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Hunt test help!! I am lost. Whoa training works BUT.....

Hunt test help!! I am lost. Whoa training works BUT.....

Postby dottie » Fri Mar 30, 2018 6:22 am

This group has been immeasurable help. I hope I can get some workable answers again.
My Brittany and I are currently entering AKC senior hunt tests. "Zippy" is earning 8's and 9's in 5 categories but in backing he fails.

THE PROBLEM..... Zippy always turns to give me a quick look if I give him a whoa. ......So he is not looking in the direction of the pointing dog......I hope he will eventually stop himself on sight of pointing dog but because in senior I am allowed to offer a gentle whoa..... to avoid stealing a point .....so I use whoa.
This is my fault because when training whoa i allowed him to turn and look so i could give him new commands.
He does not turn his head from a bird.
Any advice or suggestions will be appreciated.
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Re: Hunt test help!! I am lost. Whoa training works BUT.....

Postby cjhills » Fri Mar 30, 2018 7:09 am

Technically you cannot "whoa" the dog into an honor. You can caution him after he has established an honor.
The only way to solve this problem is to get the dog to honor on sight. You may pass a senior test with some judges if the dog does not stop immediately when he sees a dog on point, but you will have no chance in a master.
Work on the honor until he knows their is a bird involved. Stop the voice commands. Let him keep his intention on the pointing dog. Let him have the retrieve occasionally in training. He needs to be thinking about the bird, not you.
What other commands do you give the dog when he is on whoa. You should only release him with a tap.
This problem usually comes from too much training pressure and not enough birds.......................Cj
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Re: Hunt test help!! I am lost. Whoa training works BUT.....

Postby shags » Fri Mar 30, 2018 7:36 am

You need to back up and teach him to honor, instead of you relying on him obeying "whoa". There are any number of methods to teach backing. If you are following a program that makes sense to you, use that; or a little search will lead you to one that works for you.

I wouldn't enter any more tests until you've got this down pat, because at his age, every time he "cheats" only reinforces his dependence on you.

Good luck, sounds like you've done well so far, except for this little bump.
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Re: Hunt test help!! I am lost. Whoa training works BUT.....

Postby deseeker » Fri Mar 30, 2018 12:03 pm

If you have a supply of pigeons and a launcher you can teach a dog to back by doing this: Have a steady dog pointing the bird in the launcher. Have your dog some place where it can't see the dog pointing (over a terrace, behind a building, behind some tall weeds, etc.) Bring your dog out where it SUDDENLY sees the pointing dog--when it first sees the pointing dog-- launch the bird not saying a word. Do this over and over IN DIFFERENT LOCATIONS. Your dog should start to figure out there is a bird in front of the other pointing dog and stop because he thinks it is his movement causing the bird to flush in front of the pointing dog. Once your dog starts to back the other dog--start to shoot the bird and let your dog get some of the retrieves (reward for backing). If you don't have a launcher, you will need a training partner to kick up the pointed bird and shoot it ONLY IF YOUR DOG BACKS. This is the method I use because I have launchers and it works well. I'm sure other people will describe the methods they use.
Good luck :D
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Re: Hunt test help!! I am lost. Whoa training works BUT.....

Postby gonehuntin' » Fri Mar 30, 2018 2:54 pm

With a launcher, if he turns his head or wags his tail when you whoa him, launch the bird. It'll stop him quickly.
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Re: Hunt test help!! I am lost. Whoa training works BUT.....

Postby slistoe » Fri Mar 30, 2018 6:16 pm

deseeker wrote:If you have a supply of pigeons and a launcher you can teach a dog to back by doing this: Have a steady dog pointing the bird in the launcher. Have your dog some place where it can't see the dog pointing (over a terrace, behind a building, behind some tall weeds, etc.) Bring your dog out where it SUDDENLY sees the pointing dog--when it first sees the pointing dog-- launch the bird not saying a word. Do this over and over IN DIFFERENT LOCATIONS. Your dog should start to figure out there is a bird in front of the other pointing dog and stop because he thinks it is his movement causing the bird to flush in front of the pointing dog. Once your dog starts to back the other dog--start to shoot the bird and let your dog get some of the retrieves (reward for backing). If you don't have a launcher, you will need a training partner to kick up the pointed bird and shoot it ONLY IF YOUR DOG BACKS. This is the method I use because I have launchers and it works well. I'm sure other people will describe the methods they use.
Good luck :D

This is the best way I have found.

If you don't have a steady dog to use as a pointing dog you can use a painted silhouette as well for the initial practice and when the dog is working very well a couple of repeats with someone's dog will cement the idea.
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