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Thread: Payday with a young dog

  1. #1
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    Default Payday with a young dog

    I took Roca, my 17 month old lab out today for her first upland hunt. We managed to find some ptarmigan, and I was lucky enough to hit a double. The first bird fell into an open area, the second just over a small rise.
    As I had seen the birds before they flushed, I was able to give her a sit command, which she obeyed. Once the birds came up, and I shot twice, she was able to get a good mark on them. I lined her, and gave her the retrieve command.
    WOW. She loves birds. She hit that first bird at full speed. It was about a 40 to 50 yard retrieve. She brought the bird back to heel, sat pretty as you please with the bird, and delivered to hand.
    I knew the second bird would be tough as the line went through the fall of the first bird. I lined her, sent her, and she did get hung up short in the old fall. No issue. I walked up slowly, and encouraged her to hunt over the small hill. She did, spotted the bird immediately, and made another pretty retrieve.
    What a great moment! A beautiful young dog was able to bring back the birds, just as we had trained. My first ptarmigan of the year, her first white birds ever in a hunting situation. Very nice!
    I love paydays!

  2. #2
    Member tjm's Avatar
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    nice....

    I too chased a few birds with pup today...only didn't connect on any...Murdock still had a good time....better than sitting on the couch eating my 3rd helping of Thanksgiving dinner....



    ------------------------------------------------
    pull my finger....

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    Good for you guys. I need to get Biscuit out into the woods again. She did really well with the gun shots last time I had her out, but we didn't see any birds. Its very warm in Fairbanks this weekend so I should probably just make it happen.



    Jeremiah

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    Member DucksAndDogs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeremiahak View Post
    Good for you guys. I need to get Biscuit out into the woods again. She did really well with the gun shots last time I had her out, but we didn't see any birds. Its very warm in Fairbanks this weekend so I should probably just make it happen.



    Jeremiah


    Isn't Biscuit only about 3 months old?

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    Hey, good going for you folks with new pups! But be careful how you introduce gunfire. Once gunshy, possibly always gunshy.

    Best of luck!

    Jim

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    Quote Originally Posted by DucksAndDogs View Post
    Isn't Biscuit only about 3 months old?
    Sorry for the minor hi-jack, but I thought I should answer this.

    Yes, Biscuit was born on August 12th. I still take her out into the woods every now and then so she'll be used to it. I have fired the .22 with her present, and she doesn't mind at all. If I shot a grouse I'm sure she would have no idea what to do.


    Jeremiah

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    Default Payday with a bonus

    Well, we went out today as a group. Don't ask me how, but I knocked down 4 ptarmigan w/ 2 shots. 3 hit the snow hard, the 4th was a cripple. Roca chased it into a ravine filled with powder and willows. I was able to watch the whole event. It was quite the chase, but she prevailed and was finally able to claw her way out of the ravine and back to me.
    I then sent her for the last 3 birds. She took good lines all the way to the falls. She made nice short hunts on everything. I was able to use the wind to our advantage.
    I ended up with a single on one shot later, but she was not there with me. I had buddied up with another gunner and his dog at that moment.
    Roca was with Labman and his buddy, and ended up finding 6 or 8 birds for them. He said she was very steady, and made some good marks.
    10 plus birds in a day, and it all went really well.
    Any other "paydays" out there? I hope some of you are getting opportunities to hunt over your dogs. I would like to see how your training has paid off. To me, shooting birds over your dog is what it is all about.

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    Member 3CBRS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ak River Rat View Post
    ... Don't ask me how, but I knocked down 4 ptarmigan w/ 2 shots. 3
    Well I'll tell you how, Rat. You lined up 2 heads when they were sitting on the ground -- that's how you knocked down 4 birds with 2 shots. More like knocking them over than down.

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    Default You are a bad woman

    Call me a lot of things, but I'm no sluicer! They have to at least have intent to fly!
    Besides, as old and slow as I am they are normally up and moving before my mind tells my body to get the gun up.
    So far I am shooting at 166%, and the dog is batting 100. I won't mind if my percentage falls, but hope we can keep her up there.
    Hey Karen, expect a call from me. Just got word about a 2 year old male yellow lab some people can't keep. They are supposed to send me more info.

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    Default Nobody?

    Nobody has any stories of getting to hunt over their dogs after a long summer of training? Nobody is getting any time to spend with their dogs to hunt H2O fowl or upland birds?
    I know this is supposed to be a training forum, but it would be fun to see how your training worked out for the hunt itself?
    And with your newest hunting experiences, would you do anything different in your training?

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    Nope. Can you believe it, I havent been out for Ptarmies at all? Altho since the wife is back after being gone and deplyoed for 15 months might have something to do with it

    I dont know if I'll make it out but believe me Im dying to just go outside for a drive would be even good right now, the birds would be a bonus. Good luck and beautiful job with your pup.

