Question of the month!

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jwnissen
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Question of the month!

Post by jwnissen » Thu Mar 29, 2012 3:21 pm

My name is John and I am the proud owner of a 7 month old GSP named Daisie, which I have had since she was just 4 weeks old. This is my first bird dog and the first dog I have ever tried to train. Im not sure how to inteligently word this so I am going to try to get all of my thoughts out. I've done a lot of research and watched videos on training bird dogs, mainly George Hickox. I have been taking Daisie to dog training at Petsmart and she knew most of the commands before we even went, she chooses when to use her skills and when not to. Our trainer, who is also a friend, made a statement that made me start doing some more research. She said that because Daisie is a family dog and not a "workng" dog that her training is going to be different. I noticed in the videos that the dogs seemed to only know hunting and training and didn'yt apear to be a pet. Daisie lkes to play and have fun and it is hard to get her into the training mode. For those of you whose hunting dog is also a family dog, how did you make that transition? Does it just take time or do I need to train a little harder. Maybe I just need to go somewhere new where she doesn't associate with playtime. We play and train in my back yard which isnt the best for a bird dog, but its all I have. I got some pheasant wings and ever since we got her at 4 weeks, she goes crazy when I pull one out. I stopped using them because she is becoming extremely possesive with the wings and will not let them go. I had to pry it out of her mouth the last time I gave her one. Any advice or help will be much appreciated.

John

zoey'sonlyhope
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Re: Question of the month!

Post by zoey'sonlyhope » Thu Mar 29, 2012 11:47 pm

I am by no means a professional, at training my dog, she is a year old and we are still working with her, she is our first dog and is a GSP as well. What i have found works is that you have to separate play time from training time, when you want to do some training with her get her in the mood by give her a command that she has mastered, and will do every single time without thinking twice about it, like sit or stay, something easy, this should get her in the "training mood" then you can start to give her new commands, and teach her them. Also with the pheasant wings I would make those a training tool not a toy, that doesnt mean she should not enjoy them obviously but it will give her something to look forward to while training as well. Like i said im not experienced hardly at all with this so dont think that lol

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ultracarry
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Re: Question of the month!

Post by ultracarry » Fri Mar 30, 2012 8:31 am

A lot of hard charging 100% bird dogs are also pets, some even live in the house ep there is really no line drawn out that makes a family dog not be able to live in the house.

Just to confirm you are saying the dog doesn't have the hunting drive you would expect a hunting dog to have??

You need exposure to birds, a lot of them. Pheasant wings do not count, wings in general unless they are attached to a live bird do not count. Just get some professional help and you will be fine.

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DonF
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Re: Question of the month!

Post by DonF » Fri Mar 30, 2012 8:34 am

Four weeks? Who let you take a pup out of the litter at four weeks?

No reason at all why a dog can't be a house pet and a hunting dog. Both of mine are!
I pity the man that has never been loved by a dog!

dakotashooter2
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Re: Question of the month!

Post by dakotashooter2 » Fri Mar 30, 2012 9:57 am

Working on obedience training first helps with this transition. When you have reasonable control of the dog you can dictate what the activity is.

I believe a "family" dog develops a connection with it's owner that working dogs can only hope to achieve. The more contact you have with the dog the more in sync it becomes with you. I swear my first springer could read my mine but I know all she was really doing was picking up on subtle body language. I'm not sure working dogs achieve this to the extent that a family dog does. A dog that can read its master can work harder for that master.

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sdoliver
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Re: Question of the month!

Post by sdoliver » Fri Mar 30, 2012 12:58 pm

One way that might work to help your pup tell the difference between play time and training time is to use an object that you only use during training time. Maybe a different collar on the pup or you can wear you hunting vest or a certain cap. Maybe a certain time everyday for training. He will soon learn that when you are wearing that cap or you put that particular collar on or everyday at 5:00 we get to train.

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jwnissen
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Re: Question of the month!

Post by jwnissen » Fri Mar 30, 2012 1:51 pm

DonF wrote:Four weeks? Who let you take a pup out of the litter at four weeks?

No reason at all why a dog can't be a house pet and a hunting dog. Both of mine are!
I know 4 weeks is young, but her mother died when she was 9 days old. So they were bottle fed and I took her as soon as she was eating dry food. She is definately a people dog, thats for sure.

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AG74
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Re: Question of the month!

Post by AG74 » Fri Mar 30, 2012 2:47 pm

Well, interesting question. I'm not an expert by any means, but found your topic hit close to home with me also. I guess I've not ever really thought about separating training time from play time... I consider anytime that I am interacting with my dog to be training (anything you 'allow' your dog to do, you are 'training' him to do...). So, I try to keep training fun, and haven't found the need to draw a line. Most everything I've "trained" the dog to do, I've done with a clikcer and treats, and I know eating is fun for the dog, so.... I guess training and play time are the same for us? Maybe this is a fundamental flaw in my training strategy, though??? Training with birds should defintely be "fun" for the dog, right??? I'm just asking as well...

