Dog Training Dummies
Continuing with the quest for training supply knowledge. There are dozens of different sizes, colors, materials, shapes, and styles of training dummies or bumpers. They have everything from bird shaped ones to the classic cylindrical version in canvas, plastic, orange, white, black, multi-colored, various textures, etc.
What are some opinions and experiences on what types to use for what situations or times during training?
As far as color:
As a general rule. White or black/white are used to help your dog learn to "mark" a fall. At varying distances. The white is easier for your dog to see against a dark backdrop. Where the black is easier to see against a light back drop. Like a sky line or training during winter.
Dummies come in all white, all black or a combination.
Orange is used for teaching blind retrieves or pattern work. Dogs don't see color so the orange just helps us. Orange appears as a light grey to a dog so they don't see these as readily.
When I start lining, line to pile, casting drills or pattern work I will use white bumpers at first. Once the dogs confidence is up then I will switch over to orange. All orange for cold blinds.
I mostly use 2 inch diameter. But 3 inch is useful in some situations or where a dog like to mouth the smaller ones to much.
Canvas versus plastic. During winter I use canvas. The snow doesnt stick. The plastic gets hard and cold during cold. I use all plastic during warmer months.
As you have seen there are those rubber ducks.
I do use those. Just to get the dog used to handling something the same size and shape as a bird. Plus they work great in water. Real birds get expensive after a while. But, nothing beats the real thing. I do know not all have access to birds. So you have to get as close as you can.
We do something that seems to help puppies learn the scents they should be after....
We have some of both canvas and plastic bumpers. After a hunt, you can save some duck, goose, grouse feathers in large plastic bags and put your canvas bumpers in there. The canvas will pick up the bird scent.
I had a lot of problems with one of my dogs and I had no idea how to deal with it. My dog would bark constantly, break everything that she would get her mouth around, steal food from the table, run after cars. She even tried to bite the neighbor's kid. I was so frustrated with all her annoying behaviors that were driving me crazy. I got sick and tired of not being able to control her. I couldn't stand the idea that I was going to spend years to come with this mad dog.
I remember how difficult it was to find valuable dog training information, how frustrated I was every time I applied the latest techniques to train my dog, without major success. Often I had to retrain her over and over again. It took me a lot of trial and error, but I finally learned all the best dog training techniques, and I applied them to my dog one by one with great success.