Gun training


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By WillyBilly - 7/18/2013 12:08:31 AM
Not really sure how to gun train my dog? Any suggestions?
By hunter951 - 7/18/2013 2:15:46 PM
First, very important, make sure dog never has a bad experience with loud noises. I have gun trained several dogs by planting live quail and then shooting with 20 gauge from several hundred yards off as the dog flushes one. Keep moving closer if the dog does not have a negative reaction. Once you can shoot over the dog, switch to a 12 gauge and start again at several hundred yards. Continue to gradually move closer. Keep in mind, this is not a one day or one weekend thing. Introducing a dog to gunfire can be a very delicate and slow process, but it's worth it in the end. (Just ask anyone who's tried to break a case of bad gun-shyness!)
By Windjammer - 7/21/2013 10:58:14 AM
I started with a blank 22 pistol, shooting from around 50 yards away, gradually moving closer. Once I was near the dog, I switched to shotgun blanks, and started from 50 yards, working closer again. The key is to shoot at two important times, not just randomly:
1- When the bumper or bird is in the air
2- When the dog is retrieving (over his or her head).
The idea is that the dog associates the noise with the bird, and its not big deal.
I would recommend buying Retriever Training by Tom Dokken to get the step by step method. I used this book, and it is really simple once explained by him.

It is a long process though. If you rush it, you will mess the dog up. Take your time with this one.