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Author Topic: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)  (Read 72333 times)

Offline 10Key

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #90 on: July 07, 2011, 06:44:42 PM »
Wow, it has been a long while since I updated this thread...Times have been slow. We ended up hunting a couple more times after the previous post, but nothing too crazy. We hit up Lower Crab Creek on the last day of the season and didn't even see one upland bird, all well. I will get back into posting as we are going to start back into training here in the next couple of weeks. Here are some random photos of Chukar from the past couple of months:

Goofy pic of Chukar with the top of a garbage can on his head


Us working on staying before the retrieve over Memorial Day weekend


Chukar retrieving a duck decoy over Memorial Day weekend


Me Checking on Chukar while fishing


Chukar and his buddy playing in the kennel...one of the funniest moments



Offline 10Key

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #91 on: August 27, 2011, 09:17:46 AM »
Well, we had to bite the bullet. We ordered a Tri-Tronics Upland Special g3 exp. Over Chukars almost two years now, there just have been too many close calls with him not heeding my stay and or come calls. I am in the process of getin him used to the collar and receiver, along with exposing him to the beeper (I am excited for that in the field).

Last night we did a little test to see what level of stimulation Chukar would react to. Made it to level 6 of 18 before he jumped into the air. I backed it off one notch and we are going to start there. Our first training with the collar will be this weekend, back to the basics with sit, stay, come.

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #92 on: August 27, 2011, 09:37:36 AM »
That's a good collar. i have a g2 upland.  My dog reacts to level 1 of 18.  Your dog is tough.  Lol
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Offline Bluemoon

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #93 on: August 27, 2011, 12:32:15 PM »
10 Key
Please excuse my bluntness but. " last night we did a little test made it to 6 of 18 before he jumped into the air" WTF!!!  Put that collar on yourself  at 18 and then put it away untill you know what you are doing or get some help...Most dog people will admit they messed up their first dog they trained you are well on your way to that. 

Offline 10Key

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #94 on: August 27, 2011, 02:48:49 PM »
We did the self test well prior to EVER stimulating the dog. As I have read in multiple publications, when you initially start training, a base line stimulation setting must be determined. That is exactly what we did, started at 1, then 2 and so on, until the dog responded in some manner. It wasn't until 6 that he showed ANY reaction. I backed off from there and did a session today and it took level 5.

And I guess I should clarify, when I say 6, I mean high on #2, as there are three levels for each of the six settings.

Before you spout off rants on ruining a dog with a stim collar, maybe ask for clarification. The last thing I would ever want to do is ruin our dog with a collar. I make these posts anticipating feedback, thanks

Offline SkookumJeff

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #95 on: August 28, 2011, 05:22:00 PM »
+1 on Bluemoons post.  BE CAREFUL with your e-collar.  The initial procedure to use with the e-collar on the dog for the first time is with the collar on the dog and the collar on the lowest setting, wait until the dogs attention is on something else, THEN start using the nick to stimulate while watching the dog carefully, SLOWLY increase the stimulation level until you see the dogs ears move when you nick him.  THAT is the level where he is feeling the stimulation.  You'll probably be surprised how low it is.  If you still find you need a setting that seems high you probably don't have the collar on tight enough.  Once you know what the setting is where his ears move, just above that setting is the setting you can start stimulating with, increasing slowly if you need more stimulation to to get the behavior correction you need.  Your dog isn't (that) tough, he just didn't know how to react to the stimulation.  Many many dogs have been ruined with e-collars.  Also I hope you know to use a nick and not continuous stimulation.  The ONLY time continuous stimulation might be appropriate is when a dog is in a dangerous situation e.g. about to run across a highway or something like that and you need to stop him NOW, otherwise always use the nick to correct your dog.  An e-collar is a electronic check cord, not a punishment tool!  If you find yourself needing to use stimulation a lot, then you need to reassess where you're at in your training and possibly slow down and go back to basics and a regular check cord until your dog really is trained properly.  E-collars are used to enforce learned behavior.

Skook

Offline 10Key

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #96 on: August 28, 2011, 05:26:41 PM »
Thanks for the input SkookumJeff, what you described is EXACTLY what we did, even if I wasn't clear. I understand the use of ecollars and I realize they rare not a miracle worker, they are simply a tool in a trainer's tool box. At any rate, we went back to basics and have started to integrate the e-collar along with a lead and check-cord work. I will be posting up pics and vids in the next couple of weeks as we progress.

