Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

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porochi
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Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by porochi » Fri Mar 15, 2019 9:51 pm

How do you get your 3 year old GSP to retrieve when he has zero interest in it? He's a darn good hunting dog in all other respects but that's a big hole in his game. I'm familiar with the force fetch technique but training that way, that's just not me. I won't train him using FF techniques. But what's another effective alternative, esp. with a mature dog that has ingrained bad habits.

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by Cicada » Fri Mar 15, 2019 11:13 pm

Does he pick the bird up or just forgets all about the dead bird, If so how does he handle cripples. I would start working him like a pup building his prey drive.
Have you hunted him with other dogs?

I have had poor retrievers but they would all find the downed bird just not big on retrieving it, very interested in hearing from others on how they approach this problem.

Grant

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by Dakotazeb » Sat Mar 16, 2019 9:39 am

I don't like the term "force fetch". I prefer to call it "trained retrieve". With the right trainer there doesn't need to be a lot of "force" involved but at some point some force does need to be applied. If I was you I wouldn't be so negative about training the dog to retrieve. A dog that retrieves reliably to hand is worth the effort and the money.

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by Steve007 » Sat Mar 16, 2019 10:59 am

I totally agree with Dakotazeb above. The "trained retrieve" is not what you think it is – or what it used to be, when it was thought that genuine force was needed. It is thoroughly achievable by an amateur if he is consistent and works several times a day for short sessions. My dogs are house dogs, and when I need to do trained retrieve, they just have to take a dummy or retrieving buck in the garage before going out to the backyard. Then I start extending distances. As I let them out five or six times a day, you can see this is a lot of very short training sessions every day.

However..how is your dog on retrieving non-birds such as canvas dummies? Don't focus on birds. If he'll chase and retrieve back to you a dummy on a fun basis, try two or three retrieves with lots of fun enthusiasm four or five times a day. Be sure to quit when he still wants you to throw the next one. Summer is coming and there are no birds, so you'll have a lot of time to develop habit patterns of retrieving with fun items. Don't use toys, but use appropriate sized cylindrical items. Reward with the treat after a fun retrieve in the early stages, but you can dispense with the food after a while. If he's a fun guy, he should be jumping up and down for you to throw a dummy for him after a while. Do it every day, multiple sessions per day, only a few retrieves at a time. After a long while, start changing items he's supposed to retrieve remembering to make it fun and to praise when he does it right. You've got a whole spring and summer to go. Repetition and daily work will take you a long way.

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by averageguy » Sat Mar 16, 2019 11:20 am

"The Value of Force Fetch" thread has some good information in it including some links to articles and videos which are right up your alley on this.

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by Dakotazeb » Sat Mar 16, 2019 11:26 am

If the OP is somewhat reluctant to do FF my opinion is he will struggle in doing it himself. Send the dog to a pro and get it done right.

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by porochi » Sat Mar 16, 2019 12:55 pm

My GSP has no interest in retrieving dummies, toys, sticks, balls, etc. He just won't do it. He wants to run, sniff and find game. He seems to lack any retrieve instinct. Now if I lathered the dummy in bacon grease he might at least go after it. But bring it back? Nope. I'm determined to train him myself though. Just don't like FF, not my style. There should be other ways to train fetch that are fun for dog and trainer. I've seen FF done and I just can't do that to my dog. Call me a softy...

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by polmaise » Sat Mar 16, 2019 4:26 pm

Look up "Backchaining" a retrieve. You may also get more advice if your thread is in the Training section ,rather than General Chat,if it is a genuine Trai ing issue.
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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by Trekmoor » Sun Mar 17, 2019 6:38 am

You could take a good look at clicker training in general and then at clicker training as it applies to retrieving. I believe even creatures like cats and farmyard hens have been trained to retrieve using the click/treat method ? So surely a dog could be taught that way ?

