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  • Results 1 to 7 of 7
    1. #1
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      happy_blackbird's Avatar
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      Finding A Great "Sleep Away Camp" For Our 7 Month Old

      Hi, everyone! Ellie is now 7 months old and we've completed two local puppy classes and worked with a local trainer to enforce obedience. Now that she is deep into her stubborn period, we're starting to research training facilities that can first finish Ellie's obedience training and then help us learn how to best bring out and reinforce her natural field abilities. Right now she has no interest in retrieving (not a bumper, a frisbee, a stick, or a tennis ball), but she shows promise in marking (if she's not sniffing the ground, she is looking up) and has a really beautiful point (go figure). It is also very difficult to get her attention in the big world and while her commands are spot on in the house, when in the field, she ignores us about 80% of the time.

      Do you have a trainer or facility that you have worked with or could recommend? We're in Northern California, but spend the summers in Colorado. Ellie does have kennel panic that we're working on and displays anxiety on the days when she does not get enough exercise (though this doesn't happen often, as we have made the commitment to give her the exercise she needs every single day). Some trainers have voiced concern about taking her for fear that Ellie will disrupt their groups. I'm starting to worry that time is passing, she's getting older, and we may be missing some critical developmental milestones at their correct time.

      Thanks so much!
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    2. #2
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      BaconsMom's Avatar
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      We trained Bacon for both waterfowl and upland hunting ourselves, and we have had great success. We used Tom Dokken's Retriever training Tom Dokken's Retriever Training: The Complete Guide to Developing Your Hunting Dog: Tom Dokken: 9780896898585: Amazon.com: Books along with youtube and consultation with a professional trainer and our Breeder. I know it is not for everyone, but I would recommend looking into it. Bacon is proof that it is possible. He had several successful duck hunts this year, along with 2 pheasant hunts and 2 grouse hunts.

      Also, I would look into finding a local lab club first. They can either guide you to a good training program or help you with training yourself. Our lab club has been our greatest asset. Good luck!
      Julie & Jake, Bacon's Humans

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      happy_blackbird (04-06-2015)

    4. #3
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      Thank you so much for your recommendation! Ellie has such crazy focus and was bred from a long line of hunters, so I think she will really enjoy the activity, but we don't seem to have the right skill set to finish off her obedience without some assistance/instruction. Thanks, Bacon's humans!

    5. #4
      Puppy
      Slack Jaw Yokel's Avatar
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      I agree with Baconsmom, maybe before before sending your pup away you should look into a few books or dvd's for reference if you want to do it yourself. I personally like the TRT system. This is basically what I have used to teach both of my dogs. I was new to training dogs and found that the local hunting community and a retriever club was able to help me overcome many obstacles and stumbling blocks along the way. I found that most of the problem was with the handler not my dog! LOL The biggest factor in deciding to send your dog off or teach her is the amount of time you have to devote to this. Keep in mind that you are going to have to finish the training and keep your dog current. I take great satisfaction in working with my dogs to me it is worth all the effort and frustrations.

      Sorry I have no advice on a good trainer for you.

    6. #5
      Senior Dog
      arentspowell's Avatar
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      Do you hunt? If its not something that you're personally into I wouldn't have her trained to retrieve, especially by a board & train type of place. Just because labs were bred to be retrievers doesn't mean they're "missing out" if they aren't trained to retrieve. Dog sports are about doing something fun with your dog and working as a team. If hunting isn't your "thing" there are plenty of other really fun activities that can really bring out her focus and drive and will build a strong bond between you.

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      Tanya (04-14-2015)

    8. #6
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      Bill Hillman would be my choice of programs to follow. But as arentspowell has pointed out if you do not hunt then what is the point. If not going to hunt or do trials it's not really necessary. You should find a dog sport you both enjoy and something to do together.

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      Tanya (04-14-2015)

    10. #7
      Senior Dog
      Tanya's Avatar
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      Before sending her off I'd see about local training programs be it one on one or more specialised classes. There is no reason you can't work with her and get past this.

      You can re-focus teh drive to another sport that maybe more popular/doable/of interest to you should actual HUNTING not be your thing. Any sport/activity. I don't think the dog necessarily thinks "this is not duck hunting, give me some ducks people!" - they just want a job, somethwere to focus that energy and intelligence. Dock diving, Rally-O, formal obedience, flyball, agility, etc. etc. etc. are all great options that could maybe be something you enjoy more.

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