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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
My impersonation of Bill Hillmann.....

Ok not really :lol: but here is my pup(Chesty) on Day 9.

Things I noticed;
-Bill actually stops Nick a couple times on Day 9 without picking up the checkcord just being the Traffic Cop. I didn't do this but have in the past.
-He sits a little slow I guess? I'm not worried though, CC will speed that up right?
-I could lose a few pounds...wait what? :p
-I need an actual video camera if I'm going to continue videoing.
-Might remove the string from the bumper. He rarely picks it up by the string but for the distance we're working I don't really need it. I've used a paint roller up until this point in his training.
-Excitement/Return whistle, not now? later on? opinions?

Towards the end of the video as you'll see my wife and kids pull in the driveway and he knows that big rolling thing usually lets out screaming laughing kids that love to play chase. That's a HUGE distraction for him but he works though it.

His go command is 'Chet'.

Sorry about the quality. There is audio, might have to turn it up.

1:10 of Excitement(or lack thereof) marks
3:35 of ‘SIT’ work
2:00 of Traffic Cop Steadiness Retrieves
1:00 of Excitement(or lack thereof) marks

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MI-1mIdxWxw




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Dustin,

Overall, your mechanics look pretty good to me. I noticed several things that I think can be improved. Each of these, by itself, might be very minor, but in aggregate during the course of a session, have a detrimental effect on the attitude and excitement of your pup.

The biggest thing is that this session is out of balance ... way too much obedience and not enough excitement.

You started with excitement retrieves, but you didn't succeed in getting the pup nearly excited enough. Your attitude seemed too stern starting off. You seemed a bit distracted and almost aloof. As the session progressed, your attitude and energy improved quite a bit. You need to be happier and more enthusiastic from the get go.

I think you are taking the bumper from him too quickly. Let him enjoy having it when he is with you. Celebrate the success with him a bit longer. You need to get him more excited about the bumper like it's a valued prize ... and he is such a great dog for chasing it down for you.

Get the pup more riled up before tossing the bumper. He should be jumping and lunging and going crazy to try to get it from you before you throw. That will produce a more explosive, energetic chase reaction. Look at your video at about 0:47. You started getting him excited and lunging for the bumper, but then you actually gave him two corrections with your left hand for lunging. Those corrections dinged him for being excited ... the opposite of what you want.

Until you get his excitement up, I would do very little obedience. Start with way more excitement. Then walk on lead for 30 seconds, get one good sit, then reward with enthusiastic praise and get him excited again ... breaking retrieves. More frequent exciting chase activity and way shorter duration of obedience activity.

When you are doing obedience, it looks like you are you are doing too much at once. When you were doing traffic cop, he returned to you with the bumper, you physically handled him into heel postion while simultaneously physically taking the bumper from his mouth. You are trying to achieve a linked sequence of "Here" (return), "Heel" (to your side), "Sit", "Out". That's four obedience commands linked in a row. These commands need to be taught to a pretty high standard individually before you do any linking. You are getting ahead of yourself.

I would use a shorter rope. Maybe 6 - 10 ft. You're not having any trouble coaxing him back close to you and the extra length is a distraction.

I hope you don't think I'm picking on you. You're actually very close to a big improvement in excitement and attitude.

Jim
 

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TPines has good comments and a lot of experience. It was a good video and pretty impressive for a pup and an advanced beginner like you and me. Good job and both of us can learn from Tpines tips.

On another note, you might consider a different first word for your You Tube videos. "Chesty" makes it hard for You Tube to stay on topic with it's side bar of other suggested videos. Hee hee.

Jen
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
The biggest thing is that this session is out of balance ... way too much obedience and not enough excitement.
I thought I did just as many 'Excitement Retrieves', 'Sits' and 'Traffic Cop Retrieves' as Bill did on Day 9.

Guess I'll have to watch it again but thought I had them counted out. Eeek
EDIT>>> See below, everydogs different, Note to self!<<< lol

You started with excitement retrieves, but you didn't succeed in getting the pup nearly excited enough. Your attitude seemed too stern starting off. You seemed a bit distracted and almost aloof. As the session progressed, your attitude and energy improved quite a bit. You need to be happier and more enthusiastic from the get go.

