Wind drift on a retrieve

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Re: Wind drift on a retrieve

Postby GONEHUNTIN' » Tue Nov 22, 2016 8:22 am

Most dogs will drop down wind on a retrieve naturally, in fact for some tests, you train them not to fade with it. I think all experienced hunting dogs fade with the wind.

Another example is a river or a pond with current. If you shoot a duck in a river, a smart dog runs down the bank and swims straight out to intercept the duck, coming back straight to the bank so he doesn't fight the current back to you.

With running pheasant, the great pheasant dog's learn to hook a wide down wind loop around the bird to relocate on it rather than tracking the bird.

Same place you hunt with a current. It is of great benefit for ANY hunting dog to fade with the wind and current, IMO.
I just hate seeing birds die of natural causes unless I'm that natural cause.
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Re: Wind drift on a retrieve

Postby gwp4me2 » Tue Nov 22, 2016 11:07 am

Kiger2 wrote:Willie T,
EXACTLY!

Gwp4me,
Taking a line on mark, applies to every mark. Singles or multiples.

Sometimes the straight line isn't faster. But with a well trained dog I can select what I want. In the field I can send the dog on the bank or make it swim.

At a trial the straight line is valued as a measure of trainability. They often make the straight line very hard. Often when hunting the straight line is also very hard and the BEST path for the dog to get the bird.

Your example of the birds sailing over a rise or out in a cep field is excellent. By training, we can improve the dogs marking to the point where the vast majority of the time it can recognize that the bird is over a rise or far it needs to run before the search. Given those same examples, what are the chances an untrained dog has to make the retrieve??

Your example of running past the wounded rooster has some limited merit. I would suspect that the bird returning towards the hunter is pretty rare. If the birds a long way off, it is doubtful that an untrained dog would get anywhere near the crippled bird in the first place. and lastly, if the dog does pass the scent it will end up in the area of the fall and pick up the scent and find the bird. We don't get all the birds, sometimes the birds just win. But I can assure after 30 years of comparing trained and untrained dogs in the field. The trained dogs prove themselves more valuable.

Go watch a retriever trial. You will understand how a dog can be trained to mark efficiently. In fact I would wager most dogs will remember the birds locations better than you. 3 or 4 birds up to 3 or 400 yards.

When a bird goes over a rise, a straight line is extremely valuable. If the dog stops to investigate a wrong scent, and you have to send him again, you need that dog to take a very straight cast from you since you cant see to correct him. Ill give you an example, not a mark but it will support my point. I hit a chukar it sails over a rise and drops about 300 adds away. Dog didn't see it . I line the dog and send. she's off line so I have to stop her (your dog just stopped at a wrong decent and you have to resend.) I stop her on top of the rise and i have one shot to get this bird.I give her the cast and she takes off. My friend is up on the hill and he watches her take a nice line another 100 yards to get the bird. Thats rewarding!

I totally separate running marks from running lines other than telling the dog which bird to go after first on multiples. A good experienced hunting dog will usually get to the fall in the fastest way possible, especially in an area the dog knows. I specifically mentioned the value of handling when needed. Chukars are a great example. Often the dog isn't watching the particular bird shot and there is nothing worse on a bird hunt then having to drop hundreds of feet of hard-earned elevation in nasty country when a good dog could be sent. We also hunt pheasants in the river bottoms where a bird falls unmarked across the river in cover that you couldn't see an elephant walking in let alone a dog. My philosophy is trust the dog when you can. Handle when you must. A dog that is always handled doesn't learn as well to find well on its own. I've seen great duck search dogs turn into dogs that pop all the time because they were trained to handle and got handled a lot on duck hunts. They go to the fall and search a little and then look to the handler for guidance. You would probably never notice or care but we were trying to get a middle-aged dog ready for UT. She had a good search prior to being trained to handle. We had to stop all handling for a couple months to get the search back up to par. The tests and trials aren't the greatest test of a good bird dog. The trials become artificially difficult to try and separate a 'winner' of a very narrow focus be it retriever trials or AA pointing dog trials. We all love to show off our well-trained dogs because we can take so much of the credit. There are some great hunting dogs out there who are self-taught because they got to go hunting a lot and their owner kept there mouth shut....
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Re: Wind drift on a retrieve

Postby woodboro » Tue Nov 22, 2016 12:13 pm

3drahthaars wrote:Figured I'd chime in since this has not gone the direction I intended.

