Ghillie's Report Card

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trekmoor
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Re: Ghillie's Report Card

Post by trekmoor » Wed May 16, 2018 2:13 pm

My daughter and my wife wanted to go shopping so the pup got dumped off onto me. I'd intended to go fishing but do wummin care what I want ? Not that I've ever noticed !

The pup and me and Ghillie set off for the park beside a local pond. It's a nice day here for a bit of "waterwork" so I killed two birds with one stone by going there.....some splashing about in the little burn that is the ponds intake and a few retrieves given well out into the short grass of the nearby park.
All went well with the water and with the retrieving.

I went to the little burn first at a place where it drops about 6 feet down into a very shallow pool. The drop down is not vertical, it is at about 45 degrees and is studded with boulders. Kurt ...the pup, was fine with the burn in general but he really liked that little waterfall. He picked his way up and down it and across it many times. It was the very fast running water he liked and the bits of froth and bubbles carried down with the water. He reminded me of a bear trying to catch salmon at a waterfall as he did his best to catch the patches of foam.

Ghillie's obvious love of water and of running or swimming up and down burns is helping this pup to at least try going into water. I prefer pups to enter water "naturally" if possible and having a keen water dog like Ghillie there showing the pup there is nothing to be afraid of is a considerable help . I threw no dummies or balls into the burn or over it even though the water is only inches deep ....I do not want this pup's first water retrieve to result in a possible refusal.

From there I moved out on to the grass of the park. Most of it was short but it had numerous patches of 5 -6 inches high grass too.
I was using a 1/2 lb. plain canvas dummy with the throwing toggle and string removed.....pups often like to play with toggles and bits of cord. Kurt has shown me many times that he will go to dummies or balls , grab them .....and kill them ! My hope was to counteract that tendency by using such a plain dummy. I hoped that since the dummy itself wasn't much fun to play with and that the rather boring short grass all around him gave him little to be distracted by, he'd come back to me for his "fun" in the form of praise and another dummy throw.

It worked very well. He did four retrieves on the trot with the only fault being that he did a "run past" every time before turning to bring me the dummy. I will settle for that at the moment.

I had a few bad moments as I walked back to my car. A woman walked by with two westies and Kurt went to them and followed them and the woman for nearly 80 yards before I managed to recall him . The woman marched on regardless of the puppy following her dogs. I had to follow along behind as fast as I could and was on the point of collapse by the time Kurt returned to me. I put him on the lead then retraced my steps back to the car where I had to just sit for about 5 minutes before being able to drive home.

I also noticed today that he needs a lot more socialising with strange people and especially with toddlers. He was very unhappy when two toddlers ran to him , he ran off for a short distance.

Wullie
If at first you don't succeed .....find out if there is a booby prize !
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Don't do what doesn't work - do what does.
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trekmoor
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Re: Ghillie's Report Card

Post by trekmoor » Thu May 17, 2018 1:48 pm

The GSP pup got dumped off with me again today for a few hours. I'm beginning to wonder who's pup this is !
I took him and Ghillie back to the parkland beside the burn where he once more went paddling . This time he wasn't even following Ghillie into and over the burn , he went through it all by himself.

The retrieving over the grass did not go as well as it did yesterday. He lay down to chew the dummy 15 -20 yards away from me and took a bit of coaxing before he returned with it .....then he did run-by's and lay down to chew it again ! The little sod !

It's a good job I can't move fast now ..... I was feeling like marmalizing his ar$e !

As I went down into a sitting position on the grass to coax Kurt in to me, Ghillie was sitting right behind me watching all this and I could almost hear her saying ...." Tut-tut ! Would you look at that pups behaviour ! I'm sure I never behaved like that." :roll:

When I come back in my next existence I'm gonna insist to "Big G" that it is as a hamster racer or a tiddlywinks player....gundogs are pants !

