to those who seek help. Most everyone who replied were very helpful (even with the "criticisms" or maybe just "wake up calls") - I understand that opinions will vary - and I hope the majority of posters on this site understand that as well.
And who knows, perhaps when my dog is older, I will feel differently - but I don't see any harm in trying.
By the way, for those of you who care... I'm proud of what my puppy has accomplished thus far (maybe I'm just a proud-mom with a bias) - she's doing 25yd+ land and water retrieves, she's got the majority of basic obedience down pat and she's even learned a few cute tricks. She's been great with exposure to gunfire at the skeet range, riding on a boat, etc.... and she's even successfully done a few "blind" retrieves (albeit short in distance - less than 20yds). She's my little genius (again, I'm just a proud-mama)! There's alot more to learn...but she is progressing wonderfully and hopefully, with the help of a local trainer, she will be on her way to "perfection" (at least in our eyes).
Thanks again for the replies and advice!
So KDZLAW what you want to do is train your own dog under the guidance of a pro and you don't mind paying the pro for their time? I kinda thought from your first post you wanted to take your dog to the pro and have him train the pup for an hour a day and then you would take the dog home.
Dogs Dog, Handlers Handle, Judges Judge
HRCH Greenwoods Sealion Tsunami MH QAA
I sent you a PM. All the best, Martha Lancaster, Georgetown, TX
Martha Lancaster, Georgetown, TX