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gonehuntin'
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Re: Question of the month!

Post by gonehuntin' » Fri Mar 30, 2012 4:31 pm

There is no difference in training a hunting dog and a pet. You just train the hunting dog to do more varied things.
LIFE WITHOUT BIRD DOGS AND FLY RODS REALLY ISN'T LIFE AT ALL.

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ibbowhunting
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Re: Question of the month!

Post by ibbowhunting » Fri Mar 30, 2012 5:05 pm

if you can take your dog out into the woods or field just for a run let her build confidence in the field, this is happy time in the field as i learned on GDF i'm only telling you this because i'm doing this myself with my pup,at first i was think it was going to only let the dog wear of some energy, but its hard to beleave what the pup has learn by herself just letting her run out in the woods on our happy time walks. i can see her hunting drive picking up each time were out, with little or no bird contact. this i think will help out later when we start to train

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RoostersMom
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Re: Question of the month!

Post by RoostersMom » Fri Mar 30, 2012 5:13 pm

Four of our birddogs are house dogs as well. Just get them on birds as much as you can, build the desire. Sounds like that's what she might be missing - lots of bird contacts (wild birds are better than pen reared). Our "house dogs" can hold their own with any of our buddies' kennel dogs. We don't train any differently. A good bird dog needs birds, birds, and more birds.

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bigdaddy
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Re: Question of the month!

Post by bigdaddy » Sat Mar 31, 2012 9:30 pm

gonehuntin' wrote:There is no difference in training a hunting dog and a pet. You just train the hunting dog to do more varied things.
The first sentence is exactly right. I would change the second to say that there are sets of skills which you can train into your dog. None are mutually exclusive. I know hunting dogs that aren't even housebroken. They simply were never taught. I know dogs that are incredibly birdy, hunt hard and are great family pets. You won't have to train your dog to hunt. She'll either have it or not. You can train her to hunt in a manner you like, steady to wing and shot, etc.

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birddogger
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Re: Question of the month!

Post by birddogger » Sat Mar 31, 2012 9:41 pm

gonehuntin' wrote:There is no difference in training a hunting dog and a pet. You just train the hunting dog to do more varied things.
Yep. Short and accurate. No need to write a paragraph or book for a simple answer.

Charlie
If you think you can or if you think you can't, you are right either way

Max&rick
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Re: Question of the month!

Post by Max&rick » Sun Apr 01, 2012 8:24 pm

just finished first season withfirst gsp read books wahched dvds max sleeps with me and is a great companion and hunter. he turned the training corner when I got him in BIRDS BIRDS BIRDS WILD ONES PEN RAISED PIDGEONS NOW HE PLAYS DURING PLAY TIME BUT WHEN I GET OUT THE CHECK CORD HE GOES CRAZY AND KNOW WHAT TIME IT IS good luck

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jcbuttry8
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Re: Question of the month!

Post by jcbuttry8 » Sun Apr 01, 2012 9:07 pm

Bird dogs have the drive or they don't. I know that some believe that a dog must be seperate. I know of several soon to be derby dogs that have never left the kennel, never had a collar on, nor do they even know what they are called. Works for some. My pointer is a split. She is in the kennel outside during the day and comes in at night. She is doing just fine in the trial games. We will see. The big test is coming up now. We are in the process of breaking her. I don't believe that it has anything to do with whether she stays inside or out.

I will say that I have given to her what I expect everyday. The house is a place to relax and have fun. Whether it be running around the yard or just hanging out. All of our training is done either at the football field at the middle school two blocks from the house or out at the club off the 4 wheeler. If she sees' the muck boots go on she stands at the front door and howls until I am ready. My wife hates it when she is working nights. We do whoa before leaving the house and before we eat. We don't go through a door of any type until commanded to but as for cc work it is done elsewhere. The back yard is for playing chase and taking a dip in the pool.

Your dog is born with the instincts to point and hunt, all you are looking at doing is getting a handle on her and showing her they way you expect it done. You can't train the nose or the instinct. Work your dog the way you choose. I am sure that your trainer is just trying to help but just ask 5 other doggers and you will get completely different advice than your trainer. Just as there are a 1000 ways to skin a cat there is 2000 ways to train a bird dog. Find yours and stick with it. Just remember it is repetition and consistency. If the dog hunts for you the way you expect then it will be the best bird dog you know.

JM2C,

Joe

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Francois P vd Walt
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Re: Question of the month!

Post by Francois P vd Walt » Sun Apr 08, 2012 1:21 am

I have 4 Gsp's hunt hard, trial and are pets, don't push to hard enjoy the pup. You will be amazed how well dogs read body language and they will adapt to your life.

Let them grow into a hunter they bred for that, just work on basic commands as they say if you can put brakes on your gsp you will have a good dog. IMO if you can control your dog sit, here under all cicumstances you 90% there.

Good luck good to see the word fun is still in there.

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