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Thread: 1968 Training book by James Lamb Free - anyone seen it?

  1. #21
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    It is the book I cut my teeth on in the mid 70's. Read this book and made sure I bought a quality pup for my first one.. thank goodness....

  2. #22
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    Default Love That Book

    Quote Originally Posted by runnindawgz View Post
    I just scooped up a copy of this book on Ebay ... The index looks interesting ... about how to read a pedigree, the “names to look for” in a dogs pedigree - the Nat’ and Nat’l Am. information and a CHAPTER titled If the LADIES CAN “Do It ” ha ha .... looking forward to the book arriving!

    Has anyone ever seen this book? $4.00 wasted or worth it?
    You will love it. It's entertaining, and also teaches techniques that WORK!!

    Enjoy.

  3. #23
    Senior Member Wayne Nutt's Avatar
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    Ditto to all that was said above
    Wayne Nutt
    Go Nutts with dog training

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  4. #24
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    Outdated but interesting & without question the best available during its time. It was considered the training bible at the time because there was virtually nothing else available in terms of written material. I had that book & Charles Morgan on Retrievers when I started, then "progressed" or added Richard Wolters books & then to Tarrants books. I thought Quinn had a good book, The Working Retrievers, more modern in approach but still pre-ecollar. I found John Dahl's book, Ten Minute Retriever to be an excellent book especially to give the amateur trainer a broad summary scope of the tasks involved in a relatively short volume. John & Amy are still training gun dogs in NC. But nothing compares to the modern & detailed training materials available today from Lardy & Graham. They detail systems of training from 8 wks to AA competitors and everything inbetween. Hillman & others have focused materials on certain aspects of training but none more comprehensive & tested among a large group of trainers than Lardy & Graham materials.
    David Didier, GA

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Atkinson View Post
    I enjoyed Free's book. I have not read my copy in years and don't recall which edition I have.

    After probably 15 years or so, I have 3 takeaways that have stuck with me. Keep in mind, these things have a way of "warping" over time versus the way it is literally written.

    Takeaway #1:
    • Back in those days, Free and his peers did not believe in doing much training during the puppy days. If I recall correctly, Free seemed to be on the extreme edge of this - waiting 'til the dog was a year of so old before doing any real training.


    #2:
    • Free advised against letting kids and others play with your Field dog. He felt that the dog should be kept under lock and key in a kennel run during the day and only handled by you, the trainer. I do get what his angle was, in terms of making the training sessions the highlight of the dog's day and getting full value of the training sessions. But again, I recall the idea that Free was a bit on the extreme end of the application of this.


    #3:
    • Free was the source of the term "stir your stumps". Stir your stumps is the equivlanent of what I sometimes think of as "indirect pressure with poor timing". The idea is that if the dog is blowing the trainer off on a sit whistle, a cast, or some other expected response, the handler is to "stir" or run his legs off getting out there to address the dog at close range.
    • I don't recall whether it is Free, or not, that mentions e-collars and that they're not good. Some writers of that era certainly wrote this sort of thing. If it is indeed Free, and again, I don't recall, you will have to just remember that at that time, whatever was on the market is a far cry from today's equipment, and the thousands of dogs that the retriever training community used as guinea-pigs to create some established e-collar "best practice" (which is now available) was not yet around.


    I would like to pull out my old copy and re-read it.
    It was all we had in the early 60's + Pfaffenberger's book on canine behavior - the rest we just winged - I have probably every
    edition somewhere as we sold them when we owned the kennel - When Water Dog was published it was the book I recommended
    to novices with some takeaways -

    A lot of the basics still apply - dogs placing in AA stakes in those days were not hamburger dogs - the judges, for the most part,
    did a significant part of their dogs training & could set up tests that did not require a 1/4 section of real estate to be successful -
    having seen on one post the reference to MH's doing those tests, I don't think so. Oily Adams could set short tests that would
    clean up the field in short order - Given the right grounds Lanse, Pete Goodale, Jack Vollstedt can still do that - they may look like
    MH tests but only in length are they -

    If I'm not mistaken - Free used a trainer almost exclusively, so would fit right in with the use of pro's being so common in today's
    training environment .
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  6. #26
    Senior Member Mary Lynn Metras's Avatar
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    James Lamb Free's dog Freehaven Muscles appeared in some of the pics in the book. He is related way back to a number of dogs.

    http://www.huntinglabpedigree.com/pedigree.asp?id=574
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  7. #27
    Junior Member David Martin's Avatar
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    JLF's book is still a great read, and props to the previous poster that mentioned Tom Quinn's book. If you took JLF's principles you could still train a sound retriever. I totally agree with Chris though on the socializing aspect. Back in those days a dog was just that, we've come so much further. In my first edition of Free's book some of the training tools listed were slingshots, bb guns and 12ga #8's. I had a later edition where he talked about ecollarars , and I believe that it had to do with Rex Carr. Still a good read.

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