Offline SkookumJeff

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #97 on: August 29, 2011, 11:51:58 AM »
Good deal.  I sure made some mistakes with my e-collar use when I was first starting out, and I regret that.  My dog paid the price for my ignorance.  The worst mistake I made was using the continuous stimulation on him (thinking he wasn't responding) and jacking up the current.  The problem was, I couldn't see my dog and couldn't really tell if he was or wasn't really responding, that is, until I heard a blood curdling howl of pain.  I'll never do that again I can tell ya.  I spent some time later with a professional trainer getting some training on the use of e-collars.  These days I rarely need to correct my dogs, they know their job, and I mine.  I'm a big believer in e-collars.  Properly used they are a wonderful tool....

The ONLY reason I continue to use them these days is when I'm hunting during hunting season.  Off season I don't use them anymore as my dogs are well trained and rarely get too far from me.  During the season, I use the beeper feature on my collars.  I can set the beeper to go off when the dog is motionless for a certain amount of time, so when they go on point...the beeper triggers.  It's a great feature when I can't see my dogs which is much of the time when I'm hunting.  They're in constant motion when they're not on point.  My dogs are not trained to hold point after the flush, but they are ROCK SOLID until I kick the bird out, they don't even flinch when the beeper goes off.  Sometimes it can take me a couple of minutes to get to them when they're on point and the beeper is beeping, no problem, they'll stay steady however long it takes me to get to them.  Love it....They will also 'check in' when I manually trigger the beeper and they're NOT on point.  If I've lost track of them and don't know where they've got to, and it's been awhile since I've last seen them, I'll manually trip the beeper to get a line on where they're working.  I used to use cow bells for keeping track of my dogs, but birds get wise to the sound of a tinkling bell on a dog collar.  Instead I just beep the beeper once.  When I do they always come back to me to check in.  I wish they wouldn't, but they do and that's OK.  I don't know how you would correct this anyway.  This is something they've learned on their own, coming back to check in at the sound of the beeper, I can't take credit for teaching them this.  Maybe they learned to associate it with the 'come around' whistle command, I don't know.  In the field I use whistle commands exclusively, so that may be how they made the association.  So long as they don't break point, and they NEVER have, I'm OK with this as it is pretty useful...

Get me started and I ramble on....sorry.  I really enjoy talking about bird dog training.  I'll leave you with this anecdote....while I was working with pro trainers, I learned another valuable lesson on e-collar use.  My Brittany occasionally gets aggressive with other dogs.  I don't know why and I come down pretty harshly when he does this.  It's particularly bad with large dogs, he'll take on all comers.  Anyway, I was in this training class and it was time to let all the dogs run and socialize.  My Brittany starts acting aggressive and I start to use the e-collar to stop this behavior.  My trainer stops me before I can use the collar telling me to NEVER use an e-collar on a dog when it's in or about to get in a dog fight.  He went on to explain that in that circumstance the dog most likely will believe the sensation (discomfort/pain) is being caused by the other dog and react accordingly, escalating the aggression.  I took his advice as gospel and since have never used my collars in that circumstance, instead I just grab my dog, pick him up and carry him out of there, he usually goes right into the crate and is DUN for the day.  That's the price for breaking that rule.  I don't allow my dogs to be aggressive towards other dogs, it's about the worst rule for them to break.  Most of the time he's pretty well behaved, but if I don't watch him...lookout!

All the best...Skook

Offline 10Key

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #98 on: August 29, 2011, 12:00:38 PM »
Good stuff SkoocumJeff, I am super stoked to start using the Tri-Tronics beeper. There were so many times out in the sage brush last fall that I lost visual contact with my dog...I am sure I missed many points!

Offline jetjockey

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #99 on: September 05, 2011, 11:24:06 PM »
10Key

If I were you Id skip the beeper and just head straight to the Garmin GPS.  It will tell you a heck of a lot more then a beeper will.  Its really nice to be able to say "my dog is 50 yards across that creek standing on point".  Its nice to know exactly where your dog is and what its doing.  Never use the stimulation unless you can see your dog until you get a lot more experience with the collar..... 


Offline 10Key

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #100 on: September 07, 2011, 03:18:07 PM »
September 2 - 6th:

Back to basics we went, as described in so many of the rags, sites, manuals and message boards. As I described previously, I introduced the collar itself to Chukar over the previous ~ two weeks, with no stimulation save for the "test".

I began introducing stimulation with a check-cord and the come command. I reinforced that command as I had taught him as a pup and I then started introducing stimulation. It only took Chukar a time or two to get the hang of it...We moved on to the other basic commands such as heal, sit/stay. We ended the session when I noticed him fatiguing, it seems that the first couple of sessions with the collar wore him out much faster than check-cord only work. We mimicked this one other time in the back yard and then we moved into a green belt for a session on the 5th and 6th...which he seems to enjoy MUCH more than straight backyard work and he seems to respond better as well.

