Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: California and South Dakota
We would likely use launchers. As soon as the dog moves, the bird flushes. When the bird flushes you can get your correction. It gets tough when dogs are "trial wise" and then we look for fun day events or mock tests to help simulate all the excitement and hubub of an event where we can use training aids and training is not only allowed but encouraged.
The other thought is you back all the way up to standing with the dog, a check cord loop and work on proofing with walking birds. A tied wing or a tethered bird. The really important thing here is to get in a light correction with restraint and look for the point where you see the dog wants to break, but then he demonstrates self-restraint - catches himself. At that moment, before they have the opportunity to go again, give a reward/praise and stop. The biggest problem when doing this type of training is to not mark the behavior we seek. We humans tend to push again and again waiting for the break in order to correct. Try to work just below the threshold. Start with the bird some distance away, then gradually closer. Mix it up so it's not the same session over and over. Change grounds often. Also give a good run between birds and have some sessions where there are no birds - I find it helps a lot for the dogs to de-stress.
Hope that helps.
Knowledge and tools all help in training your dog, but have no worth whatsoever if one does not get up and actually go train.