versatiles

HRC, NAHRA, etc

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Postby Puddle Rat » Thu Jan 18, 2007 8:07 pm

Flyingm wrote:Don't you want your dog to go out and search for wounded game with out you having to shoot your shotgun, or throwing rocks for each time you send? I know I do. Remember these are versatiles, they aren't labs. They shouldn't need to be hacked around.


My pup was doing "great" duck searches at NAVHDA training days. I was like, cool - were ready to quack'em & stack'em. Then came opening morning. First light the first flight of woodrow I call in and three of us spash 4. He marked two and nailed the retreives. Then resend for #3 and he searches all right, swimming to and fro in the deeks, around the deeks, around the shore, in/around/thru the weeds - all the while more ducks are flaring while he's doing a text book duck search. After getting #3, I just keep him on shore and used the boat to get #4 when we pulled deeks. Had other instances where he wasn't able to mark them when they got quackinated, and again he'd go out and swim his little heart out, eventually finding it, but flaring more birds in the process. And twice there were crips that I couldn't get him into the scent cone - but he was out there searching and would have been racking up max NAVHDA points. It's not a matter of the dog being able to work independantly - my pup can do that exceptionly well - searching and tracking down crip pats & pheasants. And he'll swim his brains out if he thinks theres a crippled duck swimming around out there. So whats so HACKY about them doing it in the right area - especially on water bigger than a farm pond.

And I still think it's truely odd that so many people saying that finding the duck in the test is BAD.

I don't equate handling the dog to HACKING. It's mearly the efficent use of the dogs time, get out and get back wit da bird. Great dog work is like Mike said = get the dog to the scent cone/area then let'em get'r'done.

I guess I'm being a little hard on the duck search, but it was a HUGE dissapointment to me in how ill prepared the pup was for the glory days of Oct after being told "boy he's really nailing that duck search" at training days.............

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Postby Flyingm » Thu Jan 18, 2007 8:30 pm

Gary,

Your story proves the usefullness of a dog who can duck search. Your SM did a great job. He found the game that you wounded. So what if incomimg ducks flared. Hey, he didn't wound the duck, so don't blame him :wink:
As far as not being in the scent cone, didn't this pup just take his NA? He will learn to search out the likely spots. He just needs some more OHT ( On the Hunt Training) . Hey, he sounds like a pretty darn good versatile hunter to me. He'll just keep on getting better with experience.
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Postby ME » Thu Jan 18, 2007 9:56 pm

You just need to teach the dog to take a line so that when you send him he goes to the scent cone and then hunts it up..
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Postby Puddle Rat » Fri Jan 19, 2007 11:35 am

ME wrote:You just need to teach the dog to take a line so that when you send him he goes to the scent cone and then hunts it up..


.................................

Great dog work is like Mike said = get the dog to the scent cone/area then let'em get'r'done.


Just got home from work, so it's time to take the pup out for a walk and run some line drills 8)

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Postby yawallac » Fri Jan 19, 2007 1:27 pm

As a matter of fact, all the handlers that have UT under their belt, including some with VC's in our chapter, say that the worst thing that can happen during the duck search is for your pup to actually retrieve the bird because then you have to resend it out until the time is met - odd that an unproductive search is a good thing???


puddle rat,

I've got a few UT's under my belt and I always wanted my dogs to produce the duck. I train my dogs to find birds and that's what I want them to do. If I had to resend them than so be it.

I will also agree with others that teaching them to take a line is a good thing. In fact, teach them as much "classic" retriever work as you want. It only adds to their abilities. When I lived in MD and did a lot of duck hunting I added back and over to my GSPs vocabulary. I just added the refinements after they had the boldness and independence in the search. I think the philosophy is the same as the field work. Apply the obedience later.

By the way, nice looking pup. He sounds like a good one! :)
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Postby DrahtsundBraats » Sat Jan 20, 2007 6:35 pm

This is really for ME or anyone else familiar w/HRC tests.
My question is; Why dont more owners of Versatiles test their dogs? People argue about this water at Navhda etc-for me the proof is in the pudding. If your dog can title as season or finished dog in HRC, you know you got a hell of a dog- A brag dog if you will, especially if it can hunt uplands and track.
Just curious-any GSPs,PPs WPGs have HRC titles?
Why so few DDs/GWPS in testing? Mine can do the work. She has 2 titled dogs in her pedigree even-Mom and Grand Mom, just wonder why so few folks run their dogs-is the dog up to it and have cooperation, drive, calmness needed? Ive met some great folks who are good trainers and have nice dogs and were open to a new breed running with theirs(running just as hard too).
Im excited about running this Spring and will test in late March. Wish me luck. Will run the seasoned test here in SW Ohio.



I really have no problem with any of the versatiles taking on the challenge of other venues. However, I think the basis should be the versatile work. It has always bothered me that generations of GWP field trial dogs have never been "measured" as versatile dogs. The beginning point is proof of versatile ability, trainability and toughness. If after that folks want to go on to success in HR test, hunt tests, etc so much the
better. After preparing dogs for the Invitational, I would never have a duck dog that couldn't take simple directionals.
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Postby Bruce Schwartz » Mon Jan 22, 2007 2:37 am

Yawallac wrote:
In fact, teach them as much "classic" retriever work as you want. It only adds to their abilities.


