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Dog no longer holding point

Dog no longer holding point

Postby Bentley822 » Wed Nov 22, 2017 1:13 am

Hello all,

New member and new to the sport. I'm also an amateur seeking help. I recently purchased a one year old started setter female. There are wild birds around but not abundant in my area so I purchased pen raised quail. Worked my up to shooting a few over her with a 20 gauge and she done great. (She does chase). Long story short she caught two in a row because I wasn't prepared for the issue and now she points momentarily and busts in every time. I attempted to work on the issue yesterday with a CC and as soon as it's off she goes right back. Im aware there are similar posts here about similar issues but I'm very anxious to fix this. I was hopeful to hunt with her for our first season this year. She knows the whoa command but does not obey well when excited or on a bird. I just hope I haven't caused irreversible damage to the training. So how to proceed.... Wild birds ? Cage kicker and CC? Yard work only?
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Re: Dog no longer holding point

Postby Dakotazeb » Wed Nov 22, 2017 8:06 am

When you say a 1 year old "Started" setter please explain what the dog had for training when you bought her.
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Re: Dog no longer holding point

Postby DonF » Wed Nov 22, 2017 9:01 am

Good old pen raised game bird. Easy for dog's to catch all to often. If your using a check cord, you need helper. helper handles the bird and you handle the dog. Your problem is you taught the dog it can catch the birds so that's what it does. Keep doing it that way until the dog no longer jumps with the bird. Better yer get a release trap and pigeon's. Lacking that, get the dog on wild birds and don't shoot any the dog doesn't handle well.
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Re: Dog no longer holding point

Postby RoostersMom » Wed Nov 22, 2017 1:47 pm

Once a dog has learned they can jump in and grab a bird, there is no benefit to the dog for standing the birds. They think they can always catch one because they have done it. Makes for a very hard breaking process. I'd get the Perfect Start and Perfect Finish DVD's and follow them to a T. If you can make a clinic (4-days) work for you, I'd go there and get help. I've been to 3 clinics with my dogs, it has helped me immensely. I'd highly recommend them to help break your dog the way you want. You'll have this dog for 10 more years or more....fix this problem before next season and you'll have a great hunting companion.
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Re: Dog no longer holding point

Postby Meller » Wed Nov 22, 2017 6:32 pm

Where do you reside, at least a state; there may be someone close that could help.
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Re: Dog no longer holding point

Postby Bentley822 » Thu Nov 23, 2017 12:22 am

I'm in Kentucky. I have contacted professional help today due to the nature of your responses which made me freak out lol. I will keep you posted.
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Re: Dog no longer holding point

Postby Trekmoor » Thu Nov 23, 2017 4:47 am

Well personally I would never let the dog loose on "tame" birds again. I would only hunt her for wild birds and to begin with I wouldn't even take a gun with me. My own pointing dogs are trained most of the time without me carrying a gun , they get their reward just from having found and pointed a bird .....although in common with most other folk on this side of the pond my dogs are also allowed/taught to do a commanded ,controlled flush so that probably forms part of their "reward."

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Re: Dog no longer holding point

Postby Bentley822 » Tue Jan 23, 2018 12:54 am

Update: dog gave trainer rough way to go with launchers. First launcher would make her nervous and she'd blink the next. Pigeons seemed to not be as enticing to her but a quail (scented before she realize launcher was in use) made her just as likely as ever to bust in. I'm thinking of slowing things way down and revisiting woah. Then Cc and buddy system ? Or would planted pigeons help? Wanted to go ahead and buy perfect start/finish but I read it heavily relies on launchers. Thanks.
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Re: Dog no longer holding point

Postby Sharon » Tue Jan 23, 2018 4:18 pm

Sorry Bentley but you've bopped all over the place with that dog.
Buy the PerfectStart/Perfect Finish programme. Buy the launcher.Hard flying pigeons work very well at your dog's stage - not quail.

Follow the steps exactly . Don't move to the next step until the previous one is working well.
When one step isn't working , ask questions here about that step before moving on.
I want to hear that have a steady to flush dog by Sept. :)
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Re: Dog no longer holding point

Postby Bentley822 » Tue Jan 23, 2018 9:52 pm

Fair enough, thanks for the help I will be ordering the program tonight.
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Re: Dog no longer holding point

Postby Sharon » Tue Jan 23, 2018 10:43 pm

Have a look in the " Hunting/Dog Related Stuff For Sale" category as someone may be selling a prog. there.
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Re: Dog no longer holding point

Postby shags » Wed Jan 24, 2018 6:33 am

Does it make sense, if she blinks launchers and doesn’t like pigeons, to go back to launchers and pigeons?

When you get your dvds, study them before you restart the dog. That way you’ll have an overview of where you’re going and how you’re getting there, and understand the foundation steps.

Then start the dog at the little puppy level, not at the point of where you think she ought to be. The idea is to get her to like pigeons enough again to be able to use your launchers.

Good luck, be patient, don’t rush. I’ve gone through similar problems with a couple of dogs and starting from scratch while making adjustments brought them back. The latest one, we couldn’t use any sort of cages or launchers, he’d not point, but using a cc and released quail, he’s done well. But it took time and repetition, and it was frustrating because we’d have good days then regression. Those regression days are tough, just keep in mind that they get fewer and farther apart.