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by polmaise » Sun Mar 17, 2019 2:25 pm

porochi wrote: ↑
Fri Mar 15, 2019 9:51 pm
How do you get your 3 year old GSP to retrieve when he has zero interest in it? He's a darn good hunting dog in all other respects but that's a big hole in his game. I'm familiar with the force fetch technique but training that way, that's just not me. I won't train him using FF techniques. But what's another effective alternative, esp. with a mature dog that has ingrained bad habits.
A Gsp is no different to any other breed that has prey drive despite any ingrained bad habits that have been allowed to manifest by the handler. A retrieve is "recall " with something in the dogs mouth. So,to get something in the dogs mouth first ,start with "desire". (Basis of FF), but you don't want that route,so fine, no problem. Stop feeding the dog for two days,maybe even 3?. It won't die, trust me
Throw a raw bone and let the dog run in and get it, and let it have it!..Report back when this is achieved. I call it treat training using positive reinforcement. 😘

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by Trekmoor » Sun Mar 17, 2019 2:47 pm

:lol: I know what is coming and it does work ! :lol:

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by polmaise » Sun Mar 17, 2019 2:54 pm

:lol: :wink: :roll:
Spoil sport :mrgreen:

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by oldbeek » Sun Mar 17, 2019 11:47 pm

Watch Standing Stone Kennels videos on u-tube "trained retrieve". Very good series.My dog would retrieve balls all day in the yard. Wild quail, nothing doing. To many more out there to point. YOU pick it up! FF for 4 weeks, 3 short sessions a day. Quite a bit of force at the end, and then she broke. Fetches perfect with a smile and tail wagging every time. We really connected to who is alpha dog in our team.
Last edited by oldbeek on Tue Mar 19, 2019 3:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by gundogguy » Mon Mar 18, 2019 4:17 am

polmaise wrote: ↑
Sun Mar 17, 2019 2:25 pm
porochi wrote: ↑
Fri Mar 15, 2019 9:51 pm
How do you get your 3 year old GSP to retrieve when he has zero interest in it? He's a darn good hunting dog in all other respects but that's a big hole in his game. I'm familiar with the force fetch technique but training that way, that's just not me. I won't train him using FF techniques. But what's another effective alternative, esp. with a mature dog that has ingrained bad habits.
A Gsp is no different to any other breed that has prey drive despite any ingrained bad habits that have been allowed to manifest by the handler. A retrieve is "recall " with something in the dogs mouth. So,to get something in the dogs mouth first ,start with "desire". (Basis of FF), but you don't want that route,so fine, no problem. Stop feeding the dog for two days,maybe even 3?. It won't die, trust me
Throw a raw bone and let the dog run in and get it, and let it have it!..Report back when this is achieved. I call it treat training using positive reinforcement. 😘
When this thread first started The first thing I thought of was "treat training using positive reinforcement". FF in and of itself will never make a dog retrieve, especially one that has been allowed to "avoid" the task of going out picking up and recalling with the object.
Right-on! Used this same system on a GSP, Chessie, and labrador that had been spoiled by the owner handlers. The owners when they came back to learn how to handle their "new" retrieving machines thought I was some kind of miracle worker.

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by CDN_Cocker » Tue Mar 19, 2019 11:53 am

I am a strong believer in force fetch or the trained retrieve. But it's not necessary to get a dog to retrieve and any well bred gun dog should want to retrieve. That being said it sounds like that drive hasn't been nurtured in your 3 year old dog. What you need to do is start building that desire just as if he's a puppy. Get him excited.... use something he likes (ball) and toss it short, encouraging him to go get it and get down on his level and encourage him to come back to you and praise him up. There's a million articles online about building retrieve desire in a puppy. And that's what you need you to do. Treat him like an 8 week old puppy.
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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by JONOV » Tue Mar 19, 2019 12:55 pm

porochi wrote: ↑
Sat Mar 16, 2019 12:55 pm
My GSP has no interest in retrieving dummies, toys, sticks, balls, etc. He just won't do it. He wants to run, sniff and find game. He seems to lack any retrieve instinct. Now if I lathered the dummy in bacon grease he might at least go after it. But bring it back? Nope. I'm determined to train him myself though. Just don't like FF, not my style. There should be other ways to train fetch that are fun for dog and trainer. I've seen FF done and I just can't do that to my dog. Call me a softy...
What does he do with birds you shoot over him?

