For the next installment in our “cocker spaniel, you’ve-got-to-see-this video series”, check out this one from Nick Ridley over in the UK. Over there, they use spaniels to hunt rabbits. The vid is shot with a drone, and if you watch closely you’ll spot bunnies bolting from the cover, unseen by the shooter.
God, this video makes me envious: Of the countryside, of the experience, and most of all, of the dogs. Running birds can frazzle a pointing dog. This setter handles them like she’s done it a million times.
I was up in northern NH last weekend visiting Lexi. She’s about 1/2 through her summer training program, and she’s just starting to get out in the woods to chase wild birds. She turning int great bird dog — very easy handling and a real strong bird finder.
I took her out for a couple hours and hit a few spots. Lexi moved 3-4 grouse. I only heard the birds. The woods were too thick for me to see a thing. Here’s a quick vid of Lexi plus some pics of what we saw (and a vid of a slithering little guy we came across). Enjoy.
Has anyone ever seen pointers like this in the US? The ones in this video are fantastic looking dogs. Maybe I’m seeing things, but they look a bit different from most EPs I’ve seen over here – leggier, deeper in the chests, and with blockier, squarer heads. Their points are lot different, too. They do get the job done, though.
I like a dog that points, and when it points I want it to look proud, confident and sure. Take a look at these pointers to see what I mean. These are POINTS! — the kind of dog work that’s thrilling to look at and shoot over.
The New York Times ran an interesting article last Wednesday titled Feeding Your Canine Athlete. Here are few points I pulled from the piece:
“Many people who run or walk with their dogs treat them like human running partners, offering them sips of Gatorade or half of a sports bar during a workout. But the latest science about performance nutrition for canines underscores that dogs are not people.”
Q. Does that mean feed it (a dog) like a human runner?
A. No. Humans and dogs fuel exercise very differently…Dogs burn fat as their primary endurance fuel, and carbohydrates are not very important for them.
Q. So there’s no reason to give a dog a sports bar, which is full of carbohydrates, during a run?
A. No. Same for those gel packets…Fat is the fuel for performance dogs.
Q. What about protein? How important is it?
A. Vital. Athletic dogs need protein to build and maintain muscle. In general, their diet should consist of at least 25 percent protein, preferably from meat.
My new English Pointer Lexi is almost 21 weeks old now, and she’s growing fast. She’s up to 20lbs – almost 1/2 of how much she’ll eventually weigh – and her dexterity and coordination is improving. Training wise, she knows her name, and she’s picking up some basic commands: Come, Down, and NO (she hear’s that one a lot). I’ve been working on getting her to turn and quarter on command, too, and she’s picked it up very quickly.
Here are a couple videos of her. I shot this first one last Sunday. This was Lexi’s first time in thick, weedy cover, with limited visibility, and it took her a little while to get used to it.
I shot this next video on Tuesday. This is Lexi’s first visit to the local doggie daycare facility. While Lexi has been exposed to lots of other dogs, she’s seen this many at once. This video was shot within minutes of her being introduced to the pack. Lexi handled the situation very well.
These are all things our new pup Lexi loves to chew on. We’re on day six with her, and so far Lexi is sleeping through the night, and we’re not having any messes in her crate or in the house. The chewing and the nipping is a bit of an issue, but I’m sure it will resolve itself soon.
For all you out there who’ve raised a pup before: What tips and advice do you have for us? What did you do right? And what do you wish you had done differently? Please let us know.
Check out this issue of Nova Science Now : How Smart Are Dogs?, hosted by the big brained Neil deGrasse Tyson. It tells the story of Chaser, a Border Collie who’s pretty darn smart. The video is a bit long, but it’s worth watching just to see how much a dog can learn to do.
by Geoffery Norman – Alabama – Garden & Gun, October/November 2013
For Ramin Jackson, training a gundog doesn’t start with shouting and shock collars. It starts with getting to know his pupil
The turnoff was five miles from Union Springs, a name that doesn’t mean much unless you care about bird dogs. In that case it means a lot. Resonates, I suppose, the same way the name Bordeaux does for people who care hopelessly about wine. Union Springs, which is about forty-five miles east of Montgomery in the Alabama Black Belt, is known as the field trial capital of the world. A bronze statue in the town square depicts not the usual Confederate infantryman but an English pointer, standing staunchly with head high and tail straight…
Here’s a dog I haven’t heard of before: The Sprocker. It’s a cross between a Springer Spaniel and a Cocker Spaniel.
According to SprockerSpaniel.co.uk, Sprockers have been around for over 2o years, and there are between 5,000 – 10,000 of them in the UK, making one of the most popular spaniel breeds there.
Other than color variations, I’m not sure what advantages a Sprocker offers, and I don’t understand what niche they fill in the gundog world. Is it a leggy, rangier Cocker? A stockier, close-hunting Springer? If you have one, please let me know. I would love to learn more.
Check out this short video to see Little Jeb go from wild to steady — right before your very eyes! Here’s a bit about the video from the folks at GunDogDevelopment.com: A chronology of Little Jeb’s steadiness training. Over the last six months, we anxiously waited for him to show us that he was ready to be steadied on game. This video journal, begining May 25, 2013 captures all of his training sessions up to July 13, 2013. All of the clips are in sequence to show his progression.
Although edited, all of the benchmarks to move him through the program have been included. Little Jeb received one E-collar correction in the at the finally. If you watch closely, you can see a slight twitch in his tail when the correction occurred.