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Should I hunt my dog?

I have a 10 months old Irish Setter who I tend to use as a companion, while hunting ptarmigans. He already heels nicely, he checks in very well and is not going to far away from me, when he is out looking for birds.

He is extremely independent so I have had to be rather hard on him some times. I am starting to let him walk loos at my heel on hunting grounds every now and then and that is going fine also.

I have started to tetch the "whoa" and he is doing very well. I have been using the Delmar Smith method, (pole and pincollar). I have also tried to build up tension on the hunting ground by vispering "whooooo" if I think or know there is a bird near by and he has not sensed it. But when I want him to stop I say "WHOA" up loud and he stops. I have not started real hunting with him, yet although the seasion has started.
Now my question is shell I start going hunting with him or shell I wait untill next seasion?

Thanks for your time.
Best regards
Vilhjalmur Olafsson

Take him hunting! Don't wait any longer, the best thing for him is wild birds even if he breaks and tries to take out a bird, he will never catch it unless it is a crippled bird in which case he should retrieve it. Don't get hard on the pup, just let him have fun this year hunting.

Krystal Creek Kennels

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