Wullie
If at first you don't succeed .....find out if there is a booby prize !
-----------------------------------------------------
Don't do what doesn't work - do what does.
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trekmoor
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Re: Ghillie's Report Card

Post by trekmoor » Tue May 22, 2018 10:52 am

Despite the GSP pup being with me on Fri, Sat and Sunday I did next to nothing with him. I just wasn't feeling up to it. All he got was two dummies thrown out in the cul-de-sac for as far as I could throw them .....about 20 yards. He brought them back by the scenic route going in and out of the parked cars out on the road but at least he brought them back.

He is now 16 weeks old and is sprouting like a bean shoot, he is already about the height of a spaniel ...or a bit more and it is time I began to do some obedience training with him before he gets too big and strong ....and headstrong....for me to manage. He is here again on Friday .....let battle commence !

Wullie
If at first you don't succeed .....find out if there is a booby prize !
-----------------------------------------------------
Don't do what doesn't work - do what does.
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trekmoor
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Re: Ghillie's Report Card

Post by trekmoor » Fri May 25, 2018 7:33 pm

The battle was lost before the pup even got here today coz I'd been away fishing over the previous two days and had completely run out of energy.

All he got was two dummy throws from my kitchen door out into the garden. He did those retrieves very well though.

Wullie
If at first you don't succeed .....find out if there is a booby prize !
-----------------------------------------------------
Don't do what doesn't work - do what does.
.

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Re: Ghillie's Report Card

Post by trekmoor » Sat May 26, 2018 5:22 pm

Along with the GSP pup I took Ghillie and Edge to a small burn that has a few deep pools ...one of them is 5 feet deep. That pool is the largest one , it's almost the size of a tennis court but it has easy access points. When I got there I saw a young man was already there fishing so I had to move off downstream through a jungle of bushes, weeds and very plentiful nettles to reach the next and much smaller pool 70 yards away.

Kurt wasn't too happy about the nettles or about the bramble trailers and neither was I . I got stung and badly scratched right through my trousers.

When we reached the pool Ghillie and Edge plunged right in with Kurt not far behind and he had to swim a couple of strokes for the centre of the pool was nearly 3 feet deep. I saw him swim 3 times in total while we were there. Never more than a few strokes but he seemed fairly unconcerned and unflustered when he did have to swim , he never splashed at all with his forepaws.

I was pleased with that and tossed a dummy in for him ....his first water retrieve. I deliberately threw it only a few feet out and he went in to just over his belly depth to get it. Once back on the shoreline he bogged off with the dummy but only got 20 feet from me before a wall of nettles stopped his outward wanderings. He then brought the dummy back to hand.
I repeated this with the exact same result and then went home. He has now begun to swim, I'm pleased about that for a 4 months old GSP pup .....because I've seen dogs of this breed refuse to swim at 4 years old ! He has not yet swam for a dummy but I have made a start to that.

To take his career as a waterdog further I will have to try to get him to water as often as I can and ....if I can ....let him continue to enter water of his own free will before I do anything resembling "proper water" retrieves with him. It is a great help having Edge and Ghillie with me when introducing this pup to water for it is because he wants to follow them that he goes in.
I went home very pleased with today's "training" session.

The first two hours following our arrival back home were bloody awful ! He had a bad dose of itchy paws due to all the nettle stings and he ran frantically about trying to hide from his own paws ! Then he settled down and I took him out again and gave him two more retrieves, this time using a semi-rabbit skin dummy weighing half a pound. I threw that dummy as far as I could along a pathway near my house and he retrieved it very well both times..... I'd expected him to pounce on it and utterly mutilate the dummy but that didn't happen .....this time. A few weeks back he'd have killed that dummy very dead ! I think he is getting better at just holding a dummy instead of killing it ..... I certainly hope so ! I've never tried to train a pup that is/was so keen on mangling dummies as this pup is/was !!!

