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  #21 (permalink)  
Old 11-28-2012, 07:17 AM
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Hoping to go later this week
One thing that really struck me is that, when you go pheasant hunting, you just turn the dog loose, tell him "bird out there, hunt 'em up" or something similar, and let him do his thing.
He is expected to get into very heavy cover, and use his nose to find the bird. When he scents it, he is expected to stay on its trail until he locates it, and with pheasants chances are they are hunkered down tight into the cover (Tito's nose is just now healing up). He is expected to find that bird, even it it takes 10 minutes to do so, and never give up (Tito didn't ever show any signs of giving up a bird scent he located, no matter how long he had to follow it to find the bird).
He is allowed to break to follow the bird, because it's the only way he's going to be able to mark the fall in the tall and heavy cover. If it's a cripple, it can get pretty far away and he needs to be on its trail, in pursuit, watching it go down.
Now compare that to running a blind.
"Dead bird". Dog is lined up, headed in a specific direction. Pretty much told do NOT use your nose, no matter what. Even if you smell the bird, do NOT go in a direction different than where I sent you, even if I happen to be wrong about where the bird is. Blinds that I've seen (at all test levels) are not in cover anywhere near what the actual pheasants are hiding out in when you hunt, because you wouldn't be able to see the dog.
Sure, a blind tests his level of control. But hunting, ah, that tests his level of inborn ability!
Now that I've seen Tito truly hunt, I know what "style" is. Now that I've seen him hunt, I know what "perserverance" is. I know what a "good nose" is. And so on.
I think ALL hunt test judges, not just conformation people, should be required to watch a real hunt.
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CH Rosewood Little Giant, UDX VER RA MHU SH MXP MJP XFP T2BP VCX WCX CCA CGC FFX-OG (born 3-10-2007), also UCH HR UUD UJJ URO1 UHIT a.k.a. "Tito" (the Tito Monster)

waiting at the bridge:
My first dog, and my most special girl
Gibson's Golden Girl, CD, CGC, TDI ( 3-20-1997 - 11-22-2013) a.k.a. "Tiny", "Queen B"
and my heart dog
Gibson's Golden Guy, CD, CGC, TDI ( 01-31-1998 - 01-02-2012) a.k.a. "Toby", "HRH"
run free my sweet, sweet loves, I will love you and miss you forever.
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  #22 (permalink)  
Old 11-28-2012, 07:24 AM
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More random thoughts...
Now I understand a lot of stuff that Dan has always told me about Tito. I didn't really get it before.
I've commented many times that the Monster Boy always heads for heavy cover if there's any around, and I've had to fight it with him constantly both with marks and especially with blinds. Dan has said he goes where the bird "should be", that Tito has tons of instinct, and to not get upset with him. Now I understand.
I've mentioned how independent he is when hunting up something in the field. Now I understand why that was bred into them.
I understand him "working the wind" instead of resisting it.
And lots more.
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CH Rosewood Little Giant, UDX VER RA MHU SH MXP MJP XFP T2BP VCX WCX CCA CGC FFX-OG (born 3-10-2007), also UCH HR UUD UJJ URO1 UHIT a.k.a. "Tito" (the Tito Monster)

