How to teach handling

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Re: How to teach handling

Postby Densa44 » Tue Oct 10, 2017 7:45 pm

Be careful with this. As some of the members have said, you are not teaching a lab to handle. In the case of a Vdog you probably don't know where the bird is so you really want the dog to hunt it out.

I start with "sight blinds" put out a row of dummies (3 is enough) at 50 yds, 100 and 150. I stand them up so the dog can see the first one. Set her down and send her. She should see the second one when she gets to the first one, they should be far enough apart so she isn't tempted to switch.

Once she gets the hang of it you can stretch out the distance, I go to about 500 M.

We can discuss casting next, I only give her a cast when she looks for help otherwise I let her find it herself.

We shoot a lot of ducks here and she gets lots of practice on lively cripples in the slough.
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Re: How to teach handling

Postby JONOV » Tue Oct 10, 2017 7:56 pm

Densa44 wrote:Be careful with this. As some of the members have said, you are not teaching a lab to handle. In the case of a Vdog you probably don't know where the bird is so you really want the dog to hunt it out.

How do you mean? VDD owners don't hunt ducks any different than lab owners...unless your talking about a testing situation but it sounds like MissiK is trying to get the dog on the bird and back to the blind quickly.

A dog that knows how to handle isn't going to magically not know how to search. Every lab I've hunted with that hunts ducks does a fine "search" as well.
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Re: How to teach handling

Postby Misskiwi67 » Tue Oct 10, 2017 8:17 pm

We hunt ducks by jump-shoot. Rarely we will hunt geese from ground blinds. So the dog is in adown-stay 75 yds from the pond until we are done shooting. Every duck is a blind/search.
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Re: How to teach handling

Postby GONEHUNTIN' » Tue Oct 10, 2017 9:20 pm

JONOV wrote:
Densa44 wrote:Be careful with this. As some of the members have said, you are not teaching a lab to handle. In the case of a Vdog you probably don't know where the bird is so you really want the dog to hunt it out.

How do you mean? VDD owners don't hunt ducks any different than lab owners...unless your talking about a testing situation but it sounds like MissiK is trying to get the dog on the bird and back to the blind quickly.

A dog that knows how to handle isn't going to magically not know how to search. Every lab I've hunted with that hunts ducks does a fine "search" as well.


Really, they do. You can easily teach any lab to take fine lines and hanle beautifully. That is not the case with a V dog. Many, or most, will shut down under that training.
I just hate seeing birds die of natural causes unless I'm that natural cause.
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Re: How to teach handling

Postby Bruce Schwartz » Tue Oct 10, 2017 11:14 pm

MissK: get the paper back book, "Absolutely Positively Gundog Training" by Robert Milner. $12 or so. He trains gun dogs to do simple handling that is useful for hunters who don't want to go through the formal steps of teaching handling but need to get their dog into the area of the fall so they can more quickly deliver the game to hand. He is strong on PR (clicker training) for steadiness and other necessary skills for the gun dog. His approach is unique and I think you'd appreciate it. If, after reading it, you wish more information then I would look up on Youtube information on the "walking baseball drill". This is the best way to teach hand signals to your dog (of any age) and the dogs love doing it so they learn rapidly. It's really very simple yet can be expanded to all sorts of other stuff like "taking lines", ignoring distractions, etc.
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Re: How to teach handling

Postby crackerd » Wed Oct 11, 2017 8:40 am

Bruce, not to discount Milner - who's pretty much succeeded in discounting himself from any half-serious gundog training discussion - but you do know that early (as in "puppy") handling drills such as three-handed casting and walking baseball are no-pressure (i.e., no force or e-collar), right?

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Re: How to teach handling

Postby Bruce Schwartz » Wed Oct 11, 2017 10:22 am

crackerd wrote:Bruce, not to discount Milner - who's pretty much succeeded in discounting himself from any half-serious gundog training discussion - but you do know that early (as in "puppy") handling drills such as three-handed casting and walking baseball are no-pressure (i.e., no force or e-collar), right?
.

