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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 17 mo. old black lab that I adopted and I was told he was a finished dog. I've been running some T-Drills with him and he keeps breaking either left or right when given the back command. He usually goes and fetches the first bumper and runs a straight line, but when being sent out a second time to go get a second bumper from the pile that is straight ahead he breaks either left or right. He usually stops on the whistle, but not all the time. Any training tips would be greatly appreciated. Thanks
 

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I'd suggest just backing up and simplifying. No big deal.

How is he on simple lining to a pile? I'd work on that first, then I'd work on a front finish send to the back pile (which is just a back cast). If there are no bumpers on the sides, the only way he'll successfully take a cast and be rewarded with the retrieve is to go to the pile.
 

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Not enough info to give a good response. Someone saying the dog is "finished" was probably an overstatement. Are you following a training program? If so, which one? Is the dog collar conditioned? etc, etc. Have you previously trained a dog?

Having said all that. What you are seeing is pretty common for dogs that are just starting T. Move up to the intersection and send the dog and slowly back up. As to not sitting on the whistle, I would go back to FTP to fix that issue considering that you don't know how he did on this drill.

Hope this helps.
 

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One reason that Lardy mentions for not returning to the TT is that once a dog leaves the TT, back no longer means straight back, but rather a slight correction in the line of a few degrees. Some finished dogs will try to correct their line rather than go straight backcausing multiple handles from the confusion. But it sounds like your dog is doing this from a side send and deviating in route rather than not taking a straight back cast.

Teaching the line as Wayne describes is a good start.

What problems are you having with the dog that caused you to return to the T?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Sorry, for the late response, been really busy. First, thanks for your replies and advice, secondly I feel that all of you made a good point, especially Chris. I will be practicing with no side bumpers until he understands that back, means back. It's just a matter I guess of going back to basics.
 
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