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Thread: Relying too much on her nose on marks

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    Member Cyclone's Avatar
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    Default Relying too much on her nose on marks

    I have a 2 year old that takes nice initial lines on marks, but then slowly angles downwind and relies too much on her nose. She sometimes starts to hunt 20 yds or more downwind of the area of the fall, and ends up with a big hunt, with her nose in the air the whole time. This is mainly an issue with cross winds and marks >80 yds. Happens on land and water, particularly marks that are land-water-land. At first I was happy when she learned to use her nose, but now she seems to have become too reliant on it.

    I'm worried that if I handle her to get her back on line, it will create popping. But not sure what else I can do when she is 40 yds from the line and starts to angle downwind and away from the area of the fall. Any thoughts?
    HRCH Royer's Mighty Riverman Murphy (Murphy)
    HRCH Dakota's Element of Surprise (Ellie)

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    Senior Member ada5771's Avatar
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    Are you using well identified guns or all white throwers for marks?
    Drew Allain

    Cajun Made King "Zeus"

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    Member Cyclone's Avatar
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    I'm using wingers (no gunner or stickman in the field), sometimes the wingers are visible and sometimes they are concealed by brush/trees, etc. I'm careful to make sure the arc is visible, and her good initial lines suggest she is seeing the marks.
    HRCH Royer's Mighty Riverman Murphy (Murphy)
    HRCH Dakota's Element of Surprise (Ellie)

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    Do a search on the "dirt clod" drill.
    Erik B.

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    Senior Member ada5771's Avatar
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    Sometimes a good visible gunner gives the dog a waypoint to reach before they break down and start hunting and a combination of visible marks thrown in minimum cover as long as the dog is taking a good line these two things could help give it the confidence to stay on the line a little longer before breaking down...
    Drew Allain

    Cajun Made King "Zeus"

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    Member jluther's Avatar
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    Big white bumpers with flags attached, landing in very short cover. Get her using her eyes again--which will also help her learn to fight crosswinds.

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    Member Cyclone's Avatar
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    Thanks for the ideas. I'll look into the dirt clod drill a little more. I can certainly tie some white flagging onto the birds, or switch to white bumpers with flagging. I'll give it a try.
    HRCH Royer's Mighty Riverman Murphy (Murphy)
    HRCH Dakota's Element of Surprise (Ellie)

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    Member jluther's Avatar
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    Dirt clod drill is perhaps better for a dog that switches (quits hunting the area of the fall early to go to a different mark). It's essentially a correction, but not for fading with the wind or hunting with a nose. Dirt clod drill also requires an experienced helper in the field. I think it would be simpler/better to get your girl to use her eyes. Use very visible marks for a long time.

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    Senior Member Carol Cassity's Avatar
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    What Julie said x2
    Carol

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    Senior Member truthseeker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cyclone View Post
    I have a 2 year old that takes nice initial lines on marks, but then slowly angles downwind and relies too much on her nose. She sometimes starts to hunt 20 yds or more downwind of the area of the fall, and ends up with a big hunt, with her nose in the air the whole time. This is mainly an issue with cross winds and marks >80 yds. Happens on land and water, particularly marks that are land-water-land. At first I was happy when she learned to use her nose, but now she seems to have become too reliant on it.

    I'm worried that if I handle her to get her back on line, it will create popping. But not sure what else I can do when she is 40 yds from the line and starts to angle downwind and away from the area of the fall. Any thoughts?
    Moving down wind is a natural instinct for dogs to do and their are a few ways to approach the issue. My favorite way to teach a dog to shoulder the wind ( I use bumper boys) is to set up a second make that well go into the fall area. When the dog starts to fade, I well have the bird boy or I will, say hay!!!!!! and launch another mark in the same place as the first.

    Hope this helps.

    Keith

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