Intros

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Intros

Postby BigD » Sat Feb 06, 2021 8:22 pm

Wanted to introduce myself, Dustin, and the puppers, Chief (cheefers). I am relatively new to the gun dog world. Ran lion hounds my whole life growing up. Always loved watching the dogs work. Always told myself if I moved to "bird" country I would get into it, mostly for the dog interaction. Moved to NW Wyoming a couple years back and now have a 4 month old drahthaar, Akoni vd Cardone or Chief. I call him Cheefers when he's not in trouble :)

For those interested, thought I would drop his VDD bloodlines.

Dam: Clementine vom Burdock, 11/10, 62/62, VJP 75, HZP 174o.Sp.
Sire: Immo vom Felsengebirge, 11/11, 63/63, VJP 70, HZP 183o.Sp. + 194o.Sp. (2017 Armbruster Winner)

Things Chief does well:
Kennel training inside has been very good. During the week, he spends the day in an outside kennel next to our older dog. Each night we take him on a 1-3 mile jog. He loves our runs. On the weekends he rotates a couple hours in the kennel, then we do something active, go for a walk through the field, go on a run, or do some training in our field. We have a 5 acre pasture behind our house which makes it nice for quick training sessions.
Chief has incredible prey drive, specifically on fur. Our field holds pheasants about 50% of the time, which is awesome for a quick walk behind the house. Chief has very strong fur drive. I've drug a ball of elk hide through the field 3 times. He did very well and after the first drag, he was going crazy when he knew we were looking for the elk hide again. Then, I was lucky enough to secure a raccoon. (hope that's not illegal ha). Used it the other day for a drag. He did well again. Shows very strong tracking/trailing desire.
Took him out with an experienced friend on a chukar hunt recently. He showed 0 signs of being gun shy. He's a confident boy.
Seems to understand the aspect of team hunting. I think being on a check cord has helped since he's almost always tethered to me walking through the field. He almost always stays out in front of me and likes to go where I go generally.
Retrieves everything he can get his mouth on around the house. Will pile up our slippers, shoes, shirts, firewood, everything in the living room. We've made it a point to always praise him for bringing anything hoping that will motivate him to keep retrieving. He always love fetching his bumper and chukar dummy. He's done so good that I don't do it too often, not wanting to jinx it? idk.

Things Chief needs to improve:
Typical of puppy his age, he's starting to not pay attention to me if he doesn't think I have a treat. (suggestions welcome). He spends most of his time on a check cord, or a short leash. My thought here is I'm trying to do my best to ingrain the desired behavior without and before using a collar. Thought I read/heard someone say that a first time bird dog trainer shouldn't be allowed to use an E-collar. Maybe that will stir the pot. idk. I'm not 100% new. I've trained another DD pup a few years back, but not all the way through to finished dog. So I like the idea of forcing myself to teach him without a collar for as long as possible? What do you guys think?
We have had no experience with waterfowl. Looking for ideas to introduce him to the water.

Things I need to improve:
Knowing what to be working on. I feel like I've done well with some basic "Come" "Sit" "Stay" and "Kennel" commands. He does those relatively well (especially when a treat is present of course). But I feel like I may have skipped over some foundation training?
Need to get him access to birds. I know that. It's my #1 priority. I did get a couple frozen, dead chukars from a friend. Curious how you guys think I should use those to train? Thinking having another person toss them and shoot, then let him retrieve an actual bird a few times? A lot?
Consistency and finding a program. Deliberate training is the hardest part for new bird dog owners. What to do when and why.

I'm sure there is more but that's enough for now. Really looking forward to getting to know you guys/girls and learning from you. Forgot to mention we started building a pigeon coop. I plan on keeping birds as soon as I can find some. Should be easy training in our field with a launcher I bought.

I've noticed all the typical recommendations for training material. I had the Huntsmith dvd's a few years back. I may pick up the Perfect Start, Perfect Finish program? What do you guys think. Very tough to find anything specific for all aspects of a versatile hunting dog training, besides the VDD material that is relatively basic. Open to any and all training suggestions. I know that he's right at the point where i need to start hitting the gas pedal with his training but not 100% sure which direction to go each day. Thanks for following along!

