Wild Pheasants and Field Trial Dogs - Good or Bad?? – Part I
Here in North Dakota we have 3.5 million acres of CRP. CRP, for anyone unfamiliar, stands for Conservation Reserve Program. Through CRP, the Federal Agriculture Dept. contracts with farmers to place highly erodable cropland into a set aside program. CRP acres are planted to grass and left out of production for a minimum of ten years. This has created a boon to wildlife of all kinds, especially pheasants. Imagine hundreds of thousands of acres of knee to waist high grass-crawling with wild pheasants, sharp-tail grouse and Hungarian Partridge. Sounds like a dog trainer’s/field trialer’s/hunter’s dream? Well, it is, most of the time. (Continue)Crate Training
As the owner of Gundog Kennel
I am often clients ask, "What do you think about crate training?" My standard answer, "Crate training is the most misunderstood training technique a new dog owner faces today. Like most things in life, people often criticize what they don’t understand. Personally, I crate train all my dogs that live in the house. Many people have a misconception about what crate training is or what it is not." In this month’s article I will attempt to dispel some of the myths about crate training and give you some simple techniques that you can begin using today to make the process of crate training easy and create a "domestic den" for your dog.
The Swim-by is a fundamental step in the Basics portion of the program currently used by many successful retriever trainers across the continent. It gets its name from the skill developed by the dog at the end of the lessons: swimming by the handler on command. The Swim-by generally follows the teaching of the Double-T on land. That step prepares the dog for several of the skills that the dog will develop in the water. The Swim-by is an important pre-cursor to teaching your dog about water channels and water cheating singles. Novices, seeing the Swim-by for the first time often question the process of Swim-by and why it is necessary. Experienced trainers have learned that the Swim-by produces a dog with a readiness to stay in the water and a dog with important skills that make teaching advanced water work much easier. (Continue)