waiting at the bridge:
My first dog, and my most special girl
Gibson's Golden Girl, CD, CGC, TDI ( 3-20-1997 - 11-22-2013) a.k.a. "Tiny", "Queen B"
and my heart dog
Gibson's Golden Guy, CD, CGC, TDI ( 01-31-1998 - 01-02-2012) a.k.a. "Toby", "HRH"
run free my sweet, sweet loves, I will love you and miss you forever.
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  #23 (permalink)  
Old 11-28-2012, 07:56 AM
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And the need for the dog to be conditioned? You know, the dog should be in hard working condition.
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Old 11-28-2012, 11:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hotel4dogs View Post
No kidding!! I can't imagine having my dog 400 yards away, out of sight, for long periods of time! But I've seen them work, and they are awesome. Not for the faint of heart, though (which would be me).
I was, I guess, kind of surprised at how little hunt tests (AKC or HRC) have anything to do with hunting after we experienced our pheasant hunt. Sure, they are a very fun game, and they do show the dog has some instinct, but it is nothing like getting them out in the field and letting them "hunt 'em up", flush, and retrieve the bird.
Tito says forget the titles, THIS is what he was born to do.
YES! "Real" hunting is quite different.
Any way you look at it, though, watching a dog do what it was designed to do is a thing of beauty.
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  #25 (permalink)  
Old 11-28-2012, 01:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hotel4dogs View Post
Hoping to go later this week
One thing that really struck me is that, when you go pheasant hunting, you just turn the dog loose, tell him "bird out there, hunt 'em up" or something similar, and let him do his thing.
He is expected to get into very heavy cover, and use his nose to find the bird. When he scents it, he is expected to stay on its trail until he locates it, and with pheasants chances are they are hunkered down tight into the cover (Tito's nose is just now healing up). He is expected to find that bird, even it it takes 10 minutes to do so, and never give up (Tito didn't ever show any signs of giving up a bird scent he located, no matter how long he had to follow it to find the bird).
He is allowed to break to follow the bird, because it's the only way he's going to be able to mark the fall in the tall and heavy cover. If it's a cripple, it can get pretty far away and he needs to be on its trail, in pursuit, watching it go down.
Now compare that to running a blind.
"Dead bird". Dog is lined up, headed in a specific direction. Pretty much told do NOT use your nose, no matter what. Even if you smell the bird, do NOT go in a direction different than where I sent you, even if I happen to be wrong about where the bird is. Blinds that I've seen (at all test levels) are not in cover anywhere near what the actual pheasants are hiding out in when you hunt, because you wouldn't be able to see the dog.
Sure, a blind tests his level of control. But hunting, ah, that tests his level of inborn ability!
Now that I've seen Tito truly hunt, I know what "style" is. Now that I've seen him hunt, I know what "perserverance" is. I know what a "good nose" is. And so on.
I think ALL hunt test judges, not just conformation people, should be required to watch a real hunt.
Yes, this kind of hunting, upland hunting, is quite different from what we are asked to do in tests. Even waterfowling requires a slightly different application of the skills we train for. I have shot birds that landed deep in the tules--you have to line the dog up as if for a blind, send them in and then give them a hunt it up/hunt dead command. I always put a command on it so the dog knows they have permission to be self-employed in that situation. At other times when I know where the bird is but it is not as obvious to the dog (such as a bird down in the decoys) then I maintain control right to the bird. The tests are testing the skill set and degree of control that a capable gundog should possess--the situational aspects that come up in real hunting would be both difficult to replicate and to judge in a test situation, yet that basic skill set for which we are testing does give the dog the foundation tools it needs to get the work done.
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  #26 (permalink)  
Old 11-28-2012, 01:46 PM
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love the photos
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Old 11-28-2012, 04:08 PM
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oh and absolutely in hard working condition!! For a couple of hours he was running back and forth quartering, chasing birds, retrieving, I'm sure he covered several miles thru very thick, heavy cover, often on soft, muddy ground.
Hard working condition is critical.
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CH Rosewood Little Giant, UDX VER RA MHU SH MXP MJP XFP T2BP VCX WCX CCA CGC FFX-OG (born 3-10-2007), also UCH HR UUD UJJ URO1 UHIT a.k.a. "Tito" (the Tito Monster)

waiting at the bridge:
My first dog, and my most special girl
Gibson's Golden Girl, CD, CGC, TDI ( 3-20-1997 - 11-22-2013) a.k.a. "Tiny", "Queen B"
and my heart dog
Gibson's Golden Guy, CD, CGC, TDI ( 01-31-1998 - 01-02-2012) a.k.a. "Toby", "HRH"
run free my sweet, sweet loves, I will love you and miss you forever.
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Old 12-31-2012, 04:19 PM
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I had to laugh when I read about you going nutty when you couldn't see Tito. When I first when out hunting with my husband, I would hate it when our boy Sam was out of my sight. I was sure he would be lost. My husband (frustrated) finally told me that "just because I did not know where the dog was did not mean the dog did not know where I was!!!"

Sure enough, Sam has never really been lost even though I have not always known where he is at the moment.
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  #29 (permalink)  
Old 12-31-2012, 06:22 PM
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yep, they come charging back thru the cover, bird in mouth, grinning from ear to ear!
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CH Rosewood Little Giant, UDX VER RA MHU SH MXP MJP XFP T2BP VCX WCX CCA CGC FFX-OG (born 3-10-2007), also UCH HR UUD UJJ URO1 UHIT a.k.a. "Tito" (the Tito Monster)

waiting at the bridge:
My first dog, and my most special girl
Gibson's Golden Girl, CD, CGC, TDI ( 3-20-1997 - 11-22-2013) a.k.a. "Tiny", "Queen B"
and my heart dog
Gibson's Golden Guy, CD, CGC, TDI ( 01-31-1998 - 01-02-2012) a.k.a. "Toby", "HRH"
run free my sweet, sweet loves, I will love you and miss you forever.
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  #30 (permalink)  
Old 01-02-2013, 10:35 AM
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My favorite was when Dan sent the dog off to retrieve a duck in the worst cover. The reeds were very tall and about a foot of water. He figured it would take the Sam a while to find the duck and return to the point where they usually hunt from (he had moved down the shore for the incoming ducks). The dog beat him back to the point with a look of "where have you been" on his face. Of course he was still holding the duck.
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