Dustin (BigD)
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Re: Intros

Postby Spindog » Sat Mar 13, 2021 7:18 am

Seems to me you two are on the right path. I am not a very good trainer so I will let others advise you. There are many smart people willing to help. You may want to look at into a NAVHD Chapter near you also, That is a good place for some hands on advice. Chief looks and sounds like a great pup.
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Re: Intros

Postby AverageGuy » Sat Mar 13, 2021 8:32 am

A well bred DD has all the tools they need when they are born.

Your job will be to give your pup a chance to develop, use those tools, and shape his behaviors with some Obedience training along the way.

I train Obedience from day one, but in the house and yard using positive re-enforcement methods for the most part. I get my pups out in nature daily and let them explore and learn without a lot of interference from me. If you want to hunt huns, sharptails, chukars you will likely want your pup to range considerably distances away from you while hunting for those birds, but in the direction you want to hunt to some degree. Shaping that starts now and it involves giving the pup their head to large degree. It is critical to not attempt to control your pup's every move and to strike the right balance.

I run an ecollar/gps on my pups which allows me to keep track of them in cover while they explore and learn new things all around them. I do not begin using the ecollar tool until we are working on recall usually starting around 5 months of age depending on the temperament and actions of each specific pup. The Perfect Start DVD teaches the methods I use for my ecollar work and I recommend it for all new trainers. That DVD covers alot of other critical foundation subjects you will be working on.

A good deal of my approach to developing my puppies was documented in my Meet Tess thread on this board in the General Discussion section. And her first hunting season in the Hunting Section. You might be interested in looking through them.

Welcome aboard and Congratulations on your pup. You two have great times ahead.
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Re: Intros

Postby orhunter » Sat Mar 13, 2021 10:10 am

Dump the check cord when you're not actually training and have need it it or for the dog's safety. Pup needs to develop range, independence, freedom to follow its nose. A dog's world is through its nose. You can work on hand signals and cooperation while out there.

Pup seems a little too dependent on treats, you might want to cut back for a while and see what happens. Continue to use them when fully appropriate. My last Griff only focused on the treats and it didn't go well. Ha ha.. They can be an obstruction to what you want to accomplish if handed out too freely.

AG gives good advice.... as usual.

Thanks for photos of the pup.
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Re: Intros

Postby Highlander » Thu Mar 18, 2021 12:51 pm

Great pup!

He spends most of his time on a check cord, or a short leash.


You may want to be cautious here.
It is possible that by doing so you will kill the natural ability of the dog to improvise (when necessary) and explore.
One of the most well known DD guy the US, in his book, strongly suggest to avoid using a cord as much as possible.

I have a similar versatile dog. She is 6 month old now. I have never used a cord. Only exception is when I am training her on a track and I want her to stick closer to it. Once she secures the direction the track is laid down towards I let her drag it.
Everything comes natural with these dogs.
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Re: Intros

Postby Willie T » Thu Mar 18, 2021 9:24 pm

Dustin,
Congratulations on the new pup and welcome to the forum. There is a good group here. Use the check cord in the yard to establish a good recall and general obedience. It may also be useful in some retriever training. In the field, let your pup follow its nose to develop the confidence and independence to get out front and hunt. There are some who have the opinion too much control with a pointing dog may inhibit the dogs range in the field. I am in that camp as well. Develop a good recall and take the check cord off when in the field. Let your pup learn to keep tabs on you. As much as possible resist the urge to hack on him. He will learn to use his ears as well as his eyes and nose to key on you, rather than you chasing him. If you are nervous about losing him, a gps collar will give you peace of mind.
Best of luck to you and your new pup!
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Re: Intros

Postby J D Patrick » Fri Mar 19, 2021 6:32 am

welcome to the forum and to the DD world,, fun dogs

no expert here, but maybe I'll run into you on my birding boondoggles out west

take care

John
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Re: Intros

Postby tiger99 » Tue Mar 30, 2021 10:00 am

Get the book titled "GUN DOG" by Richard Wolters. I've used it for over 30 years to turn pups into remarkable upland bird hunters. If by chance you end up in Montana, give me a shout- perhaps we could hunt together.
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