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by polmaise » Tue Mar 19, 2019 1:17 pm

gundogguy wrote: ↑
Mon Mar 18, 2019 4:17 am
polmaise wrote: ↑
Sun Mar 17, 2019 2:25 pm
porochi wrote: ↑
Fri Mar 15, 2019 9:51 pm
How do you get your 3 year old GSP to retrieve when he has zero interest in it? He's a darn good hunting dog in all other respects but that's a big hole in his game. I'm familiar with the force fetch technique but training that way, that's just not me. I won't train him using FF techniques. But what's another effective alternative, esp. with a mature dog that has ingrained bad habits.
A Gsp is no different to any other breed that has prey drive despite any ingrained bad habits that have been allowed to manifest by the handler. A retrieve is "recall " with something in the dogs mouth. So,to get something in the dogs mouth first ,start with "desire". (Basis of FF), but you don't want that route,so fine, no problem. Stop feeding the dog for two days,maybe even 3?. It won't die, trust me
Throw a raw bone and let the dog run in and get it, and let it have it!..Report back when this is achieved. I call it treat training using positive reinforcement. 😘
When this thread first started The first thing I thought of was "treat training using positive reinforcement". FF in and of itself will never make a dog retrieve, especially one that has been allowed to "avoid" the task of going out picking up and recalling with the object.
Right-on! Used this same system on a GSP, Chessie, and labrador that had been spoiled by the owner handlers. The owners when they came back to learn how to handle their "new" retrieving machines thought I was some kind of miracle worker.

Hal
Very similarly "Hal". Out of a few that have come to our kennels for Re-Training, this one sticks in my mind. Even the mighty Bill "Trekmoor" tried his magic balls on a visit one day,with nil success ,even with all puppy play for a seasoned one that is Stuck in it's way.

A few more,and I do mean a few more sequential processes were required after this First Base.
And a few more video clips in the process for sure,way too much viewing for the average Joe on a forum.
We did however in the process cable tie a bone to the dummy/Bumper .
😘https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sr-fCx7Kxw4

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by averageguy » Wed Mar 20, 2019 7:46 am

Porochi, I posted earlier suggesting you check out "The Value of FF" thread. I posted a couple of videos from this same trainer working with the same dog in that thread because it fit with some of my posts there. Not sure if you went over there and looked or not. Here is the dog on day 12. No Force used. Many folks (and growing) are using this type approach which can easily meet your objectives for your dog. The trainer is in Kansas as are you...

https://www.facebook.com/jim.gourley/vi ... nt_mention

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by gonehuntin' » Wed Mar 20, 2019 8:21 am

If the dog has ZERO interest in retrieving, won't chase balls or toys, it will probably never be a decent retriever. You can not make a dog into a good retriever by forcing it if it has no interest in the task.
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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by averageguy » Wed Mar 20, 2019 8:46 am

Based on the series of videos for the specific dog I just posted, that Trainer has made a great deal of progress in a short time, making use of the dog's desire to get a treat and be praised. At the outset the dog appeared to have what I judge a poor/low drive to retrieve. There are other videos the trainer has posted which follow the dog's rapid progress. The initial movement down the table following a fetch command was done by placing a treat at the end of the table to lure the dog to go get it and introducing the Fetch command at the same time. The dog of course did it. Now you see where they are 12 days into it in the link I posted above. (Has some key similarities to what Polmaise has posted in this thread.)

Given Porochi's dog is not doing what he wishes it to do, my vote is for someone to give the approach a good effort. Seems like nothing but upside is the possible outcome at this point.

There are other issues however in that a dog retrieving is not at all the same as a dog doing a diligent job of hunting dead for downed birds, particularly those birds the dog did not see fall or birds which have moved. I laid out my approach to building desire and enthusiasm for "hunting dead" in my puppies in my "Start em Young" thread. Porochi's dog is 3 years old with an engrained behavior of not "hunting dead", so I am not sure how well the same methods will work but if I found myself in the same position it is the approach I would try first and see where it took us.

