What to do with wild birds and 9 month old Brittany

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BigK75
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What to do with wild birds and 9 month old Brittany

Post by BigK75 » Wed Oct 28, 2020 6:57 pm

This is similar to another thread that was just posted but mine is slightly different so I thought I would post it anyway. My dog has crazy drive and loves hunting. He points beautifully although there seems to be a lot of false points as well. When he points on pheasants I will whoa him and sometimes he will whoa and sometimes he will creep forward and will eventually flush the bird while I am trying to flush it. He knows what whao means as I spent July - September teaching him on planted birds. He was really steady in practice but all bets seem to be off now that we are actually hunting. What should I do. Should I:
a) Stop saying whoa let him creep and fix it in next April when we start training again
b) Don't shoot any birds when he moves before the flush. Thats easier said then done because I am just as excited as he is and its difficult for me not to take the shot.
c) Work on whoa in a non-hunting environment

You guys have given me awesome advice up to now so I thought I would ask to see what my next course of action should be with my boy.

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Fun dog
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Re: What to do with wild birds and 9 month old Brittany

Post by Fun dog » Wed Oct 28, 2020 7:10 pm

My pup is also 9 months. She gets a free ride this hunting season with no restrictions. While she is learning whoa in the yard, it is not being used in the field. After hunting season we will start teaching whoa on birds. Let the wild birds teach your dog as much as possible.

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NEhomer
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Re: What to do with wild birds and 9 month old Brittany

Post by NEhomer » Thu Oct 29, 2020 4:00 am

I know that you folks are excited about your dog and the season being upon us but you can either commit to the fact that year one is a training year or face two choices. Either work twice as hard to undo the mistakes or have a dog that's never fully staunch its entire life.

because I am just as excited as he is and its difficult for me not to take the shot.

Really? The situation requires you to have greater mental and emotional control than a puppy. Sorry to put it that way but that's it in a nutshell.

Let any bird that's scented and not staunchly pointed fly away for this whole season. That's my advice. My setter's in his prime here in year 5 and I could go have a sandwich and return to him standing like a statue~

best to you both.

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Re: What to do with wild birds and 9 month old Brittany

Post by shags » Thu Oct 29, 2020 5:27 am

So your pup disobeys a command then you reward him for it, then wonder why he keeps disobeying the command?

You know what to do...A,B, and C.

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Re: What to do with wild birds and 9 month old Brittany

Post by birddogger2 » Thu Oct 29, 2020 10:53 am

I am also in the camp of not allowing the pup do do things you will have to train out later.

I would not whoa the dog. Keep your pie hole shut and let the dog work it out with the bird.

If the dog roads in and flushes the bird. or breaks and tries to help while you are flushing...go into training mode. Break your gun, put it down and then physically pick the dog up, walk it back several steps. Clip on a short, 5-6 ft. lead, stand the dog up with some sharp tugs, style him up and make him stand there. I'd wait a good honest three minutes...by your watch. Then I would heel the dog away and make it heel for a bit before casting the dog off again...with the lead on.

I would definitely NOT reward the dog for messing up on birds and I would also definitely do some yard work to reinforce.

Always remember... what you allow...you encourage.

Pay me now...or pay me(a lot more) later. If you allow the dog to break and reward him with a shot bird that he can wrap his gums around... you are going to have to put considerably more pressure on him when you decide you want it to stop.

A Brittany(which is typically on the softer side, temperament wise) and large doses of negative pressure, is NOT something you want to work towards. it is something you want to avoid, if possible.

I know very well how fired up you are about hunting over your youngster. Been there...many times. So have just about everyone on this board, including the folks that are urging you to maintain discipline and not shoot a bird that is not properly handled. We get it...believe me.

It is VERY hard to maintain discipline when a big rooster is cackling and rising into the fall sky. But it will pay dividends over the lifetime of the dog.

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Re: What to do with wild birds and 9 month old Brittany

Post by mask » Thu Oct 29, 2020 2:34 pm

I am with Ray G on this one. Stop him, pick him up and put him back where he belonged in the first place.

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RatDog
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What to do with wild birds and 9 month old Brittany

Post by RatDog » Thu Oct 29, 2020 3:59 pm

I totally get where you are coming from. Opportunities to kill wild birds over your pup can be hard to come by depending on where you are hunting or how often you can get out. Part of what makes the sport fun is how exciting it is approaching a dog on point. I have a young dog as well and do my best to leave the ones he flushes alone but sometimes muscle memory kicks in and I drop one that I really shouldn’t have. This is my first bird dog and if someone followed me around with a GoPro it would be mortifying a lot of the time. I’ve cued him with the collar to come with and he ended up being on a bird, I’ve missed coveys that he held point on with both barrels, etc. It’s OK to make mistakes out there in the field, I sure as heck do.

