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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I shot a couple ducks on the youth hunt a few weeks ago and threw one for her and she ran got it and started ripping out the feathers. This morning I tried it again and she did the same thing she loves retriving. It doesn't day anything about it in any of my books.

this is her retriving a dummy(my favorte picture)
 

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Put it this way, at least you have a pup with a good prey drive to go and pick up the bird you threw. As your training continues (get on a good training program if you're not yet) the dog will understand that the birds need to be brought back. Make sure with a pup of this age, put them on a long check cord so you can reel them back in. If you chase them with what ever you've thrown, they'll associate that as play time. Later in your training you'll use Force Fetch as a command and the dog will understand that holding and not mouthing or chewing on their retrieve is required of them.
 

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Sounds to me like you are not following a training program with your pup and like you expect the pup to naturally retrieve w/o training. At this point it isn't "retrieving", it's playing a game that is fun. At your pup's age, all it has is natural prey drive. You have to train it to retrieve, and it's a long, slow process.

It also sounds like you are making the common mistake of pushing your pup and expecting it to develop too fast. At 5 months old it you should be working on formalizing Basic OB, not retrieving birds.

Also, at 5 months it is in the process of losing it's puppy teeth, so you shouldn't even be doing puppy bumpers. It hurts to grab a bumper with those loose teeth, and you don't want ANY negativity associated with bumpers. Again, just work on formalizing OB during this period.

I highly recommend you get a copy of 10 Minute Retriever and Smartwork For Retrievers, start from the beginning,and follow the program. Don't skip steps and don't move on to the next until the current task is firmly in place..

Starting with a 7-11 week old pup, my general time frame is socalizing/puppy bumpers,
extremely basic (name recognition,sit/stay/come) OB up to 4 months,
4-6 months, Basic OB(loose leash walk, heel, kennel up)
6-10 months, FF/CC & basic marks,
10-12 months, Transition Training,

first hunt at shooting preserve under tightly controlled conditions around 12 months,
continued Transition Training 12-14 months,
next controlled hunt around 14 months,
begin Handling around 14-15 months,
Water Force & water blinds around 15 months,
polish & Finishing 16-18 months,

THEN the first hunting season in that 18 month area...
 

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Just keep him on a check cord, about 30' long when you send him for the duck. As soon as he gets to the duck, give a light jerk on the cord and command HERE. Keep giving short, gentle tugs and commanding HERE. The pup won't want to lose the duck, so will pick it up and bring it to you with guidance from the cord.

In a month or two, or after hunting season, you should put him into a regular training program like Evan Grahams and it will take care of any problems he may have.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I have two books, 10 minute retriever and game dog. I have not been following them strictly, but combining them . I have got basic commands, sit, stay, and here. Im still working on here she comes if shes on a cord or in the house. I will probaly buy smartworks because thats what ive been hearing is a good traing aid. Thanks for the input
 

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10 Minute Retriever will take you nicely through the first 6 months. After that the much more in depth and structured Smartwork is a great foundation for next 12-18 months it will take to Finish most gundogs.

BTW, it appears that someone edited & changed a few things to my post....

Puppy OB entails simplly sit and to a lesser extent here. Name recognition and such is simply part of socializing, not OB. At this stage you have to let your pup be a pup and not put too much on it's plate.

Formal OB at 4 months constitutes sit, here, heel, stay, both on & off lead. it's extremely important OB is rock solid & firmly in place before you go one step further with the pup, as it's the foundation of all future training tasks.

This is where your your pup begins to learn how to train. In FF/CC it learns how to respond to training pressure and to turn it off by quickly performing the task upon command.

A good general rule of thumb is, as your dog progresses in it's program and even in the years after it is Finished, if it backslides in a task (for example, breaking at the shot) go back and reinforce the corresponding OB...

BTW, thats' a great looking pup. A guy just has to love the obvious enthusiasm of a lab! :beer:
 
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