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by Trekmoor » Thu Mar 21, 2019 5:20 am

I have often wondered just what people do to dogs that makes those dogs not want to retrieve. I used to train retriever classes and found that even the show bred labs wanted to retrieve but every now and then someone would turn up with a lab of work breeding that did not want to retrieve. This is so rare an occurrence in the Labrador breed that I am of the belief that it is always the owners fault !

I also owned and trained GSP's and brittanies, when some of them did not want to retrieve I knew exactly who to blame ! I'd failed to notice that those pups were becoming hunt obsessed and becoming less interested in retrieving. The cure was simple....little or no hunting until I had built up much more of a desire to retrieve.

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by Steve007 » Thu Mar 21, 2019 12:49 pm

Bill, it's not always a matter of not wanting wanting to retrieve. I have had retrieving problems with two dogs, and I thoroughly believe that both were natural retrievers. The first was a Gordon Setter of field trial breeding. It wasn't the breeding, but he had been raised as a trial dog and among well-trained trial dogs and it simply never occurred to him to retrieve. He was a very agreeable fellow, but I just couldn't get it through to him.

The other was a GWP who was a terrific natural retriever. I thought between that and teaching him "hold", that's all I would need. Maybe it would've been. But when retrieving a canvas dummy, he got socked in the eye by the knot on a throwing cord. I realize nobody has ever seen this happen before – myself included – but it did happen. And he wanted nothing to do with retrieving anything after that!.

No point in your explaining what I "could have done to correct the problem." I assure you, I tried it, and over a period of time. Ultimately, I went through a slow and extended FF process throughout the summer months. The thought got through, their natural retrieving ability which was there all the time came to the fore, and I ended up with two spectacular – and fun – retrievers. Things happen, but sensible and determined owners can correct them over time.

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by polmaise » Thu Mar 21, 2019 2:47 pm

Having the Individual dog and more so ,any individual Dog and Individual handler at the same time with any issue Is And always will be the best resolve for all. Thankfully.

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by ezzy333 » Thu Mar 21, 2019 3:54 pm

Trekmoor wrote: ↑
Thu Mar 21, 2019 5:20 am
I have often wondered just what people do to dogs that makes those dogs not want to retrieve. I used to train retriever classes and found that even the show bred labs wanted to retrieve but every now and then someone would turn up with a lab of work breeding that did not want to retrieve. This is so rare an occurrence in the Labrador breed that I am of the belief that it is always the owners fault !

I also owned and trained GSP's and brittanies, when some of them did not want to retrieve I knew exactly who to blame ! I'd failed to notice that those pups were becoming hunt obsessed and becoming less interested in retrieving. The cure was simple....little or no hunting until I had built up much more of a desire to retrieve.

Bill T.
'
It was always my experience that I trained hunting to the continental breeds first and then needed little work of the retrieve. I still think that too much and too soon work on retrieving tended to bring out enough natural desire that it often became a determent to hunting and pointing. Pointers and setters were worked in the exact opposite order. Was I wrong? I don't know for sure but it worked and this all took place before FF was even mentioned but was a major part of my breeding program.

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by Trekmoor » Fri Mar 22, 2019 5:11 am

That's interesting Ezzy. I never had any trouble at all in getting the continental breeds to hunt and point , it just seemed to happen.

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by polmaise » Fri Mar 22, 2019 12:35 pm

Always perplexed.
When a well bred Retriever pup is born and then 8 weeks later ,no mention is ever given on how well it is steady to shot or flush,even how well it can heel,or even take direction,not to mention how good it is on a stop whistle ,and never a mention how well it takes a straight line.?.....Just like it's Sire and Dam......Not a mention how well it can swim across vast ponds and ignore all distractions and Deliver A Bird to hand . .
Another perplexed thought is when a handler of a Pointing breed relies so much in the dog doing all the work ,without the Coach supplying the environment for the pupil to grow