Exactly!


Drahts wrote:
I really have no problem with any of the versatiles taking on the challenge of other venues. However, I think the basis should be the versatile work.


I agree 100%


The NA (especially) and the UT (to a lesser degree) are good tests for applying some uniformity in grading performances between dogs. They aren't perfect, but do seem to give some measure of where a litter is, say, in relation to another in terms of measuring against a standard. And the results seem to hold up from year to year.

HRC, AKC hunt tests, etc. are more a measure of how well the dog's trained and how well it would be expected to perform in the field. I couldn't own a dog, V-dog or otherwise, that couldn't handle to a pretty high level for my waterfowl hunting. Like someone said, you have to get the dog into the scent cone where it can find the bird and get the dog back in the blind. Not being able to handle is too hard on the dog, especially in cold or dangerous water.
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Postby Rick Hall » Mon Jan 22, 2007 6:51 am

Not being able to handle is too hard on the dog, especially in cold or dangerous water.


Selfish bastard that I am, I'm thinkin' not being able to handle is too hard on the hunter.

I've only hunted over one said-to-be-accomplished NAVHDA UT dog, and it made for a very long, frustrating morning. Searched pretty much 'til his man dropped but wouldn't handle a lick (or make long or multiple marks), which absolutely sucks in a real world where there are 360 degrees and hundreds of yards of possibility and cripples are running and swimming. Search without handling not only cost us several lost cripples but ran off enough new shooting opportunities that the handler's friends were putting that status in question.

And having just finished our second duck season with half a handling dog, I can tell you that sucks, too. Learned the Brittany I expected to use last year, while a retriever pup's handling was being conditioned, was going deaf, and so drafted the nine-month-old, half-trained Chessie pup into commercial service to save what was left of the older Britt's hearing. And ended up working a dog that quickly became a really fine marker and would take good initial lines but began blowing off directional casts in favor of his own developing judgement - which was, indeed, often enough better than mine to encourage the practice. (Which I was doing my level best to train out of him between hunts with great success - except when hunting.) Beat snot out of no dog, but calling him in and resending him when that's what it took to get him where need be still cost us too dang many new gunning opportunities a quick handle would have afforded us.

Lost that, by then much better trained and super efficient, pup to cancer at Christmas and was forced to bring the going-deaf Brittany back into service. Little guy marks like a "real" retriever and handles well - when he can hear the word or whistle. But he can no longer hear the whistle at distance under other than favorable conditions and wind and must too often be stopped for directional casts with a gunshot. Which can't be appreciated by others hunting the marsh and, so, was avoided as much as possible. And, again, lack of proper handling ability cost us both cripples and new gunning opportunities.

Absolutely hate the prospect of facing next season compromised by a lack of solid handling, and it will be interesting to see how much the new pup will be able to absorb before it, too, is pressed into service sooner than likely ideal.
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Postby Bruce Schwartz » Mon Jan 22, 2007 5:28 pm

Selfish bastard that I am, I'm thinkin' not being able to handle is too hard on the hunter.


Yeah, that too Rick!
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Postby bill10979 » Tue Jan 23, 2007 12:31 pm

Sorry to hear you lost your pup Rick.
Dont you have another Chessie you work-HR titled?
Pup sounds like with more work he'll be fine..

I got a week left of gunning late season here for duck/geese, trying to make the most of it.
Geese are everywhere, ducks are few and far between. Dont know if its been the warmer weather or not? My buddy seems to think. He has 3 blinds at the public area that have gone by the way side. There is little to no gunning for ducks there. Rivers are spotty & hit/miss. Field hunts doing well.
I have private lake rights and can almost always get a limit(4) but the shooting isnt great by any means..A little disappointing overall, as I saw some outrageous flocks in scouting.
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Postby Rick Hall » Tue Jan 23, 2007 4:03 pm

Bill, the pup we lost at Christmas was a HR but the only Chessie we currently had. Sometimes wonder if I wasn't too proud of how he was coming on.

Our next Chessie was whelped yesterday, and Bon Chance is first, third or fourth from the left in this pile:

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Postby bill10979 » Wed Jan 24, 2007 10:03 am

Thats a bundle of Joy, Rick!
Good luck with the pup.
Guy in my HRC club has a nice Chessie.
If I owned a specailist, it would be a Chessie. Always liked them.
Im a glutton for punishment and like these damn ugly dogs...
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Postby Rick Hall » Wed Jan 24, 2007 11:41 am

Shhh! Don't ever want one of my mutts to hear he's supposed to be a "specialist".
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Postby bill10979 » Thu Jan 25, 2007 10:27 am

I promise I wont Rick!
Ive got to be the Only person in this country using a DD for schutzhund, only my dog doesnt know shes not supposed to do the work. Not a Sch specialist either.
Dont tell her...

Always liked Chessies, great looks & work attitude.
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