K-9 Training

I know these are not Drahthaars. The top one is a Belgian Malinois. The bottomt is a Dutch Shepherd in action.
The reason for this post is just to show how proud of my nephew i am. He is the Canine Manager for SLC F.D. He trains and works with dogs all over the country to prepare them and handle them in Urban Search and Rescue situations. He also does live find and cadaver dogs as well. He has traveled all over training and testing his dog Wersley as well as many other dogs he has prepared for other orginizations. He has a Chocolate Lab, a Belgian Malinois and is now in the process of getting a Dutch Shepherd.
He is looking to test these dogs according to the Dutch standard of what they call the KNPV.
Much like the Germans the Dutch have a very strict way of doing things. This is the only orginization that will certify these dogs as Urban Search dogs that have really been put to the test! I think it is really cool that he is getting so into this that he will have to travel to Holland to test and certify these dogs.
Keep up the good work nephew.

Santa Hessian

(poor pooch huh, had to do it)

Training Again

Out to Lee Kay again for some more training with Zac and Mac.
here are a few pics of Jager and Lola by the water. Lola checking out the scenery and Jager, Lola and Hessian doing an example of a 3 dog PLATZ Session. Good distraction!
We were working on getting the pups familiar with water, and see if we could get some swimming in, worked on searching while walking all over not saying much.
I am preparing Hessian for the Breed Show in February. Alot of heeling, trotting, whoaing,platzing and hands on handling. like a judge would do.
I have also been working on Steadiness and Down from a far distance.
Everything seems right on track. Also with the new pups, everything is right on schedule, need to get in some bunny work and time to really crack down for the VJP.

Trapped in the Desert


Went out with Hessian this last friday to hunt down some rabbits for a few guys that need them for their pups. Saw about a dozen but none within shotgun range unfortunately.
While Hessian was searching as big as he does, i heard him yelping in pain, so i ran to his location about 50 yards away and there he was with his front leg caught in this trap. Screaming and pulling, so i rush to him and see the trap, no teeth thankfully. Carefully i open the trap, he yanks his foot out and starts running around me watching what i do. He did not get hurt at all, didn't seem to bother him one bit.
I was really ticked off, Not knowing much about trapping, i've talked to a few people and been on a couple forums. It is legal, and it happens alot, dogs getting caught that is.
Just another thing to keep your eye on when in the field. You never know what you will encounter in the desert. Happy Hunting.

Kennel Question.

I added a poll just above the Post section.
I am curious about something.
I kennel Hessian in an outdoor kennel 6x6x6. Have since he was a pup. I have a small yard and as we all know the drive of this breed, i have always been concerned he would "hunt" his way out.
It is not a problem for I or the dog. He enjoys his kennel and i know he is there when i get home. Besides it has made training easier in my opinion.
My nephew and house mate has a 1 year old dog that he does not crate or kennel for personal reasons. No problem. Just curious on peoples insight as to if Hessian being kenneled, seeing this dog have free roam, in the yard, in the house, in the yard, starts to want to act up, or not always listen so hot cuz he sees this dog free.
Lately he has busted birds on more than one occassion and has started doing the old puppy race car around the yard upon being let out.
Check out the poll above and feel free to comment please.

Bad Dog Chew Toy

Just a heads up not to buy this toy for your Drahthaar.
Not sure if your DD has the same case of the OCD as Hessian but man what a powerful chewer. I had bought this toy for him to take his mind of the Lick Granuloma and in 45 minutes he had destroyed it! Good thing i was there and did not let him swallow any of it or it would have been another expensive vet bill!
Stick with the indestructible Nylabone types.
Petco was nice enough to let me return it.

