Instructional Videos for Head Start Puppies, Companions and Gun Dogs

You should have the following items if you wish to participate at home:
* Acme 211 1/2 training whistle ( available on Amazon)
 * A six foot cloth leash and  training collar , martingale or slip leash
* Training treats ( soft cat treats work best)
* Training bumpers ( available at Lion Country

​ Vocabulary and Definition 

Here : to come in

Heel : to walk by your left side, without pulling

Sit: to sit down at your left side, sit means stay.

Here whistle : three tweets or a trill sound    

​Sit Whistle: one tweet, hissing sound, hold one finger out

Change Direction Whistle : Two tweets

Kennel : to go in a crate, load in a trailer or car.  

Hup: encourages movement. We use the word ” Hup” prior to a fun retrieve when puppies are young. Hup can also be used when you want them to jump or load.  ” Hup, kennel” for example.

Ah Ah: is a verbal scolding. It tells the dog that you don’t like what they are doing. 

No : is used rarely .

Language: Your dog’s language was built on “ Negative, Solution, Praise.”
The Negative is “ ah ah,” telling him you don’t like what he is doing.
The Solution is the command you want him to do instead.
The Praise is telling him he is a good boy, a treat, or a pet on the head.

Negative: A fair correction for an active act of disobedience. 

Positive: Praise ( treat, touch, verbal) to convey a job well done.

Conversations / Language: By using Positive and Negative cues you create a ” language” that you can speak with your training partner.
An Active Act of Disobedience:  when a dog choses to ignore a known command when he/she has heard and understood what you were asking for.

Mistakes: are wonderful. They are opportunities to learn and deepen communication. 

 Block and Chain Building :   This involves building each piece of your training  and then chaining the pieces together. For example : The blocks of Here, Heel, Sit and Hold become the Delivery to Hand chain.

“True obedience is empowerment though choice, not submission.”
These are the words that my staff members hear on their first day working with dogs. Eight simple words that when combined, should be the corner stone of every handler’s building blocks.

Crate Lessons:

In this lesson, Brea demonstrates what the wrong energy does to a dog and how to correctly get your dog out of the crate, while setting them up for success.

Take away : Set your dog up for success while STILL in the crate. Greet them in a calm manner to encourage calm behavior.

In the second video, we are going over putting the leash on while your dog is in the crate, calmly waiting for instruction.

Take away: Make sure your collar is put on properly. A choke collar that is put on backwards, will not release and be uncomfortable for your dog.

In our third video, we go over getting your dog to go in a crate.

Heel lessons:

In the following videos we go over heel and how your dog moves with your body.

Take away : Remember, use a conversational tone when you are working with your dog.

This video shows the proper placement of Brea’s shoulder to your thigh.

Head Start Puppy Program:

  Group Walks: 
 Once the litter  learns that the recall whistle means a positive experience ( for puppies this is the instinctual reward of food) we can start taking the pups on adventures.
We use the recall whistle to move the litter as a group, and soon add the direction change whistle ( two tweets) to tell them to go a different way.

 Change Direction Whistle:
This is a lead in to our gun dog program, to have the ability to tell your dog to change directions in the field. 
It is a ” two tweet” sound, that is sharp and clear.

​Companion Tom and Started Gun dog, Dixie demonstrate.

Recall Whistle :

To Recall, means to come in or here. This is a different sound then the sit or change direction whistle, as this is a continued trill sound. 

Companion Tom and Started Gun dog, Dixie demonstrate 

Companion Dog Program:

Proper Heel Position and  Sit / Stay 

In this video, Clyde is demonstrating the proper heel position. It is on your left side, with his shoulder parallel to your leg. 
Onnastasia asks Clyde to ” Sit” with a hissing sound and then holds her finger out to re-issue the command. 

The End Result:
Once you have a firm foundation for Here, Sit and Heel, and can have ” conversations” using known positives and negatives; you can begin adding distractions. 
In this video, Molly is worked with and around umbrellas, walkers and greets another handler that is working with Clyde. 

Gun Dog Program:

Teaching Hold and Intro to Handling:
In this video, Kati ( with an i) is demonstrating  ” Hold”.
​Hold means to receive and hold onto something until told otherwise. 
We also use this time to introduce the concept of handling and the use of hand signals .

Delivery to Hand: Our ” delivery to hand ” is built by chaining three known commands or ” blocks” together.
In this video, Tula is demonstrating the commands : Here, Heel and Sit combined with formal hold lessons that gives you a reliable  Delivery to Hand. 

Handling Lessons: The Back Cast

In this video, Tula is demonstration the back cast. This is a part three of handling : Right, Left and Back.

* An excellent book to read at this point  would be  Training Retrievers to Handle by D.L and Ann Walters. 

Handling Lessons / Baseball Drills :

In this video Brea, demonstrates a baseball drill, working with one bumper.
In this lesson, the sit whistle still means sit, but now we are asking her to sit and pay attention. You are telling her, using the language that you have built ” Sit down and look at me. I am about to give you information so we can be successful . “
Remember that you are a team. You are both working together towards the common goal of bringing back game. 

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