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Hello--I would like advice on AMATEUR books or training videos for my 3 1/2 black lab and his AMATEUR handler. The dog is a pet. I have been to one field trial practice and gotten interested in the sport. And this duck season learned that casting is very important. But this dog is first and foremost a family pet and my primary goal is to not mess anything up in that department.

Here are things I need to work on:

  • Whistle-When I first got the dog I taught him to sit with one whistle and to come with three whistle toots. Something has happened and he is now confused with whistle commands, but still responds nicely to voice commands. I am scared I am responsible for the confusion/lack of confidence due to poor use of electric collar.
  • Electric Collar--This thing scares the hell out of me due to Whistle issue above. The dog is not ruined--he still has hard drive and all the basics down. But I can definitely see where a dog could be easily ruined with an electric collar.
  • Casting -
The other day I sent Jake (my lab) to find a tennis ball some kids has lost. I did blind retrieve/casting with voice commands. He did it perfectly. That got me pumped.

So I went out today to work on him with the whistle. I need to get him to sit 100% of the time at distance with whistle toot. And I could see his confidence erroding with collar use--even at low setting. So that thing is being put up until I am sure I know how to use it right.

I have read "Smart Work" by Evan Graham. It is for professionals. I need something geared toward amateurs.

I know it is important to teach things in order according to flow chart. If I had time machine I would go back and fix it. But it is what it is now. I need to teach: whistle sit, casting, electric collar correction without harming his enthusiasm. That is what I need help with currently.

Any suggestions on progams/books/dvds suitable for me and Jake are greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance!
 

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Hello--I would like advice on AMATEUR books or training videos for my 3 1/2 black lab and his AMATEUR handler. The dog is a pet. I have been to one field trial practice and gotten interested in the sport. And this duck season learned that casting is very important. But this dog is first and foremost a family pet and my primary goal is to not mess anything up in that department.

Here are things I need to work on:

  • Whistle-When I first got the dog I taught him to sit with one whistle and to come with three whistle toots. Something has happened and he is now confused with whistle commands, but still responds nicely to voice commands. I am scared I am responsible for the confusion/lack of confidence due to poor use of electric collar.
  • Electric Collar--This thing scares the hell out of me due to Whistle issue above. The dog is not ruined--he still has hard drive and all the basics down. But I can definitely see where a dog could be easily ruined with an electric collar.
  • Casting -
The other day I sent Jake (my lab) to find a tennis ball some kids has lost. I did blind retrieve/casting with voice commands. He did it perfectly. That got me pumped.

So I went out today to work on him with the whistle. I need to get him to sit 100% of the time at distance with whistle toot. And I could see his confidence erroding with collar use--even at low setting. So that thing is being put up until I am sure I know how to use it right.

I have read "Smart Work" by Evan Graham. It is for professionals. I need something geared toward amateurs.

I know it is important to teach things in order according to flow chart. If I had time machine I would go back and fix it. But it is what it is now. I need to teach: whistle sit, casting, electric collar correction without harming his enthusiasm. That is what I need help with currently.

Any suggestions on progams/books/dvds suitable for me and Jake are greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance!
First off I'd say for you to say smart works is for the professionals only is off based. It's a very user friendly program IMO for even the novice trainer especially if you can get around some experience.

2nd don't worry about the time machine. You don't have to go back in time just cause your dog is 3. Just get a program you like and start at tightening up Ob and go for it. You said you read smart works, but. I think watching the DVDs would ease your mind to you being able to use it effectively.
 

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Get Evan Graham's Basics Package DVD's. They are very easy to follow, many inexperienced trainers have used them. Evan will respond to questions on the forum, via PM's or email. You can go to utube and find plenty of videos he has posted, or even do a search on this forum and find links he has posted to them. I'm sure you'll get other suggestions as well.

My dog is just over 2 yrs old, I have never trained one past basic obedience and she is doing great. Jumps with excitement when we get an ecollar out, she knows it means she gets to work and she loves to work. Continue to put the ecollar on your dog so he stays accustom to it, just don't turn it on. Do fun things as well as work with him wearing it, so he learns it isn't a "bad" thing. Look for a local retriever group to train with or at least someone in your area with some experience to work with.
 

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I knows lots of Ams who have trained nice dogs with Smartworks. Its probably a "learning curve issue." Stick with it!
 

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When I started into this 6 years ago, it didn't seem like there was a lot of good puppy/young dog stuff on market as there is now. Before I went into Evans program, I read the book "10-minute Retriever." This really helped me tie together a lot of things I wasnt quite understanding in the formal programs.
 

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I have read "Smart Work" by Evan Graham. It is for professionals. I need something geared toward amateurs.
That's a little disappointing to hear, but perhaps I can help. Email me at [email protected] so we can get to what the real problems are, and let's get this dog going.

Evan
 

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Smartworks is for trainers.......amateur or professional.

I'm pretty novice and I watched the Basics DVD (in Smartworks) last week and it's very clear and would be helpful to the above issues.
 

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I would continue to work through this with Smart Work. Like others I was suprised by your comment that you wanted something for "amateurs."

What training has been done before this? Many people try to pick up training with older dogs and have trouble because the basics are not solid. When starting with an older dog it is best to go back and start from the beginning.
 

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I was thinking the OP possibly has "Smartworks II, Secret of the Pro's".. Might be the confusion, possibly? Just thinking out loud....
 

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It makes you wonder, doesn't it? Still no contact. I'm sure I can help, but you need to contact me to clear this up.

Evan
 
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