A very good day for once. :-D

Wullie
If at first you don't succeed .....find out if there is a booby prize !
-----------------------------------------------------
Don't do what doesn't work - do what does.
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trekmoor
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Re: Ghillie's Report Card

Post by trekmoor » Mon May 28, 2018 5:12 pm

I made a complete balls-up of this mornings session with the pup. I took him and Ghillie to a local river , quite a large one.... but I took my wife along too . Having her there distracted me and the pup. My wife is one of those people who can do a really good , high, girly voice and pups like it more than they like my voice. When she wants a pup to come to her she emits that high tone while giving the pup highly extravagant praise words .....she never speaks to me like that when I won't come when I'm called. :(

When trying to get a pup to go away from her ,from the house out into the garden for example ,she calls the pup's name in that high pitched voice and then she sort of goes ....." Too-root - too-root- too- root !" like she's a bugler blowing a cavalry charge . Pups love it and go charging off like a runaway cuddy . She was doing this today and I could not compete , the pup was really "with" her and not me.

The part of the river I'd chosen for water work was only inches deep for the first 30 feet out and the pup never went out beyond about 15 feet from the bank. I chucked a dummy out for him to just beyond that distance and he refused to go that last few feet for it . A bad mistake on my part. I don't like to give pups chances to refuse water retrieves.

I tried again ,this time with a 10 feet throw and he did bring that dummy back but then took it off and into the rhodie bushes to chew it ! :mad: I tried calling him and I tried whistling for him but he remained deep in his lair among the rhodies. My wife went into girly voice mode and he returned at once but minus the dummy. I had to send Ghillie into the rhodies to rescue it.
By now I was very pi$$ed off and headed back towards my car but Ghillie found a tennis ball still inside the cup of one of those thrower thingies......she brought me back the ball and the thrower.

I thought I'd give the pup a try with it and he did two perfect little retrieves on a lawn like stretch of grass. I should have stopped at that but I gave him "just another one." It was one too many, he lay down with the ball to chew it then left it behind when my wife called him in. Nowt seemed to go well for me today .....it must be my wife's fault. :snooty:

Wullie
If at first you don't succeed .....find out if there is a booby prize !
-----------------------------------------------------
Don't do what doesn't work - do what does.
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trekmoor
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Re: Ghillie's Report Card

Post by trekmoor » Fri Jun 01, 2018 3:08 pm

The pup arrived again this morning but I did very little with him. All he got was 3 retrieves with a 1/2 lb. dummy which he did well and one retrieve with a much bigger dummy which, despite it's size, only weighs about 3/4 lb. All of the retrieves were done inside the garden . He went for a little detour with the larger, strange dummy but came to me when I did a bit more encouraging.

He is losing his puppy teeth now , I've found a couple of them. I saw him cock his leg for the first time today .....am I right in thinking this is a bit unusual in a pup that is still not quite 5 months old ?

Wullie
If at first you don't succeed .....find out if there is a booby prize !
-----------------------------------------------------
Don't do what doesn't work - do what does.
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trekmoor
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Re: Ghillie's Report Card

Post by trekmoor » Mon Jun 04, 2018 10:35 am

I've had the pup here every day this weekend including today. All I've done is two retrieves a day using a 1/2 lb. dummy . He has stopped chewing dummies for the time being but he is now turning every retrieve into a run-past.
To combat this , since I'm not able to do the usual things like crouching down or moving backwards quickly as pups approach me with retrieves, I am trying to make where the retrieve takes place do the work for me.

It's a more advanced form of my "doorstep delivery" where a pup tries to reach it's favoured place in the house with a retrieve article but encounters me blocking it's way in the doorway and eventually settles to the idea that I make a good "favoured place" to take a retrieve to.

I have been taking Kurt to a little lane bordered by 15- 20 feet width of grass that leads into the little strip of woods behind my house. Once there I just throw the dummy as far as I can , which is probably about 20 yards , and let the pup run-in for it. Once he has it he makes a beeline for my house which is just around the corner of the high wooden fencing but he has to pass me to get to the gate of the house and the gate is shut.