Lick Granuloma

Hessian has a Lick Granuloma. This is a small sore caused by licking an area constantly. Seems that they start out small and get bigger as time and the licking go on.
The licking is caused out of frustration and drive.
When locked in a kennel day after day, separated from its owner or new things stressing the dog a high prey drive dog has been known to pick a spot and lick away.
The licking is soothing and/or sends endorphins to the brain much like satiating on a bone or toy.
If not treated the dog will lick and lick until the sore is red and infected. There is not much info on an actual cure, just antibiotics and and taking the mind of the area. Even when covering or bandaging the area it has been known for the dog to start licking on another area. The most common area is the wrist area or carpral area.
I have Hessian on Antibiotics now and have given him bones to take his mind off it. But just keep this in mind if you begin to see a pattern in your dogs licking behavior. Thought this might be interesting and help someone out if there dogs develop sores like these.
It took 160 dollars for me to find out.

Elk in West Jordan

Spotted these elk in a field in West Jordan along with the Geese! Guess someones got some domestics. pretty cool to go look at though.

LOLA!!! L-O-L-A - Lola

Pheasant Derby 2008

Headed on out to Wasatch Wings and Clays for the Pheasant Derby and what a blast!
The event started at 8 am and off we went to kill pheasants. The first two areas we tried were empty. No birds to be found. I was started to get really anxious, wondering if Hessian was even hunting for us. With an hour left into the derby we changed spots one more time. Ten minutes into this area and BAM Hessian locked up on a staunch point. Waited for me to approach and flush bird and with a few "Wait"'s from me, Hessian hung tight and waited for the bird to be shot.
Then with a "Fetch" from me off he went on the retrieve. He returns and sits, bird in hand!
We continued our course and found another rooster to our surprise in an area that had been hunted earlier.
They had some great prizes like, memberships, chukar hunts, shotguns, antelope tags, Carhart jackets, hats etc.
All in all was a great time, the guys i went with were able to win some great prizes and get a few birds.
My nephew Biz and i hung out a bit longer and picked us up 4 more birds in an hour, thanks to the help of my hunter Hessian.
One thing for certain, I learned to trust my dog! If he smells no bird then there is no bird. Good Times.

Just Added!!

Just added James Newby and Adeen vom Heuerhaus to the Fellow Addicts Slideshow.

Chukars?? Where Art Thou?

Took a drive out to the desert once again, but instead of training, we went for hunting!
Sure is nice to be able to use all the skills i have been training to real use. This was our first time out really hunting since we passed the HZP. Wish we had gone some where that had birds but of course we got skunked again.
The weather was great, and I took a few family and friends along. It was cool to be hunting behind my hunting buddy Hessian. Next time we will get those damn devil birds. Alot of hiking and beautiful scenery but where o where chukar where art thou?
Got some big plans to do some Preserve hunting this coming weekend. Hopefully that goes better! Enjoy the pics and the Video of Hessian rock climbing, just looking for Chukar like the rest of us!

Say Hello to Lola (Ice) vom Wasatch

So excited for fellow addict and close training buddy Zac, with his new pup Lola Ice vom Wasatch!
Cute little pup and Zac was ready. Starting over with a new pup and a whole new outlook on what it takes to train this breed properly. Pay attention new comers Zac has had some challenging experiences with this breed and has some good advice!
Good Luck with all the new training and i look forward to helping you out on your road to the VJP. Lets get some more pics this is the only one i have. She has been added to the Drahthaar of Ours Slideshow!
Lets Go Hunting!!!!!

HZP is over for me! Passed with a 178!