  12. #12

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    I have several different stories from this years "cherry" hunting retrievers. If the clients aren't able to take their own dogs out on an actual hunt...well...I do.
    The most memorable was a little golden female that I had trained since about 6 months. At the time she was about 10 months of age. I was hunting a narrow channel of water that snaked back and forth. The mallards where using it quiet heavily. So I made my way along side and did some jump shooting. If memory serves me right I shot two dwon for her. One landed out in the open and another across the channel up on the other side. She picked up the one in the water and brought it in. Then I was like Oh Great now she is cluesless about the other bird. So now I've got to see how she does on a blind retrieve. By the way ...at the time she hadn't done a blind retrieve. Lots of sight blinds and pattern blinds but I hadn't built her up to running cold blinds yet. So I lined her up and sent her. Into the water she goes and actually landed on the other side of the channel. She started to hunt the far shore (because of the other bird she had just picked up. Some feathers had drifted up over there.) I gave a whistle sit. Which she did. Gave a back and up the bank she went. At that point I let her use her nose...she was in the right area. She went back too far at one point where I whistle sat her again ..gave a come in whistle. Just as soon as I gave the come in whistle she acted birdy and snatched up the still alive mallard. It had tracked about 30yds past where I had scene it fall. When she brought that bird in boy was she jacked up and all proud of herself.
    On the way out I wasn't expecting any more birds so I let her range out in front of me. There are these narrow creeks that flow into the larger channel. Marsh grass grows over the top of these creeks and covers them over like a canopy. Sometimes you can't see the creek so its tricky walking or you'll fall into them. So we are walking along and she starts acting birdy again. With her nose to the ground and in the air moving her head side to side getting centered to the scent. She then goes down into one of those creeks under the grass. I can hear her moving up the creek and pretty fast. So I run alongside expecting a mallard to jump out any second. She pops out a time or two ( I guess to see where I was, she'd look at me then back in she went) We went along that creek for about 100 yds when all the sudden under the grass I hear alot of wrestling commotion and a few quacks. About 30 seconds goes by and she pops out with a greenhead in her mouth. She delivered it to me very much alive and I didn't have to fire a shot at it.
    She was so jacked up the rest of the day. Looking at every bird or dragonfly that flew by ..then looking at me like why didn't I shoot it.

  13. #13

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    I shot a couple ptarmigan the other day and my 2 1/2 year old lab brought his first two ptarmigan to hand. It was great to see him work. Now I'm excited about getting my new dog banks out in the woods so he can hunt up some birds but it'll be a while before that happens. Right now I have a couple tennis balls in a zip lock bag full of ptarmigan feathers so when the time comes he'll be ready for them.

  14. #14
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    Default keep a diary

    I thought I'd remember every bird my dogs retrieved. Sure, there are some unforgettable moments, but I have lost more than I've kept in the way of memories.
    Keep a log, a diary. Make it as simple or complex as you want. Include whatever you think will add to reading it again and again.
    And not just for dogs. I've already forgotten some of the adventures I've had with my kids.

  15. #15
    Member Burke's Avatar
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    Default belated congrats AK River Rat

    It is always nice to see the fruits of our labor with the young dogs! Awesome.
    Where are the pics ! ? :-)

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    Default handicapped

    Burke, I am technologically handicapped. Like I always say, I can dig a ditch, then jump it using the spade shovel as a pole vault, in a single bound, but computers scare me.
    Maybe I can get my super daughter to help my old butt out. I think the pictures came out pretty good.
    I hope this WX stays a bit warmer here in interior. I want to get this pup out and hunt over her. Really I'd like to take my old man out, but the snow is pretty deep for him to negotiate at 12 years of age.

  17. #17
    Member slimm's Avatar
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    Great read RiverRat,, And good shootin,,
    I have about 80 days of upland in this year,,Wish i could post a couple pics but since i don't live in AK. i think the mods would frown on that,, But i understand completely,,After all this is ALASKA outdoors..
    Journal's are great i keep track of all my bird hunts..
    Looking forward to some pics of your hunt..

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    Default The forum is Gundog training Slimm

    My vote is that if pictures show training, or fruits of training, they should be able to be posted. That would mean the dogs have to be in the picture. The picture could be of a dog working a complex water blind while waterfowl hunting. Or of a dog working different cover, maybe slammed on point in brush or something.
    Questions that come up in hunting are training related, so why not the photos too? And we do like input from trainers regardless of where they live, so always feel free to join in the party.
    But then, sometimes my opinion is not worth very much. I'd say try it and see what the mods think. They are pretty fair folks.

  19. #19
    Member Burke's Avatar
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    Default good point river rat

    but you could post pics on the small game forum instead of the gundog training forum
    and I think it is okay for people post "outside" pics

  20. #20
    Member slimm's Avatar
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    Thanks guys,, i will just let it be,This is a great site and i understand completely about not polluting up an AK site with ouside pics and threads..
    But if any of you folks want to come down to Idaho and get yer dogs on some upland birds feel free to pm me,, I have been seeing from 50 to 300 Chuckar and Huns a day..

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