Running big IIOur 4 year old male Griff has started running too far while hunting, he'll go out over150 to 200 yards. We have decided that an electronic collar would get him back into a working range for us. Any suggestions on which kind to use? We have tried a check cord, but he figures once he's off of it, it's time to run again.
Thanks - Colleen What is the problem with running too big, is it that you don't have confidence in the dog's pointing instinct?
I hear this from many people over and over again, that they think that their dog is too far out. A pointing dog's ablility and job is to drive out and find game, point game and hold game until you arrive to flush and shoot it. People tend to get nervous with their dog being too far out and that is usually due to not having confidence in other areas like obedience or pointing. An electric collar may make you feel better but it is not a cure all for shortening up his range.
My shorthair ranges 200 to 300 yards out at times because there is little or no scent to work so he expands his search pattern to find scent. When he finds scent he will shorten up and work it until he points game. With lots of training and wild bird hunting he will go out and point & hold game for me in most cases (no dog is ever perfect 100%). If he breaks or the bird flushes wild, I use whistle commands and have an electric collar ready to use if he ignores commands.
The best thing to do is to try to shorten up the dog without a lot of pressure by planting birds close in. Hopefully the dog learns that he will find birds by you. Shortening up his range may make you feel better but it kind of defeats the purpose of a pointing dog. Before you burn a dog with a collar to get him within your desired working range, try to plant and shoot birds for him closer to you first. If that doesn't work, then use the e-collar to bring him in.
We use both Innotek command series collars and Tri-Tronics Pro 100 and 200 collars, all of which are good collars with variable intensity levels that are selectable at the transmitter. Dogs can also learn when you have the collar on and when it's off, so if you start to use it you may have to keep it on the dog all the time, because there may come a time when you didn't put it on and you needed it.
Krystal Creek Kennels
For more information on running big, try:
Running big - Ted Wigglesworth
Roaming too Far - Ted Wigglesworth
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