Check ✔


I think you are taking the bumper from him too quickly. Let him enjoy having it when he is with you. Celebrate the success with him a bit longer. You need to get him more excited about the bumper like it's a valued prize ... and he is such a great dog for chasing it down for you.

Get the pup more riled up before tossing the bumper. He should be jumping and lunging and going crazy to try to get it from you before you throw. That will produce a more explosive, energetic chase reaction.

Check ✔


Look at your video at about 0:47. You started getting him excited and lunging for the bumper, but then you actually gave him two corrections with your left hand for lunging. Those corrections dinged him for being excited ... the opposite of what you want.
I can see now how that might have given him a false perception. I was really just horse playing with him while trying to keep him where he can see the bumper about to go out. But like you said, he might take that for correction and deminish the excitement.

Check ✔


More frequent exciting chase activity and way shorter duration of obedience activity.
Check ✔


When you are doing obedience, it looks like you are you are doing too much at once. When you were doing traffic cop, he returned to you with the bumper, you physically handled him into heel postion while simultaneously physically taking the bumper from his mouth. You are trying to achieve a linked sequence of "Here" (return), "Heel" (to your side), "Sit", "Out". That's four obedience commands linked in a row. These commands need to be taught to a pretty high standard individually before you do any linking. You are getting ahead of yourself.
Even though I don't give him any verbal commands to do so? Just asking b/c I haven't really taught him 'HEEL" yet(just lead walking) and he hasn't been taught 'HERE' at all. I think that's in another week or two.

I was thinking it was more muscle memory for him to come to me, heel, sit and release, while I give him praise. Doing all this with my hands it's like he barely notices but gets the muscle memory. Or so I thought. You're saying to hold off on this right?


I would use a shorter rope. Maybe 6 - 10 ft. You're not having any trouble coaxing him back close to you and the extra length is a distraction.
Check ✔

I hope you don't think I'm picking on you. You're actually very close to a big improvement in excitement and attitude.

Jim
No way Jim! I value your opinion and remember Mrs. Mary saying that Bill thought you had a great understanding of this program, so by all means THANK YOU! for your time sir!





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Dustin, the biggest challenge you'll likely have is reading YOUR dog and adjust accordingly. Counting every throw and mimicing every single thing Hillmann does won't work with every dog. Some dogs will need more of one thing, less of another, etc. Training programs are guidelines, you have to do the nuance stuff of reading the dog.
 

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I thought I did just as many 'Excitement Retrieves', 'Sits' and 'Traffic Cop Retrieves' as Bill did on Day 9.

Guess I'll have to watch it again but thought I had them counted out. Eeek
Don't worry about how many sits or retrieves Bill does, hes not training your dog.... Listen to what he says. You need to take what he says and make it work for your dog. Some pups may need 6 fun bumpers with you rolling in the grass and mud and flopping around and maybe skip sit a few sessions. Some pups need a pile of extended sits because they are about to blow their top off when the bumper comes out! You need to balance your little pup into a well rounded student.

Edit: Kim beat me to it... :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Dustin, the biggest challenge you'll likely have is reading YOUR dog and adjust accordingly. Counting every throw and mimicing every single thing Hillmann does won't work with every dog. Some dogs will need more of one thing, less of another, etc. Training programs are guidelines, you have to do the nuance stuff of reading the dog.

Thanks Kim & Gavin

I sort of realized that when writing my response back to Tpines. My thought was "wait a minute" you can't count retrieves and excitement bumpers Do Do!"
B/c each day he might/will have a different attitude and need more or less of the other!
duh ...


:lol:

Thanks

EDIT: Thanks Gavin! lol


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Dustin, the biggest challenge you'll likely have is reading YOUR dog and adjust accordingly. Counting every throw and mimicing every single thing Hillmann does won't work with every dog. Some dogs will need more of one thing, less of another, etc. Training programs are guidelines, you have to do the nuance stuff of reading the dog.
Exactly!

When you watch Hillmann, don't mimic quantity ... what you are after is quality. Thia applies to determining when you are ready to advance to the next "Day". The skills and conceptas that Bill demonstrates in Day 9 might take several days to accomplish. It depends on the dog and depends on the trainer. Bill is mostly teaching a dog. The majority of us are simultaneously teaching ourselves while trying to teach a dog. Obviously that will take us longer.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·

Well to be honest this whole "play & excitement' combined with 'balance and work'
is a new philosophy to me.

