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Training methods - how do you train your dog?

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Training methods - how do you train your dog?

There are many way to train a dog. My question isn?t about who?s method you use but do you follow a specific method or not. Do you use an established program like Smartwork, Mike Lardy, James Spencer, D. L. Walters etc. from page 1 to The End or is your program slightly different. The components that you have added to the established programs what are they? How/why have you modified the programs? If you pieced a program together, why?

Joe Miano
 

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There have been several people of the course of years that have shaped how I train a dog. As an amateur trainer of only 1-2 dogs at a time I have the luxury, that others may not have, of tailoring my training to the dog's specific needs. So I hesitate to call it a program.
There are steps and principles that are universal to achieving a trained a dog but the technique that works may vary from dog to dog. For me that is the challenge and the enjoyment.
Tim
 

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subroc said:
Training methods - how do you train your dog?

There are many way to train a dog. My question isn?t about who?s method you use but do you follow a specific method or not. Do you use an established program like Smartwork, Mike Lardy, James Spencer, D. L. Walters etc. from page 1 to The End or is your program slightly different. The components that you have added to the established programs what are they? How/why have you modified the programs? If you pieced a program together, why?

Joe Miano
Virtually all of us who have been involved in retriever training for a few years have come to know certain names of trainers. When we see them in print, or hear them spoken, we instantly associate them with achievement and a degree of authority.

In any pursuit there are such people who distinguish themselves through performance. Great athletes, designers, writers, teachers, innovators, etc., all have names that become recognized as being special at those pursuits. There are basically two reasons why this happens, especially in dog training. First, the individual must have superior acumen; keenness and depth of perception, discernment, or discrimination especially in practical matters, and special inborn ability. Second, and this is very important, they do the great things they become known for with exceptional consistency. How does that happen?

Method: 1): a systematic procedure, technique, or mode of inquiry employed by or proper to a particular discipline or art (2): a systematic plan followed in presenting material for instruction (3): a way, technique, or process of or for doing something (4): a body of skills or techniques. Over decades of study and practical research, trends become identified as patterns, and patterns become distilled as principles. Eventually certain principles emerge as constants. They are at least as constant as circumstances will allow empirical evidence to show. Certain variables are ongoing impediments to this study, but we come to understand that through our own experience.

We each seek a fairly specific skill acquisition for our dogs that allows a well-defined performance. The commands they must obey have become pretty uniform, and the performances of retrieving are widely shared among trainers, especially here in America. I have voiced agreement with Mike Lardy many times that the differences in the training of a dog for hunting or for competition are more a matter of degree than of divergent method. It is a superior method that allows more trainers to do their best, dog after dog.

I believe such a method must have two characteristics:
1) It must be based in the soundest of principles.
2) It must be broken down into understandable portions that can be best understood and used by most people, and their dogs.

I think it?s fine to experiment, especially if such experimentation is based in well established principles, and is done by someone with enough experience and genuine empathy to understand when they are (or are not) being fair to the dog being trained. I just hope that new trainers understand early on that they are not alone in this pursuit. You can be a bold individual, as so many desire to be. But your dog may have to cash the checks carelessly written.

Choose a method, and stick with it. I could offer more advice, but probably none better.

Evan
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"There is little reason to expect a dog to be more precise than you are." ~ Rex Carr
 

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Being from and educated in this wonderful sport from Wisconsin my basic program follows the Lardy methodology.

Having said that..... I'd love to list the dozens of GREAT animal trainers whom have help me form my program that is maliable enough to be tailored to every dog.

I try to train with every good pro and amateur I can. Clinics, I'm the "queen" of clinics. I learn at least one good thing at everyone.

I think that's why we are all so obsessive about this sport. It's always evolving and changing, staying fresh and stimulating. God love our dogs!!! :D :D :D

Can't think of a better reason to get up in the morning!!!!! :wink:

Angie
 

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subroc,
I preffer to stay with the tried and true methods from the originators themselves. Not trying to "reinvent the wheel" as some might say but rather staying the proven course from start to finish! I can read, watch and observe other methods but when the training begins it's always back to ole' Cotton, Morgan and DL for us! :wink:
Peake
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everyone knows how guilty i am of #3, but its worked for me. do i have a FC yet? of course not, but its not my goal. early on i had the time and a pup that absorbed everything with gusto, and like Tim said, training only 1 or 2 dogs at a time you have more luxury to tailor the program. so i definitely took a short cut or seven, some with no issue, others finding out in a test that i had a hole somewhere and went back and fixed it, good ole school of hard knocks learnin'.

but if i had several dogs or a whole fleet like a pro there is absolutely no way this could work. i fully understand you would have to be on a strict regimen and apply a structured course just like elementary school. certainly the higher and more advanced you go the more you see that one tiny thing in the beginning can become be a bigger obstacle to get past, like an air bubble rising through a column of water.

and like math, some people might be able to do trig without taking geometry and pick up the basics as they advance, but if you think you are going to skip trig and succeed in calculus you are mistaken, and without basic math you will struggle at every level. basic math-algebra-geometry-trig-int/diff calculus is the system for a reason.
 

