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Training Tips

Here's how we make the most of each hunt
Training Tips

Categories:

Advanced, Basic, Hound, Puppy, Upland, Waterfowl

Black lab getting pets from trainerBlack lab getting pets from trainer

Poor Performance in Bird Dogs

by The SportDOG Staff

Your bird dog has been a strong, eager hunter with lots of pizzazz and snap, but now he has lost that snap, speed and stamina. He still eats well, is bright and alert and has normal bowel movements. Have you over-trained the dog or is it poor nutrition, heartworms or...

Draathar running through snowDraathar running through snow

Rigors of a Tough Hunting Season

by The SportDOG Staff

During the 2009-2010 hunting season, most of us endured our most interesting upland season in quite some time. The entire country experienced unique weather conditions this fall and winter. Hard winters often turn most of our thoughts and concerns towards, "how are the birds going to make it"? A question...

yellow lab in orange collar sitting behind tall grass looking to skyyellow lab in orange collar sitting behind tall grass looking to sky

Tips For Dove Hunting And Gun Dogs

by The SportDOG Staff

There are many things that you should do to prepare you and your dog for opening day of dove season. For most of us in the south, it is still very hot during dove season. The most important thing is to keep yourself and your dog hydrated! There are all...

Watch for Man walking German Shorthair Pointer at heel with leash and e-collarBehaviorWatch for Man walking German Shorthair Pointer at heel with leash and e-collarBehavior

Watch for Displacement Behavior

by Charlie Jurney

No matter what breed of dog you’re training, at some point the dog will try any number of tricks to avoid giving up its alpha position. Yawning, scratching, sniffing, head shaking and licking are all ways in which your dog will attempt to delay performing a command. Your dog may...

Yellow lab puppy in back of SUV with window openYellow lab puppy in back of SUV with window open

What Does “Socializing” Your Puppy Mean?

by Tom Dokken

You hear a lot about “socializing” your puppy, but what does that mean and why is it important? Socializing is actually training. By that I mean that every time you are with your puppy he is learning something. You need to make sure he’s learning what you want him to...

Yellow lab laying down calmly in crateYellow lab laying down calmly in crate

4 Good Reasons to Crate-Train Your Dog

by Rick Grant

One of the first things you should do when you get a new puppy is get him used to spending time in his crate, or portable kennel. If your dog lives in the house, the crate is a good place for him to be when you don’t want him underfoot....

Yellow lab laying down being petted while in crateYellow lab laying down being petted while in crate

Understanding Canine Influenza

by The SportDOG Staff

If you have been watching the news lately or reading metropolitan newspapers, you may have noticed articles about a “new” flu outbreak in dogs. In some sections of the country, veterinarians are reporting a near-panic situation around this canine flu news. Here are the facts. Canine Influenza Virus is a relatively...

Yellow lab running through tall grassYellow lab running through tall grass

Introducing Your Retriever to Upland Hunting

by Rick Grant

One of the most common questions I’m asked when I’m doing training demonstrations for SportDOG is this one: “How do I keep my retriever hunting in range?” Without a doubt, keeping your dog from getting too far out in front of you when he gets on the scent of a...

Yellow lab sitting in field.Yellow lab sitting in field.

Training Your Retriever for Double Duty

by Charlie Jurney

If you own a waterfowl dog, chances are that sooner or later you’re going to ask it to perform upland duty. It might be a pheasant hunt as a sideline to your Dakota duck hunt, or maybe an afternoon of quail hunting after a morning goose hunt. Most retrievers handle...

man petting black lab dog on tailgateman petting black lab dog on tailgate

Where to Find a Dog with the Right Stuff - Part 3

by Charlie Jurney

I talked about getting the pick of the litter in Part 2 of this article series. Now you have to decide whether you want a started dog or a finished dog. So now you know what you’re looking for in a puppy, but what if you do not want to deal...

Setter with orange e-collar on with grouse in mouth.Setter with orange e-collar on with grouse in mouth.

Early Season Grouse Hunting

by Aaron Robinson

The 2010 hunting season is just around the corner, and in many states the Sharp-tailed grouse and Partridge season are the first to kick off. This is where our summer dog training and conditioning finally materializes, or so we hope. Dogs at this time are usually accustomed to liberated birds...

Yellow lab in orange e-collar behind tall yellow grass.Yellow lab in orange e-collar behind tall yellow grass.

