Here we don't do much push/pull here/heel. It is virtually unused. All lining is done with the arm.
Some dogs are better at taking a line and focusing than others. But my dogs watch my hand/arm in the air as it comes down to its pointing position, and then you can actually see them drop off the hand onto the point in the distance. I should maybe try and video this. We teach them to do this by using white dummies or an object to focus on that you are pointing to.
So, for our blind sendaway we point to the place and then drop the hand into a stationary position for the dog to lock a line off of, and then release with a verbal command, with the hand/arm staying absolutely stationary where it is.
There have been studies done on animals and 'pointing'. Kaminski I think. Showing that dogs understand pointing better than chimps etc. Brief bit here, but you would need to look up Kaminski for the full studies: http://news.discovery.com/animals/zo...ans-120208.htm
Last edited by kennel maiden; 04-09-2013 at 06:30 AM.
You may want to ask Some top FT pro's about that. There are many Dogs trained to not go unless a hand is dropped in first. There are no absolutes in dog training. And this may be as common as not using a hand to send on the go bird. As with many problems ,,in this case breaking,,,sequences become important. They can represent what is about to occur or not occur through conditioning.I think that it's more of a NOT putting your hand down, might keep them from breaking.
You can't know what you don't understand
Hunting does not require precision. And dogs are allowed to wear training equipment during hunting. I have never run marks remotely at hunt tests or FT's and I have run under Steve Parker many times who in my opinion is the King of unique set ups.. The chances of getting remote marks are slim ,but in hunting my dogs are remote most of the time. And they know the difference. I think they are talking about breaking as a major problem in a dog not just a general training sequence in which even the steadiest of dogs are fully capable of breaking at some point in their life.So, the hand doesn't solve the creep, but it solves the break? If you use your hand for "steadiness" cue...ie the dog does not go until it sees the hand, what do you do when you are hunting? You have the hound sitting on a muskrat hut 20 yds away, because that is the only dry ground for him to sit, and you are over hiding in the cattails...do you then have to go over and send the dog on the mark? Just curious...
You can't know what you don't understand
I started in NAHRA and love it, I've run a few just for fun with my all age dogs. One thing I really like about NAHRA, and feel is pretty realistic toward hunting is the fact that NAHRA lets you talk quietly to your dog as the birds are going down. That helps a lot in preventing a break. I do remember back in the day (1993-95) when I was running NAHRA, it was fairly common to have your dog sitting outside the blind with the handler inside. I wasn't training field trial style back then, and lucky for me being a newbie, I had a very-very steady dog, I think I just released him on his name back then. If I took one of my current AA dogs to a NAHRA now and had a remote sit, I would probably just say his name.
I do disagree with you on it being a problem to allow a different standard while hunting versus field trial training. I trained for and ran hunt test NAHRA and AKC from 1993-2000 and field trials from 1995 to present. I take every hunting season off from October first to the beginning of January. I literally do not train even once during that time period, I hunt with and without a collar as my dogs will certainly break on those first few birds of the season (a well timed correct solves this), I don't make my dogs handle over points or down shorelines when it is quicker and safer to let them run the bank, in short I hunt them way different than what they have to do in field trial training. The remarkable thing about this is that their first day back in training after hunting season, they train as if we never took a day off. I learned a long time ago that these dogs are situational, they really understand the difference between hunting, training and field trialing and act accordingly. Another benefit is those three months off from training really relaxes them and they start up again with a great attitude.
Very nice post. I like the acknowledgement of what is practical while hunting.
As for the hand---In my opinion, just another cue. It doesn't matter what cue you use, as long as you are consistent and don't change any other verbal and/or body language. For a high drive dog one cue may work better than another, i.e. verbal, visual, combinations, etc. Stimulus discrimination.
"I love the rod and gun and where they take me."
"Do not judge a man until you have walked two moons in his moccasins."