Do your best to leave the birds he flushed alone, if you end up shooting them have him hunt dead and praise him for bringing you the bird and move on to the next one. It’s not the end of the world. I’m not really qualified to say anything beyond that.


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Re: What to do with wild birds and 9 month old Brittany

Post by DonF » Fri Oct 30, 2020 10:01 am

Running a pup on wild birds before training doesn't hurt a thing. What hurt's is expecting the pup to learn from mistake's you make. I run pup's on wild birds prior the training, dicky birds mostly as there's not a lot of wild game birds around here anymore. As said above, keep your mouth closed and just let the pup work on it. Big problem with me and wild birds fr training is I can't control the bird and and therefore the situation. Keep doing it and in time, if you find enough bird's, the pup will sooner of later get it, if you keep your mouth shut.
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BigK75
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Re: What to do with wild birds and 9 month old Brittany

Post by BigK75 » Sat Oct 31, 2020 8:06 am

I read this thread about 5 times and you guys are 100% right. I appreciate the advice I am going to:
1. Not say a word when he is on point
2. Only shoot birds where the point is held without creeping
3. Work on whoa at the at the table.

One thing that is confusing me though is why I would keep my mouth shut and not whoa him. How else would he know that he has the stay in one place. Also what do I do on false points when there is no bird there. My thinking is exactly the same. Move him back to position and then release him when I am ready.

I am like Ratdog, I have never hunted over a dog, never had a dog for that matter. It's tough to hold back on shooting when I am out once a week and may or may not shot a bird. This is my boy training in the summer if anyone is interested in seeing him:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AgVSPAXlLT8

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Re: What to do with wild birds and 9 month old Brittany

Post by RatDog » Sat Oct 31, 2020 8:28 am

BigK75 wrote:I read this thread about 5 times and you guys are 100% right. I appreciate the advice I am going to:
1. Not say a word when he is on point
2. Only shoot birds where the point is held without creeping
3. Work on whoa at the at the table.

One thing that is confusing me though is why I would keep my mouth shut and no whoa him. How else would he know that he has the stay in one place. Also what do I do on false points when there is no bird there. My thinking is exactly the same. Move him back to position and then release him when I am ready.

I am like Ratdog, I have never hunted over a dog, never had a dog for that matter. It's tough to hold back on shooting when I am out once a week and may or may not shot a bird. This is my boy training in the summer if anyone is interested in seeing him:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AgVSPAXlLT8
This I can say from experience, you don’t say anything because eventually the dog will learn on its own that crowding the birds causes them to flush. It’s the real world version of what a launcher is trying to teach; movement = flush. Depending on the dog and how much training it has had in the yard this can take a lot of flushes for him to get it. I went through a phase with mine where he was just merciless about taking out every darn bird he would find. It took something like 50 flushes before he started to hold enough for me to flush the bird. He will still bump skittish birds but is pretty consistent now when they hold tight. If you’re going to be hunting wild game the less noise you make, ie talking, the better. Ideally you won’t have to talk to your dog at all when he’s on point.

Everyone else was absolutely correct in saying that killing birds after he moves will reenforce bad behavior so if you can help it don’t do that. All I was trying to say is that I have made myself sick over mistakes I’ve made, especially where the dog is concerned because he’s relying on you, and it is wasted energy. Just like in football, move on to the next play!


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Re: What to do with wild birds and 9 month old Brittany

Post by RatDog » Sat Oct 31, 2020 9:22 am

Something I did to at least keep things interesting and hype up the dog a bit was shoot a couple birds that flushed wild or that I flushed independent of the dog


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Re: What to do with wild birds and 9 month old Brittany

Post by shags » Sat Oct 31, 2020 10:15 am

One thing that is confusing me though is why I would keep my mouth shut and not whoa him. How else would he know that he has the stay in one place. Also what do I do on false points when there is no bird there. My thinking is exactly the same. Move him back to position and then release him when I am ready.

Whoa is a command to stop, and he's already stopped. Why would you whoa him when he's standing still? Maybe you're thinking that a whoa is more of a caution to continue to stand there? That might be ok with you as long as he obeys, but what do you do when he moves despite your whoa? To be fair to the dog and to not mess with prior or future training, you're going to have to lay down your gun and go correct the dog...every.time.he.moves. Something I try to keep in mind with young dogs, is that I want my dog to be a really classy brag dog for the next 10-11 years or so. In my mind yelling Whoa! Whoa! on every bird isn't part of that package so training every time out is the priority. With training, the dog will learn that the bird itself is the whoa command...bird = whoa...and he stands there until released by whatever method you choose ( go on the shot, or flush, or by your verbal command).

