New to site with a Lab. Early Training any insight??

Post Reply
User avatar
Lilly_The_Lab
Rank: Just A Pup
Posts: 8
Joined: Wed Dec 15, 2010 8:35 am
Location: PORTAGE PENNSYLVANIA

New to site with a Lab. Early Training any insight??

Post by Lilly_The_Lab » Wed Dec 15, 2010 8:52 am

I am young (23) and new to the world of gun dogs. I am an avid outdoorsman and am involved in all things outdoors. I am from south-wester Pennsylvania. I archery hunt, flyfish, upland, bear, basically everything.

This is my first dog and she is wonderful. A mild tempermant and a huge desire to hunt and please is helping me keep my entusiasm. Her name is Lilly-May. The training is going well. Lilly is 5 months old and 42 lbs. I will add new pictures soon. She just finished her shots yesterday.The vet commented on her build and what shape she is in. He also said she had great genetics.

I started with all of the obedience commands and she mastered them. She was housebroke from day one. She does pet tricks and now is starting to really take off with hunting training.I basically started playing fetch with some frozen birds after she mastered obedience. Now i hide her face and throw the birds and make her use her nose to find them. I started in high weeds but now throw them in brush piles and jaggers among others. She finds it every time. I have watched this game go from hide and seek to now where she sounds like a vaccum trying to get the scent and vigorously searching to find it. I also now see when we are on our walks/training she checks out every brush pile and structure. She now responds to "find the bird" and "hunt em up" by looking at me and putting her nose to the ground and getting birdy. She also is following hand signals somewhat and is not affraid to go into jaggers, jump ditches, go through water or high weeds also. She is also branching off from the trail we walk on and going in zig zags to check out the scents. I bought a foam grouse from Doken and everytime I use it for fetch i repeat BIRD. Now it is hard to turn her off from wanting to find it. I almost cant play fetch with it in the house now. I never added scent to it yet.

I am going to now start planting the "birds" before we walk and see if she can find them. I am going to take her to a buddies farm and plant some live quail and try to get her on some ringneck as well. I am planning on walking through some places i know there were a lot of grouse and hope she might sniff one up. I also hope to get her around an older dog to try to get her to go out in front when in tall grass.

Any insight on my training and any suggestions will be appreciated. It is awsome to slow things down and watch how much she is actually taking in and learning. Thanks for the help guys!! Dont be affraid to tell me if i am doing something wrong. I now need to get my wife to stop with the reindeer horns.Poor Dog
Attachments
lilly3.jpg
the pictures are about a month old
lilly3.jpg (179.58 KiB) Viewed 2847 times
lilly.jpg
lilly.jpg (67.94 KiB) Viewed 2841 times

User avatar
Ryman Gun Dog
Rank: 5X Champion
Posts: 1074
Joined: Wed Feb 17, 2010 8:19 am
Location: Endless Mountains of Pa

Re: New to site with a Lab. Early Training any insight??

Post by Ryman Gun Dog » Wed Dec 15, 2010 11:34 am

Lilly,
Sorry nobody saw fit to anwer your post, I have trained some labs for upland, they were used for Pheasants and Grouse both, and the men had a ball with them.
Does your dog point or just do a running flush, as you hunt it makes a great deal of difference in your upland hunting techniques. We have not had a lab around here in years, the last one was Bill Reids Moca, a fine Chocolate lab who stole my heart every time she Grouse hunted. She was especially good at finding snow rousting Grouse
with my old GSP Rosie. You might want to get your dog out in the Grouse woods and see what she can do, you might be surprised how well she does.
Your dog is a beauty, take good care of her.
RGD/Dave

User avatar
Lilly_The_Lab
Rank: Just A Pup
Posts: 8
Joined: Wed Dec 15, 2010 8:35 am
Location: PORTAGE PENNSYLVANIA

Re: New to site with a Lab. Early Training any insight??

Post by Lilly_The_Lab » Wed Dec 15, 2010 12:59 pm

She does point but it is kind of like when she comes across something unfamiliar or if she is really concentrating. She lifts her right front leg, cocks her head down and her tail gos up straight. I am going to try to start teaching her to hold off as well by maybe tying the "bird" on the end of my flyrod to simulate a false flush. If something catches her attention she will point so when she gets to close i will lift the bird quickly. I think i can get her to do this. She is not a far ranging dog yet wich will be good if she doesnt get this concept. She is definetly one of the smartest dog i have seen and has an unbelievable nose.