FYI, I was just trying to start a conversation on what would cause a dog to seem to compensate for the wind and "intercept" a visible retrieve/fall that drifted 30-50 feet from the fall on open water because of the wind.

I didn't see or intimate any problems... again, just observation. It appeared that the dog figured something out, and I was looking for other observations or anecdotes from those who may or may not have seen similar behavior.

I don't live/hunt in a location teeming with wild game such that multiple marks are a necessity... and, I don't really care.

I don't train to take a straight line or worry about curving, so long as it is downwind... i.e. I don't want my dog to become too reliant on visuals... NOSE is primary. And, so long as my dog gets downwind I know she'll succeed.

Bless you guys and your straight lines that are essential to retriever games, but I derive more pleasure in watching a dog use its nose to work out a problem.

Best regards and have a Happy Thanksgiving,

3ds


Hit nail on the head for a dog that is a ult. dog. They may take line , but they feel they are smarter and will down wind into a dead game or wounded game.
I've seen dogs go up wind , but trained them to use downwind processing to go into it.
The dog I referred to that took line and broke it off, was a very nose driven dog.
However on that note sometimes he out smarted himself and went up wind , or fallen short of the retrieve.
I was discouraged with it , recent him or back command , but frequencies were not that bad , I could always go out and support him as a team player.
*Nose smart dog means as an example pointing a Dakota phez from over 150 yards.
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Re: Wind drift on a retrieve

Postby AverageGuy » Tue Nov 22, 2016 3:50 pm

gwp4me2 wrote: There are some great hunting dogs out there who are self-taught because they got to go hunting a lot and their owner kept there mouth shut....


Amen.
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Re: Wind drift on a retrieve

Postby Kiger2 » Tue Nov 22, 2016 7:38 pm

gwp4me2,

Pretty good post.

although, Popping is not a result of too much handling, its a result of improper training. Popping at a trial is an invitation to leave, so is switching to a different mark. Both are corrected/trained for in training.
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Re: Wind drift on a retrieve

Postby Kiger2 » Tue Nov 22, 2016 7:42 pm

couple of other points. Dogs do learn to mark better from lots of exposure. The value of training for better marking is the dog is far better prepared on day 1. Why wait a few years for decent marking?

Running the bank. If Im hunting and the bird is in the creek, I certainly wouldn't care if the dog ran the bank. I might even send him down the bank. Otherwise get in the water and get going.
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Re: Wind drift on a retrieve

Postby gwp4me2 » Tue Nov 22, 2016 9:09 pm

Kiger2 wrote:gwp4me2,
Pretty good post.
although, Popping is not a result of too much handling, its a result of improper training. Popping at a trial is an invitation to leave, so is switching to a different mark. Both are corrected/trained for in training.

IMHO the training priorities and sequence are different for a NAVHDA dog than a retriever trial dog. A v-dog is only tested on marked retrieves beginning at UT. Search, tracking and independence are more of a focus early. Handling is a potential deduction all the way through. Even in UT the marks are mostly short and easy. With the importance of the duck search in UT I try not to do much with handling until after that test. That usually means a year or 2 of slower retrieves while hunting letting the dog do some searching when necessary. In the end good dogs will learn all skills but I think you lay different foundations and overcome different challenges at different times. The popping case I cited came from a dog advancing to an advanced level of skills and then going back to do a duck search. When a dog has a lot of duck hunting experience where you quickly handle them when needed they look for that help after a few minutes.
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Re: Wind drift on a retrieve

Postby Kiger2 » Tue Nov 22, 2016 11:14 pm

IMHO

Teach them not to pop!!!!! Then they won't!


