Beginning the FF process

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Beginning the FF process

Postby ryanr » Thu Sep 06, 2018 2:31 pm

In keeping with my training plan to force break my latest pup after her NA we began force fetch recently. First session was so so but upon some reflection and advice from a mentor we got things going in the right direction and her understanding that she needs to hold that object until I command out. She's just starting to open her mouth a bit on her own as I put the paint roller in and say Fetch and she's holding it nicely and responding to the Out command too. I even have her moving along the table with it. I jumped ahead and tried to walk her down and around and she dropped it though but today I got her to walk down the ramp with it and then gave her the Out, ended the session on that note with a lot of praise. I will begin having her hold different objects now just so she has that down too before we get to far forward. We also start each session off with some heeling work too.

Between lousy weather and my dad in the hospital for several days with sepsis the number of sessions each day wasn't consistent initially but it should be better moving forward now. I'm hoping to make a lot of progress between now and the end of September. I'm even putting my 6yr old dog back thru it too. So much less anxiety for me this time around, with both dogs. I feel better prepared.
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Re: Beginning the FF process

Postby mastercaster » Thu Sep 06, 2018 6:41 pm

Because I live in a townhouse and had to deal with a month where it poured rain almost every day I did a lot of the FF training right in my living room. LOL Or out in the garage using the training table. I was even doing force to pile work in the house and the garage,,,,,all the time! You do what you have to do so you don't have to skip training days.

Getting your dog to hold paint rollers, PVC tubing, rubber dummies and dockens is all you really need to do. Some trainers think having your dog hold car keys, baseball gloves, beer bottles, etc. is not needed at all! Once a dog is fully FF'd the dog will hold anything you command it to hold because it's now their job to do it.

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Re: Beginning the FF process

Postby ryanr » Thu Sep 06, 2018 8:02 pm

Understood, luckily we just started so I'm not too worried about it in the beginning stage of basically just getting the pup used to holding it. She's picked it up quick and I love her cooperative nature (although I was happy she had a little bit of fight in her initially, they say that's a good sign.) Pressure will start to pick up from here though, longer holds, etc and the sessions will be consisten, at least 2 each day. Sure I wish I had a garage though.
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Re: Beginning the FF process

Postby Doc E » Thu Sep 06, 2018 8:50 pm

FF = GO SLOW.
FF is not a race --- Turtle and Hare.
Don't jump ahead until you are more than sure the previous phase
is completely finished.

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Re: Beginning the FF process

Postby ryanr » Fri Sep 07, 2018 9:22 am

She was great this morning, opening her mouth now pretty consistently and even eagerly. I was mindful of going slow but she was eager and had some happy feet on the table and wanted to move (I think she was excited about the heatwave breaking as much as I was) so I went with it after a few easier reps and she walked along the table, down the ramp at heel and then even turning and walking back up. We did that a couple times and she never dropped the roller once. I've been keeping the sessions very short, definitely shorter st this te than when I did FF with my first dog. I think back then I got into a mindset of doing a set number of reps over and over too much each session. Right now I get 5 or 6 good reps in a session, along with some heeling work and I end it, praise her up good and give the "free" command. Same thing with my older dog, he almost doesn't know what to.make of it when I tell him "free" after only a few good reps. This time I have him sitting before I take the roller out, something new for him.

As I said earlier, this weekend will be about introducing other objects for her to hold. Curious to see how that will go.
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Re: Beginning the FF process

Postby mastercaster » Fri Sep 07, 2018 3:04 pm

When it comes to holding diferent objects, there's no need to go to this extent,,,,even when you need to start a fresh bottle and want to impress your guests. LOL

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Re: Beginning the FF process

Postby Deuce » Mon Sep 10, 2018 10:39 am

Slow and steady wins the race. Sounds like you're on the right track.