    Sorry it has been so long but right after i got home from the test I took off for the Elk hunt, but here is a post.
    Tested in my first HZP test September 28th and what an experience! The weather was warm and sunny, alot different than the HZP i watched last year. I was really nervous and not quite sure what to expect from Hessian that day. We were in a new area, sleeping in a motel room and he was going to be spending alot of time in his crate until his turn to test. Not a problem for most dogs except when Hessian's switch goes on its on and it doesn't shut off until we are home for an hour. Regardless everything went very well. 
    Did have a few scary moments,during the Field search/pointing section points were great but on retrieve found a live chukar before the dead one and took off in a chase right through a barbwire fence luckily no damage done. 
    During the rabbit drag, released well,tracked well,found rabbit turned and headed back to me. With me praising from the point i could see him till he was just a few feet away then suddenly he decides to veer right and go hang out in the bush for a few seconds then returns to me and without a sit i rushingly take the rabbit. Passed that though.
     Next during the water work, gun tolerance goes well, but on retrieve he swims in to shore stops in the water at the bank drops it, picks it up and then comes in, no sit and a give.
    On the blind retrieve, crosses over fine, finds duck quickly and then runs up and down the shore on the opposite side trying to figure how to come back, realizing i am where i can not get to him he decides to hide behind a bush, drop and damn near pluck the duck. Something clicked and he decided to swim over to my bank and again stop in the water. As i approach to take the duck he swims away and then quickly reverts and comes upon shore looking a little unsure of my mood with him. "Give". Good dog. Only one more thing to do right... How bad can it be.
     Search Behind the Duck time. I release him to fetch the duck off he goes, swimming away, goes to other side and is sniffing away. Making alot of noise here comes the duck swimming out of cover and heading down the channel, but here comes Hessian a few seconds later can't see the duck but smells it. Follows smell around corner and next thing you know 'arf arf arf ' He found it! He sees it! Barking all the way swimming after the duck, the barking gets farther and farther away til we can not hear or see anything. The judges inform me to try and call him back so i do. No success. Over and over, whistling, calling. Wondering where the hell is my flippin dog! Even the judges are whistling him now. How embarrassing right? They inform me to go take a walk along the bank calling to him and so i do and as i get to the other side. I see people waving me back to them. Hessian has returned. Whew. Over right? No, the judges still need to see a retrieve. So release Hessian into the water and they toss out a duck, he retrieves, comes back to shore, out of the water walks around me, heads back to water then slowly turns my way and sits. I hurry and take the duck. Thinking were done! But scared of not passing cause he didn't listen and would not come back.
      Come to find out it was a good thing, it showed his desire and how he will not stop or give up during a search. So done. Made it through it.
     Next time I will be sure my dog is Force Broke. Got some dings on Manner of Retrieve but still a great score! Passed with 178 Points!
    Want to say thanks to Lynn for walking along with me during my field search and hanging around waiting for me to finish each portion with advice after. It really makes a handler feel good knowing his breeder supports him.
    Also to the Judges Shane, Phil and Bruce, Thank you for an informative and fun experience, I appreciate all of our advice and calming words along the way, letting me know i was still in it and doing fine. It helps to hear those thing in a tense situation.
    And finally thanks to all the other handlers and spectators that were watching and supporting me through my first HZP. It got tense a few times there, nice to see others wishing the best and lending helpful advice. Thanks for the pics and all the crunch time training help Zac. And to my wife Carrie, thanks for all your support and letting me do what i gotta do!
Happy Hunting to all.

Talkin Bout HZP!

 My world has officially stopped. All focus is on the HZP Test this weekend. I will actually be testing Hessian on Sunday, time to see what my training efforts will produce. The HZP is the second test in the series of testing that goes on inside the VDD. In this test the dog will be judged on it's abilities as a versatile hunting dog. Much like the VJP in scoring but different in that there are added abilities to watch for as well as water work and retrieving. The subjects judged are as follows: Tracking, Use of Nose, Search, Pointing, Cooperation, Desire to Work.
Water Work consisting of Gun Tolerance, Retrieving, Blind Retrieve in Dense Cover, Search Behind the Duck.
 Retrieving of Furred Game, Feathered Game, Manner of Retrieve, and Obedience. The biggest part of training should have been accomplished by this time.
  My best advice to those looking or getting there pups would be to join the VDD, research, and involve yourself with the testing system. I know it might not be for all people, in fact i wasn't sure if it was for me,but this is a breed of dog that is not for everyone too. These are high drive dogs bred to hunt. That is what they live and breathe to do, it takes a bit more patience, perseverance,and commitment to training and knowledge of dogs and dog behavior. These are not for the light hearted or sensitive souls and in my experience being part of an organization like the VDD who's members,breeders and judges will go that extra way to help another out is very commendable. I would not know where to begin training a Drahthaar without help.
  I am extremely nervous for Sunday, I have trained myself and Hessian so hard I just don't want to fail. My biggest concern arose last week when it finally occurred to me that maybe Hessian is not Force Broke yet. Causing a bit of concern on my part wondering what will happen will he bring the duck,bird or rabbit back? Another would be my choice of using the E collar as much as i did i may have screwed up a bit there, not only has he grown wise to it i have become dependant on it and unsure of what my dog will do without it. I have 2 days till i find out. 
 Advice to those who do plan on testing: Start now. Whether you have a pup now or on the way. If waiting on pups start your research, start reading, start calling people and going with others to watch tests or training. If you already have a pup start conditioning it to retrieve, track, use its senses, and obey. Teach your pup who is in charge all the time, no question. Do not let it get the best of you be dominate and controlling. Of course let it be a puppy but make sure it understands you let it. Start dragging hot dogs or meat and teaching the dog to follow its trail to the prize. Teach it to use its nose and smell a planted bird a few feet away and watch that pup point! Take photos and let it soak up those points no rush. Teach it to chase after a frozen bird you toss and praise joyfully the first time it brings the bird back. Get it in the water alot and soon, those little back yard pools are great. Start firing a cap gun or making loud noise, start showing it what sit,down, stay and come mean. Take it's food from it at random, turn on its back and hold it there, play with its muzzle and teeth and ears and do not let it get angry about any of it. Most of all love your pup, exercise your pup for soon you too will be nervous for your HZP. 
Good luck all be seeing some of you in 2 days.