I cant help that the requirements of the testing don't coincide with what is best for retrieving.

Its whats most useful to a hunter.
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Re: Wind drift on a retrieve

Postby Deb » Wed Nov 23, 2016 12:53 am

3Drahthaars - yes, our first GWP did it all the time. She adjusted her course early into the retrieve so it was clear what to see what she was doing.

We're now on our 4th wirehair - 2 GWPs and 2 DDs, but she's the only one I've seen do this consistently. She also did get a lot more...training?? Maybe not the right word - she was our first hunting dog and just got a lot of undivided attention. After that we got busier and there has always been more than one hunting dog to work when we're out. Although I do think the young DD does do it some...too early to tell tho'.
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Re: Wind drift on a retrieve

Postby 3drahthaars » Wed Nov 23, 2016 9:21 am

AverageGuy wrote:
gwp4me2 wrote: There are some great hunting dogs out there who are self-taught because they got to go hunting a lot and their owner kept there mouth shut....


Amen.


Bump!
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Re: Wind drift on a retrieve

Postby gwp4me2 » Wed Nov 23, 2016 2:25 pm

Kiger2 wrote:IMHO
Teach them not to pop!!!!! Then they won't!
I cant help that the requirements of the testing don't coincide with what is best for retrieving.
Its whats most useful to a hunter.

That's what we did when the popping showed up. The point is that it didn't exist until handling was introduced. I think people should look very carefully at breeds, testing, trialing and how all of those affect your hunting. There are many people these days for whom the games are a bigger part of dog time and efforts than hunting. That is probably actually easier than having a huge focus on hunting and trying to do well in the games. One of the main reasons I have AKC GWP's and not the German registered version is all the fur stuff. I start breaking my dogs off all fur from day one so I don't want to train it. (Let's just agree to disagree and not drag this thread down DD guys) I actually do train for blood tracking but much later in the pup's life. For me the testing and having a goal and a date pushes me to have a better trained dog as well as have a hugely better understanding of what a good dog can do when we go hunting as well as evaluating breeding. IMHO the more advanced a trial is the less related it is to hunting. I have no use for an AA pointer, National champion retriever or hound that will strike a track out of the back of a truck at 30 mph. What I can use and have the fortune to own is a great v-dog who is very good at searching, pointing, retrieving and tracking. Set your priorities and don't loose sight of them. Lots of people want to make their dog the exception to the breeds strengths/limitations. Stick with what gives you the best chance of success.
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Re: Wind drift on a retrieve

Postby Willie T » Thu Nov 24, 2016 7:00 pm

Good discussion! Good dog men train their dogs to fit the way they use them. The best and most secure don't worry too much about what somewhat else trains for, but instead admire good dog work when they see it. Whether it's like their dog works or not.
I try to train my dogs how to deal with most retrieving obstacles they will encounter.
As for taking a line to marked birds, whether singles or multiples, if the dog has the mark, it picks the line. I do prefer them to take honest lines. I think it helps on really long marks in cover. On multiples my dogs are trained to get the last bird first and work back to the first bird last.
I also teach them to handle. In my experience, if training is balanced, they will not lose their independent search and pop. I like to have the ability to send the dog after a cripple first, or work together if they don't have the mark. Most of the time I just watch the dog work. That's what works for me, but there is always more that one way to skin a cat.
As far as wind influence, I think most any good dog, instinctively seeks the wind.

Willie T- My granpa taught me a long time ago " never brag on your dog or your shooting" either one can blow up.
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Re: Wind drift on a retrieve

Postby gwp4me2 » Thu Nov 24, 2016 8:40 pm

funny that I mentioned the fur thing. My older dog and I surprised a mother bobcat and her kitten on ledge at 20 yards. I got my dog called off her before he got in trouble. I have no idea what the outcome of a bobcat trying to defend her young would have been. When I got to about 10-15 yards she bailed and left the kitten. I got a nice pic of it's head from inside 5 yards and then we left it there. Very rare to see that close while hunting with dogs. We were actually on top and they couldn't bail down.
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