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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have an 11 month old CLM who I recently started collar conditioning following the Smart Fetch book. When I started working with him about two weeks ago I increased levels gradually on my Dogtra 1200NCP collar until it seemed like it was enough pressure for him, while working on here on a lead. Four sessions and he seemed to really understand that two get rid of the stimulation that he had respond appropropraitly to the command. I mixed in a few freebies and some fun bumpers to end the session and things seemed fine. I was out of town last week, and got a call from my wife that when she went to put his flat buckle collar back on him (I haven't been putting it one on him as he out grew the one I had and hand't gotten him a new one until recently) he started hanging his head and hiding between the couch and the ottoman. This behavior has continued now any time he has the flat buckle collar on, he wants to stay right by my side, he doesn't want to play with the other dogs and hardly wants to go outside (I don't use my yard for yard work, so he has never had the collar used within the yard). Can anyone recommend how to remedy this? He will still retriever with the collar on, but that is about it.

Thank you in advance.
 

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I"m not an expert at this at all.. I'm sure Evan is tired of my questions on this subject. Can't say I blame him either lOL!

But I didn't notice that you mentioned anything about the follow up sessions. I would guess that maybe your pup needs some more follow up sessions.

Did you do the "Finesse" part of the conditioning to "Here"? and the praise sequence?
 

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If you only use the collar when it's necessary, over time this will pass.
 

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CO Retriever said:
I have an 11 month old CLM who I recently started collar conditioning following the Smart Fetch book. When I started working with him about two weeks ago I increased levels gradually on my Dogtra 1200NCP collar until it seemed like it was enough pressure for him, while working on here on a lead. Four sessions and he seemed to really understand that two get rid of the stimulation that he had respond appropropraitly to the command. I mixed in a few freebies and some fun bumpers to end the session and things seemed fine. I was out of town last week, and got a call from my wife that when she went to put his flat buckle collar back on him (I haven't been putting it one on him as he out grew the one I had and hand't gotten him a new one until recently) he started hanging his head and hiding between the couch and the ottoman. This behavior has continued now any time he has the flat buckle collar on, he wants to stay right by my side, he doesn't want to play with the other dogs and hardly wants to go outside (I don't use my yard for yard work, so he has never had the collar used within the yard). Can anyone recommend how to remedy this? He will still retriever with the collar on, but that is about it.

Thank you in advance.

You are in a region of the country where you can get all sorts of help. Plenty of clubs in the area with members willing to give you a hand. Even with a good book like Evans, being able to read a dog for the correct timing is something a beginner seldom has learned.

My recommendation is to approach an experienced amatuer, or spend some $$$ and time and visit a pro. Otherwise you may be on a road you will find is extremely difficult to return from without lots of grief. Your problem is the type that requires personal 'hands-on' help.

Good luck,

UB
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Sorry for the lack of clarification. I have a 5 year old that I worked with a Pro during force fetch and basics. While I am by no means a novice, I have only used the collar during yard work to enforce this command that he knows.

I did do the finesse drill were i used a 50 foot lead around a pole to get him to come to me while using restraint.

I haven't worked him since I got home and this issue cropped up.

I guess I am also fighting two battles here, one trying to determine how to proceed, and then one with the wife who is an obedience trainer who does not use electronic collars. She is pretty pissed with me right now. I'll call a person that I know today, but I don't want to wait until a local club has a meeting to get with someone. I would use the pro route, but it is cost prohibitive right now as we have a baby on the way.
 

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The training tips of throwing some "uppers" is the way to go. Try leaving the collar on for several days in row, or at least have it on when fun things like eating are happening.

If you were putting it on ONLY for the force, this reaction could be expected.
 

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I can't address Evan's method, so I don't know how much help this will be, but when I start a young dog, I put the collar on every time I take him out of the crate, and take it off only when I put him back in. This conditions the e-collar association with GOOD things happening, not just stim drill work. Even if it doesn't get used at all that day, he's wearing it - play periods, romps in the woods, hanging out chewing a bone, whatever.

I also work a "place" command, sending the dog away from me, so that he doesn't get the idea that the stim ONLY means to come to me. This tends to "un-velcro" them sooner, but over all, as you continue your conditioning work on other skills, the dog's idea that he has to stick to you like glue fades over time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Update- My 11 month old has been wearing his flat buckle collar (which when I posted he would act really leary of everything) since the last post and he is back to his crazy self. Now, I will work on putting the e collar on him all the time when good things are happening and see how that works out. I feel like an idiot as I know better than to only use it with drill work. I guess it totally slipped my mine as my 5 year old doesn't have any of these issues. She knows when she sees the collar that it means that it's time to train and she gets totally amped. Guess it's easy to forget when it has been a while since FF any dog.

My last question is should I just have him wear the e-collar for the next week while doing other things and then picking up with yard work after he seems really comfortable with it? Also is it ok to keep throwing marks as we haven't started FF? He really is a great dog and already retrieves almost to hand, but maybe I am to anxious in moving him forward as I wasted the last 5 months with working a lot.
 

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Good to hear :)

As far as throwing marks while going thru FF. From what I can tell it's a split camp. Some say no way some say they hate to stop giving marks to the pup. This second camp also states that if the dog has bad mouth habits you might want to stop the retrives until it's done with FF

Disclaimer: (I'm am a first time training so I"m just passing what I've been told :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
From what I read I will stop throwing marks as soon as I start FF, such as hold etc. But know I am collar conditioning to here, sit, and heal. Is it ok to run marks, and even more what about marks with birds to keep him really excited after yard work. To clarify, if I do yard work in the morning is it ok to throw marks in the afternoon?
 

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I have heard that a dog should wear a dummy collar or e-collar that's off for quite awhile before you start to force them. Then they don't become collar wise. How long did he wear the collar before you started the pressure?

Anyone back me up on this?
 

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But, is this taken care of????? :lol:

CO Retriever said:
..........
I guess I am also fighting two battles here, one trying to determine how to proceed, and then one with the wife who is an obedience trainer who does not use electronic collars. She is pretty pissed with me right now. ..........
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
He wore the collar on and off for a while, clearly he understands the diffrence between when he has one on and when he doesn't. Man I could kick my self.. I know he should be wearing it for a while. I know when my 5 year old was with a pro it was on her anytime in the yard. Hopefully I can get him out with it on with some pigeons this weekend so he has something that is more interesting than thinking about the collar.

JS- It's taken care of in the fact that I told her that it was my fault and not that I was using to much pressure as she thinks. I love the damn dog, you think I'm going to fry him for fun. No. Her last statment is that the e-collar is not going back on him, and in that sense she is correct, it will not be on him when she is around. My wife is six months pregnant, already uncomfortable and talk about mood swings. Easier not to argue at this point in the game. Still got to get him through FF before the baby in Sept and hopefully a pass in an HRC Started Test.
 

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CO Retriever said:
Four sessions and he seemed to really understand that to get rid of the stimulation that he had respond appropropraitly to the command.
Four sessions? Have you watched this procedure on the Smartwork Obedience DVD? It's difficult to imagine a dog not figuring this out in a single session with two ropes. You did the two-rope procedure each time, yes?
CO Retriever said:
he started hanging his head and hiding between the couch and the ottoman...He will still retrieve with the collar on, but that is about it.

Thank you in advance.
I sense a disconnect in the procedure somewhere. Feel free to email me or call my business cell phone to discuss this. (816-213-9397) In all the years of doing this with my own dogs, and personally teaching what now numbers in the hundreds of trainers to do it, there have been no reactions like this one.

I think we can sort this out, but let's get on it!

Evan
 
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