New Additions

I added some stuff to the links section. I now have links to vom Wasatch and vom Moorehaus now. I really like these sites for the great pics and information. vom Moorehaus has a ton of info on there.I urge you to check them out.
I also added a few new forum links, just easy access to some of the forums that i like to visit and see what everyone is talking about these days. Utah Bird Dog forum had changed its address so i updated that and also added Gun Dog forum. Have fun visiting those. All my Reading and Viewing Material is now linked to a source too.
There are some new dogs on the Drahthaar of Ours slideshow.
The Fellow Addicts Slide show has changed also with some new faces from the VGP. I added Steve and Ace, Todd and Beth, Blake and Eddo, and also Jeff and Corinna. Take a peek, and next time you see them don't forget to remind them they are now famous!

VGP Slideshow

It took a while but hopefully i got it right. I made a video with all the pictures Zac sent me,even addded some music, I hope everyone enjoys it, It has a little of everything. The only thing there are no photos of is the bloodtracking portion, as we could not tag along during this test. All the judges and coordinators did a great job in my opinion to plan and prepare this test. The handlers did very well in preparing there dogs for this test also. All handlers and judges had a nice big camp spot set aside up Logan Canyon near Bear Lake and the areas the test took place was perfect hunting country. Perfect for a hunt test. Great job everyone, you guys put on a great show.All 8 of 8 dogs passed. Keep up the good work judges that is a tough gig, maybe i will join in the fun of judging one day.
It's back to training for me, HZP in 7 days so enjoy the video.

Wild West Chapter VGP

Headed out to Logan Canyon to watch the VGP this weekend and WOW is the only way i can describe it. Absolutely amazing what these dogs can do. Anything. They are a true hunting dog through and through.
All will be talking about this VGP for a while because it was one of the better in years. All handlers and dogs were well prepped and all 8 dogs that tested passed.
One of the more amazing shows was Scott Doxey and his dog Gracie who completed the overnight bloodtracking and also the Dead Game Guide portion. Really put on a clinic style performance.
Congrats to all handlers and dogs. It really goes to show that all your hard work and determination in training does pay off. There really is alot involved you should all be very proud of this accomplishment. Thanks to the judges and coordinators who put on a great show, that is some hard work and dedication to the breed.More to come as soon as possible. There is alot of photos and alot to be discussed.
I will try to post more promptly but I am also prepping for the HZP so please be patient,
Enjoy these for now......