Overall, he is making awesome progress and I couldn't be happier. As I stated previously, the point of this collar was really for one main reason, to reinforce the come command, everything else it will assist with is just gravy. It was really nice last night when I went to the yard and gave a come command and he came right in :)

We can't wait for quail season


Offline 10Key

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #101 on: September 19, 2011, 11:17:35 AM »
September 18th, 2011:

We headed out to some National Forest ground off of 97 in hopes of getting into some grouse and to shake the memories from last weekend. We exited the truck and off we went. The area looked good, an old secondary road that has good vegetation and I was seeing sign. Within 500 yards of the truck we saw a nice bull elk, a shooter in my book. We kept working up the road and we weren't seeing anything. Chukar was taking a while to get in the groove, this was his first trip out hunting since last January (I am not counting last weekend's debacle). He was staying close, within 50 or so yards and he would come back and he wasn't too enthused...until he figured out that if there aren't any gamebirds, might as play with the squirrels. he then was stretching his legs quite a bit, doing his thing. The nut-hoarders ended up messing with him all day long, which normally would annoy me, but he was literally hunting them and pointing when appropriate. It was good to see him slink, something he hasn't done until last December when we hunted several good areas for quail. All in all it was a good day, Chukar looked to back in form, I can't say the same for me. I was breathing hard after not much work, it was great to get out never the less. We are going to pick up some birds this week, I have a bead on some quail and we are going to train a bit over in EWa when I am in Tri-Cities.

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #102 on: September 26, 2011, 12:56:48 PM »
SEPTEMBER 24th, 2011:

We headed over to Tri-Cities for the weekend and picked up some bobwhites from a new supplier on our way over. The plan was to go out and get Chukar on live birds and see if he "remembered" what to do :)

We found a spot south of town that was large enough and had some nice terrain with a small ditch and sage on the upper edges. We did our best to spread out the birds, we only had seven birds, so that wasn't too tough. After planting the birds, we went back to the truck and released the hound. He was excited as he road in the back of the truck in his kennel, right next to the box of quail. He jumped out of the truck and hit the ground running. We directed him to an area that one of the quail flew off to (I guess I didn't make that one dizzy enough) and he couldn't track it down, so we went back to find the others. As soon as he dropped over the edge of the ditch, you could tell he was onto the scent. We let him do his thing, he was working about 75 yards out and we could tell he was super birdy. He buried his head in some tall grass and locked up. We scurried over as quick as we could to flush the bird. We got to within 5 yards and the bird flushed, I winged it. We chased it down and Chukar had his first prize of the 2011 season. Back we went to find another, I swung him around to where to planted the first bird and he was right on it. We were closer this time and about the same time Chukar pointed the bird, it flushed as we were pretty close. Bang, bird down. We collected the bird and we noticed that Chukar was pretty hot, it was 90+ out this day. We went back to the truck and watered him. He was panting profusely and my wife didn't want him to go back out and Chukar didn't either, but there were 5 more birds out there. I wet down his neck and let him rest another 5 minutes. I got him excited again and off we went. Within 50 yards I could see that this just wasn't going to happen, it was just too damn hot out. We shut him down and decided to leave the area with some nice hawk food.

Overall, the session was short, but pretty good. I was stoked to see Chukar get back into the swing of things, considering he hasn't been around live game birds since last December. It was also a good learning experience about hunting in the heat, he just can't go too long in those temps. It wasn't simply him being out of shape as we grouse hunted the weekend before and he did fine running in some pretty hilly country and never really slowed down. Thankfully, most of the season the weather is much cooler. Also, the birds we bought were great, they were hardy and flew well.

Offline 10Key

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #103 on: September 27, 2011, 09:12:28 AM »
Last night we made a trip to a local "natural pet store" to purchase all natural and raw dog food, wow, talk about sticker shock :)

Since November of 2010 Chukar has been dealing with a weeping prepuce, sometimes the discharge is white sometimes it's green, indicating infection. We have been to our regular vet too many times to count and an internalist. He's been poked, prodded and put on short and long durations of anti-biotocs. He responds well to the anti-biotoce, but as soon as he is off of them, back comes the weeping. After he recently had a scope done to eliminate the possibility of tumors, a foreign body or any other abnormality, we decided it was time to go to a holistic, natural vet as the traditional route was not working. We found one that came highly recommended and they were willing to see Chukar. Their first recommendation was to eliminate the possibility that it is a simple food allergy...That's what led us to the store last night. We have our fingers crossed, the weeping is hell on us and we know Chukar can't be 100% while this is going on. We are going to give this diet a 6 week trial to see if he responds and go from there.

Offline CountryslickR

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Re: The Trials and Tribulations of Chukar (a Brittany)
« Reply #104 on: October 02, 2011, 04:19:31 PM »
Great thread!! Hope the pup gets better! Just curious, how do you like your tan/orange jacket? is that Cabela's brand? was thinkin bout picking that same jacket up, but wanted some info from someone that has worn it quite a bit.. thanks!

 


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