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Thread: Hunting Retriever Training

  1. #1
    Senior Member HPL's Avatar
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    Default Hunting Retriever Training

    OK, most know what I am facing at the moment. In the near future I will probably be starting with a new pup. Are there any instruction programs out there that don't use e-collars and force fetch? I haven't the time, money, or inclination to run trials or really even tests. I want to train a nice, solid, hunting companion. I used Water Dog for my previous dogs, but have been told that it is really out of date and that there are better methods now. My first dog was very steady, quiet, and driven. The last two have been driven retrievers, but less steady when we are actually hunting.

    HPL
    Last edited by HPL; 01-10-2020 at 07:39 PM.
    Any doctrine that weakens personal responsibility for judgment and for action helps create the attitudes that welcome and support the totalitarian state.
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  3. #2
    Senior Member Tobias's Avatar
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    I have contemplated on numerous occasions using the 'traditional' style of training (sans collar or FF)... But for some reason, I change my mind at the last minute and use more current training practices.

    I think you could probably do Hillmann's traffic cop ecollar free.... But I really don't know of any dvd's or current books that train without a collar or FF.... not in America, at any rate. I am certain there are plenty such 'programs' available across the pond.....

    Truly - the big thing is teaching, repetition, reinforcement, and practice. Don't need a collar to steady a dog, and you don't need FF to get a dog to deliver to hand (since that is not what FF is about, anyway)....
    The way I look at it, every dog is an opportunity to be a better trainer, and every day is a new day to be a better trainer to the same dog we trained yesterday.

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    Hugh,

    There are other methods available now. Not necessarily better for what it sounds like you want and need from your next dog.

    It doesn't seem to me like you want to spend the time and effort to learn to train the next dog differently from what has worked for you in the past. I would say that getting the right kind of pup for you is extremely important. I urge you to choose wisely. -Paul
    there's no good reason to fatten up a retriever.

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  6. #4
    Senior Member drunkenpoacher's Avatar
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    I see no reason to skip FF or not use an e collar when training a hunting dog. Why not use the best tools and proven methods for a hunting dog? I also think it saves a bunch of time.
    It is very important to maintain the same high training standards when hunting. My current dog was 11 months old on his first pheasant hunt. I used it as a training situation and still do. If he broke on a bird I would stop him, bring him back to where he should have sat, and do it over. The birds are all fliers when you're hunting and a dog can get out of control very quickly.
    "I'm thankful someone stood up to him, even if it was a woman." Franco 10/18/19

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    Senior Member HarryWilliams's Avatar
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    If you had good results and got out of it what worked for you with Water Dog, that could be a reason to use it again. Sorry about your dog and good luck with the next pup.
    "Sometimes we just gotta do what is right". Jerry 2006

    See ya in the field. HPW http://www.sagaciouskennel.com/

  8. #6
    Senior Member HPL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by paul young View Post
    Hugh,

    There are other methods available now. Not necessarily better for what it sounds like you want and need from your next dog.

    It doesn't seem to me like you want to spend the time and effort to learn to train the next dog differently from what has worked for you in the past. I would say that getting the right kind of pup for you is extremely important. I urge you to choose wisely. -Paul
    Howdy Paul,

    You've got to be kidding. It's been almost ten years since I was actively training a completely ignorant dog. I'll HAVE to learn whatever method I use this time at least almost like I had never done it before .

    I'll admit I don't understand "force" fetching a dog. My dogs have all WANTED to go get the bird (dummy, stick, etc.) and bring it back to me. I haven't had any that wouldn't pick up a bird or wouldn't give it to me easily. Now my first one had a hard mouth. Made me think I was a great shot. All the birds looked like they had been centered in the pattern , but he didn't eat them or play tug of war, just didn't want them to get away.

    I got my first pup in Feb. 1980. I was in grad school working with javelinas and, of all things, goats. Part of the pasture had an extremely hot, hot fence to deter coyotes from getting to the goats. One of the first days I had the pup, I took him with me to the research area. I was letting him run loose as I walked along. He was staying very close but all of a sudden he ran a bit ahead down the path to where we had a gate to get through the hot fence. The bottom wire was necessarily only about 6 inches or so off the ground to keep coyotes from scooting under the fence. Now I hadn't been thinking about the fence until the pup ran toward it. (Ya'll can probably see where this is headed). Just as he started to go under it I yelled NO!!! and began running toward him. Well, the first pulse caught him when he was about half through and just basically paralyzed him. It probably hit him about 3 or 4 times before I booted him through (hit me once through the boot). He ran yelping about ten feet and collapsed under a bush. Now, that pup didn't know what he had done wrong, but he knew that somehow I had reached out and smacked him just after yelling NO! I see how an e-collar could be very useful. That dog learned in one painful lesson that I was GOD. I see lots of guys hunting their dogs with the collar on, making me believe that they learn that they don't have to mind if they aren't wearing one. I just don't like that.

    One funny result was that for the rest of his life he would not TOUCH any kind of fence. He wouldn't mark a chain link or stand up and put his feet on the top rail and would NOT go through a 5 strand barbed wire fence. If I had a cripple that flew 100yds to a fence and then dropped 1ft on the other side, he would run RIGHT to the fence and sit. I had to walk the 100yds and pull the wire out of his way and tell him OK.

    HPL

    PS, I'm also ao bit concerned about accidentally taking the spark out of the dog.
    Any doctrine that weakens personal responsibility for judgment and for action helps create the attitudes that welcome and support the totalitarian state.
    (John Dewey)

    Associate yourself with men of good quality if you esteem your own reputation; for 'tis better to be alone than in bad company.
    (George Washington)

    Gig'em Aggies!! BTCO'77HOO t.u.!!

    www.HughLieck.photoshelter.com

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    Senior Member Dave Farrar's Avatar
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    I think that's how Robert Milner of Duckhill Kennels trains. He has a couple of books on his website.
    http://www.duckhillkennels.com/dogs/gundogs.php
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    Senior Member MooseGooser's Avatar
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    Old thread! Lots of information (opinions) from some fun folks

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    My Christian Name is Michael Baker..
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  11. #9
    Senior Member Steve Shaver's Avatar
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    Just about any program or method will work collar or no collar. For a hunting dog I don't think the collar is at all necessary. Everything to start with is up close and personal no need for the collar and needs to be taught with out it anyway. If raised right and obedience taught thoroughly voice commands is all you need. Just learn the methods to train for certain things like double T and teach everything slow and thorough in very small steps. Most important is to use a flow chart (I like Lardy's flow chart) and don't skip steps.

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