Learning how to balance it, will definitely be the key.

Glad some of you folks can help point out which side of the scale I was on.
 

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heres Goosers take.

I am following Hillman also with my currently 18 week old pup.

When I first started, my puppy didnt have alot of desire to retrieve..
Everything distracted her..

When I did throw a fun bumper,, she would get it,, but not with alot of enthusuiasum.

I didnt immediatly incorperate the obediance that Hillman shows in first days oof training.. Instead,, I went for long walks, let the pup explore, made everthing really fun.. I waited untill I could see the dog anticipating our daily outings, then while I was walking with her I would throw a fun bumper. When she chased it and picked it up, I made a REALLLLY big deal out of it, running away, clapping my hands, wooooohoooooing,, basically acting afool. Madea BIG game out of it..

It is actually what Hillman suggests you do first... Get the pup CRAZY to retrieve......

I could only throw 2 or 3 of these fun bumpers an outing, before I could read she was getting bored, and the game wasnt fun anymore... Then back to walks...

Eventually her retrieving desire kicked in,,, and that desire went through the roof.... The bumpers and the Game now is a trigger for FUN!!!!

I then incorperated the obediance and traffic cop slowly....

Like I said ,,she is now 18 weeks old,,, is pretty steady, sits on a whistle, loves birds,, but the most important deal is,, The Game of retrieveing is HUGE fun for her....
I am inpressed with Hillmans methods,,,, but I believe you have to be able to tweek it to the way a particular dog reacts..

My opinion...... Remeber who you is talking to.....:p Is to slow down with the Obediance,,, and listen to what Hillman says when he teaches,,,
Make the PUP CRAZY TO RETRIEVE FIRST....

Only throw as many retrieves ( might be only 1 or 2) for the dog to keep him excited,,, and stop at the point when he wants More.. Never let him become bored doing this game..


JMHDAO>

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Even though I don't give him any verbal commands to do so? Just asking b/c I haven't really taught him 'HEEL" yet(just lead walking) and he hasn't been taught 'HERE' at all. I think that's in another week or two.

I was thinking it was more muscle memory for him to come to me, heel, sit and release, while I give him praise. Doing all this with my hands it's like he barely notices but gets the muscle memory. Or so I thought. You're saying to hold off on this right?
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You are right, if you were trying to give him the verbal commands linked together it would be worse. If the dog were out of balance with too much excitement, the extra physical "man-handling" and physical pressure would probably not be detrimental. However, you have the opposite problem. Your pup is being tentative, careful ... almost uncertain about if it is OK for him to let loose and just be crazy about the bumper. So with a dog like that, extra physical pressure only supresses his attitude.

Hillmann's general principle is to keep excitement activities and obedience activities separate from one another. He starts with chase being the only requirement. Separately, he teaches obedience skills starting with sit and walking on a line. Only after an obedience skill is taught to a fairly high standard does Bill incorporate that skill into the chase activity. For example, Traffic Cop involves sitting motionless, followed by release. The dog must be sitting pretty well without involvement of the bumper before being combined with use of a bumper. Further, the bumper is placed fairly close at the beginning of Traffic Cop. In this way, the bumper is used more as a distraction than a chase object; because at this stage Bill is teaching about distractions and teaching the release -- not combining the teaching with the chase activity. Only after the pup has learned about distractions and being released does Bill extend the distance to a real retrieve. The idea is to keep the chase free from corrections or confusion. The chase is never suppressed. So, always do your primary obedience teaching separately from your retrieveing.

Jim
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks guys, awesome info.

It’s awkward I guess that, what I thought I was doing well at;
I was actually not doing enough of.

Like always it seems with starting out, the Trainer needs more help than the Dog.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Ask away Renee. I didn't intend this to be an exclusive topic for my dog and I.

I know lots of folks here recently are following Hillmann and/or thinking about it, but don't see many progress report topics on it. So I figured why not?

So by all means carry on! :)
 

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Ask away Renee. I didn't intend this to be an exclusive topic for my dog and I.

