I miss Jake again.
I miss Jake again.
you should have no problems getting her in the water it will be getting her out.. might just sit in the canoe in your yard and teach her not to get out. the floater vest thing might would be a good idea depending on water temp and how far from shore you might be planning to me.
As been already said, getting into the water won't be a problem. Avoid any bad experiences; currents, aquatic vegetation, problem dogs, etc. early on and keep it simple. Go to a quiet pond where you know there is a shallow shoreline with no submerged stuff and just walk her along the edge. She will either follow along in the water or tear off out for a swim. Those temp's should not be a problem for an introduction, just follow her lead. The canoe/boat intro could be a bit more work. Get her comfortable with the canoe on the lawn so it is nothing special and get her to sit still in it before putting her and the boat in the water. Then she will have an idea what is expected of her in the boat and she (and you) can enjoy the ride. Sit/stay/come commands are the same on land and on the water. I've hunted with dogs with and without vests. If it is really cold (well subfreezing), long winter days, lots of long retrieves or in aggressive vegetation it makes a difference but depends on the dog. Some dogs seem calmer with a vest even in mild winter weather. Dogs have been retrieving birds long before neoprene. Enjoy and let her know your having fun!
Barbecue is like a coquettish young woman, favoring only those suitors who ply her with considerable time and attention.
- Bob Garner
teaching my dog to stay more than about 5 seconds is being a challenge. She is a smart pup but that part is the one I am working now the wife and I are finding it is easier to work with her after taking her to a dog park to play for about 2 hours
"An armed society is a polite society." Robert Heinlein
I can refer you to a couple of good pro trainers if you'd like. If you're more interested in doing the training yourself then there are two good modern hunt trainers with books and videos I recommend. Mike Lardy's Total Retriever system and Evan Graham's Smartworks series both are excellent step by step approaches to training your dog for everything they might encounter in the field. And as an added bonus a properly field trained dog will have all of the formal obedience necessary to be a wonderful (and obedient) family companion as well. Both have clips of their videos on youtube to check out and see whose philosophy you like better. Personally I like Mike Lardy's approach better but either one will, if you follow their program, help you train your dog into an excellent hunting dog.
whatever training book or video you decide to use stick with it don't be jumping around. you have got to get the obedience training done. your local petsmart will have group traing. basically they train you and give you homework for the next week. heel, stay, sit, down, come and whoa (immediate stop) are a must. also be sure she is trained by both of you so she understands the commands from either of you. once you get the obedience training solid and want to get into some of the hunting stuff look for your local NAVHDA great group to learn and train with. I live in the sticks and when I got my first German Shorthaired Pointer I hired a local trainer who came out every friday for an hour or so and would review last weeks homework and walk me through what and how to do next. I think it was 6 or 8 weeks. that was the best $$$ I ever spent.
WHATEVER YOU DO.. DO NOT THINK THAT USING AN E-COLLAR IS A SHORTCUT TO ACTUAL TRAINING!!
Last edited by Blue Raccoon; 12-02-2011 at 08:44 AM.
It takes quite a bit of training, but you would be surprised by how much of their instinct will take over. Kody's retrieving instinct is really strong, so that part of it was easy. And it really is a lot of fun for both the dog and the owner. And you can train a lab to different levels. It's up to you to just teach the basics or you can teach advanced kind of stuff. Just depends on what you want to do. My advice is to start with basics and just worry about that for now (I just used the book "Game Dog"), and then go from there. If you really get into it, then you can go further and teach advanced stuff.
If you have any questions, feel free to pm me. But I am no dog training expert, just to warn ya. Kody is my first lab and he retrieves birds. That's about as good as it gets with us two. Lol!
"When you become senile, you won't know it." -Bill Cosby
I've never seen a Lab or a Chessy that was afraid of water,as others have said,teach her stay,you'll have more trouble keeping her in the canoe and getting her out of the water.
Labs and Goldens were bred to absolutely LOVE the water. My in-laws have a black lab and a golden mix, and those poor dogs would swim and fetch tennis balls from the water until they drowned from exhaustion. We always have to be really careful to watch how tired they get, because they'll keep going and going until they sink like stones.
Nobody's mentioned it yet, but you might want to tie a length of thin rope to your lab's collar when you go out. If she tips the boat over or not, she still might jump out and take off for something interesting. Tying the rope off to a pin on the boat will keep her from getting away from you. Labs have webbed feet, as someone else said, but they can swim faster than a duck if they have a mind to.
~Matt "I'm writing a book about reverse psychology. Please, don't buy it."
My female black lab was 10 months old before she wanted to swim.
I would take her and my Malamute to a mountain lake and the Malamute (most won't swim) was swimming away with the Lab pacing back and forth on the shoreline. One fisherman got a real kick out of that sight.
At 10 months something switched inside her and now it takes a lot of attention to keep her out of the water.
Having a piece of land on a small lake, I was always jealous of my neighbors who all had labs and who had so much fun with them in the water. My dog at the time (not a lab) would have nothing to do with swimming. Fast forward some years and for my 50th birthday my family had me pick out a choc lab pup. My fear at the time was with my luck I'd have the only lab who doesn't like the water....well never fear, from the moment he came home he was into the brook that runs through our property and the following spring he was jumping off our dock after frisbees. I agree with other posters, the problem you'll most likely have is getting her out of the water. My guy would live all summer in that lake.
One other bit of advice is to make sure her ears are dried with a small towel as best you can after water time is over. My guy has had several ear infections when we've forgotten to do this.
Should be instinctive. My non-hunting Lab would chase a stick/ball into the lake anytime of the year.
to add to the good advice above.
Labs are easy to train if you understand what drives them. All they want to do is please you............and eat LOL
make training fun and focus on praise when she is doing what you want. repeat repeat repeat.
using small treats when first introducing her to the canoe will help, you could even try giving her meal in the canoe a few times.
hope you enjoy your trip with mans best friend.
It would be nice to see a photo or two of your trip.