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1. Is it normal for a 18 week old Chocolate Lab to make five or six bumper retrieves (on the lawn in our back yard) and then lose interest?

2. Is it normal for her to go into the taller weeds to look for a bumper and lose interest (or focus) very quickly?

As always, thanks for the feed back.
 

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Both very normal. I would keep retrieving to only a couple at a time and you've now seen the number of bumpers it takes for the dog to loose interest. Shorten the session by a couple bumpers and then you put the dog up wanting more. Also I'd recommend getting the dog on either live or dead pigeons. That should help with the prey drive to pick up things that are thrown.
 

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My pup lost interest very fast on bumpers until we introduced live pigeons to her. We clipped the flight feathers and then tossed the pigeon into some knee high grass with the dog trailing close behind. Jazzed her up, introduced gunfire at the same time. Now, when I grab a bumper, she acts like I have a live bird and doesn't ever want to quit.

LIVE birds are the answer for young pups that get bored very quickly.
 

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Very normal, and 5-6 puppy bumpers are too many in a session. Only 2-3 maybe twice a day, and make them easy to see (nothing in cover) and close.

The change of cover is a challenge even for an older pup. At 18 weeks, your pup is too young to comprehend it. Remember it's just a baby. Make it fun & easy.

You want to make this game (and at this age it's a game, not a task) as easy and fun as possible for the pup, and you always want to leave him/her wanting more...

At your pup's age, you should be concentrating on it's formal OB (sit stay, here, heel) as it's the foundation of all future training...
 
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