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I'm having a tough time choosing so I went with "other". Most if not all popular programs have a very similar end result, its interesting to look at each individual programs steps and compare the sequence to others. Like Tim stated, I as well only work with one or two dogs at a time generally. I guess the big difference in how I train has to do with my environment and the dogs purpose. I've said before that I hunt big geese and I train for it, as far as my environment, could be big water with crashing/rolling waves for divers, could be chest deep sucking mud for puddlers. I guess I spend a lot more time conditioning dogs to those things as well as pit blinds and different kinds of boats. I have a general guideline from a program I like to follow, however, depending on the dog, each one of those steps might be from another program as long as it promotes progress and doesnt interrupt the "flow". However, I'm sure that when I'm ready to get involved in FT's (someday) my dogs purpose will change, as will the training (somewhat).
 

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There have been several people of the course of years that have shaped how I train a dog. As an amateur trainer of only 1-2 dogs at a time I have the luxury, that others may not have, of tailoring my training to the dog's specific needs. So I hesitate to call it a program.
There are steps and principles that are universal to achieving a trained a dog but the technique that works may vary from dog to dog. For me that is the challenge and the enjoyment.
Tim

+1 more.

Juli
 

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OK newbie here... so can't say start to 'finish' yet.

We have been slow getting started because we have been so 'not sure' what to do and do not want to do things wrong. Our pup is 8 months, she is a wonderful dog. I have experience in 'good dog behavior' (not formal obedience) and agility. We have been trying to be more consistent on what we do and don't want behavior wise she is a firecracker, and need to enforce proper behavior so we can handle her now rather than waiting until later.

We joined a couple clubs, and we entered a hunt training 101 seminar. After the seminar we went to the facilitators for some training help. We also recently acquired one of the programs mentioned. We are trying to do things right.

This is DH's dog, the hard part is he likes the "fun" stuff not the home work. I think he will get there he just needs to be more consistent about doing the work in the first place.

He is heading to a club training session this weekend. Hopefully he will get good feedback and reinforcement. Doesn't happen overnight, however he wants it to. LOL

Ann
 

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I follow Mike Lardys program. Lardy makes a point on day one to give credit where it is due. Carr, Morgan, Walters, Free, etc.


Mike Lardy talks the talk, But he damn sure walks the walk. I'm not wearing a blindfold, but I don't feel like I'm in a posistion to make his program better. Frankly, I've come across VERY few dogs that it didn't work on. (other than the obvious, won't pick up a tennis ball types)
 

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I said modify since I'm also training/competing in obed, agility and some tracking. SmartFetch has given me some really great ideas that have helped immensely in Open obed, for instance.

My 14 mo old was the winner of the "chicken" game at class the other night for a remote Drop from across the room. I'd just started working that with her recently. I have been using EG's rope pulley (sit on whistle), modified to teach the Drop on Recall. I can now get a solid Drop in a matter of days, coupling that w/ collar (fast drop = turn off the pressure)--- vs months as it used to take to proof it when tossing food, etc as I did w/ my first 2. Though ecollars aren't allowed in obed classes normally, I've had several instructors ask me how I did that... because I get a nice fast, happy drop! ;)
 

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Training dogs is somewhat like cooking, once you learn the fundamentals and develop a decent level of competence it is no longer necessary to follow the recipe to be successful
 

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Carr (Lardy & Graham) based, but with minor changes such as collar conditioning before force fetch.

There are always things you pick up from this forum as well as articles from the pros in RJ and other magazines. Burns and Attar were also a huge help. I hear that they are planning a return trip to Michigan next year.
 

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I guess, no... I'm sure I'm in the 'other' category - but not completely. I take advantage of the structure of training programs. But, since I don't use a collar, or FF, I have to improvise. One might be suprised at how well the structure works for non-collar trainers. When it comes to force, well...you have to adopt other means of motivation. But, the structure and sequence have proven sound so far.

Which method? Well, which-ever works best at the moment.

Making progress....

Snick
 

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I follow the Lardy system but the system is not rigid. Even Mike Lardy doesn't follow the Lardy system from beginning to end without any edits.
 

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Training methods - how do you train your dog?

There are many way to train a dog. My question isn?t about who?s method you use but do you follow a specific method or not. Do you use an established program like Smartwork, Mike Lardy, James Spencer, D. L. Walters etc. from page 1 to The End or is your program slightly different. The components that you have added to the established programs what are they? How/why have you modified the programs? If you pieced a program together, why?

Joe Miano
I think if you put your whole life dog training into one person's hands or methods, you are pretty much handing them the responsibility of keeping up with every trend, idea, trick, and philosophy that is going on in the entire planet. Also, the leaders of today would have never became. Keep your eyes and ears always open.
 

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Training dogs is somewhat like cooking, once you learn the fundamentals and develop a decent level of competence it is no longer necessary to follow the recipe to be successful
I'm going to have to borrow that quote and send it to someone, but then she can't cook but she sure can train dogs.
 

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since this poll and thread is almost 7 years old, I wonder if any of those that answered and responded originally would change or alter their answers based on learning new methods
 
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