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Thread: Young Lab issues/questions

  1. #1
    Member honeybadger's Avatar
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    Default Young Lab issues/questions

    I'm not able to get my lab in to Bob at Northern Petcare until a couple weeks from now. By that time hell be 5 months old. There are a couple of things bothering me. I don't know that I got him out enough the first few weeks I've had him as I was working and sheep hunting on my off time. When I take him out to the field for walks now he generally walks behind me and does not venture far when exploring. He won't go in water,( no I have not tried to force him), and most troubling he shows little interest in retrieving anything from a ball to a grouse wing. He will track what I throw for him but when he gets up to it he loses interest in it. Any suggestions or ideas would be helpful. My two puppies are the first dogs I have trained and I want to do it right. Thanks.

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    Member Gerberman's Avatar
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    You have to make it a game, sit on the floor with a ball and roll it between your feet, he will get interested, take it away from him, roll it again, take it away again, soon he will start to try and get it from you and play with it, he will start to bring it to you to play the game. Each session you will roll it a little farther from him and he will bring it back to continue the game. It takes some time and effort to develop a good retriever. Soon you will start pointing to where you roll the ball, the beginning of hand signal training. By the time he is 7 to 8 months he should be ready to go to the field and help you with your hunting, do not need to pressure him, just let him continue the game.

  3. #3
    Member honeybadger's Avatar
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    Thanks for the tip, it took him a minute to understand that it is a game but he is responding now. Both of my dogs are obsessed with the sharptail wing I've tied to a stick. I let them chase me with it on a walk a minute ago then I had my wife hold them back while I drug it and hid it in the bushes. They found it each time after 2 minutes or so. I was very pleased.

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    Couple of quick things: You might use something other than a ball. Try a small canvas bumper or even a small paint roller. Tease pup, throw it out, and when he brings it back make a big deal out of it. Do this only three (3) times and then hide it. Don't over do it. The swimming thing is problematic due to the cold temps right now. I never put a pup into very cold water for the first time. But if, and when you do attempt to get him to swim, it helps if you are in the water as well. And it sometimes helps to have another dog or two along that like to jump in. As to the following behind thing...I'd just let him alone, stand there in the woods and let him move out on his own. Eventually he'll branch out further each time. Again, another dog helps with this.

    Bob will get your dogs going just fine. The man is part K-9! Listen to him, and do everything he tells you to do.

    Best of luck. Let us know of your progress.

    Jim

  5. #5
    Member Burke's Avatar
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    Honeybadger, do not stress too much yet, he is young. Enjoy and bond, make life fun for the little guy... in two weeks the trainer will be of great help.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim McCann View Post
    Couple of quick things: You might use something other than a ball. Try a small canvas bumper or even a small paint roller. Tease pup, throw it out, and when he brings it back make a big deal out of it. Do this only three (3) times and then hide it. Don't over do it. The swimming thing is problematic due to the cold temps right now. I never put a pup into very cold water for the first time. But if, and when you do attempt to get him to swim, it helps if you are in the water as well. And it sometimes helps to have another dog or two along that like to jump in. As to the following behind thing...I'd just let him alone, stand there in the woods and let him move out on his own. Eventually he'll branch out further each time. Again, another dog helps with this.

    Bob will get your dogs going just fine. The man is part K-9! Listen to him, and do everything he tells you to do.

    Best of luck. Let us know of your progress.

    Jim
    honeybadger: I second what jim said and understand your frustration... my little pup is nearing a year and when she was young I was sure she was a dud and told my wife that we had another pet.... she would not retrieve very well and showed little attention span All I can say is keep at it work at it hard time yourself 10 min no longer this was more to keep me in check than the dog... only throw it three times ... once again keeps you in check... with that said i would throw it three times about three times a day morning lunch and dinner... throw it down a hallway to force the bring it to you. If the dog runs off with it to chew just go get it plenty of time later to ramp up the correction right now just get her loving to retreive and when she does wrong just get the bumper and do not let her develop bad habits..train at least 6 days a week that is only 60 min a week. Most important do not let yourself get aggravated, when that happens stop training. it is a blast this is my second dog to train I figure by the time I am on the tenth dog i might have it right... just be patient it will all come together.

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