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by gundogguy » Fri Mar 22, 2019 1:11 pm

polmaise wrote: ↑
Fri Mar 22, 2019 12:35 pm
Always perplexed.
When a well bred Retriever pup is born and then 8 weeks later ,no mention is ever given on how well it is steady to shot or flush,even how well it can heel,or even take direction,not to mention how good it is on a stop whistle ,and never a mention how well it takes a straight line.?.....Just like it's Sire and Dam......Not a mention how well it can swim across vast ponds and ignore all distractions and Deliver A Bird to hand . .
Another perplexed thought is when a handler of a Pointing breed relies so much in the dog doing all the work ,without the Coach supplying the environment for the pupil to grow
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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by averageguy » Wed Mar 27, 2019 6:29 am

Porochi,

here is another progress update on the GSP being trained to retrieve using treats and praise only to this point.

https://www.facebook.com/jim.gourley/vi ... 499471697/

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by oregon woodsmoke » Sat May 18, 2019 2:57 pm

Clicker training works really well for training the fetch. The problem with clicker training is that the trainer must learn how to use the system. The dog has no problem understanding and learning it.

Not all bird dogs are fetching fools. Our spaniel would hunt birds and find every bird shot and bring it to hand. He'd find all the runners. No problem bring in the birds.

But throw a ball for him at home and he'd give that offended dog eye roll that they do when they are disgusted by their owner's mistakes. He wasn't interested in fetch; he was interested in getting the bird.

Is OP's dog not picking up and bringing birds? Or is he bored with playing fetch with a canvas dummy?

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by gonehuntin' » Sat May 18, 2019 4:07 pm

The best system of FF on the planet is the one Evan Graham teaches. It can be easily modified by using treats. You seem to think FF has to be brutal. It most certainly does not. By combining TEACHING with PRESSURE reinforced by TREATS the FF process is relatively easy to achieve. Now, let me state again, IF THIS DOG HAS NO interest in retrieving, you will NEVER make a decent retriever of it. Teach it to point dead if he truly has zero interest in retrieving.
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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by JONOV » Tue May 21, 2019 10:37 am

gonehuntin' wrote: ↑
Sat May 18, 2019 4:07 pm
The best system of FF on the planet is the one Evan Graham teaches. It can be easily modified by using treats. You seem to think FF has to be brutal. It most certainly does not. By combining TEACHING with PRESSURE reinforced by TREATS the FF process is relatively easy to achieve. Now, let me state again, IF THIS DOG HAS NO interest in retrieving, you will NEVER make a decent retriever of it. Teach it to point dead if he truly has zero interest in retrieving.
I think that's the big thing that most people miss. You've had more experience with it than most and have probably seen the good, bad and ugly when it comes to FF.

There are still a lot of folks out there that don't get what they need initially from the dog and move to a bottle-cap on the thumb to amp up the pain. I wish I had (at the time) the knowledge to seek out other resources when the answer was "More Pressure" for a dog that was otherwise very cooperative and had a decent natural retrieve to boot. What ended up working was taking a month break from it before going back to it. Also I had to reward with a treat on the delivery. Super strange but it worked for me?

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by averageguy » Wed May 22, 2019 6:14 am

Porochi,

you have gone radio silent for awhile so not sure where you are at with your dog. The trainer and dog I posted earlier in this thread are now pointing, flushing, shooting and retrieving shot birds to hand.

A discussion on clicker training on another board turned up this video and I thought it would be beneficial for you to take a look and consider the possibilities for your dog. You said that your dog might run to an object and pick it up but would never return with it. That is a function of not having trained individual actions which can be chained together for a complete retrieve. A dog which has been trained to Hold, Recall, Pick up and Hold an object, as separate actions can then be trained to chain those behaviors together for a complete retrieve. But if you have a hole in any of those, the complete retrieve will break down.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6oFO9Z0 ... =DonnaHill

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by gonehuntin' » Wed May 22, 2019 6:57 am

averageguy wrote: ↑
Wed May 22, 2019 6:14 am
Porochi,

you have gone radio silent for awhile so not sure where you are at with your dog. The trainer and dog I posted earlier in this thread are now pointing, flushing, shooting and retrieving shot birds to hand.

