NA Track Question

North American Versatile Hunting Dog Association Tests

Moderator: Moderator Pack

NA Track Question

Postby JONOV » Mon Oct 16, 2017 4:12 pm

I was volunteering at a test this weekend. During the pheasant track, a dog tracked the pheasant quickly and caught it, in under a minute. From my vantage point I could see that the bird ran mostly in a straight line for a good part of its track. After the other dogs had gone, this dog was recalled to do it again. New bird, the handler sent the dog, the dog was out for a longer time, but still found the bird.

I do understand that finding the bird in and of itself isn't the be-all and end-all by which the test is judged (although it certainly doesn't hurt,) and that a dog that follows a track diligently with focus can score well even if it doesn't catch it.

My question is, is there a minimum time or distance the judges expect the dog to work the track for? I had never seen a dog asked by the judges to do a do-over.
JONOV
Senior Poster
Senior Poster
 
Posts: 248
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2016 1:14 pm

Re: NA Track Question

Postby SwitchGrassWPG » Mon Oct 16, 2017 5:54 pm

Not witnessing it, its hard to say. My guess is the judges didn't feel the dog tracked the bird, but ran in the general direction and happened upon the bird.

If the bird doesn't move far and hunkers down, there's a good chance for a rerun. I've rerun the track, with multiple dogs, for various reasons, over the years...
The only thing worse than a bad dog, is no dog at all...
User avatar
SwitchGrassWPG
Master Poster
Master Poster
 
Posts: 383
Joined: Sun May 21, 2006 8:08 pm
Location: Oklahoma

Re: NA Track Question

Postby Deuce » Tue Oct 17, 2017 8:01 am

SwitchGrassWPG wrote:Not witnessing it, its hard to say. My guess is the judges didn't feel the dog tracked the bird, but ran in the general direction and happened upon the bird.


Most likely the dog found the bird in a free search after a bad start and/or the pheasant didn't go as far as thought so they re-ran. There is no minimum time.
User avatar
Deuce
Champion Poster
Champion Poster
 
Posts: 845
Joined: Wed Mar 21, 2012 11:31 am
Location: North Carolina

Re: NA Track Question

Postby JONOV » Tue Oct 17, 2017 8:03 am

SwitchGrassWPG wrote:Not witnessing it, its hard to say. My guess is the judges didn't feel the dog tracked the bird, but ran in the general direction and happened upon the bird.

If the bird doesn't move far and hunkers down, there's a good chance for a rerun. I've rerun the track, with multiple dogs, for various reasons, over the years...

That makes a lot of sense, and I hadn't heard that.

I'm now in the beginning stages of training for the UT prize, and have been told time and time again that an early retrieve on the duck search will result in the dog being re sent. I didn't remember hearing that they'll as to see a dog again for the same reason in the track.

FWIW, the bird ran in more or less a straight line and the dog zipped right to it. Probably it wasn't far enough. It was a pine plantation and the bird kept in the same row of trees.
JONOV
Senior Poster
Senior Poster
 
Posts: 248
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2016 1:14 pm

Re: NA Track Question

Postby SwitchGrassWPG » Tue Oct 17, 2017 4:32 pm

If the duck is found and retrieved before 10 minutes has elapsed, there's a good chance you'll be asked to resend. Resend is done without a shot.
The only thing worse than a bad dog, is no dog at all...
User avatar
SwitchGrassWPG
Master Poster
Master Poster
 
Posts: 383
Joined: Sun May 21, 2006 8:08 pm
Location: Oklahoma

Re: NA Track Question

Postby AverageGuy » Tue Oct 17, 2017 4:57 pm

SwitchGrassWPG wrote:If the duck is found and retrieved before 10 minutes has elapsed, there's a good chance you'll be asked to resend. Resend is done without a shot.