I just lean or squat against the big wooden fence as he does the run past then watch as he vanishes with the dummy around the corner ! It's a chancy sort of way for me to behave for he could just drop the dummy once he gets to my house's gate or he could lie down to have a good chew on it.
I am betting on him wanting a "favoured place" and on him wanting to interact with human company ----that's me on both counts !

So far, he has been behaving as I'd hoped and is returning from my house gate , coming around the corner of the fence and into my view once more and then giving me the dummy...............the fings I do just to train dugs ! :roll:

Yesterday one of his two retrieves done in that little lane was his first ever memory retrieve . The distance was only about 25 yards but he did the retrieve easily .....apart from the run-past.

He is teething , my wife keeps finding his teeth , so I think I will stick to fairly soft, lightweight dummies for a while yet. He is also becoming very "wise" about when I am going to take him outside the garden to retrieve. He now knows I keep dummies in a big box out in the garden . That box is so big we call it "the sarcophagus." It looks very like one of those things Egyptian mummies are found in . Kurt now goes daft as soon as I open the box and jumps all over me to try to take the dummy from my hands. Edge thought he'd get a retrieve while I was occupied in fending off the pup so he took a flying leap right into the box .....the lid felt his weight strike the inside of the box and down it came trapping Edge inside.

I thought he'd be terrified by his big coffin but he emerged quite happily with a dummy as soon as I opened the lid. I don't think either Edge or Ghillie are too happy about how much retrieve time the GSP pup gets . I should be taking them out training ....they both need it !

Wullie
If at first you don't succeed .....find out if there is a booby prize !
-----------------------------------------------------
Don't do what doesn't work - do what does.
.

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trekmoor
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Re: Ghillie's Report Card

Post by trekmoor » Wed Jun 06, 2018 12:32 pm

My daughter arrived at my house to "see if you'd like to go shopping Mum ?" Do spaniels like to chase rabbits ? My wife is a Queen Bee shopper ! I'd intended to go fishing but my daughter had brought Kurt with her for us....meaning me to look after.

We all ended up going to a part of the local river I've never been to before to give all the dogs a run before we went our separate ways , my wife and daughter to the shops , me and all the mutts back to the house.

My daughter does marathon run training and hadn't thought to mention that from where we had to park the cars down to a little park beside the river was a walk of nearly half a mile. I got less than halfway there before I just had to stop. Edge, Ghillie and Charlie were supposed to go on with my wife but they all refused to go . They all opted out of having a nice long walk and they all stayed with me when I sat down on a tree stump beside the river. Kurt was also inclined to stay with me but he got put on a lead and made to continue onwards.

I sat there for about 1/2 an hour among very heavy bankside cover on the very high and steep slope leading down to the river. Charlie did his usual and dug for mice and voles to eat while Edge and Ghillie explored all around me including the river.

Eventually I heard shouting off in the far distance and it sounded like my daughter. Kurt had decided that me and the dogs were better fun than those two wummin and had reached me on the way back far quicker than my wife and daughter ......he'd dumped them ! :lol:

I gave him two retrieves with a tennis ball into the river. He only had to go in belly deep for the first one but the second one was a few feet further out and he had to swim a few strokes to reach the ball. He made a lunge at it but only succeeded in pushing it under the water ....so he submerged his head, neck and shoulders in order to grab it underwater . I thought he might panic a bit and drop the ball but he didn't panic at all. He kept hold of the ball, swam back to the bank, climbed up it and gave me the tennis ball.

I was delighted, it was his first water retrieve where he had to swim.
I am now just sitting around waiting for God in the form of my shopping crazy wife to return from her expedition ..... it will probably be at least another 2 hours before she sees fit to do that though !

Wullie
If at first you don't succeed .....find out if there is a booby prize !
-----------------------------------------------------
Don't do what doesn't work - do what does.
.

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Re: Ghillie's Report Card

Post by Judy » Wed Jun 06, 2018 1:01 pm

Every cloud has a silver lining!
In life, it is important to know when to stop arguing with people and simply let them be wrong.

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