By Mark Whitehouse
Friday, 19 March 2010
My spaniel is making good progress with obedience training.
However, I have encountered a problem.
I think it's to do with obedience training.
When I throw her a retrieve she watches it leave my hand but then she never takes her eyes off of me.
Consequently when I send her for the retrieve she will go into the wrong area and start hunting. How can I remedy this?
MARK WHITEHOUSE SAYS: Most spaniels are natural hunters and they will tend to rely on their natural ability to resolve any problems, such as mis-marking the fall area.
The ability for any gun dog to watch and mark the fall area is, however, a skill that can be trained and developed.
I always involve a second person for this exercise.
A very simple way of getting your gun dog to watch and pinpoint the fall area is for your helper to shout the verbal command ‘mark’ just before shooting the starting pistol and launching the dummy.
In time and with practice the verbal command will not be needed, as your gun dog should have learnt to relate a shot being fired to looking forward and marking the fall area.
This exercise will also help your gun dog to cover his ground quicker when sent out for a retrieve.
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