She also gos "birdy" with antlers. I started hiding these from her as well. She does just as good with them but lets say we are finding antlers and i bring out the pheasant she wants absolutly nothing to do with the bones. Wich is good. I just wanted to see if she can find the horns. She will find them anywhere i plant them. Under blankets, in boxes, in shoes even too. Wich amazed me because i thought for sure the "shoe/feet" smell would over power the 4 year old antler we train with. I want to have her on birds but if she picks this up as well i would be happy. She knows that birds are the main focus and i can see it in her eyes when i pull out a pheasant compared to the antler. I look forward to next hunting season but i will take her out this second pheasant season in PA. If only to get her used to seeing the birds or them flying and flushing. SHe is not gun shy and gets totally pumped when she sees a gun. :D

User avatar
gonehuntin'
GDF Junkie
Posts: 4561
Joined: Tue Dec 12, 2006 5:38 pm
Location: NE WI.

Re: New to site with a Lab. Early Training any insight??

Post by gonehuntin' » Wed Dec 15, 2010 5:11 pm

You should be following an organized training program with Lilly. I strongly suggest you invest the money in some DVD's, Fowl Dawg's one, two, and three. Follow them to a T. You may only need one and two. Three is advanced.

Then, if you have questions, ask them on here. Training a retriever is very, very, involved and you should get organized and follow a program.
LIFE WITHOUT BIRD DOGS AND FLY RODS REALLY ISN'T LIFE AT ALL.

User avatar
kninebirddog
GDF Premier Member!
Posts: 7829
Joined: Sat Dec 25, 2004 12:45 am
Location: Coolidge AZ

Re: New to site with a Lab. Early Training any insight??

Post by kninebirddog » Wed Dec 15, 2010 6:09 pm

Might want to see if their are any retriever clubs near you where you might be able to get some hands on help
"I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all."
"When I hear somebody talk about a horse or cow being stupid, I figure its a sure sign that the animal has outfoxed them." Tom Dorrance
If you feel like you are banging your head against the wall, try using the door.

poudre river gundogs
Rank: Just A Pup
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun Dec 12, 2010 5:20 am

Re: New to site with a Lab. Early Training any insight??

Post by poudre river gundogs » Sat Dec 18, 2010 4:11 am

Your dog is ready for some structured training. First thing you need to decide is what you want to accomplish with your dog. At five months old your dog should be dropping her teeth. If she stops retrieving don't get too worried about it. Forget the hand signals for now. Build the foundation right from the start That consists of obedience, teaching the conditioned retrieve response( force fetch ), bird introduction and for pointing lab whoa training.

Start building the foundation with obedience.

Teach your dog what birds are and how to find them. But stay away from roosters. Many pups and young dogs will not tolerate getting spiked in the face. There is a whole training process to follow to build the foundation right. I know where there will be a pointing lab training DVD released pretty soon that should help you move in the right direction with your pup. http://www.poudrerivergundogs.com. If you look at the front page there is a video trailer for the DVD. There is also some video and photos of exceptional pointing labs at work. Good luck!

Gary

User avatar
Lilly_The_Lab
Rank: Just A Pup
Posts: 8
Joined: Wed Dec 15, 2010 8:35 am
Location: PORTAGE PENNSYLVANIA

Re: New to site with a Lab. Early Training any insight??

Post by Lilly_The_Lab » Tue Dec 21, 2010 7:57 am

GREAT SITE!! it gave me some pointers on some training aspects to explore. I added it to my favorites and intend to buy the dvd. i am working on the whoa! command now and she is picking it up. I am in the process of building a quail house so i can do the "tetherball/whoa" training session. I am excited but i wonder how my neighbors will react when im out in the yard with a quail tied to a string and holding my dog back. that has got to be a treat.

User avatar
Ryman Gun Dog
Rank: 5X Champion
Posts: 1074
Joined: Wed Feb 17, 2010 8:19 am
Location: Endless Mountains of Pa

Re: New to site with a Lab. Early Training any insight??

Post by Ryman Gun Dog » Wed Dec 22, 2010 11:33 am

Lilly,
You might want to contact a Lab trainer in your area and get some advise, but 1st you need to decide how and for what you want your dog trained.
If you want formal retriever training you definitely need to contact a Pro and get into a program. If you simply want to use your Lab for upland hunting,
there are lots of videos to pick form, have fun and enjoy your dog.
RGD/Dave

Post Reply