Quartering questions

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Quartering questions

Postby overit2 » Wed Apr 19, 2017 11:30 am

So, I was doing an online search for quartering because of some behavior I saw in our pup this weekend and was surprised to see articles on 'training to quarter'- I mean don't most dogs do this naturally? Our weim seems to know instinctively how to do this?

He's almost 8 months and we took him camping for the 1st time this weekend. We are both beyond proud, impressed and happy at how well he behaved AND how much enjoyment he had and brought to us. Seriously, he was fantastic! We used a long check cord/rope to set up a zip line with caribiner for him to use at camp and that worked better then the stake as it got caught less.

Slept great in tent with us (ok yes he didn't stay in his own bed but that's usual for him ha)- didn't bark at noises/neighbors. You could see his hesitance the first day/night out there but then he became a pro-did NOT want to come back- curled up in our cargo bag, laid himself on top of the dismantled tent-pouted.

So, we took him down to the lake to try and keep introducing him to water more. We used dummies but ultimately cheeto puffs did the trick to get him in further. Kyle threw them towards us and I encouraged him to swim towards me- got him to paddle once but then didn't push it-he got in neck deep though time after time and would retrieve sticks/dummies and eat Cheetos of course. When he got out of the water you could tell he could see the fish (I could also while standing in the water) and he started quartering the bank up and down and each time he would go wider and wider- and then go in the water looking, back out and go left to right up/down the bank. Do other dogs do this? Was he marking his search area/territory ? He was intently looking back into the water while he did this. He did this at the 2-3 locations we went to.
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Re: Quartering questions

Postby GONEHUNTIN' » Wed Apr 19, 2017 12:36 pm

Most dog's will quarter naturally but it is not always a desire able trait. A pointing dog in my view, should quarter for grouse and woodcock and run to objectives on the prairie.

A good example of this is a couple years ago a friend and I were Waterfowl hunting in ND. We let the dog out of the truck and were setting up decoys in a corn field. About 300 yards away was a patch of willow and cover. The dog took one look and headed for the cover, ignoring all the cut corn. She hit the patch and immediately pointed a sharptail . Had she quartered all the way to that it would have been a waist of time.
I just hate seeing birds die of natural causes unless I'm that natural cause.
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Re: Quartering questions

Postby orhunter » Wed Apr 19, 2017 1:03 pm

Quartering is a waste of time in most cases. A good dog simply goes down wind of likely cover. A dog that is allowed to hunt learns what puts birds in the bag, all without human intervention. We can all ruin a good dog if we try to teach it too much.
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Re: Quartering questions

Postby Densa44 » Wed Apr 19, 2017 2:36 pm

I don't think that he is quartering, I think he has found that he has to be looking at the water at an acute angle to see the fish under water, at an obtuse angle the light reflects off the water and the fish disappear.

I'm glad you both are enjoying your new dog.
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Re: Quartering questions

Postby overit2 » Wed Apr 19, 2017 3:18 pm

Ahhhh, ok that would make sense Densa.

When I say 'quartering' I mean that he'll cover ground, some times in zig zag motion, sometimes straight, wherever the scent takes him really.

And yes, we are super enjoying him. As he's getting older he's becoming even more of a joy. Next Navhda training on Sat :)
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Re: Quartering questions

Postby Densa44 » Wed Apr 19, 2017 6:55 pm

At the NAVHDA day my recommendation is to find some one who has been at this a looong time. You'll be able to pick those handlers out easily, they don't talk much and will not be running around telling people what to do, they will also be old.

What I'm trying to say is don't necessarily seek help from some one who has the same breed as you do. If a dog is keen and smart and yours seems to be, IME those dogs, breed to breed are very similar.

We lucky ones had great mentors or we wouldn't be successful to-day.

BTW they won't mind you asking them, we need new people in the hobby, and youth is a big help.
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Re: Quartering questions

Postby gwp4me2 » Thu Apr 20, 2017 4:16 pm

A good dog will naturally use the wind. Quartering is very useful when hunting things like crp, stubble, prairie, etc. If you want the dog to impress people who don't know any better hunt straight into the wind. The dog will probably quarter nicely. Hunt a cross wind and the dog will yoyo. Go downwind and the dog will probably make a long cast and then quarter back toward you. See where I'm going? Using the wind most efficiently means running across the wind. Most of us have proved to ourselves over and over that it is best to trust/follow the dog rather than try and make the dog hunt where we want it to.
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Re: Quartering questions

Postby overit2 » Fri Apr 21, 2017 10:22 am

" Most of us have proved to ourselves over and over that it is best to trust/follow the dog rather than try and make the dog hunt where we want it to."

THIS is so very true, isn't it? ANd yes, in my VERY limited experience in watching other dogs AND our pup-what you describe on how they work differently depending on wind is very true.

Our local navhda logo on tshirts/hats is "Trust your dog" and I absolutely love it!
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Re: Quartering questions

Postby 3drahthaars » Fri Apr 21, 2017 5:46 pm

I think that my standard reply applies here...

... don't be concerned with training so much as getting your pup exposed.

The experience of exposure to wild game will bring out a pup's desire, teach it how to use its nose, and develop its search in the field and also in water.

A pup so exposed will learn how to hunt, when to quarter, and when to hunt objectives.

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