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Location: SW washington
Joined: 05/10/2004
Posts: 38
wanting to train a duck dog

i have a springer spanul great dane mix (sounds weird but looks just like a black lab) and its 7.5 weeks right now i want to train it to be a duck dog and was woundering when i should start training it and how to train it should i start training a little now? or just let it be a puppy? its starting to come to its name already and sits sometimes one of the smartest puppys i ve seen just dont want to sit still yet lol any help would be great thanks

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Location: Denver, Colorado
Joined: 03/07/2004
Posts: 57
wanting to train a duck dog

The problem you have with a mixed breed dog is that the hunting traits that you desire from the sproting breed dog is not going to be strong enough in your dog. dont get me wrong, i am not saying that your dog isnt smart, but most of hunting that you do with a dog is generally driven by that dogs instinct which as a trainer you channel. If you want a duck dog, buy a duck dog. You will find that you wil become very frustrated trying to make your best friend do what is instincts arent telling him to do.

P.S. I am not talking out of my butt here, my primary hunting is waterfowl with a dog, I trained my dogs myself and it is frustrating enough with a dog that has the string desire and instinct to retrieive.

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Joined: 08/27/2004
Posts: 1964
wanting to train a duck dog

i disagree if you want your dog to do any bird hunting you work at them hard enough and train to the best of your ability most of the time your dog will catch on just be on him like crazy and deffinetly start now while the pups young get him into it early

Location: Minnesota,
Joined: 08/28/2004
Posts: 259
wanting to train a duck dog

you could get some duck wings and through them around and see what happens. Aren't springers upland bird dogs anyway he might point to where the duck is instead of retriveing wich would be bad for you he might make a better pet try some simple retrieves and just see what happens who knows. I had a lab that could seperate pepper from fly shit but didn't like water. good luck and don't push him to hard 'cause if it's not there it's not there.

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Joined: 01/16/2006
Posts: 10
wanting to train a duck dog

I had a golden that wouldn't do upland or waterfowl. She would retrieve anything really well in water or land but wouldn't range for upland or keep still and silent for waterfowl. But these are OB issues that can be overcome. I have a setter now that hates water. But drop a bird in the water and her bird desire overcomes her hatred.

You can always train a dog to hunt. It may not be the best but may still bring home birds.

What I like to do with a young pup is to put a long leash or check chord on it. Get a toy (something that really interest the pup) and toss it just far enough that you can still reach the chord. Say 'fetch' or 'retrieve' or whatever. If the pup picks up the toy and comes to you, give it alot of praise. If not, gently pull the pup to you. Do this a few times a day. Break up the sessions throughout the day.

You can use a long hallway also w/o the check cord. Close all the doors so there is only one direction or two ways to go; away from you and to you. Again praise the pup highly if he does it, nothing if he doesn't.

Also, send the pup to OB classes as with high energy dogs they are usually hard to keep still.

Milliondollarbear,
An english spinger spaniel is a flushing dog.

Don Fischer's picture
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Location: Antelope, Ore
Joined: 03/24/2005
Posts: 3173
wanting to train a duck dog

The first post you got was by far the best. I could teach a goat to retrieve and it would still be a goat! The springer blood may and may not be good. Some springers are bred solely as show dogs and have had the brains bred out of them, dispite the breeders claims! I'm not sure what great danes do other than eat a lot.

None of this is to say you can't train your pup to hunt in some fashion as ALL dogs are basicly prediators. Thru breeding we have developed different traits in different breeds to suit out needs. Take the two best pure bred dogs of the same breeding you can find and put them on an island together. Come back in 50 years and you'll have coyotes.

If your serious about hunting and want a dog, invest in a well bred dog thats bred to do what you want.

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