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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This discussion was buried in another thread, I thought it deserved a thread of it's own.

It has been my experience that a dog that has gone long twice with success has a much harder time with a short check down retired.
What really makes it more difficult?

Is it expectations, (the dog has found the other birds long and therefore expects the bird to be long)?

Or is it because the dog has forgotten the shorter bird?

More importantly, What is the best way to improve a dog's success at a trial? Secondary selection or Ideal selection?

With secondary selection, the handler is having the dog pick up shortest of the remaining birds second. A close corollary is that in training you don't have a dog run past a short station that it has not yet retrieved. Creating an expectation for the dog to pick up the shortest bird before the longer bird even if the longer bird is more attractive.

In contrast, with Ideal selection as I understand it, one is training the dog to be comfortable running by a short bird and picking up the attractive long bird and then coming back and picking up the short bird:
After reviewing the notes I took and rereading Chapter 6 of the Art and Science of Handling Retrievers I see that selection IS the reason Dave trains for the dog to pick up the short retired last.

Quote by Dave-"Over time Rex trained myself and other trainers to teach the dog to pick up the short bird last in training quite often. In doing so, you start to teach the dog to be good at that short retired gun while getting it last. Then, because the dog has gotten so good at getting the short bird last, he may voluntarily want to select that short bird out on his own."
He then mentions Hiwood Apache Scout saying that he had a very difficult time in checking down to pick up short birds. After consistent work where the dog was only allowed to pick the short one up last he became good at it.
Quote by Dave-" I noticed that he started to get good at getting it last. Then he started to be succesfull in getting it last on weekends. Next he started selecting it out on his own. He became one of the best I've ever seen at getting the short bird any time. He became easy to work with on line with short retired birds. At a Field Trial, when he wanted the big flyer second I was actually comfortable in letting him go for the short one last."

Dave referred to the ability as "ideal selection, defined as getting any bird at any time at any place and feeling comfortable enough to do it".
Final sentence in the chapter-"When you can master ideal selection you can master any test that is out there because the dogs will work with you to get any bird next"
 

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I don't know what makes it so hard. Perhaps because we start pup on running memory birds, pick up short to long, and don't do enough short memory birds? And, we correct for breaking down early? Then, with triple, quad,hey, go ahead, check down, knucklehead? I do think dogs today are better at short retired than in the past. Most likely, more balanced training.

We always train secondary selection, it's the way we were taught. But, do think should be open to new ideas. Ideal selection sounds interesting.

I think a lot depends on the dog. Some have no problem going right back where they were, can run by a tight short retired for an out gun, then come right back in and dig it out. Some can't, maybe they worry more, they will need to get the short bird first.

In a trial, whatever works, training might be out the window.
 

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i think one key is for the dog to have a very high success rate on them in training. too often, people expect the dog to transfer it's ability on long retireds to short birds.dogs just don't generalize skills that way. dogs needs balanced training on short, middle and long retireds, and i think it's better taught at a fairly early age. a lot of trainers are teaching these skills much earlier these days.

one teaching aid is to use an ABCD drill setup with 4 blinds/camo umbrellas. all 4 marks thrown as singles. the thrower immediately retires while the other 3 are visible. as the dog improves, you can hand throw off to the side while the thrower retires.

i think it also helps the dog understand the concept to exagerate the short or long bird. that is, to make the short bird really short in relation to the other mark(s), or vice versa

good topic!-Paul
 

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Obviously, based upon my comments in the previous thread, I train with secondary selection, shortest to longest approach. I also subscribe to the "keep it simple, stupid" theory.

Even in a trial, esp with a tight set-up, I don't think I would purposely send a dog for a long mark past a tight short mark (unless the dog clearly indicated he wanted the long mark in some way) before the short mark has been retrieved. The risk is too high that the dog would instead p/u the short mark anyway & I would be left with the prospect of attempting to convince the dog to take the same line again to the long mark (loud voice, hand down etc).