Which is why you will hear most trainers always give their dog a second resend when training, so the dog comes to expect and look forward to it.
AverageGuy
Champion Poster
Champion Poster
 
Posts: 1425
Joined: Mon Dec 22, 2014 8:05 am

Re: NA Track Question

Postby ryanr » Tue Oct 17, 2017 8:55 pm

AverageGuy wrote:
SwitchGrassWPG wrote:If the duck is found and retrieved before 10 minutes has elapsed, there's a good chance you'll be asked to resend. Resend is done without a shot.


Which is why you will hear most trainers always give their dog a second resend when training, so the dog comes to expect and look forward to it.


Yup and here's an outlook on duck search that I am really going to take to heart. It comes from my GWP pup's breeder who is also a VC level pro trainer. I often hear handlers say that the only time they don't want their dog to find a duck is on test day. My breeder says he always wants his dogs to find a duck during the test, in fact he wants them to find two. He wants that resend instead of hoping he doesn't have to. I think that's the approach you want to have to get your dogs trained to blow duck search out of the water.

In thinking about it I had pretty much the same attitude with the track at my older dog's NA. I had complete confidence in his tracking. He loved tracking and still does (it's why he is so tenacious,and excellent on cripples I think.) So unlike most NA handlers on test day I was looking forward to the track with full confidence. It was the field that I had great anxiety over. We didn't do many formal tracks during training days (actually only 3, maybe 4 "tracks" of a dead pheasant somebody would drag.) Instead I encouraged him to track just about anything we came across on our daily exposure runs: rabbits, squirrels, running pheasants that I saw way ahead of us that he didn't see. Even foxes.
ryanr
Champion Poster
Champion Poster
 
Posts: 2103
Joined: Mon Feb 06, 2012 8:54 pm
Location: Lehighton, PA

Re: NA Track Question

Postby J D Patrick » Mon Oct 23, 2017 5:58 am

so my young dog loves tracking,,,,lots of "nose down" time,,,and we are in the woods/fields nearly every day (may miss one or two days every month due to work travel),,,,

released a pheasant for her yesterday,,,,it went in a shallow curve but only 35-40 yds before hiding in some low brush,,,,,,

my pup took the trail,,,,looped once in the middle,,,and then found the pheasant (she pointed,,,crept, pointed, then grabbed it and brought it to me - kind of!)

my question - in the event that I do this again, should I force the pheasant to go further or just let it do it's thing? My pup has no issues with tracking,,,very hunt minded,,,,getting ready to start blood trail training,,,,,but I wanted to expose her to this pheasant deal so the first time she smelled one wasn't next March,,,,,,
J D Patrick
Started
Started
 
Posts: 29
Joined: Sat Sep 16, 2017 9:33 am

Re: NA Track Question

Postby SwitchGrassWPG » Mon Oct 23, 2017 6:19 am

30-45 yds is good. No need to try to make it go farther.
The only thing worse than a bad dog, is no dog at all...
User avatar
SwitchGrassWPG
Master Poster
Master Poster
 
Posts: 383
Joined: Sun May 21, 2006 8:08 pm
Location: Oklahoma

Re: NA Track Question

Postby J D Patrick » Mon Oct 23, 2017 8:50 am

thanks,,,
J D Patrick
Started
Started
 
Posts: 29
Joined: Sat Sep 16, 2017 9:33 am

Re: NA Track Question

Postby AverageGuy » Mon Oct 23, 2017 12:40 pm

J D Patrick wrote:so my young dog loves tracking,,,,lots of "nose down" time,,,and we are in the woods/fields nearly every day (may miss one or two days every month due to work travel),,,,

released a pheasant for her yesterday,,,,it went in a shallow curve but only 35-40 yds before hiding in some low brush,,,,,,

my pup took the trail,,,,looped once in the middle,,,and then found the pheasant (she pointed,,,crept, pointed, then grabbed it and brought it to me - kind of!)

my question - in the event that I do this again, should I force the pheasant to go further or just let it do it's thing? My pup has no issues with tracking,,,very hunt minded,,,,getting ready to start blood trail training,,,,,but I wanted to expose her to this pheasant deal so the first time she smelled one wasn't next March,,,,,,


You note your pup is very track minded. Tracked and eventually caught the first pheasant you put it on. I would not do it again. In 86 when I got my first GWP I bought a copy of the original VDD training manual translated into English. In it the founding guys discussed extensively the need to read the young dog and balance its development of the various skill sets e.g. search, point, track and retrieve. It discusses how puppies will not exhibit and inherit all skills equally, thus the need to read them and give more work in weaker areas and less in stronger areas, least the dog become out of balance.

