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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
i have a yellow lab that just turned 2 yrs old sept 19, 2003 she has gone hunting with me last year and this year. i have no problems with her advancement except that she retrieves everything i throw her on land except a goose (haven't tried another type of bird eitherpheasent season is comming) but if a goose falls in water or i throw one in the water she will fetch it almost to me untill her legs or feet hit land or bottom of the lake any ideas i was wondering if its the weight. she does turn it over and starts to like pluck it what do i do thanks . :-?
 

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laabdog said:
she does turn it over and starts to like pluck it what do i do thanks . :-?
I'm no expert, but I had the same thing happen last year. It was a new "toy" for my dog that she wasn't used to. She was content just playing with it. I dealt with it by using just plain old repetition and correction. I got her thinking the fun was bringing it to me and not playing with it. We've only had a few geese, so this is still a work in progress...but the first goose this year wasn't a problem.

My issue is that I've got the smallest lab- 45lbs soaking wet. The bigger birds take her a while to get a good grip on. The fowl trainer dummys are excellant cuz she always takes a grip on the body, but its hard for her to keep it held. So I just started having her carry logs around the yard to stregthen her mouth and neck muscles.

Good luck!
Dave
 

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Another thing you could try is attaching some wings to a larger dummy. This will help the dog get used to the feathers in its mouth. Make it fun for the dog and reward him/her when they do it right.
 

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I had a similar problem with my first lab but it was with pheasants. She would not pick them up on land, would get feathers in her mouth and would then start plucking. The idea of tying wings to a dummy should help. I would not try with pheasants or other upland birds until you get this fixed using waterfowl and dummy's w/wings. I would start with the dummy/wing and if the dog hesitates on the retreive, try getting her real excited before throwing the dummy. Switch it up, a couple plain dummy's, then one with a wing. For the water work maybe use a duck instead of a goose at first. As soon as the feet hit solid ground start moving away from the dog quickly. Usually they will be worried about being with you and forget to drop the dummy.

Another suggestion is to try force breaking the dog. I don't particularily care for it myself and do not use it, but it does work. You can find a number of different books that cover how to do it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
thank you for all the help but have tried all that and it works feathers and all to dumbies and she retrieves them great but not the real thing starts plucking lol just have to work with her more
 

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You have to force fetch her. Did this with mine when she was a pup now she is great and has numerous hunt test ribbons to show for it. You work on force fetching with her for a month hard and she will have it.
 

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My buddy trains dogs for a living and I work with him 4 times a week and help on weekends.

And greenheadIL is right. Take the dog to a GOOD trainer and have it forced out. The dog becomes much more business oriented he'll fetch a VW if you comand him to, and it is never to late to do it. But as soon as you see a problem you need to correct it before it becomes a habit.

Once they are force broke they are a dream to work with and they have it in their head who is the boss. And they will Love to please and get more joy out of a full "to the hand" retrieve then goofing off with a bird. Transfer the excitment of the bird to the excitement of giving it to you.

I would advise that you do NOT do the force break your self
P.S. It is night and day, and the best investment to a 13 year relationship.
You may want to also move to weighted dumbys and a Dokken goose dumby

Trust me you'll be grinning ear to ear when you see your dog work.
It's the good dog work that makes duck hunting so great
 

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I started to read this thread and automatically started thinking force fetch. But, it can be done by an amatuer. I've done all my dogs myself. Get some good resources. Training your own dog is a blast, in fact it kind of makes the hunting season last year-round, at least when they are young. Get into the Mike Lardy stuff. He's the Michael Jordan of the retriever world and has great videos (not cheap). Go to http://www.working-retriever.com/home.html and check it out. Also, try subscribing to Retrievers Online, a great publication from Canada.
 

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yeah anyone can force fetch a dog, but you should do some research on it first and make sure your doing it completely right before you start something that is wrong that can make it worse. Luckily I am good friends with a couple professional trainers/breeders of golden retrievers. Like stated before the difference is like night and day between forced fetched dogs and non force fetched. When they are taught to force fetch they will learn they have to pick up anything and i do mean anything you tell them to without pausing.
 

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There is a force fetch method called the Sanborn method that is very effective and gentle, Its a little slower than some of the other methods but is easier for the amatuer to do. Do an internet search you will find info on it. Iv'e been training labs for 35 years and the biggest mistake people make is trying to force break in a hurry.
1) Step one get a good video tape
2) watch the tape several times
3) wait until your dogs has one season under its belt. You can do it earlier if you use the Sanborn method but I like to have the dog a little more mature so it can handle a little pressure without wilting.
4)follow the steps in the tape religiously - no shortcuts
5) keep the sessions short ( 10 minutes no more) and always finish with a couple commands they understand and praise them lavishly for doing something right to keep their spirits high
6)this ones very important if the session is going badly STOP put the dog away and go do something else. DONT lose your temper and I can assure you sometimes they go badly. Skipping a session is a lot better than undermining your dogs confidence in you. Same applies if you are having a bad day. Skip the session and just take the dog for a fun time walk.
7) read # 6 again
8) expect this process to take 8 weeks or more which is why you want to do it after the season ( remember only 10 minutes a day)
 

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Black dog, where did you get your lab? "I've got the smallest lab- 45lbs soaking wet". I would like a lab, but my wife doesn't like the size of labs. I could probably get one if I could hook up with one that size.
 

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Look in the back of retriever journal and gundog magazine for the breeders and importers of english lines of labs. They have some smaller lines of labs and also they tend to breed a much calmer easier to train dog. They're lines have been culled toward steady dogs for many many years. Tell the breeder exactly what you are looking for in size and tempermant. Also tell them what type of hunting is your main style of hunting. I 've been training labs all my life and the English dogs are very easy to steady. This calmness also tends to make them good housedogs.
 

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clenjb said:
Black dog, where did you get your lab? "I've got the smallest lab- 45lbs soaking wet". I would like a lab, but my wife doesn't like the size of labs. I could probably get one if I could hook up with one that size.
I got my lab from Wildfowler Kennels in Prairie Du Chien WI. She wasn't expected to be as small as she is- The ***** (like I'm 16 again, I laugh every time I say that) was 60 lbs and the the male was 70lbs. I didn't want a huge lab either. They take up too much room in the boat and the bed.

Most females from their litters come in at the 60 mark....still bigger than mine, but 60 lbs is still a far cry from some of the giant labs we run against.

You can email me [email protected] for the contact info for the breeder or any other info.

Dave
 

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laabdog,
Listen to the above posts, 2 words, FORCE FETCH. A word of caution though. When or if you decide to FF your dog, I would not hunt the dog during the FF training process.

USMC-RET
 

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Simper Fi

About the force fetch, you need to make sure you do it religiously and know when the dog has had enough 15 min is the longest. Always end with something run and positive.

If you just quit doing it because of lack of time then it will just become frustrating to you as well as the dog.

And warning you can ruin a dog.
 
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