That's why I am convinced there is something else to Rorem's logic for teaching this 2 longs before a short retired as a concept that has not yet come into the conversation.
 

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It's always best to let the dog have the 2 birds that they want... Usually in this situation the 2 long birds... That way you can talk them into the short retired third bird... There's nothing left to tempt them away from that "key" bird.

Teach it as a secondary selection bird as much as you can training, but at a trial or test go with what the dog wants and have a game plan accordingly...

Angie
 

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I have had several conversations with David about this subject and I still don't pretend to entirely grasp his rationale. However, I think - in part - his rationale is this

1) If you want to win, you must be flexible
2) There are times in trials - and particularly in Nationals, where you will see quads, with two flyers and hen pheasant retired birds - where you must be able to go long twice, then come back for the short retired birds (or go long, short, long, short depending on the layout of the birds)
3) You want a dog that is comfortable picking up the birds in whatever sequence is appropriate
4) If a dog is only able to pick up the birds ... short, long, longer ... it won't be very successful if it is necessary to dig up the long bird before the short bird
5) So, you want to train your dog to be flexible in the manner in which it picks up the birds
 

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I have had several conversations with David about this subject and I still don't pretend to entirely grasp his rationale. However, I think - in part - his rationale is this

1) If you want to win, you must be flexible
2) There are times in trials - and particularly in Nationals, where you will see quads, with two flyers and hen pheasant retired birds - where you must be able to go long twice, then come back for the short retired birds (or go long, short, long, short depending on the layout of the birds)
3) You want a dog that is comfortable picking up the birds in whatever sequence is appropriate
4) If a dog is only able to pick up the birds ... short, long, longer ... it won't be very successful if it is necessary to dig up the long bird before the short bird
5) So, you want to train your dog to be flexible in the manner in which it picks up the birds
A dogs natural tendency at a trial is to select the birds that are most appealing to them. That is long and long... the short retired is a money or "schooled" bird. Let the dog get those long birds that they want and then "talk" them into those short retired birds.

In training one will train conventionally to emphasize the short retired... To get them to relax and be comfortable with the short after long concept..

But a trial,,, the pick up is anything but....

Angie
 

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It's always best to let the dog have the 2 birds that they want... Usually in this situation the 2 long birds... That way you can talk them into the short retired third bird... There's nothing left to tempt them away from that "key" bird.

Teach it as a secondary selection bird as much as you can training, but at a trial or test go with what the dog wants and have a game plan accordingly...

Angie
Always ??????????

john
 

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It's always best to let the dog have the 2 birds that they want... Usually in this situation the 2 long birds... That way you can talk them into the short retired third bird... There's nothing left to tempt them away from that "key" bird.

Teach it as a secondary selection bird as much as you can training, but at a trial or test go with what the dog wants and have a game plan accordingly...

Angie
Always ?????

john
 

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Not that I agree or disagree with this method,but I definetly believe in having a dog with the upmost in balance!! I can't foreget what either Joe Harp or Hugh Author said one time "Rin Tin Tin can't go Long twice, then go short." Evidentally David has broken that train of thought, I have never tried that on purpose, but it has happened to me before!! I think I will discuss this topic at large with Mike and see what he thinks, I'm pretty sure what the answer will be, IT DEPENDS!!! Having a dog balanced with enough bottom to get that long retired punch bird and thinking enough to pickup the short retired right in front of a middle distance flyer is what we are all hoping to have, no matter what order your training dictates you to the order that you pickup the birds. This is the best topic RTF has had in a while.I hope to get to sit in on a Rorem seminar sometime in the near future to hear more about this topic.
CB
 

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Not that I agree or disagree with this method,but I definetly believe in having a dog with the upmost in balance!! I can't foreget what either Joe Harp or Hugh Author said one time "Rin Tin Tin can't go Long twice, then go short." Evidentally David has broken that train of thought, I have never tried that on purpose, but it has happened to me before!! I think I will discuss this topic at large with Mike and see what he thinks, I'm pretty sure what the answer will be, IT DEPENDS!!! Having a dog balanced with enough bottom to get that long retired punch bird and thinking enough to pickup the short retired right in front of a middle distance flyer is what we are all hoping to have, no matter what order your training dictates you to the order that you pickup the birds. This is the best topic RTF has had in a while.I hope to get to sit in on a Rorem seminar sometime in the near future to hear more about this topic.
CB
Maybe "Rin Tin Tin" can't go short after going long twice? But our AA dogs can. Think about it. Where else can they go but short once the long appealling birds have been picked up, in a situation that's been described?

