: Hey Tom,
: Thought I'd let you know that the dog with
: Terry the falconer is working out very well
: and getting lots of work on sage grouse as
: well as sharp tails. Terry loves him.
: I'll weigh in on the launchers. I have
: three Dogtra units that have worked well for
: me for 9-10 years. I had to have one of the
: batteries in the number one launcher
: replaced this past summer and the company
: was very reasonable and quick with the
: 1. I use these with pigeons and starting
: pups pointing on a rope. When they point, I
: drop the rope and let them chase as I pop
: the bird and fire the gun when they are in
: hot pursuit. No gun shyness for me with
: this method.
: 2. After they have been to the prairies or
: into wild birds enough that they are telling
: me they are ready to break, I use the
: launchers again with pigeons. Let the dogs
: point and then hold the rope as the bird is
: flushed a few times - gunfire optional -
: maybe every other time. Control the dogs
: chase and soothe them to stand after the
: bird is flown.
: 3. Depending upon the dog, employ a Buddy
: Stick for steadying next or go to a flank
: collar and rope. Flush the bird and control
: the dog with the Buddy Stick. Some dogs it
: works very quickly to get them steady -
: others takes a little more time. With the
: flank collar, the same can be true. I hold
: the rope and touch the collar and see the
: reaction. A little humping up to the collar
: and they often back up a step or two.
: Repeat and then drop the rope. Same with
: the stick - repeat and then drop the stick
: after maybe giving them a little push in the
: brisket. End the Buddy stick and switch to
: flank or neck collar as you see fit.
: 4. Plant your pigeons in natural cover of
: course - mottes, fencerows, etc. Don't do
: this work in the middle of a hayfield or
: bunch of grass. Put your birds where they
: ought to be found.
: 5. Next thing is STF for the release traps
: - pigeons again and send the dog forward
: wrong winded and then pop a bird. Tap the
: flank collar if necessary when the pup
: (Derby) starts to take too many steps or
: chases. Shouldn't take long if the basics
: are in place.
: 6. Use the traps to set up backs also as
: you will be controlling two dogs - a broke
: one pointing and your pupil for backing.
: Vary the flushes with you in front flushing
: or approaching and later when you are still
: on the way to the dogs back some distance.
: 7. Multiple flushes. At any time, carry
: extra birds in a bag and vary the releases
: of pigeons. Sometimes flush the bird from
: the trap and then drop more after that one
: flies away. Next time, throw the extra
: birds and then release the trap. Shoot your
: gun on the first bird sometimes and on the
: last other times. Dogs tends to stay more
: intense doing this. I use three traps of
: course so can have two or three finds each
: session. Later I will twist the pigeons
: wings together and not use traps if I think
: the dog is totally broke on the traps.
: 8. I do not put tame quail in launchers -
: some people do. I NEVER use tame quail for
: anything until the dog is broke on pigeons
: and reasonably standing and broke on wild
: birds. Then we deal with walking birds and
: half flushes, etc for which tame quail are
: I hope this stimulates discussion. I am not
: above changing all of this up with
: particular dogs as I have NEVER had two dogs
: take training exactly the same way. I have
: kept entire litters to age two trying to
: sort thru to get the best field trial dog
: when I had none and had this same experience
: - no two alike.You have to adjust to the dog
: - not the dog to your training IMO. You
: train using most of the same methodology but
: observe and create changes to suit the dog.
: More thoughts: Be careful you don't ever
: launch a bird into a pup's face - pick them
: up gently and back them up if too close.
: Don't get in a hurry - Rome wasn't built in
: a day and a little work every few days is
: better then jamming it all in a month. When
: they are ready to break though, you can
: sometimes get it done in a week or two.
: Greypointe Gladiador was essentially broke
: as a Derby in January in four sessions with
: a Buddy Stick over a seven day period. He
: was ready though - nothing forced and he
: just knew what he was supposed to do. The
: Buddy stick was not used on Greypointe Hasta
: Lavista, Izquierda or Islamorada which I am
: running as young AA dogs right now.
: Plans are to use it on Greypointe Kilogramo
: soon as he is ready to break and I placed
: him in a Derby stake this fall. He pointed a
: bunch of sharptails in North Dakota with me
: getting off the horse to flush every time.
: Right now, he is letting me get off the
: horse but is now jumping the birds before I
: get to flush so he is ready to have that
: We'll use the traps with pigeons and the
: rope and then the Buddy Stick. Transition
: to the flank collar. I need to break him
: now as the longer I wait, the harder he'll
: be is my thought. It will take the run out
: of him for awhile but he can run so it will
: gradually come back The dog is hunting hard
: now and that isn't coming out of him EVER
: after all the birds he found on the prairie.
: Biggest concern I have with him is getting
: him back on edges SO I will plant all his
: traps and birds on edges during the