I always took my dog out with a pellett gun and no other people to start. I then several weeks later took a .22 caliber and worked on him getting used to that. when you shoot act normal and he will watch your reaction and if you do not act scared he will learn to accept the noise. make shooting a gun a positive thing and maybe give him a treat after you shoot. I then worked my way up to a shotgun from there and repeated the process.
Not at all, he just sat there.
My son has a toy gun that shoots out soft ping pong size balls. It makes a startling noise. He was not bothered by that noise either. He actually went to the glass door looking for squirrels. I think the gun sounded like the GAMO pellet gun I use to keep the squirrels away from the house. He really likes chasing those squirrels. Any sounds like a fire cracker or gun sends him into the next county.
Sound's to me like a man made problem. We are talking about this same thing on another forum and one guy mentioned a good suggestion.
Take a cap gun into a back room and fire it. Immediately call the dog back and give it a treat. The idea is that the dog learn's to accociate the noise with a treat. I would guess that it will take awhile and you have to make the transition to a gun at some point. But don't try it until the dog come's looking for the treat without being called.
I would say it's good advice even tho I've never tried it. First it makes sense and secondly, I have a good deal of respect for the guy that wrote it. If you try it, let us know how it goes.
When hunting whitetails there are many different languages being spoken afield that I key on when outdoors. All these little creatures living around whitetails have something to tell us if we are willing to listen.
My favorite tattletales of the outdoors are a handful of little birds that live in my state of Ohio. Maybe yours too. A tip for the upcoming season.
There are Blue Jays, Cardinals, Chickadees, Killdeer, and Sparrows that all have language...