Finley and Banshee's Mom
Join Date: Sep 2011
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Wow! Thanks to all who have posted since I was last on here! Sorry I went so long without responding. I used to check in with the forum every day and have become a slacker.
So here's the update. We went to a field training day with 1st state retrievers. (2 weeks ago) I reached out to them through Facebook and mentioned our duck. I was told someone there would be able to give me pointers so I decided to keep it in the freezer where it remains today. I also did not buy any bumpers or anything else, as they said there would be plenty there for us to try.
This training day they were only using bumpers. I introduced her to 2 and 3" plastic bumpers in the parking lot and we did a few short retrieves while on leash. They showed me how to sit in a blind with her and told me to give her cheese when a gun would fire, although the noise didn't phase her, except to notice it.
When it was our turn they had us walk maybe 1/2 the distance to the blind from where the bumpers were being thrown since it was our first time and they wanted her to be successful. A man was with us, using a walkie to communicate to the guy in the blind. I explained that this was a first, and he asked me if she can retrieve anything lol. (which was understandably a good question). I asked how is she supposed to know what I want her to do, (I thought I should mark it with my hand as we do the gloves in OB). Anyway, he told me not to point, but to say "Mark!", and that she would naturally look in the direction of the gunfire and then see the bumper go down. I truthfully thought she might go 10-15 feet away and probably turn and look at me waiting for more direction as to what I wanted. But just as he said, she watched that bumper go down, and I sent her with "Take it!" And off she went! She searched for that 1st bumper, didn't find it, but kept looking. So the man throwing the bumpers gave a "HEY HEY HEY" and threw anther one. She got it and brought it right back. Then we went to a different blind the other direction and did it all over again.
We stayed for their picnic but had to leave before they did the water retrieves. Bottom line it was SO MUCH FUN! We both loved it! The next training day won't be until October. (They have a hunt trail in Sept.) I'm planning to join the club and participate as much as we can. We are going to nationals. I had thought I'd leave her home for the hunt portion (wanting to watch and learn) but after reading the responses here, maybe she'll be coming along for the seminar. Thanks again everyone!
Stormy Point's Erin Go McFinley R Sweet Peach CDX RN CGC CCA
Birthday: January 11, 2012 "Finley" Our Golden
Cha-Rish Fire Diamonds Dance On Banshee CD CGC
Birthday: October 25, 2012 "Banshee" Our Doberman