Hunting Dog Training
While it’s true that hunting dogs will instinctively search, sniff and chase other animals because it’s their nature, having the best bird dog out in the field relies on how well trained your canine is. Your gun dog needs to be able to listen and obey your commands because after all, what is the purpose of bringing a four-legged friend out into the open if they can’t heed what you have to say? This is why hunting dog training is such a crucial step in the development of your canine companion. It must be instilled from a very young age so that they grow up to be tame and obedient.
Steady to Wing and Shot
This term refers to having a hunting dog stay on point and remain in that position until commanded to do so. This means that even if the bird they hunted is killed, they would maintain a steady position until their handler gives out another command. If a bird is shot, the handler orders the hunting dog to retrieve the bird. Once they retrieve the bird, they return it to their handler or owner for that matter. Plus, they only begin to hunt again when commanded to do so. Bird dogs maintain this behavior in order to mark the fall of the bird and to avoid flushing other birds when they are pursuing a missed bird.
This is a form of gun dog training where pressure is utilized in order to teach the hunting dog to retrieve an object or a bird when they are asked to. It’s known by many other names such as force breaking, trained retrieve and force fetch, among others. Although hunting dogs, especially retrievers, retrieve by nature, training them to do so in a more controlled manner is the objective of force retrieving. Bird dogs that have been trained to do this tend to be more pliable and obedient. Another way to put it is that a gun dog retrieves an object that their owner wants them to retrieve in the manner that the owner expects.
When hunting, there’s a huge chance your hunting dog will encounter a rattlesnake, especially if you hunt in early spring. Snakes use this season to move around in search of food. As protection for your hunting dog and yourself, it’s best to have trained your gun dog in snake breaking as early as possible. Doing this ensures that hunting dogs will stay away from potential danger. Also known as rattlesnake avoidance training, this kind of hunting dog training ensures that your canine remains alert despite being curious about the movements and sounds made by the snake. A successful training results in dogs being able to avoid snakes through visual and auditory association.
This is mostly a prerequisite of other forms of hunting dog training because it teaches hunting dogs the most basic of commands: sit, stay, down come, etc. Not only that, obedience training can also extend to a more high-level form of training like those seen in dogs presented in professional competitions. The results of obedience training should really see the gun dog being able to comply with the direction or command given by the handler or owner. They also have to respond reliably every time a command is given by the handler. The amount of training required for a dog depends on the level of obedience an owner wants the hunting dog to possess. That said, it could be a lengthy process or an ongoing one. The methods used and the skill of the dog are also factors in how long training lasts.
Scent Hound Training
As their name suggests, scent hounds track their prey primarily by using their nose. These kinds of hunting dogs are trained for endurance rather than for speed as they can track their prey even when it is out of sight. Some scent hounds showcase deep vocalizations to alert their handler regarding the prey. Scent hounds rely on treeing or cornering their prey, then they alert their handler as to the animals whereabouts. This nature often requires a sense of independence and can present some training challenges. Even worse, scent hounds get easily distracted by other smells which makes outdoor training somewhat difficult. Some scent hounds even present a disturbance to neighbors as they can be really vocal and continue to bark and bay for a long time. Scent hounds also tend to chase after scents and cover great distances which makes it rather difficult for a handler or owner to train them without a leash. What this simply means is that extensive training and a tremendous amount of patience is required for anyone who chooses a scent hound for a hunting companion. Since scent hounds like to explore, you can start training them on a short leash and reward them each time they listen to you. After that, you can start lengthening the leash and repeat commands of having them come back to you. This way, they will know that they can hunt whatever catches their scent as long as they come back to you.
Sight Hound Training
Just as a scent hound uses their nose, a sight hound makes use of their vision to track down prey. Hunting dogs of these variety are built for high-speed chases over a short distance. When hunting, they perceive any change in the environment, as well as slight movements as potential prey. They are independent and will strike down and kill prey on their own. Often times, they are aloof and wary of strangers. Sight hounds have a tendency to run away because they are chasing after animals and even don’t come back when they are called. They are quick creatures who pose a potential threat for other small animals due to their predatory nature. When training a sight hound, it’s best to know the distinct characteristics of their breed. By doing so, training sessions could go a lot more smoother because you know their strengths and limitations. Also, they are best given freedom in a fenced area so they don’t go chasing after what they set their sights on. Since a sight hound is motivated to pursue something they see, play a game of chase with them and reward them for properly responding to a command.
Below you will find Hunting dog training pros and the State they are from. MORE TO COME!!!!
4K LABRADORS – Fresno, California
Covey Flush Kennels – Sasser, Georgia
Trieven-Sungold Kennel – Lovell, Wyoming
Diamond Brook Kennel – Brandon, Vermont
Aimpowers Retrievers & Kennels – Six Mile, South Carolina
Old Oak Retrievgers – Blooming Prairie Minnesota
Bull Valley Retrievers – Southernmost, Illinois