Tips For Training a black lab pup ?

Discussion in 'Waterfowl Hunting' started by CKT, Oct 27, 2007.

  1. CKT

    CKT Member

    Messages:
    138
    State:
    Winston-Salem,NC
    Got a male black lab pup just six weeks old and im trying to find out how to train the dog to be a waterfowl dog and how to keep him from being gun shy also if hes going to be a hunting dog should he be kept inside? thanks for any help.
     
  2. crab

    crab New Member

    Messages:
    1,055
    State:
    Ironton,Ohio
    I trained my black lab with a starters pistol and treats,Have someone a good bit away from the dog fire the pistol while you are petting him and rubbing him. Then as you see he is used to it you can throw his dummy have someone away from the dog fire the pistol while you are petting him then tell him to fetch it up. this worked for me. be sure to be a ways from the dog when you fire the starters pistol.:big_smile:
     

  3. jtrew

    jtrew New Member

    Messages:
    4,404
    State:
    Little Rock, AR
    Shooting something like a cap pistol while the pup is eating is a good start, too. Some people like to take a couple of duck wings and tie them to the dummy. I never could get mine to pay any attention to hand signals, so if he got to going in the wrong direction after a dead duck, I'd throw a small rock at the duck to get the dog's attention. That black lab really loved the water---in the summer. When the water had skim ice around the edges, I'd have to pick him up and throw him in the water. He was ok then; he'd fetch as many ducks as I wanted. But once he was out of the water long enough to warm up, I'd have to throw him back in. Stubbornest dog I ever owned.
     
  4. quackingtim

    quackingtim New Member

    Messages:
    90
    State:
    indiana
    Get a copy of 10-minute retriever as fast as you can and start reading. The first thing you want to do is start working on the basics; sit, here, heel. Those are the most important things of any retriever. A dog that don't have those down is dangerous to have around a duck blind where he might knock down a loaded gun. Everything in dog training is crawl, walk, run. It is a slow process and it will not happen over night.

    http://www.amazon.com/10-Minute-Retriever-Obedient-Enthusiastic-Minutes/dp/1572233036


    Have fun, and stay calm, the dog will test you to see what he can get away with. Your dog can be you best hunting partner if you take the time to work w/him.
     
  5. Ghost River

    Ghost River New Member

    Messages:
    466
    State:
    Carolina
    CKT-

    IN all seriousness- get a good book from a reputable trainer. 10 minute retriever is one but there are better ones. I personally recommend Smartfetch by Even Graham. You sill not find it in the book store and will have to order it from him or one of his few distributers. He's not a star trainer but I'd bet 75% of the top hunt test and field trial dogs are being trained under his program. It is that good. Any of the Mike lardy material is good.
     
  6. Ghost River

    Ghost River New Member

    Messages:
    466
    State:
    Carolina
    I just realized I gave you bad info. Smartfetch is the intensive authority on force fetch training that Evan wrote. It's also good material but you will not be ready for that until sometime next summer. Smartworks vol. 1 Is the book you want for starting a young pup from nothing.
     
  7. brad kilpatrick

    brad kilpatrick New Member

    Messages:
    2,666
    State:
    Kansas City
    As fortraining for gun shyness, start NOW! What I did with My pointer ,was to start was to clap loudly over Her when She was eating or similarly distracted, I kept this up untill she had NO reaction to it at all. (at 1st it startled her) Then moved on to a louder noise like slamming a book on the counter. We kept up this pattern untill We moved into the field, and started with a starter pistol gradualy working our way up to a shotgun blast right over top of her.

    Patientce and consistancy is the heart of any dog training program. never miss an opportunity to train! even short sessions will pay off with time. good luck!
     
  8. Zebco 33

    Zebco 33 New Member

    Messages:
    90
    State:
    Illinois
    Keep Pup with you, alot, during the first few months. THere is no such thing as spending too much time with him.

    Remember one thing about dogs, you are always teaching Pup. You might teach him to be bad or be good, but he is always learning from you. If are too lazy or slow taking him outside to go potty, then you are teaching him to pee on the rug. If you allow him to make retrieves in his order or without being steady, you are teaching him to be his own handler.

    If you can not be constitant in teaching Pup, don't keep him. You must reinforce the behaviors you want EVERY SINGLE TIME he does than with praise and punishment when he does not. Same for bad behaviors. If not, then Pup gets confused.

