Pop-up blinds for momentum
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Thread: Pop-up blinds for momentum

  1. #1
    Senior Member Newf's Avatar
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    Jul 2010

    Default Pop-up blinds for momentum

    My dog and I are beginning basic cold blinds, and I've noticed a significant loss of momentum. We progress through pile work, T, and pattern blinds. I realize part of this may be lack of confidence, and at this point I don't think there's much we can do except just run blinds and make the dog successful every time. However I have noticed the momentum gets worse with added handling. I am considering a couple different ideas to get him going with a little enthusiasm.

    Pop-up blinds: after I kick the dog off in a direction a bird is launched to help the dog get there without handling, boost confidence and build momentum. Anybody have any advice about using these drills??

    Another idea I had, and somewhat unconventional I think...use a salted area with birds. I could kick the dog off and no matter how bad the line is the dog would find a bird easily. There maybe a drawback to lining skills but I would think the momentum and confidence would go up.

    Any thoughts and advice would be greatly appreciated.


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  3. #2
    Senior Member
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    Jan 2004
    Phoenix MD


    A couple ?s. Have you left en route force behind? How often do you give an en route "back" command?

    Also with young dogs in transition don't be too picky about his line. Let him run.

    Bert Rodgers

  4. #3
    Senior Member Duckquilizer's Avatar
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    Apr 2011


    Do a search for gradient blinds. Evan gives a nice description.
    Kendall Layne

    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.

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  6. #4
    Senior Member jd6400's Avatar
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    Feb 2009
    NE OHio


    Back in the good oledays we did pop outs frequently, with todays force methods we see no need.Be very careful if doing them as several problems can occur. Jim

  7. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2010


    Hey Newf,
    I have been trying to style my dog up on blinds and this is what I have been doing.

    Pop up blinds are great for building confidence, but you have to be careful with them because it can make a dog start popping. I would supplement pop up blinds with evan grahams BB blind and Evans Grahams zig zag drill. Do not worry about the "line" your dog is taking, let him roll and only handle him if you need to. You want the dog to believe he can do this and over handling will hurt his confidence. I would NOT force your dog to speed him up. It would hurt his confidence even more.

    I do not know your dog but maybe you should ease up on the build work. Lots of control is used during these drills and it can have a negative effect on their attitude. Make sure to mark your dog everyday!

    The other day I found this on the forum http://www.retrievertraining.net/for...hlight=zig+zag . Go to the page #2 and read the post by Breck. Lots of good information in that post!

    Max use to walk on blinds and I have been working with him very hard to get his style up and it is starting to pay off. Evan grahams BB blinds and Zig-zag drill is great for providing lots of repetition and gives you the ability to keep an upbeat tone to the training with lots of praise.

    Hope this helps!
    Last edited by logy; 04-07-2013 at 10:46 AM.

  8. #6
    Senior Member Evan's Avatar
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    Jan 2003
    Kansas City, MO


    2 quick thoughts on your question. First, pop-up blinds can help with style, but not momentum. They aren't really a transitional-type drill, which is what you really need right now. There have been good posts so far, but I would like to know what you did to transition to cold blinds?

    "Prepare your dog in such a manner that the work he is normally called upon to do under-whelms him, not overwhelms him." ~ Evan Graham

    “People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.”

    ― George Bernard Shaw

    The Smartwork System for Retriever Training (link)

  9. #7
    Senior Member KwickLabs's Avatar
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    Jan 2003
    Roscoe, IL


    Getting to the point of running true cold blinds should be seamless (there are several steps in transition). Since a pup has already run 100 yards "back" often in T-work and moved on to complete running pattern blinds at least to 300 yards with style, this is what I do next.

    July 15 journal excerpts (early morning, 3 other dogs were trained)
    trained at BT's hay field, Gunny ran on his first real blinds, placed five 3" Avery Flashers as cold blinds 50 yards apart at 125 yards (see photos), this is his first "fan blind" setup, the routine is to line him up toward the middle and "kick him off" = which ever way he goes.....let him roll until he is nearest to one of the blinds.......then handle him the rest of the way to that one

    note: this works with a pup that "fires" with no questions when you ask

    note: first go he got some suction from the hay baler and wagons on the far left.....after he was out about 70 yards, he took five casts to blind #5 (which was good because there would be no gaps in the remaining four)

    note: second "back" had him heading directly at cold blind #3 and he lined it (straight) with good momentum, the hay cover is such that when he gets about five yards from a bumper......it becomes visible (easy to find)

    note: quit after that & picked up the other three (good start)

    I run multiple blind setups for quite some time to avoid getting "picky" at the line. Lining routines improve gradually without confusion and good momentum is established because of success.
    Last edited by KwickLabs; 04-07-2013 at 11:43 AM.
    Jim Boyer KwickLabsii.com

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