Training with the Breed Warden

Last night I took a drive on out to Hooper and met up with Lynn Whiteley of von der Salzmarsch
Who also is the Breed Warden for the VDD. He too is preparing his dog Giza for the HZP. It was nice to get together and have him show me a few pointers and tips from an old school perspective.
We worked with both dogs on some Search behind the duck, and some drags. Everything went well I learned a few thing i need to work on but also exactly how to work on them.
I need to concentrate more on some drag work and a few more live duck searches. Hessian's live duck search went well except i need to keep him from hanging around on my side of the water and get him to go to the other side to search. His drag tracking needs some work. He followed the drag well but marked the drag object several times deciding instead of fetching it up he would search around some more. I need to get on him for not being near enough afraid of coming back to me with nothing. Easy stuff to work on so i know what i will be doing this week.
Thanks Lynn for all your help you have no idea how much it opened my eyes.
To all interested planning on going out this weekend for some training. I will let everyone know via email but just a heads up.
Also added Lynn's and Giza's pictures to both slideshows take a look.

New Faces!

Just added Doug and Elmo vom Fuchsfluesschen also Mac and Harley (Jager) vom Wasatch to the Fellow Addicts Slideshow.
As well as just Elmo and Harley to the Drahthaar of Ours Slideshow.
Thanks for submitting your pics guys! The addiction thanks you!

New Photos Added

I have added some new faces to the Fellow Addicts slideshow and the Drahthaar of Ours slideshow. Look for Nate and Jager vom Wasatch, Scott and Gracie vom Felsengebirge, Mike and Eik vom Felsengebirge, Matt and Bryndis vom Uintah also Ron and Nick vom Wasatch.
On Drahthaar of Ours look for the same dog faces without the handler. Thanks guys it was fun,plan on getting together soon and good luck with all your training and testing. Its almost time to concentrate on hunting!
Don't see YOUR picture(s) on any of the slideshow? Don't blame me, send me your photos and I will post them. Come on, don't ya want to be cool and be able to say "My picture is on the Drahthaar Addiction page!"

Dove Hunt '08'

Headed out west cuz i wanna be a cowboy baby!.....Not. Actually headed out for the opening of the dove hunt! The weather was trying to scare us away but we were not having it. Got to our favorite little watering hole, set up our decoys and found a hole to crawl into behind some bushes. It was a bit chilly and cloudy most the time and even though the sun would peek out in spurts it stayed chilly. To our surprise the doves kept coming in, we thought they would have been headed out of town, maybe we just caught them on thier way out. Whatever the case may be it was the best i had in 2 years, and with a dog that can and will retrieve it makes it that much more fun. I was able to turn it into a small training session working on "Hold" and almost every one was a blind retrieve that helps train as well as basic obedience prepping up for the duck blind ie lay down and stay still. We all had a great time, bagged our share of doves and headed back home.
PICS ABOVE: Bizkit and Todd w/Hessian and our Doves, Hessian holding,
Hessian holding again, Last two Pics are My hunting buddy chilling shotgun in the Jeep ready for action!

HZP / VGP Training

Saturday went out to Lee Kay once again for some training with the ugly dogs and come to think of it not much better looking handlers! Some of us were there to train for HZP and some there to prepare for the VGP. Had some ducks and some chukars and went to work. All together betweem everyone there the subjects worked on were some Search Behind The Duck,Furred Game Drags,Blind Duck Retrieves,Gun Tolerance,Pointing,Steadiness to Shot,BloodTracking and even Dead Game Guide! Learned alot once again, watched some dogs get trained by some great guys met a few new faces and matched them to the dogs we've already heard about! How bad is that when you've heard of the dog before the owner? ! Pretty amusing!
Watched Gracie vom Felsengebirge do a fantastic 17 hour Bloodtrack and as a finale Dead Game Guide work. truly amazing once again showing the true versatility of the Drahthaar. Also watched as Jager vom Wasatch held some tight points stayed steady and retrieved some shot birds as well as Bryndis vom Uintah with great tracking and retrieves on furred game drag and a nice search behind the duck. Ron was there just to watch all the activities and learn about what experiences they are in for with his new pup Nick (Hanks) vom Wasatch. Was able to do some duck work with Hessian and also work on a furred drag as well as get a few points and retrieves out of him. I am concerned about a few things like the fact that he killed the duck and has done this more than once now,wants to pluck birds on retrieves and dropped twicw in the last two weeks. Things that i can hopefully work out before our test but if not thats ok fail or pass i have a great hunter. After all thats what we all want isn't it?
PICS ABOVE: Hessian and Jager cooling off, Some of the guys spectating and helping.
Nate and Mike working with Jager's steady to shot, Jager on point.
Ron's new pup Nick- Hanks vom Wasatch.

Blind Retrieve Video Follow Up

This video is of a Blind Retrieve kind of a long vid but shows alot. This gets back to my previous statement about the frustration i had with his water/ land retrieve. He starts out great. In the water like he is supposed to then once on the other side gets out and begins a land search only finding nothing, returns to the water and upon finding it will retrieve well. I am not certain if this will be ok for the HZP test. He is searching even though out of the water. And upon finding returns the fastest way he can find which in this case was faster to bring by land. I think he has a good manner of retrieve but just not sure if this is test material.
I took him out yesterday on the Jordan River and did some blinds that in my opinion went very well. I wish i had got footage of that. I would throw the duck across the river without him seeing it and then send him after it. Instantly he begins checking the dense cover on our side of the river then swims across and instantly checks the dense cover on the other side. I can hear him using his nose and then i can tell when he smells it because it is a hard, fast swim to where the duck is held up with a great retrieve. To me this shows great marking ability by Hessian to know that that dense cover is where to look first. Again please bring the comments, advice,criticism. Thanks in advance.

Gunfire Sensitivity Video

I am figuring out what it takes to post videos here but it takes alot of time and some computer finesse, which i do not have. I have to record the movie on the camera, convert the file, make it into a movie on a program, save it to a flash drive then upload to the blog. Hope this works for everyone to see.
This is a video on more training i have done, just checking to see if Hessian has any gun sensitivity in water. The answer is no. There is a Dokkens dummy in the water that he has seen, I command "fetch" and off he goes, I fire a shot at the dummy to check. Not exactly sure if i am doing this right but it is pretty much what I saw at the last HZP.
Also not to sure what the high pitch bark is about. He only does it if he can see the object i have sent him after. Could this be considered Loud on Sight? Not sure. Remember comments, criticism, and advice are all welcome here. Don't be shy.

Blind Retrieve Video From 8-23

This is just some footage of what i did this weekend to show where i am in my training, still alot of work to do,I have more than one video, but this one shows what is a bit frustrating to me. I have placed a duck out in the cover and send Hessian to retrieve.
The idea is to have him enter the water and begin a search, upon smelling he is to go to and retrieve. The thing that is frustrating me is that he will enter the water, than exit the water and retrieve or re enter the water, retrieve and return to me on land. Not a problem for hunting but not quite sure if it will fly for the HZP test.I will try to post the other videos so more can be seen but if anyone has any comments,advice or criticism it will be eagerly accepted.


 O.K Everyone the new stickers have made it! A bit larger print and all in one piece now i will be sending these out to all of you that i had sent the originals to. If you have not ordered yours yet now is your chance to represent your addiction! The stickers are cool and the price is perfect. FREE!!! Look for the ad on the top right side under the slideshows and you will see instructions to order. If you ordered one before I will automatically send you a few new ones. Thanks

Honeymoon Is Over Time To Concentrate On Whats Really Important

 Now a married man and back from our honeymoon in Jackson Hole. Had a great time eating great food like buffalo and elk, shopping for souvenirs, bar hopping daily,taking scenic drives, horseback riding and river rafting. We were able to see some wildlife, moose, deer, osprey, bald eagle,grouse. But now it is time to concentrate on test training. I think Force Fetch is complete and need to really get on training the test aspect of retrieve. I have frozen ducks to work with but will need to get some live ones for training search behind the duck. I also need to do a refresher course in pointing and will be working on drag tracks now so i will be in search of the elusive bunny rabbit once again. My next month will consist of HZP training, and hopefully some hunting too. I hope to be able to use the few hunts before the test as a training crutch, we'll see how things go. I am really nervous about this test,more nervous than my own wedding day! Not sure if I will have enough time to prepare the way i would like. That is all for now, more to come on what the HZP consists of and how we are training for it. Good luck to all others preparing for the test too!