A discussion on clicker training on another board turned up this video and I thought it would be beneficial for you to take a look and consider the possibilities for your dog. You said that your dog might run to an object and pick it up but would never return with it. That is a function of not having trained individual actions which can be chained together for a complete retrieve. A dog which has been trained to Hold, Recall, Pick up and Hold an object, as separate actions can then be trained to chain those behaviors together for a complete retrieve. But if you have a hole in any of those, the complete retrieve will break down.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6oFO9Z0 ... =DonnaHill
Thing is, this dog is THREE years old and won't pick up anything. If a dog has ZERO interest in retrieving you risk making a blinker of him if you try to teach him. The dog that will retrieve in your yard may give up in a heartbeat in heavy cover or when hurt by a bird. The method posted may work to an extent if the dog is reward driven. At 3, it may also back fire and create a blinker. Hard to say. One thing for sure a GSP can be the most difficult of all dogs to work with.
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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by averageguy » Wed May 22, 2019 7:03 am

I agree it may not work but I fail to see significant risk of creating a blinker using the approach.

You are attempting to get the dog to initially voluntarily place its mouth on a bumper using zero pressure and rewarding it when it does. There is no pressure involved. I don't see how that creates risk of a blinker, but absolutely understand that the dog may be so turned off by its prior bumper work (which is apparently soured on), that the approach does not work.

My suggestions are working within Porochi's framework of being committed to not using other methods that a skilled person such as yourself might well succeed with.

Occurs to me to add some thoughts. I think the risk of furthering the dog's dislike of bumpers or retrieving using the approach in the video depends critically on the starting point. In the video the woman is working with a dog which has obviously had some successful prior obedience training. The dog is very content and relaxed to sit in front of the trainer making good eye contact. The dog likes to work with the trainer and is eager to do so.

If porochi's dog does not have that same level of trained obedience then attempting to start with getting it to put its mouth on a bumper is ill-fated from the outset and does create more risk of furthering it's negative reactions to being asked to do so. I am referencing the standard concept/approach of chaining trained behaviors together. If porochi's dog will not happily sit and face him then that work would need to proceed where the video takes up and be accomplished in a manner where the dog does not resent doing it ...

Trained retrieve using any approach requires trained obedience and no trainer or dog succeeds without it. We all agree on that, right?

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by RyanDoolittle » Sat Jun 01, 2019 7:20 am

The benefits of Force Fetching a dog far outweigh a little ear pinch for a couple days. You will get the retrieve you want and will have a different relationship, for the better, with your dog.

Whether they need it or not, I FF all my dogs. FF is not just about the retrieve.

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by Ouzel » Sat Jun 08, 2019 10:18 pm

RyanDoolittle wrote: ↑
Sat Jun 01, 2019 7:20 am
The benefits of Force Fetching a dog far outweigh a little ear pinch for a couple days. You will get the retrieve you want and will have a different relationship, for the better, with your dog.

Whether they need it or not, I FF all my dogs. FF is not just about the retrieve.
I've heard that and some surely swear by it, but it could be more a justification for not learning a less aversive method. There's no evidence that "a little ear pinch" gives an improved outcome over other methods.

If a dog isn't motivated by food then that might be an indication that force is necessary, and, also, if OP's three year old has no interesting in fetching whatsoever then I'd go with GH's advice.

Here's a ten week old pup of mine who's had one week of some pretty low key sessions of retrieve training: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sQZ4pL2qrTI

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by gonehuntin' » Sun Jun 09, 2019 7:03 am

Ouzel wrote: ↑
Sat Jun 08, 2019 10:18 pm
RyanDoolittle wrote: ↑
Sat Jun 01, 2019 7:20 am
The benefits of Force Fetching a dog far outweigh a little ear pinch for a couple days. You will get the retrieve you want and will have a different relationship, for the better, with your dog.

Whether they need it or not, I FF all my dogs. FF is not just about the retrieve.
I've heard that and some surely swear by it, but it could be more a justification for not learning a less aversive method. There's no evidence that "a little ear pinch" gives an improved outcome over other methods.

If a dog isn't motivated by food then that might be an indication that force is necessary, and, also, if OP's three year old has no interesting in fetching whatsoever then I'd go with GH's advice.