My favorite way to work on FF training is during commercial breaks. Have your stuff ready to go and work on hold & carry while commercials are on, as soon as what you're watching comes back on finish your rep and stop, skip a commercial break, and do another set of reps 20-30 minutes later. It keeps things fresh and forces you to stop at a set time instead of fighting "just one more" syndrome.
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Re: Beginning the FF process

Postby ryanr » Mon Sep 10, 2018 9:34 pm

Deuce wrote:Slow and steady wins the race. Sounds like you're on the right track.

My favorite way to work on FF training is during commercial breaks. Have your stuff ready to go and work on hold & carry while commercials are on, as soon as what you're watching comes back on finish your rep and stop, skip a commercial break, and do another set of reps 20-30 minutes later. It keeps things fresh and forces you to stop at a set time instead of fighting "just one more" syndrome.


So it shouldn't matter if I just transition immediately to doing it on the ground (my living room) at times and then also outside on (and off) the table?

I hear you on avoiding the "just one more" syndrome. I think that was a mistake I made in FFing my older dog. I'm putting him back thru it now too. With her I do maybe 5 or 6 reps and that's it. With him, I might only do 3 or 4. He seems stunned when I end the session so soon but he's eager and cooperative each time and I think that's a big part of the reason why.

I have her holding it and carrying it off the table and around the table and back up on it pretty good. She seems to definitely understand I want to her hold it until I say out. I'm starting to tap and bump it a little more now too.

Too keep it even a little more fresh for both of them I switch little things up here or there. Like what direction we walk off the table, where I command out, maybe an extra turn, etc. Just little incidental things so they don't just anticipate or become complacent with the reps. I also have them each watching while I train the other. I'm actually having fun with it this time.

Thank.you for the tips.
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Re: Beginning the FF process

Postby Doc E » Tue Sep 11, 2018 8:48 am

A Table is not really needed at all.

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Re: Beginning the FF process

Postby Deuce » Tue Sep 11, 2018 1:37 pm

I'd just go slow, and if you hit a hiccup in a different environment back up a step or two in that environment then progress. I never used a table, I literally did all my FF groundwork in my living room and bedroom hallways for line drills, then transitioned outside to line work.

Nothing wrong with doing both, just be aware that you may gain ground in one area but could his snags when jumping off from that spot in a different area.
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Re: Beginning the FF process

Postby ryanr » Tue Sep 11, 2018 3:01 pm

Deuce wrote:I'd just go slow, and if you hit a hiccup in a different environment back up a step or two in that environment then progress. I never used a table, I literally did all my FF groundwork in my living room and bedroom hallways for line drills, then transitioned outside to line work.

Nothing wrong with doing both, just be aware that you may gain ground in one area but could his snags when jumping off from that spot in a different area.


Cool, got it. I was kinda anticipating I might have to back up a bit going to a new spot. I was also thinking that in the long run it might be beneficial to the process to bounce back and forth a bit and get her comfortable with doing it anywhere she's asked. Thank you again.
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Re: Beginning the FF process

Postby Meridiandave » Wed Sep 12, 2018 8:18 am

Props to you for doing this during the season. Lots a work to mix in with hunting. Good luck.
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Re: Beginning the FF process

Postby ryanr » Wed Sep 12, 2018 12:39 pm

Meridiandave wrote:Props to you for doing this during the season. Lots a work to mix in with hunting. Good luck.


Well, dove is in now and early goose but our true upland season in PA doesn't begin until October 13th. At that time I'm hoping to be on our way towards finishing up. We'll see.
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Re: Beginning the FF process

Postby mastercaster » Thu Sep 13, 2018 10:33 am

Doc E wrote:A Table is not really needed at all.

.


I used a table part of the time during the process, sat on a stool, as well. Like you say, it's not necessary at all to us a table, but it sure is easier on your back if you happen to have had a low back injury in the past.

My table actually gets used a lot. I put all my camping/fishing gear on top of it for easy access! LOL
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Re: Beginning the FF process

Postby flitecontrol » Thu Sep 13, 2018 11:04 am

The table was born of necessity when Bodo Winterhelt (co-author of the "Little Green Book") hurt his back. I think it helps the dog's focus too by limiting their movement.
I've had several really good dogs, but none were perfect. Neither am I, so keep that in mind!
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