    Best way, IMHO and personal experiance of training ten Labs for personal/guide use, is to intro Pup to the gun while he is out on his "fun time" afdter a short training session. When he is about ten yards away and chasing butterflies, have a starter pistol behind you and fire one off. Pup should raise his head and cock it wondering what is going on. When he starts chasing butterflies agian, wait for a minute and pop another one off. What you want to do here is get Pup use to a sound of the gun and for im not to be warry of it. Just don't do it close to him or let him associate anything with a loud noise with you, so don't let him see you pop the starter pistol off. You might want to start out about twenty yards and then work your way back to Pup, but you don't have to shoot right over him nor should you.

    Start out training Pup alot and a little. Thsoe words were spoken by a great trainer along time ago. You train Pup in three to four sessions a day, but they only last five (or less) minutes each. You work on the retrieve, sit, and come. You should already be walking Pup on the lead and teaching him good habits like how to behave around other people. Throw a ball, small bumper, or favorite squeaky toy for Pup. Hold him for a second, then release him while tell him "Back". He should bring it back to you. If not, get him in a hallway where he has to come back to you and not around you. If he wants to run away from you when he gets it, he is wanting to play like puppies do, just walk away form him. Pup should come running, cause you are his world and best buddy. He'll get the idea after a while. Whne you practice the "Sit", make Pup sit by putting your hand on his back and one on his chest. Gently apply pressure til Pup sits. I'm sure he will raise Hades, but he will abide after awhile. Extend the time you make Pup sit before releasing him with an "Ok". Try without hands and longer periods of time after awhile. When Pup is good at a longer sit, then work with "By Me". This is just a come command. You should already be working on "Be Me" while Pup is in the field or park palying around on a long lead.

    Never try to train Pup right out of the kennel or house. Give him about five minutes or more to play around and let off some steam. After even the shortest training session, give Pup paly time also. Don't try to use commands or whatnot. This is recces for Pup and he should enjoy it, to a point. Give him his favorite toy (as long as its not the same item used in training) to throw and bounce around with. He will quickly learn the differance in the two.

    Pup also needs field time to learn to hunt. I've used city parks also. This can be done three times a week and Pup just thinks he is playing. All you need is a bumper or two hidden in taller grass or behind a tree. I've placed then on slides even. Then just walk Pup around the park guiding him to the object, that is upwind, til his nose kicks in. You will know! I've had a four month old yellow lab find a pigeon, that had escaped the pen, in a large weed patch. All I did was bring him down wind of the pigoen and when he got scent, WAM, his head spun and he went in and came out ten minutes later with the pigeon. That was his first "hunt" and live pigeon. Just don't over do this exercise. Its just an added bonus to Pups play time.

    This sounds like alot, but its quite easy on both you and Pup. Just don't force anyting on Pup are except anything too early. That is just bonus.

    Good luck with Pup and feel free to e-mail me or PM me if you need to.

    A good book is one by Ken Roebuck. He is actually a Spaniel guy, who is dead, but I like his approach better than some of the hardcore retriever writers. I feel they use too much equipment and try to force alot of things on Pups too early. By Ken's book on retriever's and Spaniels is great and is written for a new owner. http://www.amazon.com/Gun-Dog-Train...8101732?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1194187674&sr=8-1

    Jerry
     
  9. quackingtim

    quackingtim New Member

    Messages:
    90
    State:
    indiana
    Even Graham's books are top notch. Lots of detail there, I would have read them before getting a dog. I still think Ten Minute retriever would be a better read as you go book. Even's books are even better w/the DVD's he puts out, but they are going to cost you.
     
  10. jtrew

    jtrew New Member

    Messages:
    4,404
    State:
    Little Rock, AR
    Talk about bringing back old memories! This past weekend I was camping and watched a man with a grown yellow lab and a half grown black lab pup. The yellow was out playing in the water; the man had the black in his arms trying to get it out in the water. About all he succeeded in doing was getting its feet wet.
     
  11. GMC FishHauler

    GMC FishHauler New Member

    Messages:
    1,335
    State:
    Waco, Texas, Un
    I've told this to many folks who have asked how i trained my dog to listen as well as she does.
    You have to build a bond with the dog before anything. I kept my dog with me as much as i could when i first got her, i did not let anyone else pet her or feed her or have much contact until she started listening to me. This takes such a short period of time to get the dog started right. With my dog it only took three weeks. I did not start training my dog for any tricks or retrieving until she was 3 months old. Some people told me that was too long of a wait but she is trained the way i want her, not the way someone else wants and i am happy with that.
    I have my dog (Rhodesian Ridgeback) where she will be in hot persuit of a rabbit or cat or deer or anything else i tell her to get, all i have to do is call her off one time and she sprints back to me looking to get reward (a good scratch and sweet talk)