Here's a ten week old pup of mine who's had one week of some pretty low key sessions of retrieve training: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sQZ4pL2qrTI
A ten week pup has nothing in common with a three year old with problems. The justification in the ear pinch system over any other on the planet is that retrievers have been trained using this method in field trials since before I've been around the game and that's 50 years. A dog trained without this method can not compete with them in AKC field trials. Pointing dog trainers have used it even longer but haven't taken it to the degrees of perfection the field trailers have. There is NO more well proven method than the ear pinch. Period. Nothing else is even close. ESPECIALLY in older dog's. It is the ONLY system that provides you with the tools to fix many future problems that COULD be encountered. Remember, we're talking about a THREE year old dog here.
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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by oldbeek » Sun Jun 09, 2019 12:46 pm

Agree with gohuntin! My dog at 1 1/2 flat would not retrieve shot birds. She was to busy hunting. She does like treats. BUT she likes hunting more birds better. Force was the only way to convince her that it was her job to retrieve. After trained retrieve with treats, what do you do if she refuses to retrieve in the field??? Put a trail of treats over to the downed bird?? NO! Walk her to the bird and use ear pinch till she picks it up. Thankfully she loves to retrieve as now she knows it makes the boss happy.

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by Ouzel » Sun Jun 09, 2019 1:35 pm

gonehuntin' wrote: ↑
Sun Jun 09, 2019 7:03 am
A ten week pup has nothing in common with a three year old with problems. The justification in the ear pinch system over any other on the planet is that retrievers have been trained using this method in field trials since before I've been around the game and that's 50 years. A dog trained without this method can not compete with them in AKC field trials.
The ear pinch has been around a long time and it works mainly because nobody had an alternative that worked. PR gets you to the same point as the ear pinch but quicker and mouth issues can be shaped as opposed to traditional FF. For instance, you can correct mouthing, chomping, or vary the force the dog uses to hold the dummy.

To Oldbeek's point about what do you do when the dog refuses to retrieve you use the ecollar, same as anybody else who gets a refusal with the FF method. Walking out to the bird while pinching the dog's ear is certainly old school. The fetch with PR is normally proofed with the collar, same as you do with traditional means. Read Evan Graham's FF instruction manual where his star pupil spent six weeks on the table getting his ear pinched before "getting it". A more knowledgable trainer would have had the dog at the same point in a couple of days.

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by gonehuntin' » Sun Jun 09, 2019 3:09 pm

Ouzel wrote: ↑
Sun Jun 09, 2019 1:35 pm
gonehuntin' wrote: ↑
Sun Jun 09, 2019 7:03 am
A ten week pup has nothing in common with a three year old with problems. The justification in the ear pinch system over any other on the planet is that retrievers have been trained using this method in field trials since before I've been around the game and that's 50 years. A dog trained without this method can not compete with them in AKC field trials.
The ear pinch has been around a long time and it works mainly because nobody had an alternative that worked. PR gets you to the same point as the ear pinch but quicker and mouth issues can be shaped as opposed to traditional FF. For instance, you can correct mouthing, chomping, or vary the force the dog uses to hold the dummy.

To Oldbeek's point about what do you do when the dog refuses to retrieve you use the ecollar, same as anybody else who gets a refusal with the FF method. Walking out to the bird while pinching the dog's ear is certainly old school. The fetch with PR is normally proofed with the collar, same as you do with traditional means. Read Evan Graham's FF instruction manual where his star pupil spent six weeks on the table getting his ear pinched before "getting it". A more knowledgable trainer would have had the dog at the same point in a couple of days.
We could not disagree more. Seems like you're all over the board on this. Mouth issues CANNOT be addressed or controlled by PR on older dogs. FF is the only way to really cure this. A "more knowledgable" trainer than Evan......Me thinks you haven't been involved with these pooches very long.
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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by Ouzel » Sun Jun 09, 2019 3:20 pm

gonehuntin' wrote: ↑
Sun Jun 09, 2019 3:09 pm
A "more knowledgable" trainer than Evan......Me thinks you haven't been involved with these pooches very long.
Not sure length of time involved with these pooches equates to knowledge but I ran my first licensed field trial in 1970.

