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jwed

Pup killed a pigeon

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Hi lads,

My 6 month old springer pup has a mega drive and I've been trying to keep him away from birds till I can get him fairly well behaved. I've just really been walking him on and off the lead in the field behind the house in some rough ground. Today I saw him hunting a scent like crazy about 20 feet from me and he caught and killed a pigeon and scarpered with him. I managed to get the bird off him and put him to the kennel to calm down.

Am I doing right by keeping him away from birds? Is it normal for springer to catch and kill birds? I reckon if I'd not got the bird off him he could have even eaten it. Is there anything else I should be doing with him?

 

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I introduced all the pups I’ve had to  chickens from a real young age. The more often they see them the quicker they get used to them and know to ignore flapping things with feathers till you train them otherwise to retrieve and it flush feathered game. Get them at first to walk round them on a lead then to heel, then sit stay and get them to run back through them to you. it’s always worked for me! You can always tell what dogs on shoot days never see birds unless out on a shoot as they are the ones who go deaf to a stop whistle because seeing so many birds is far too exciting. 

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Thanks Jarvis, I actually have hens here and the pen is right beside him so he's well used to them.  Maybe I'll let the hens out of the pen and do some work with him on the lead with them, or better still bring him into the pen on the lead. 

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18 hours ago, jwed said:

Thanks Jarvis, I actually have hens here and the pen is right beside him so he's well used to them.  Maybe I'll let the hens out of the pen and do some work with him on the lead with them, or better still bring him into the pen on the lead. 

I’ve got mine in an orchard so it’s nice and easy. Also once you’ve mastered heel, sit, stay, recall etc a good way I found with my cocker to get her steady and used to birds was dogging in. It’s easy for me because I keeper a shoot but if you  know a keeper see if you can help him out to get him steady to see birds regular but keeping him steady and close to you. The worst thing for a young dog is to try work and train them and not have birds or scent to flush / see and they will end up getting fustrated. 

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Thanks Jarvis. I thought his recall was good but when he had the pigeon was oblivious to the whistle. I plan to spend the spring and summer really focusing on obedience training and summer into winter get into game training. 

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On 01/01/2019 at 10:38, jwed said:

Thanks Jarvis. I thought his recall was good but when he had the pigeon was oblivious to the whistle. I plan to spend the spring and summer really focusing on obedience training and summer into winter get into game training. 

Best thing to do is don’t rush and just because you think they have masters something don’t stop doing it. Keep constantly going over the basics... my cocker is 3 now and she is still definitely learning.

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Come woodcock season you will be wanting every drop of that drive.  You have the complete opposite of a sticky spaniel and many people envy that.  As long as he doesn't run out beyond the gun you are doing ok.  Just don't let him possess it long enough to kill it.  A bit of work with the dummy with pigeon wings, 3 retrieves in 5 mins, no more and end the session on play never a retrieve.

As for the recall, springers dogs can be deaf when they want to be but sit must mean sit.  I found that once the springer is out of the oen you literally have to give the dog 15mins to burn off all that mental energy before training can commence.  If you try and begin training the moment the dog is out of the pen just have a stress ball handy for yourself !

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Good luck bud

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