As for false points, IME that's just a young inexperienced dog thing. With my dogs, I treat it as a non-event and just ignore it. Eventually they figure out hot spots, feathers, or whatever as opposed to game. If you watch carefully you might be able to notice little subtle differences in your dog when he points game vs false points. Maybe a little bit looser, or a lower tail, or maybe some flagging or head slinging, maybe just his posture. If you don't see any clues sometimes the only thing to do is to go in for the flush and if nothing's there, just move on. I use "OK, Let's go" and we leave. That little bit of verbal helps later on when the dog stops on a rabbit or something...I can get him outta there with no drama.

Remember that your dog is just a puppy and you're a dog newb. Mistakes are a given for both of you. But you're helping him to become a good partner and he's helping you. You'll get there :D

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Re: What to do with wild birds and 9 month old Brittany

Post by whatsnext » Sat Oct 31, 2020 11:15 am

One thing i noticed in the video is everyone seems nervous or worried about what the dog is going to do, remember dogs will feed off of the atmosphere which you create i believe. So if you are nervous , the dog will be nervous also .

This is how much you should say while flushing birds .https://youtu.be/vZcvwqTJFYY

BigK75
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Re: What to do with wild birds and 9 month old Brittany

Post by BigK75 » Sun Nov 01, 2020 8:51 am

whatsnext wrote:
Sat Oct 31, 2020 11:15 am
One thing i noticed in the video is everyone seems nervous or worried about what the dog is going to do, remember dogs will feed off of the atmosphere which you create i believe. So if you are nervous , the dog will be nervous also .

This is how much you should say while flushing birds .https://youtu.be/vZcvwqTJFYY
Keep in mind this is a seven month old pup in this video and I am complete dog newbie AND bird dog newbie so yes I was a bit excited in this video. This video is also shot where we do our training twice a week. These are planted birds. I will keep my mouth shut for the rest of the year and if he moves that bird is not getting shot.

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Re: What to do with wild birds and 9 month old Brittany

Post by whatsnext » Mon Nov 02, 2020 10:02 am

BigK75 wrote:
Sun Nov 01, 2020 8:51 am
whatsnext wrote:
Sat Oct 31, 2020 11:15 am
One thing i noticed in the video is everyone seems nervous or worried about what the dog is going to do, remember dogs will feed off of the atmosphere which you create i believe. So if you are nervous , the dog will be nervous also .

This is how much you should say while flushing birds .https://youtu.be/vZcvwqTJFYY
Keep in mind this is a seven month old pup in this video and I am complete dog newbie AND bird dog newbie so yes I was a bit excited in this video. This video is also shot where we do our training twice a week. These are planted birds. I will keep my mouth shut for the rest of the year and if he moves that bird is not getting shot.
I have been where you are before, you two will learn a lot from each other.

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Re: What to do with wild birds and 9 month old Brittany

Post by bonasa » Tue Nov 03, 2020 9:41 am

BigK75 wrote:
Wed Oct 28, 2020 6:57 pm
a) Stop saying whoa let him creep and fix it in next April when we start training again
b) Don't shoot any birds when he moves before the flush. Thats easier said then done because I am just as excited as he is and its difficult for me not to take the shot.
c) Work on whoa in a non-hunting environment

You guys have given me awesome advice up to now so I thought I would ask to see what my next course of action should be with my boy.
Does the dog drag a check cord or wear a collar on flank? Do you have a helper/shooter to handle or shoot? Does the dog stop to flush? How do you correct the behavior when the dog goes with you on the flush? Do you approach the dog from behind or circle to the front and approach head on?

a) Stop saying whoa - if he bumps bird work on stop to flush
b) Don't shoot any birds that he flushes. work on stop to flush
c) Whoa is not for birds. A helper and checkcord (or solo and ecoller on flank) is all one needs
i. Whoa post without saying "whoa"
ii. Transition to collar on flank then get off check cord from post
iii. Collar on flank stimulation when dog is upwind of bird in air (NOT SCENTED)
iv. Collar on flank stimulation add shot when dog is upwind of bird in air (NOT SCENTED)
v. Dog points bird, dog stands wing...any movement gets correction then several reps with the dog upwind of bird (Stop to flush)
vi. Dog points bird, dog stands wing and shot ... any movement gets correction then reps with the dog upwind of bird (Stop to flush/shot)

1) build drive
2) stop to flush
3) steadiness around game
4) steady to wing/shot

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