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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
In 5 days Fred will turn 1 and we have just completed our first hunting class. I did not really plan to enter any hunting courses, but we both enjoyed all our standard obedience classes so much I figured we should both step up our game. I entered a course together with 2 retrievers, 1 toller and Fred. What a difference in temperament I saw there! Yes, Fred was by far the youngest and most impatient but her energy and willingness to work were outstanding compared to the others. I just fell in love with the Vizsla breed all over again.

Since I never planned to enter hunting courses, I never taught Fred to wait for the 'go fetch' after throwing a ball. She just bolts after I throw it. Now we have to start fetching dummies and I need to focus on teaching her to wait until being released to fetch. How do I start? At the moment I can hold her collar, ask her to wait and then slowly let go of her collar and she will try with every bone in her body to wait for a command to release her. But without holding her collar, she bolts.
 

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You're on the correct path.
With puppies, you kind of hold them in place, and command fetch and let them go. As they get older, it sometimes requires a "slip lead". This is a flat piece of material about 25mm wide, 3m long that just loops under their collar. You toss the dummy, and then can't run because they know the lead is there. You command Fetch, let one end of the lead go. It "slips" through their collar as the go after the toss.
From there it becomes a matter of incorporating the "Stay". Put Fred in the "Stay", not the "Sit" unless that is what you want. Keep commanding "Stay", while tossing the dummy.
It will only take a few days, but She'll begin to understand that a "new" element has been placed in the game. From there is just repetitive until the point that you no longer have to command "Stay". She will just automatically wait. If she's already solid at the stay, this will probably only take week or two. They catch on fast.
One thing to start doing right now is this; Every time you command her to fetch, from the stay, you make an overt sweeping arc motion with your arm in the direction of the object to retrieve. The Arc start with the arm extended fully up, and sweeps down along the body and grazes the thigh knee and end parallel to the ground. When you begin to work on Blind retrieves, having this motion makes the start easy. Fred will also begin to look for the arm to go up in the air like a flag, and move when the arm finishes it's sweep. Done properly, with time, You will throw the dummy, or ball, and using the motion of your arm, command the fetch and not one word will be spoken. It won't take long to get there either.
If you're going to be competing with retrievers, you'll eventually work to Trianglular Retrieving. This is where the dog is kept in one spot, commanded to retrieve from a second spot and delivers the fetch to a third spot. That's a lot of fun too.
Retriever training is very cool, and the dog has to think.
Have fun always.
 

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If you plan on training with other people while she is in the field, or have her honor another dogs retrieve. I would use a word to send her, that no one else is using. It can be your dogs name, or any other word you wouldn't normally hear another person saying in the field.
I use the word Alright, to release Shine from a whoa. If I were to up her training on retrieving, I would use the same word. As she already knows the meaning.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thank you both for the elaborate replies. A lot of information is in there. Practice starts tomorrow! You’ll probably see more questions coming in within the next few weeks 😁 I can’t wait to get started.
 

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Texas Red is very much spot on.
Once you get past the rote mechanics, you'll develop a language of your own between the two of you.
What was it like watching the Toller? I haven't seen a Toller in years. Was it retrieving only, or were they working with it to Flag ducks also?
 

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If you plan on training with other people while she is in the field, or have her honor another dogs retrieve. I would use a word to send her, that no one else is using. It can be your dogs name, or any other word you wouldn't normally hear another person saying in the field.
I use the word Alright, to release Shine from a whoa. If I were to up her training on retrieving, I would use the same word. As she already knows the meaning.
I completely agree with TexasRed. I use "OK" , my dog's name or a slight tap on their head to send them for the retrieve. There are some competitions (NAVHDA) that I use the word "Fetch" for but it's only used when I want the dog to track. They're accustomed to working with dead birds to track.
When training on live birds, using their name or another word that isn't used by other handlers, makes the possibility of your dog breaking on the command "Fetch" when used by another handler; much less likely.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Texas Red is very much spot on.
Once you get past the rote mechanics, you'll develop a language of your own between the two of you.
What was it like watching the Toller? I haven't seen a Toller in years. Was it retrieving only, or were they working with it to Flag ducks also?
Compared to the Golden and the Labrador, the Toller and Fred were definitely bringing a lot more energy. The Toller was a lot less willing to please compared to a V, but then his boss did not seem te be the sharpest knife in the drawer😉 With ferm training I guess it could be a very passionate hunting dog. Then the trainer showed a ball on a rope, and the Toller went nuts.I’ve never heard the Toller scream before. It’s horrible!
 

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it can be a conundrum, my two are working dogs so field trials/work trials ettiquette is not practical, If we're on picking up duties and a bird is injured but not killed I like my dogs to be straight on it with no instruction from me, if one lands stone dead 10 feet away they have to leave it, Steadiness is key, lots of dummy tossing in the back garden, praise when it goes as planned,,,nonono and back at sit at heel when they break prematurely. Once on a shoot I like to think that both dogs are ready for a runner (injured bird) or a clean killed one,,,,they seem to know.
 

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Shine, and I have been working on a more formal retriever over the summer. She’s still not much on waiting, if given the choice. Put her back on a checkcord, so it’s easier to enforce.
Wish I would have started recording a little sooner.
 

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She's a strong swimmer. Her head is completely out of the water and she's making a "V" behind her.
Nice!!
 

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She's a strong swimmer. Her head is completely out of the water and she's making a "V" behind her.
Nice!!
She’s actually one of my slower swimmers, when compared to my past Vs. Both in learning how to swim level, and speed. She just started really enjoying swimming this summer, at three years old. But on land, I’ve only owned one vizsla faster than her.
 

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need to get her on hydro dash next season!
That’s something to consider.
Trying to focus training towards getting a SH title on her, and then possibly a JHR.

Right now we are working on her being steady till released. In hopes that she won’t break before gunfire during the hunt test. You know Shine, she loves a good chase when birds are in flight.

With all the hot weather, we work 2-3 birds. Then head to the water for her to cool off. She swims trying to catch dragonflies, and I throw a couple of retrieves for her.
 
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