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Training Book or Video

 
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Louffers
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Joined: 15 Aug 2005
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Location: Spicer, MN

PostPosted: 08/16/05, 9:26 am    Post subject: Training Book or Video Reply with quote

We recently purchased a 15 wk GWP and we are in love with her. She was "started" but we need some resources for "finishing" her. Can anyone recommend any good training books or videos? I am not at all interested in using training methods that require a 'training' collar.

My husband would like to primarily hunt upland birds but occasionally some wetland birds as well.

Thank you!
Leah
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walltentwire
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Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 18
Location: Alberta

PostPosted: 08/16/05, 7:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm amused whenever people dig their heels in on the issue of collars. The guys who introduced me to upland dogs are dead-set against using collars, but after seeing my pup almost get himself killed one too many times I just decided to ignore all the racket and make up my mind for myself. In my case, sensible use of a good collar has given me the margin of safety I needed to get him to two years of age in one piece. I can confidently do things with my dog that would simply not be advisable without having that dog under control in an all-out emergency situation. Things like working him on wild birds within 30 feet of 4 lane highways with complete confidence.

If you've got all the time in the world to train your dog and you don't mind seeing him get squashed on a road when he bolts after a rabbit or having the news media knocking on your door because your dog just whacked the neighbors cat, then by all means don't buy one. A dog with the drive mine has needs a steering wheel and some brakes. Otherwise he is little more than a loose cannon. Have a look at my past posts and read the one about his Kamakaze dive out the second floor window to hassle some sparrows at the backyard bird feeder, and you'll get an idea of what these dogs are capable of when they get excited. I'm just glad this dog isn't a scrapper, because if he scrapped like he hunts, he'd be a scary animal.

Good luck with your pup, my guess is you might be in for some surprises with this experiment. I hope it works out for you. Realize, however, that collars give you the great advantage of correcting a pup precisely when he tests your resolve. For me, the collar is now our silent, deadly communication advantage when we work tough old pheasants. This has made us a fearsome team. I honestly wonder if I'll ever have another dog as good as this one is. I should also mention that my pup just goes crazy when he sees his collar, because he knows its time to find and point birds.

There are a lot of pros who use collars very wisely and sparingly. I'm glad I ignored all the naysayers and found out for myself why that is.
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dualgwp
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Joined: 19 Oct 2002
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Location: New Hope PA

PostPosted: 08/17/05, 6:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Leah,
tell us why you are not interested in any method that uses a training collar... that might help.

There is always the good old jerk em off their feet training method we used in the good old days, or the shoot em with pellets method that many people advocated. Certainly not kind, although it worked, it was just not as effective or as kind as todays training collars afford us.

I would suggest your hubby find a local NAVHDA chapter, or a GWP club in your area that holds training days. Seeing something in person, and having experienced folks there is much easier and quicker than reading books. I always advocate reading all you can, but if you see it put into practice.... it makes the reading come to life.

As far as books or tapes I would recomend... I like Bob Wests tapes. They start from scratch and take you through the entire process... but they do use a collar during the training.

Good luck, and please let us know the progress your making.
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Deb Finstad
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Joined: 21 Oct 2002
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Location: Minneapolis, MN

PostPosted: 08/17/05, 9:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you would like to follow some advice from Dual and look into the local NAVHDA or GWP club, drop me a line. We belong to both organizations right now.

It's a pretty good year to get involved in GWP's if you live in Minnesota since we are having the GWPCA Nationals in October up in Superior, WI; you can get all the information you need from the Home page of this site or go directly to WWW.TCGWPC.Com.

In addition the NAVHDA Invitational will be held Labor Day weekend in Hugo, MN. At the Invite you'll get to see a number of highly trained hunting dogs do both field and water work. It runs from Thursday September 1 thru Sunday September 4th. There are also Natural Ability (all dogs in this test are under 16 months old) and Utility tests coming up. Go to www.NAVHDA.org (or www.MNNAVHDA.com for the local chapter) if you like more information on the group.