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by gonehuntin' » Sun Jun 09, 2019 3:52 pm

Then I'd think that there are some things you must realize. 1) No trainer anywhere will guarantee he can cure mouth problems like chomping. 2) PR gives you no basic to fall back on. You need a program to build a reliable dog. 3). A ten week pup is one thing, a three year old another. The chances of EVER curing a three year old to retrieve reliable by using PR must be one in a thousand. 4). PR works great on pups. Once a dog starts defining you it loses all effectiveness. As you say yourself, at some point you have to apply pressure, the collar, etc to correct the dog. Baffles me why you just don't build it in from day one rather than try to add force on top of PR. You'll have to back up and spend more time.

If you've run licensed field retriever trials since the 70's, you have seen virtually no dog's that were not ear pinched. Or are you not talking Retriever trials?
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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by Ouzel » Sun Jun 09, 2019 5:37 pm

As I explained in my posts, the OP's three year old dog may not be interested in food, in which case PR isn't likely to work. If not interested in retrieving anything, then even FF may not be an option. I'm no pro (and yes, I've run licensed retriever trials), have done traditional FF in the past, and I have no problem using force when necessary. In the typical case I just don't think ear pinching is necessary, but also firmly believe that a "PR retrieve" needs to be backed up by the ecollar so that you have a stick as well as a carrot. Most dog owners aren't like you (and have not FF'd large numbers of dogs) and it can be a daunting experience for the pet's owner. Also, numerous dogs have been harmed in the FF process which I believe is totally unnecessary.

The ten week old pup retrieving, holding, sitting, and giving up the dummy in the video was not to equate it with anything except to show that you don't need to have a dog on a bench day after day having it's ear pinched in order to get it to open it's mouth and reach for a dummy. I've used PR on pups, young dogs, and recently on a twelve year old dog who wouldn't fetch anything - BUT he was motivated by food. "Shaping" is a term for modifying the dog's behavior in small ways with PR - so that it is possible to change their mouth habits. I know this is an advantage to traditional FF early on but I"m not sure how that works on a dog who's learned to chomp - as you've said.

gonehuntin' wrote: ↑
Sun Jun 09, 2019 3:52 pm
Then I'd think that there are some things you must realize. 1) No trainer anywhere will guarantee he can cure mouth problems like chomping. 2) PR gives you no basic to fall back on. You need a program to build a reliable dog. 3). A ten week pup is one thing, a three year old another. The chances of EVER curing a three year old to retrieve reliable by using PR must be one in a thousand. 4). PR works great on pups. Once a dog starts defining you it loses all effectiveness. As you say yourself, at some point you have to apply pressure, the collar, etc to correct the dog. Baffles me why you just don't build it in from day one rather than try to add force on top of PR. You'll have to back up and spend more time.

If you've run licensed field retriever trials since the 70's, you have seen virtually no dog's that were not ear pinched. Or are you not talking Retriever trials?
Good post

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Re: Training GSP to retrieve w/out FF

Post by RyanDoolittle » Wed Jan 15, 2020 9:17 pm

Ouzel wrote: ↑
Sat Jun 08, 2019 10:18 pm
RyanDoolittle wrote: ↑
Sat Jun 01, 2019 7:20 am
The benefits of Force Fetching a dog far outweigh a little ear pinch for a couple days. You will get the retrieve you want and will have a different relationship, for the better, with your dog.

Whether they need it or not, I FF all my dogs. FF is not just about the retrieve.
I've heard that and some surely swear by it, but it could be more a justification for not learning a less aversive method. There's no evidence that "a little ear pinch" gives an improved outcome over other methods.

If a dog isn't motivated by food then that might be an indication that force is necessary, and, also, if OP's three year old has no interesting in fetching whatsoever then I'd go with GH's advice.

Here's a ten week old pup of mine who's had one week of some pretty low key sessions of retrieve training: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sQZ4pL2qrTI

The FF teaches the dog how to turn off pressure. This is why it helps further down the road.

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