Train for flexability and depth... A dog needs a very, very rich vocabulary to be successful week in and week out at field trials.

But be prepared for how a dog will want to pick up their marks at a trial. It can be very contrary to your training given the situation.

Angie
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I have had several conversations with David about this subject and I still don't pretend to entirely grasp his rationale. However, I think - in part - his rationale is this

1) If you want to win, you must be flexible
2) There are times in trials - and particularly in Nationals, where you will see quads, with two flyers and hen pheasant retired birds - where you must be able to go long twice, then come back for the short retired birds (or go long, short, long, short depending on the layout of the birds)
3) You want a dog that is comfortable picking up the birds in whatever sequence is appropriate
4) If a dog is only able to pick up the birds ... short, long, longer ... it won't be very successful if it is necessary to dig up the long bird before the short bird
5) So, you want to train your dog to be flexible in the manner in which it picks up the birds
A big reason for secondary selection, is to pick up the tougher short bird while it is fresher in the dog's memory. Is that the trade off? The fresher memory vs the absence of the suction from the long attractive bird if it is out of the picture.

Does the it matter the type of dog? For example, a good short bird marker vs poor short bird marker. Or, a dog that is flier crazy and will go to the long flier anyway vs the team player that will pick them up in whatever order the handler wants.

Who determines the order of pickup the dog or the handler?
 

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I'm still sitting back to take it in. I am sincerely interested in the thoughts that the successful, or about to be so, RTF folks have.

John Fallon, please, sincerely, if you have something to contribute, please lay it out in some detail. I believe you likely have some knowledge to share and I personally am not sharp enough to dig it out of the brief rhetoricals....

Thanks! Chris
 

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2 things come to mind in the selection decision: habits and picture.
Habits dealing with order that the dog is most accustomed/training. As creatures of habit many dogs are most confident picking up in reverse order.
Balance this against the picture presented to the dog. Retired or not how well did these throws standout as they were going down? What will dog be looking at when/if he overruns the short bird?

IMHO there is no formula. It's a game time decision.

Tim
 

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A big reason for secondary selection, is to pick up the tougher short bird while it is fresher in the dog's memory. Is that the trade off? The fresher memory vs the absence of the suction from the long attractive bird if it is out of the picture.

Does the it matter the type of dog? For example, a good short bird marker vs poor short bird marker. Or, a dog that is flier crazy and will go to the long flier anyway vs the team player that will pick them up in whatever order the handler wants.

Who determines the order of pickup the dog or the handler?
The dog,,, The short bird is there in a well schooled, well trained AA dog... They do remember it from all the short retired bird training they've had.

At a trial,,, the symantics change... A dog will always want what they want first. That is to go long... It's the way they're programed. Long is easy...

Let that dog get what they want first... Then you have all the time you want or need to "talk them into" that short retired bird... The suction is gone from the birds they want... There is no where else to go,,, so they are more receptive to the idea of going to that short retired bird.

Thank you Dave Rorem,,,

Makes total sense to me. How about you John???

Angie
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Thinking back this fall, on the tests that had a tough short retired bird tight in front of a long bird. I think I can count on 1 hand the number of dogs that successfully picked up that short retired bird after running by it and picking up the long bird first.

It just seems that if the dog ran by the short retired once that it was more likely to run by it a 2nd time. Now most of the dogs running were also trained to secondarily select the bird. So maybe that explains it.
 
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