I'm not sure I understand what you mean.
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Re: How to teach handling

Postby crackerd » Wed Oct 11, 2017 10:42 am

Bruce Schwartz wrote:
crackerd wrote:Bruce, not to discount Milner - who's pretty much succeeded in discounting himself from any half-serious gundog training discussion - but you do know that early (as in "puppy") handling drills such as three-handed casting and walking baseball are no-pressure (i.e., no force or e-collar), right?
.

I'm not sure I understand what you mean.


Just what I said - about no pressure for early handling drills. Puppy casting and puppy blinds (which begin the handling process) are done in a fun way - no e-collar, no force, no scolding, "all positive" if you're quoting your man Milner.

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Re: How to teach handling

Postby Misskiwi67 » Wed Oct 11, 2017 12:35 pm

Most of my training is no pressure... I've been known to send a dog on a blind, and when they reach their objective give them a positive verbal marker and throw a bumper for a fun retrieve as a reward.

I think I have Milners book buried somewhere, I just couldn't visualize a lot of the descriptions so didn't follow his system for my early training. I will dig it out and see if it makes more sense.
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Re: How to teach handling

Postby Densa44 » Wed Oct 11, 2017 12:46 pm

I drop the dummies out behind me as I walk on the path. Where I live we have "oil" roads that have been driven across farm land to a well, no cars and very safe.

What I'm trying to teach the dog is; to leave my side, and to trust that there is something to find.

As others have said, "you can teach a dog anything".

Keep at it.
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Re: How to teach handling

Postby Misskiwi67 » Wed Oct 11, 2017 12:55 pm

Densa, if I walked a straight line and dumped several bumpers behind me - I guarantee my dogs would have zero problems because they will track foot scent.

What do you do to avoid tracking instead of expanding?
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Re: How to teach handling

Postby Bruce Schwartz » Wed Oct 11, 2017 1:09 pm

crackerd wrote:Just what I said - about no pressure for early handling drills. Puppy casting and puppy blinds (which begin the handling process) are done in a fun way - no e-collar, no force, no scolding, "all positive" if you're quoting your man Milner.


I wasn't advocating pressure.

I AM advocating teaching gun dogs to handle as a necessary skill in retrieving game though. Perhaps the way Germans hunt it's not needed, but for many American hunting situtations a dog without rudimentary handling skills is really handicapped. There are lots of ways to teach it.
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Re: How to teach handling

Postby GONEHUNTIN' » Wed Oct 11, 2017 4:03 pm

For basic handling, it's dirt-simple. Get them running three lines on a baseball diamond and when they're doing that sit them and cast them back, right, and left. I actually have a pup that like doing it!! Surprise, surprise. Just be aware Missk; just because they'll do it on land does not mean they will in the water.
I just hate seeing birds die of natural causes unless I'm that natural cause.
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Re: How to teach handling

Postby Densa44 » Thu Oct 12, 2017 8:59 am

This is getting pretty complicated. I haven't had the foot scent problem, some times I drop the dummies out the window of the truck depending on how cold it is. It doesn't seem to bother the dogs. When I'm sure she knows the game, and will leave my side with enthusiasm every time, I throw the dummies to the right and left of the road, At first I stand them up in the snow so that she gets the idea that they always won't be on the path.

I haven't found that I have had to teach them to search for ducks, it seems to have come naturally. What I needed more than anything is for the dog to carry the distance. When she gets far enough back into the tules she always finds the duck, or in one case a wet pheasant.
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Re: How to teach handling

Postby GONEHUNTIN' » Thu Oct 12, 2017 10:53 am

You're teaching blinds; sight blinds will become cold blinds. Foot scent has absolutely nothing to do with it. As Doc said, a good book or DVD is invaluable. For walking baseball, which I believe D.L. Wolters invented, his book is great. His mother, Anne, was the greatest force trainer in the country at one time. Ear Pinch, not collar.
I just hate seeing birds die of natural causes unless I'm that natural cause.
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