Training for NA test

Pointing, retrieving, flushing, tracking, behavioral issues, puppy training, etc.

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Re: Training for NA test

Postby AverageGuy » Mon Mar 26, 2018 11:54 am

Well my checklist goes like this.

How hot is it? Over 60 degrees and my antenna are already up before I cut the dog loose. I carry alot of fresh water, and watch my dog closely. If hunting in country I have been in before I keep some natural water close enough to swing by and take a break while the dog jumps in and paddles around a bit. If hunting in unfamiliar territory I will use Google Earth on my phone to see where water might be. If I find none I am all the more conservative with calling my dog in and forcing them to take a breather.

A dog's tongue has alot of blood running it through, which is why panting with its tongue hanging way out is its first line of defense against overheating. It is also why watering the dog frequently before it has overheated is common practice. It is not so much the water the dog takes in, as it is the cooling effect on its blood running through the tongue. But getting into the water is for the best.

If running a hunt test, I inquire as to where the watering spots are, either natural or artificial. I have never been to one where they were not present. If they were not present and it was hot, I would return to my point made above. No Hunt Test is worth overheating my dog and I would bow out if need be before I let that happen.

I caught a break in this area 40 years ago and it stuck with me. A good friend was hunting doves with his awesome 8 month old Black Lab. Dog overheated bad, he rushed it into a pond and saved its life but the dog had some remaining issues with heat the rest of its life. Made a lasting impression on me.
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Re: Training for NA test

Postby GONEHUNTIN' » Tue Mar 27, 2018 9:19 am

Use alcohol on a rag to dampen the armpits and stomach. The alcohol will cool the dog quickly and it's easy to throw a bottle in your vest.
I just hate seeing birds die of natural causes unless I'm that natural cause.
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Re: Training for NA test

Postby ryanr » Thu Mar 29, 2018 2:36 pm

orhunter wrote:We can all agree upon the best method but what if it isn't available?

I've been to one NAVHDA event where a tub or wading pool was provided and that was because I brought it knowing no one else would.


Hmm, I've been to maybe a dozen or so tests now (with two different chapters)and EVERY test I've been too had at least one filled water source (usually a kiddie pool) placed in the middle of the field. In some cases, in my chapter we've put two out at either end of the field. When I ran my NA there was a large springfed pond within the field portion. In my chapter it's always one of our main checklist items. And I don't know a judge out there that doesn't encourage every handler, certainly in NA, that doesn't suggest or remind the handler to water their dog right after each successful bird contact.

Average Guy is so correct that EVERY handler should read the Aims document which explains exactly what is expected in each element of the test.
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Re: Training for NA test

Postby Densa44 » Fri Mar 30, 2018 8:59 am

Too Hot for dogs? I can only wish, it is a blizzard outside and my 18 week old still has to wait for her first turn at training. Spring time in Alberta, this winter has been way too long.
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Re: Training for NA test

Postby GONEHUNTIN' » Sun Apr 08, 2018 12:07 pm

Densa44 wrote:Too Hot for dogs? I can only wish, it is a blizzard outside and my 18 week old still has to wait for her first turn at training. Spring time in Alberta, this winter has been way too long.


I think my ass got frostbitten today walking the dog's. I don't think Spring is ever going to come. :-x
I just hate seeing birds die of natural causes unless I'm that natural cause.
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Re: Training for NA test

Postby huntindog1 » Mon Apr 09, 2018 5:58 am

I am trying out my first AKC hunt test this weekend. Suppose to be warm but stormy and windy.
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