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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys,
I have an awesome young dog who is doing incredible in almost every aspect of hunting.

He returns birds to heel and holds them. He sits still and quiet in the duck blind. He marks super well, can be called off birds and sent on other birds. Takes casts decent. Is a really amazing pheasant dog. Does just a really really good job on almost everything....

But that sucker peeks when geese are coming. He will sit still and quiet on the lookout for geese the whole morning. But the second there's a flock hitting the bank, he has to look at them no matter what. In his dog blind, he will be half out or more when they spin around the back of the setup. In the panel blind, he has nocked over the panel because he has to peak. He won't break at the gunshots. He won't break and run on the birds, but dangit it is frustrating.

In training I can't make him break from his kennel or from his place board or from the blind. Calling, shooting, hooting and hollering, nothing. He won't budge. But you add live birds spinning around the spread and he has to look at them. I don't know what to do next. We tried letting him peak in the panel blind. That seems to cause him to want to spin to look at them.

Anybody ever deal with something like this?

Again, in training he will not break. Add live birds though and he has to watch them. He won't run out, he won't even budge when the shooting starts. He just can't not look at them.

Any advice is appreciated. I don't know what to try next.

Please be kind guys, he is my own little self trained monster. I'm new here and I'm just looking for help.

Thanks
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Put your shotgun down and train the dog.
I know that sounds so simple, but I have really been trying man. The hard part is,
It's just me and my wife. I don't shoot when we have friends with. Because then I can just focus on him. When it's just us I'm the caller, the flagger, the dog handler and the shot caller. When we have other people with then it goes better because I just focus on him and calling. I didn't load my gun the last 3 hunts and didn't have an issue with steadiness. When it's just us, I run out of eyes and hands. If I don't shoot when it's just my wife and I then he doesn't get retrieves either. She's not a bad shot by any means but she is a bit timid on the trigger.

We didn't have this issue last year at all, and I'm honestly not sure why it's happening now. Obviously something in my off season training didn't help set him up for success.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Bingo, every hunt is a training opportunity. You cannot create the excitement of a hunt, except in the hunt itself!
I really do believe that, I just don't know what drills to run to help correct this. When it's just us I'm having trouble. When I have friends with, then I don't shoot and I just run the dog and call.
 

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I really do believe that, I just don't know what drills to run to help correct this. When it's just us I'm having trouble. When I have friends with, then I don't shoot and I just run the dog and call.
I get it, time to take some friends hunting a few times, let them know you need to train and need their help!
 

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I really do believe that, I just don't know what drills to run to help correct this. When it's just us I'm having trouble. When I have friends with, then I don't shoot and I just run the dog and call.
There are no drills, there is only training. If he doesn't get a retrieve with your wife, good thats double punishment for him.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I get it, time to take some friends hunting a few times, let them know you need to train and need their help!
If all my buddies wouldn't have moved away I'd still be golden. Now I gotta wait till the father I'm law and my dad come with. Which is all good, but doesn't give me many reps on other things.
I do have one good buddy left up here but he's an ER nurse so he works odd shifts. Love getting out with him when I can and he does so good with Odin. I'm lucky to have a good buddy like him
There are no drills, there is only training. If he doesn't get a retrieve with your wife, good thats double punishment for him.
Fair enough. Guess I gotta just accept that the freezer might stay empty.
 

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Hey guys,
I have an awesome young dog who is doing incredible in almost every aspect of hunting.

He returns birds to heel and holds them. He sits still and quiet in the duck blind. He marks super well, can be called off birds and sent on other birds. Takes casts decent. Is a really amazing pheasant dog. Does just a really really good job on almost everything....

But that sucker peeks when geese are coming. He will sit still and quiet on the lookout for geese the whole morning. But the second there's a flock hitting the bank, he has to look at them no matter what. In his dog blind, he will be half out or more when they spin around the back of the setup. In the panel blind, he has nocked over the panel because he has to peak. He won't break at the gunshots. He won't break and run on the birds, but dangit it is frustrating.

In training I can't make him break from his kennel or from his place board or from the blind. Calling, shooting, hooting and hollering, nothing. He won't budge. But you add live birds spinning around the spread and he has to look at them. I don't know what to do next. We tried letting him peak in the panel blind. That seems to cause him to want to spin to look at them.

Anybody ever deal with something like this?

Again, in training he will not break. Add live birds though and he has to watch them. He won't run out, he won't even budge when the shooting starts. He just can't not look at them.

Any advice is appreciated. I don't know what to try next.

Please be kind guys, he is my own little self trained monster. I'm new here and I'm just looking for help.

Thanks
My training approach has been to use a jet sled all summer long with the sitting dog behind me.
The jet sled keeps the dog warm and dry and is a mental barrier to creeping/breaking.

Then hunting solo, the same approach. If the dog jumps out of the jet sled, he is denied the retrieve.
Also if possible I wait 5 minutes before giving the dog permission to retrieve.
They learn pretty quickly that being steady and waiting is the only way they earn the right to retrieve.
Also with the dog behind me, their is much less canine hearing damage from muzzle blast.
 

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"He just can't not look at them."

Sounds like my hunting partner.
Sounds like you've done a great job steadying your dog. There's no magic bullet, excitement is too much. The advice regarding reinforcing sit as birds approach, and longer waits before sending is what will work. But it is diificult to do as you explain. Good luck.
 
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