Shortening range and breakingMy 21/2 year old d.d. bitch is a prize 2 navhda utility steady to fall in tests and ranges 50 -100 yards. In the field on wild birds she is out 300-400 yards on sharptails and presumably the same on ruffies of course she is out of sight so do not really know. Also she breaks after the shot on wild birds. It is imperative to have her ranging at the 50 100 yard range and steady to fall/command as she is to be a falconry dog. I do not use e-collar and would prefer guidance that did not involve e-collar. Hope you can help. - Robert Robert,
If you have passed the UT test from what I understand from your post, a very good Prize II, then I would suggest you follow the same procedure you did to get her ready for a test, but use your training procedures on wild birds. And use it on every hunt. Don't put up with the dog breaking.
If the dog breaks on the shot while I am hunting wild game I would verbally try to stop the dog with the 'whoa' command. If you can get her to stop great! GO PICK UP THAT BIRD! The retrieve is the reward. Once I pick up the bird, I toss the bird in the air trying to coax the dog to move. Get her to move and correct her immediately. Put her back to the original place. If you can not stop the dog on the command don't give up. First get the bird back to hand, sounds like the retrieve is not the problem here so let's not screw that up. Once the bird is back to hand whoa her and toss the bird with a shot. If she moves command her again and bring her back to the spot you whoaed her from. Don't be gentle but use forceful commands while putting the dog back. Try again. If she does not move send her, and praise her. But is she does do this step until she does stay put. Be consistent and look for a place to hunt on. Then hunt on and repeat the practice all over again. Eventually with enough repetition you should solve your problem. I purposely miss birds while hunting because I absolutely require my dogs to stay put. I have taken pot shots in the direction of hens just so I could take this sequence one step farther.
For the range problem have you tried verbally keeping her closer to you? Again doing this I would go back to basics. If she starts to range to far turn around and go the other way. Don't say anything to her but let her decide where and with who she hunts. I am willing to bet she turns to get in front of you. Also in open ground pick you pace up while constantly changing directions. Again is she gets to far out lay down.
If she is like any other dog and since you got a Prize II - I am willing to bet that she would rather hunt for you than alone and will find you. Just don't get into the routine of being predictable.
So re-capping - when you train or hunt it should make no difference - be consistent to let her know that even on wild birds she should not break. If she does physically and verbally correct. When done correct PRAISE THE DOG.
She must know the word "WHOA!" If you really want to use a flacon you need to be able to trust the dog to stop first time every time via voice or whistle what ever you use. So you need more postive repetition for this also.
Can you place a live bird on the dog? How long before she tries to retrieve or kill it.
There are times you will get physical with the dog. Learn to break her down somewhat and then build her confidence up so she is happy. Happy dogs just hunt better.
And it took me 5 1/2 years to get one dog to be steady to wind and shot even after others said I could not. So constant postive repetition is the key and it all can be done without the e-collar.
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