A monkey can train a really good dog, but we get to be better trainers with these problem dogs.
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Re: Dog no longer holding point

Postby DonF » Wed Jan 24, 2018 12:30 pm

It's not that she doesn't like pigeon's. Two things come to mind right away. She's a bit timid about the launcher. Tell's me she's got to close to many times. The pigeon is simply a bird we can control to use for training. But if your allowing your dog to make mistake's a wild bird would not make, you have turned the pigeon into a training bird and the interest slow's down. You will be able to see it in them. They will get lazy when standing or simply blink the pigeon. Keep in mind before you started training, or someone started with her, a pigeon was just another bird! The trainer teach's the dog the pigeon is a training bird, period! When I run mine it's pretty much always pigeons. They are free and keep coming back for more! Squirt is coming 11 yrs now and he's as interested today I them as he was as a pup! Quit being a trainer and make the pigeon act like a wild bird. You do that and the dog never learn's it's a training bird! Dog get's within 10' or so of the bird, pop the bird. Doesn't make a bit of difference if it's in the scent cone or not, pop the bird and ignore it, ignore it. Do not correct the dog! Dog goes into the scent cone you need to learn to read that. It will give a sign either with it's gait or moving it's head. You see the sign you pop the bird. Then let it go, don't correct the dog. Dog hit's scent more than 15 or 20 yds out it will either slow and go straight at the bird or will rush the bird, pop the bird and go on, don't correct the dog! A lot of people have been successful with more control on the dog. Those are the dog's that don't care about pigeons, they are training birds! Lot of people have a problem with pen raised birds. That's because they put the dog on them to soon and allowed the dog to strut it's stuff and a few of those bird's taught the dog how easy they can be to catch, you did that.

There are guy's that swear by training on wild birds only, they are not wrong but, their training birds cannot be controlled and are not always where you want them to be. What you have to do is turn a pigeon into a wild bird by the way you operate you trap! Keep your mouth shut unless the dog does it right! Do not try to set the dog back so it might under stand what you want, it know's what it want's, teach it how to get it!
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Re: Dog no longer holding point

Postby Meller » Wed Jan 24, 2018 3:10 pm

I agree with everything that Don said, but will add one thing, it doesn't hurt to kill one every now and again.
You might get on the site ( steady with style), good info. there. I think they are on face book also. :D
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Re: Dog no longer holding point

Postby Thinblueline » Thu Jan 25, 2018 7:59 pm

DonF wrote:It's not that she doesn't like pigeon's. Two things come to mind right away. She's a bit timid about the launcher. Tell's me she's got to close to many times. The pigeon is simply a bird we can control to use for training. But if your allowing your dog to make mistake's a wild bird would not make, you have turned the pigeon into a training bird and the interest slow's down. You will be able to see it in them. They will get lazy when standing or simply blink the pigeon. Keep in mind before you started training, or someone started with her, a pigeon was just another bird! The trainer teach's the dog the pigeon is a training bird, period! When I run mine it's pretty much always pigeons. They are free and keep coming back for more! Squirt is coming 11 yrs now and he's as interested today I them as he was as a pup! Quit being a trainer and make the pigeon act like a wild bird. You do that and the dog never learn's it's a training bird! Dog get's within 10' or so of the bird, pop the bird. Doesn't make a bit of difference if it's in the scent cone or not, pop the bird and ignore it, ignore it. Do not correct the dog! Dog goes into the scent cone you need to learn to read that. It will give a sign either with it's gait or moving it's head. You see the sign you pop the bird. Then let it go, don't correct the dog. Dog hit's scent more than 15 or 20 yds out it will either slow and go straight at the bird or will rush the bird, pop the bird and go on, don't correct the dog! A lot of people have been successful with more control on the dog. Those are the dog's that don't care about pigeons, they are training birds! Lot of people have a problem with pen raised birds. That's because they put the dog on them to soon and allowed the dog to strut it's stuff and a few of those bird's taught the dog how easy they can be to catch, you did that.

There are guy's that swear by training on wild birds only, they are not wrong but, their training birds cannot be controlled and are not always where you want them to be. What you have to do is turn a pigeon into a wild bird by the way you operate you trap! Keep your mouth shut unless the dog does it right! Do not try to set the dog back so it might under stand what you want, it know's what it want's, teach it how to get it!


I would love to use your exact methods, which I’ve no doubt would produce the finest dogs. Problem is I can’t afford one remote launcher, let alone multiple launchers, which sounds to be required for your program. And pigeons? Good grief, but can’t imagine how much I’d spend in pigeons to follow what you’re saying. But again, I wish I could do exactly what you’re saying.
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Re: Dog no longer holding point

Postby ezzy333 » Thu Jan 25, 2018 9:23 pm

For years I used a kids sock for a launcher before they were available. Take a sock and put a rock in the toe and then tie a cord around the sock. All you need to do is lay 30 ft or so out straight so you can get a hold of it and jerk it off of the bird which you put in the sock head first.Make as many as you need and work your dog with them.
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Re: Dog no longer holding point

Postby Trekmoor » Fri Jan 26, 2018 5:11 am

Thanks Ezzy ! :D I wish I'd thought of doing that while I was still capable of training pointing dogs ! Never heard of that simple little "trick" before now. It's nice to hear of methods I've never even thought of !

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