Have fun with the pup!
Deb
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charlieo
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Joined: 22 Sep 2004
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Location: littleton Co

PostPosted: 09/06/05, 3:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I recommend George Hickox's video on training the pointing dog. He uses an e-collar, but after you view the tape you may change your mind about the collar use. Janet Nahorn has a video on training I also like. "Silent Hunting, whistles, no whoas"I've incorporated their methods in my training of the last two dogs.
What Hickox point out but is easy to miss, is that the dog has to be taught a command BEFORE you use the collar to reinforce the command. Hickox also demonstrates the level of stimulation you should use on the dog. The lowest level the dog notices.
The tapes are cheap compared to the cost of keeping a dog. View both tapes and then decide on your method.
Remember teach the command without the collar.
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charlieo
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PostPosted: 09/06/05, 3:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The reference to Janet's tape should be "Silent Hunting, no whistles, no whoas"
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Louffers
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Joined: 15 Aug 2005
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PostPosted: 09/11/05, 9:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you for all the tips. We have some other obstacles to get over before even considering an e-collar. Willow is VERY sensitive to touch for some reason. Thus the reason we do not want to use an e-collar on her. She has been in the field and she is doing pretty good. I also bought some blanks for my handgun and I can fire those without any problems with her flinching etc. She has a problem with other dogs her size or larger. She simply melts into a crying puddle when faced with a dog the same size or bigger than her. If the dogs are smaller than her she is fine, as long as they don't jump on her. The family farm we are using to work her in a field has a dog the same size as Willow but is just as afraid of dogs as Willow. Due to this other dog's behavior it has been a good place to get Willow introduced to a 'mild, big' dog. Yesterday was our first successful day. She played with this dog and didn't melt into a puddle once. Meaning she didn't scream, go to the ground and pee. So slowly we are getting past that. She will need to be able to hunt with other dogs and our next adventure will be to bring another dog to the field with us.

Sorry for rambling and I will certainly look into the MN NAVHDA chapter.


Thanks,
Leah
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dualgwp
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PostPosted: 09/12/05, 6:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

When Willow "melts" upon meeting another dog, what do you do?
When you see another dog heading her way, what do you do?

Here is why I'm asking....
Many times puppy owners are unwittingly teaching their puppy there is something to fear from other dogs by sheltering and trying to protect them.
When Willow "melts", ignore it and her. Just walk away and let her figure it out on her own. As long as the other dog isn't out to draw blood, all should be fine. She sounds like she is really submissive, and is letting the other dog know she ain't here for a fight..... good tactic for staying out of trouble, but it looks horrible.

You also say she seems very sensitive to touch? What do you mean?
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Louffers
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PostPosted: 09/12/05, 8:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am a former vet tech and do know to let her fend her battles to some degree. I struggle more so with my husband in sheltering her. When we come across a "big" dog I do not shelter her (I know these dogs and how they interact with other dogs). Instead I encourage her through the greeting. I do not bed down and pet her. I stand and verbally reassure her. When we got her from the kennel you could tell by the wounds on her ears that she was pretty much the beating bag for the rest of the litter. We met the entire litter and none of the others in the litter were like that. Also when at the kennel, she came around the corner of a building and saw a huge english pointer chained and ran off screaming. And I mean SCREAMING and RUNNING. Now we have it so she doesn't run away. She is starting to not be so submissive and with this farm dog that she is now able to deal with helps.

As for touch. She is very sensitive to touch, such as petting, regular colar, bedding etc. She doesn't go wild or melt. But she will scratch.

I have to say she has come a long way since we got her. Today we had monster storms and one would think she would be terrified but NOPE she was out playing in the rain and thunder. Had to call her back into the house. She also is different in the field as well. Our next goal is to try to introduce her to 'big' dogs while in the field. She seems to be much braver there.

Oh she is doing a great job at retrieving.

Leah
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