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I have recently titled my dog at the seasoned level and would like to do the same at the finished level. I am a solo trainer and this is the first HT dog I have trained. Could some of you folks give me some insight as to what was the biggest hurdles you faced in moving up and what would the pro's suggest that I really work on. Any and all input is appreciated
 

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I think the biggest problem most Seasoned handlers have (from the judges perspective) is they need to tighten up their blinds NO HUNT'EM UPS IN FINISHED. Blow your whistle thats what it was made for.

This all assumes that the dog can mark and run a decent blind.
 

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What Ken said, and line manners!

Hopefully you have kept them pretty tight so far, it is a lot easier to demand this from the beginning. But either way, tighten them up now. You said you train solo, but you'll want to do lots of honoring.
 

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Ken and Wingshooter are both right. I would add that you need to train on alot of concept. Train in as many different types of terrain as you can. Train on different marking setups, blinds with suction, do inline marks, over and unders, and lots of drills.
 

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I agree with everything said so far. You need to have a dog you would enjoy hunting in any situation hence what Steve said.
An analogy, in Seasoned it’s like shooting a shotgun as long as your pretty close your probably OK in Finished it’s more like shooting a rifle you have to be precise.

Line manners
Tight blinds
Precise marking
No switching

Train at twice the max distances remember the wipe out birds (a lot of variety) throw the diversion where it almost hits the dog.


Steve, ya'll going to Alamo next month?
 

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No Don, we are going down to Louisiana to run a MH Test in a couple of weeks. Then back up here to run Cowtown's Upland Test June 1st and 2nd.
 

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WingshooterMN said:
What Ken said, and line manners!

Hopefully you have kept them pretty tight so far, it is a lot easier to demand this from the beginning. But either way, tighten them up now. You said you train solo, but you'll want to do lots of honoring.
I believe they sometimes make you shoot while honoring too. If you haven't done this in training I highly recommend it. I was asked to shoot while honoring at a recent club training session. My dog had never broken in training or testing since I first steadied him up. He had never broken on an honor either, but when I shot the go bird for the honor he was gone (the working handler shot the first 2 marks and I shot the go bird). I also just finished Seasoned and you can bet I'll be working on that one before I run Finished.

Good luck!
 

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The rules allow a lot of judging lattitude in Seasoned. Whiustle refusals, cast refusals, get to send twice on marks and blinds. None of that in Finished.
Lines to the blind need to be straight, there will be a lot of suction and factors in them. Down the shore, under the arc, poison birds etc.
Marks will be a lot different and can be very tight. In lines are not uncommon and in your face breaking type marks are also there.
Best to get with a group of "been there, done that" and train way over expectations and don't run till ready.
Good luck
 
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