5 Crucial Training Tips For Your New Hunting Dog
A few days into your new relationship, you start to consider a training plan. You know the first few months are important but wonder where to begin. You are not alone wondering how to start training your furry hunting companion.
Listed below are some of the top tips professional trainers recommend for starting your new bird-hunting puppy.
1 • Be Patient, Slow and Simple Wins
2 • Socialize, Socialize, and Socialize
Expose them to different people and other dogs in a variety of situations. If the pup becomes fearful, avoid treating it like a baby human by getting down to their level and consoling them while talking baby talk. Instead, stay calm and positive. Be the leader. Dogs will feed off your tone and inflections in your voice. If the pup knows you are okay as the leader, the pup will feel okay. The socialization process is where you teach the dog to look to you for leadership. If you are the pup’s leader and have a positive relationship with your dog, it will pay huge dividends in the future.
3 • Exploring to Build Courage and Confidence
Firstly, you bought this dog as a hunting companion. Take the puppy in the field as often as possible to different locations and habitat types. Let the puppy explore while learning the sights, sounds, and smells. Over time, you will see the eagerness and excitement grow as confidence and courage grows.
4 • Shut-Up
Firstly, your pup cannot understand and trying to reason with them is useless and confusing. If you do need to speak, be concise with as few words as possible. One or two words are adequate most of the time. Also, be consistent with the words you do speak so they eventually become understood.
Lastly, keeping your mouth shut will help build the pups confidence. If you are yapping at every little thing the pup does, soon the pup will not want to do anything without first looking to you. Let the pup learn, explore, and experience the world without you in its ear all the time.
5 • Build Prey Drive
For a pup just a few months old, make sure birds are associated with praise and fun at all times. Using pigeons or farm-raised quail is a good way to introduce your pup and encourage prey drive. Tie the bird’s wings behind its back and let the pup play with the bird, pick it up, play hide-and-seek, and walk around the yard proudly with it. As the pup gets a little older hide the bird and let the pup find the bird and you flush it while praising the pup. Also, take your pup to areas where you may encounter wild game birds or waterfowl. Again, making sure these games and first encounters with birds is fun and full of praise for your young pup is critical in the first few months.