Your pup is strong in tracking. Working some blood tracks sounds like a good idea. Working more live birds which cannot fly, ending with the pup catching the bird will not further enhance its strong natural tracking as much as it will detract from its pointing is my prediction. Letting your pup track wild game it encounters on your daily walks will suffice and prevent it from catching the game laying down the track.

My GWPs have shown strong tracking skills early on and not needed any artificially released game to further those skills. Avoiding allowing them to catch released birds which cannot or do not fly has been critical to not taking them backwards in developing their pointing skills.

Sounds like your pup is coming along nicely. My Comments are intended to be helpful in keeping things headed in the right direction.
AverageGuy
Champion Poster
Champion Poster
 
Posts: 1425
Joined: Mon Dec 22, 2014 8:05 am

Re: NA Track Question

Postby J D Patrick » Tue Oct 24, 2017 5:02 am

appreciate it AverageGuy,,,,that was my plan as well,,,,I just wanted her to have that as an experience and glad it makes sense,,,,,,,
J D Patrick
Started
Started
 
Posts: 29
Joined: Sat Sep 16, 2017 9:33 am

Re: NA Track Question

Postby orhunter » Tue Oct 24, 2017 10:00 am

Depends on the wind too. Ideally, there should be a crosswind to the track where the dog runs downwind of the path the pheasant took and runs right to the bird. Rarely do we get the kind of cover and have good birds that will get out there, so the dog has an opportunity for a good track. Cover in most cases is too thick, too wet, birds are in poor shape and the track might be 25/35 yards because that's all that can be made of the situation. I don't like it but that's the way it is. The best tracks I've seen were 100 yards or more.
SARCASM, one of the many free services I offer
orhunter
Champion Poster
Champion Poster
 
Posts: 7290
Joined: Wed Sep 04, 2002 12:29 am
Location: nw oregon

Re: NA Track Question

Postby JONOV » Wed Oct 25, 2017 3:29 pm

orhunter wrote:Depends on the wind too. Ideally, there should be a crosswind to the track where the dog runs downwind of the path the pheasant took and runs right to the bird. Rarely do we get the kind of cover and have good birds that will get out there, so the dog has an opportunity for a good track. Cover in most cases is too thick, too wet, birds are in poor shape and the track might be 25/35 yards because that's all that can be made of the situation. I don't like it but that's the way it is. The best tracks I've seen were 100 yards or more.

Yeah, by late afternoon of the second day of the test we had the judges return several of the birds before ever setting a pup on them, just no run in them...
JONOV
Senior Poster
Senior Poster
 
Posts: 248
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2016 1:14 pm

Re: NA Track Question

Postby orhunter » Wed Oct 25, 2017 6:25 pm

I was at a test one time when they used a hen, in the spring. It is said they have no odor that time of year, dunno if it's true. The dog before mine was put on a hen track. Dog couldn't follow. Told the judges to put a rooster on the ground and they'd probably see a different dog. They reran the dog with a rooster. Dog went straight to the bird around 100 yards, for a nice fetch. Dog got a 4. My turn I said, use a rooster. They put it down and it ran out front to a brush patch around 110 yards out. Cover was sparse, could see the bird the entire time. Put my dog on the scent and she sniffed a few seconds then took off on the run. Had the bird in seconds. The thing with this test is that the track was done in ideal conditions. Didn't have much to do with the dogs.
SARCASM, one of the many free services I offer
orhunter
Champion Poster
Champion Poster
 
Posts: 7290
Joined: Wed Sep 04, 2002 12:29 am
Location: nw oregon

Next

Return to NAVHDA

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests