Hip Dysplasia and "Fetch"


The time has come to really think of the future with testing and breeding of Hessian. Before the HZP i need to have his hips x-rayed for HD (Hip Dysplasia). There are very specific instructions for the vet on what the Germans expect the x-ray to look like, sometimes not every vet can get it right. These instructions are available to download and print at the VDD-GNA Website. I would recommend doing your research to find a vet that has maybe done this for the VDD before. If not you could end up with my headache. These x rays can get expensive, so I am currently in the dilemma of hoping the 2 x-rays i have will be sufficient if not i think my testing days are over due to the cost of more x-rays.  I have attached a few pics of my x-rays, Note that neither one is actually correct but I am hoping they can see what they need to between the two of them. Hope this works, more on this to come.
  As for Force Fetch, it seems to be going well. I have officially started "Fetch" now and Hessian is currently sitting still, waiting for my command to "fetch", and then fetching out to about 6-8 feet with me still holding the object. After fetching i will "sit" him, walk away, call him to me into a "heel" and we walk with him holding, then it's "sit" again and look at me then" give", and repeat with all objects. I have been doing this with bumpers and a fox tail for now but think i will soon move to frozen then thawed game. Then i can delve deeper into it and began making him fetch up off the ground.I have been doing this training still by e collar and it seems to be getting through to him well. No pics of this right now but i am working on a short video showing my progression. More to come soon on this topic as well.

Father's Day Fishing

Got a few of the fathers and sons out for a day of fishing at Strawberry Reservoir. Sure did enjoy ourselves. We rented a pontoon boat for the day and took off for some trolling early in the morning till 7 that night. It was a gorgeous day, sunny, warm with a little breeze. The fishing was alot slower than we had expected but we all had a blast. Pop caught the most fish so that makes it worth it! Can't wait to get back out and do it again. Here's a pic of Bizkit with his fish and my dad with one of his. Wish i could of got more pics but someone had to drive the boat! 

"Hold" in Pleasant Valley

Took another trip out East to Pleasant Valley to get some tips and an evaluation on all the training I've been doing from the guru's. Met up with a couple fellow addicts and their dogs.... Zac and Grizz and Justin and Kaz.Everything is going very well! We are right on track! Those are nice words to hear when you are new to handling dogs. Turned out to be great weather, we were wondering at first. Hessian got to go for a real run chasing four wheelers, behind the pack now i bet a few more sessions of that and he will be leading. Was able to get there impression of his search and basic obedience, he even Platzed(down with chin on ground) when fellow addict Zac just spoke it in conversation! Impressive. We were able to get the HN certification done and over with, just waiting on the paper trail now. HN is a toughness certification (Haertenachweis) in which the dog must demonstrate its fearlessness and toughness in the face of furred predator or feral game in a hunting situation. All part of the breeding system and mandatory for breeding certification. Next on the agenda for breed certification is the Hip Dysplasia where i will need to have x rays of his hips examined in Germany, more on this later.
 I was also able to get some tips on FF. I found out that during my training of the "hold" command I was repeating it over and over, (hold, hold, hold...) and saying hold before i put it in the dogs mouth, that is fetch.Hold means hold whatever i tell you too, fetch means reach for it, go get it, on one command only. So after a few tries we were opening the mouth placing the object inside commanding hold once and walking with it. Excellent! Also got help transferring over from the ear pinch method to e collar, which i think is especially important because on "hold" if item is dropped it needs to be an instant correction and I find this much easier than fumbling around to grab the dogs ear. We have been practicing since and as you can see in these photos he is holding everything now, no mouthing no dropping and he is more comfortable in the holding situation. Just about ready to move to fetch!
 Last two notes. Grizz is looking great, training is going well, running with the pack and closely behind the leader who was Nic. Searching well, whoaing and obeying nicely. FF has officially began for him too with hold introduced this weekend!
 Received an email from a man named Jim today (posted in this posts comment section) wanted to talk to me. Talked with him for quite a while doesn't have a dog yet but is addicted none the less.He has been doing his research and enjoyed the sites info. People like this is exactly why I started the page. Looking for a pup now and hope to see him around soon.
 Thanks again Jon and Brian see you soon!
 Oh ya check out the slideshow Fellow Addicts i have added 3 more Jon, Brian and Justin with dogs.

Force Fetch Update (Hold Training)

 Since my last post on FF. I found out I was skipping a major step in my training. I think as a beginning handler I am anxious to get to the final product therefore causing me to hurry through and skip steps. FF training is not something that should be rushed, take time, baby steps and real time progression will be noticed.
 So what happened was I skipped hold almost all together I used "fetch" instead and had him holding only bumpers, it was working well actually had him lunging for the bumper right away and before long even going away from me to fetch bumper. He would hold bumpers great with a little bit of mouthing. Thats where the skipped steps reared it's ugly head. After getting the advice of others I started over with "hold". The problem was he would fetch a bumper or hold a bumper with some mouthing, no mouthing allowed! And never being introduced to fur or feathers there was no way he would fetch up a bird or rabbit. So out came the Tri Tronics trained retrieve dvd! I have been following that method by the book. I must say everything is really working out much better. I currently have him heeling while holding everything from bumpers to pipes to frozen ducks,chukars,pheasants, frozen rabbits and fox tails! Oh he was definitely hesitant at first with all these things but most definitely the fur. As you can see in these photos this was the beginning of the frozen game hold training he is not happy. Expect any dog to be reluctant at first but with constant repetition it will soon pass. Fur is the biggest obstacle to get past in hold training in my opinion. I will update soon with photos of our progress as of now. Good Luck to any of you who are currently in the process of this same training. Don't forget to send those photos or info on your training.