I know lots of folks here recently are following Hillmann and/or thinking about it, but don't see many progress report topics on it. So I figured why not?

So by all means carry on! :)
Brave of you to post, I happen to know I look like a train wreck with my dog.
 

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Jim, Kim, Gavin?

What's your thoughts on my whistle question?
The way I see your use of the whistle is that you are not giving toot-toot-toot as a command. You are trying to establish an association between his action of returning to you and the whistle. That seems OK to me; I am not aware of Hillmann addressing this specific point.

Now, if you were to give the "Here" command or whistle equivalent to recall your pup from a sit, or if he was engaged in something other than already coming to you, then I believe that would be a major violation of Hillmann practices. If you are following Hillmann, then you have not taught the "Here" command yet. This is an important aspect of his approach to steadyness, where the sit standard is well established before "Here" is introduced.

So, is your use of the come-in whistle a violation of this principle? I can't say for sure. Is it going to make a difference later when you teach "Here"? Probably not. You will have ample opportunity to establish and reinforce the whistle when you are ready to teach "Here". I have yet to know of anyone having trouble with the "Here" command using Hillmann's methods. The biggest problem is getting people to believe and trust that they don't need to teach it right away.

Jim
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Correct on the 'HERE' command. He has not been taught it yet.

It can sometimes be a pain not having him learn 'HERE' yet though.

As you saw, with a bumper in his mouth he always seems to return. He doesn't bolt off in the yard or anything like that. I've never had to really deal with that....yet

BUT when's he just roaming around while hanging out in the yard it's another story...sometimes lol

He knows exactly what I want him to do but he'd rather continue playing around. You know what I'm talking about :p

I have to sort of force myself to not say 'HERE' when I want him to come to me obviously not wanting to wear that word out plus, I have no control to back that command up as well.

Most times I just coax him to me, slip the leash on him and just walk with him to where ever I want him to go.

I'll be glad when he starts to learn 'HERE'.


On the Whistle;
I don't always use it for the 'Return'. In fact he's only heard it a few times while 'Returning' with a bumper. I could easily drop it all together.
Like the program too, yesterday was the first time he was introduced to the beginnings of 'Whistle Sit'.

Thanks again for your time Jim!



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I don't use a whistle or the here command, at this point they don't really know what either mean and im just trying to teach simple things like chase and walk on a line and sit. I usually get down on my knees and make a huge fuss of excitement when they grab the bumper. If they drop it or wonder off I stop. Calmly go pick it up and try again. Usually if you did a good job of getting them excited before you threw it they cant wait to get it and come on back. I rub it on him roll it on the ground in my hands lots of hey hey hey hey's until my boy is about to chew my arm off to get to that bumper, then throw it. When he comes back in with it, don't take it from him! Love on him and rub and tell him what a great dog he is for a good 10-15 seconds. It really doesn't matter that he brought it to you, it matters that he chased it and came back! That's what your after.

This is just my dumb ass opinion from a guy on his 2nd trained dawg.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Here's the Video Timeline break down;

1:10 of Excitement(or lack thereof) marks
3:35 of ‘SIT’ work
2:00 of Traffic Cop Retrieves
1:00 of Excitement(or lack thereof) marks
 

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Dustin really good. Thanks for posting!!!You are following Hillmann to the letter. Distractions are great for them (the more the merrier) and he does well b/c it is hard for a pup to focus. He waits good on throws (Traffic cop), holds well and brings it to you well. You do a great walk around. One time you came in and he moved. So if you think he is going to move as you come towards him, reinforce the sit. His sit is off the side but I believe Hillmann said that would improve over time, just try to correct him. Start blowing the whistle first and then say sit.
Yes, others commented on your pup's lack of excitement to retrieve and maybe you could energize him abit. If anyone saw my hyper, spastic pup they would say I over did the desire bit. Every dog is different.
Obedience is still important!! And yes it is a lot of fun!!!!:) That was Hillman's point!!-have fun.!!! Patience, Kindness and understanding in your approach to training your pup was key. Hillmann was very casual in his approach to his training method. Keep viewing the DVD and it will really help you.
Did I say your pup is nice looking and again a really great job!!! Thanks for sharing to us RTFers!!:)
 
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