Getting Your Retriever in the Thick of Things

by Rick Grant

If you were going to go pheasant hunting on a farm where you’d never been before, where would you start your search? You would probably head for the thickest cover because you know that’s where birds feel safest and therefore tend to hang out the most, right? Well, when you...

man walking with black lab on leash while hold training dummiesman walking with black lab on leash while hold training dummies

Straight Talk About Protein for Hunting Dogs

by The SportDOG Staff

As I travel across the country attending field trials, visiting kennels and hunting, I get a lot of questions about dog food for some reason. One topic that stimulates many questions is protein quality and protein’s role in dog nutrition. Protein is required by the body for two reasons: To provide...

German Shorthair Point at heel by trainerGerman Shorthair Point at heel by trainer

Talent Is Not Obedience

by The SportDOG Staff

Whoa! Can your hunting dog “whoa” or stop on a dime? Does it always come when called? Will it turn on command or always sit or lie down when instructed? Will it gently deliver a bird to your hand without chewing the least little bit? Good bird dogs have been...

lady kneeling on ground petting two black lab puppieslady kneeling on ground petting two black lab puppies

Where to Find a Dog with the Right Stuff - Part 1

by Charlie Jurney

Each time someone calls to ask about locating a puppy, I have flashbacks to my first dog, Sam. I purchased Sam from a friend who had an athletic eager hunting dog. He decided to breed his girl to a very nice looking male whose ancestors found fame in the show...

Young chocolate lab jumping on bumper with trainer in background holding check cordYoung chocolate lab jumping on bumper with trainer in background holding check cord

When Your Dog Should Enter the Hunt

by The SportDOG Staff

Young dogs take a while to develop into the hunting or field trial champion you want. Your knowledge that the pup you chose is from proven hunting stock is just the beginning. I have been spoiled. During hunting and field trial seasons, I have always had older, veteran dogs to rely...

AUTHORS

Dokken brings more than 45 years of retriever-training experience to the SportDOG team. He is well known as the inventor of Dokken’s Deadfowl Trainer, which has become standard equipment for retriever trainers everywhere. He is the owner of Dokken Dog Supply and Dokken’s Oak Ridge Kennels, the largest gun dog...Dokken brings more than 45 years of retriever-training experience to the SportDOG team. He is well known as the inventor of Dokken’s Deadfowl Trainer, which has become standard equipment for retriever trainers everywhere. He is the owner of Dokken Dog Supply and Dokken’s Oak Ridge Kennels, the largest gun dog...

Tom Dokken

16 articles

Dokken brings more than 45 years of retriever-training experience to the SportDOG team. He is well known as the inventor of Dokken’s Deadfowl Trainer, which has become standard equipment for retriever trainers everywhere. He is the owner of Dokken Dog Supply and Dokken’s Oak Ridge Kennels, the largest gun dog...

Raised in the Finger Lakes area of New York State, Jim was involved in hunting and birddogs from an early age. Upon graduation from college, he joined the US Army in 1967. He served until 1989, retiring at the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. After his retirement, Jim and his wife...Raised in the Finger Lakes area of New York State, Jim was involved in hunting and birddogs from an early age. Upon graduation from college, he joined the US Army in 1967. He served until 1989, retiring at the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. After his retirement, Jim and his wife...

LTC Jim Morehouse

6 articles

Raised in the Finger Lakes area of New York State, Jim was involved in hunting and birddogs from an early age. Upon graduation from college, he joined the US Army in 1967. He served until 1989, retiring at the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. After his retirement, Jim and his wife...

Greg McGuffin has been professionally training hunting dogs for 8 years.  3 years ago he and his family sold their house in Tulsa, Oklahoma and decided to dive head first into Retriever Training.  They now live on the 2,000 acre family ranch in south central Oklahoma where Greg, his wife,...Greg McGuffin has been professionally training hunting dogs for 8 years.  3 years ago he and his family sold their house in Tulsa, Oklahoma and decided to dive head first into Retriever Training.  They now live on the 2,000 acre family ranch in south central Oklahoma where Greg, his wife,...

Greg McGuffin

1 article

Greg McGuffin has been professionally training hunting dogs for 8 years.  3 years ago he and his family sold their house in Tulsa, Oklahoma and decided to dive head first into Retriever Training.  They now live on the 2,000 acre family ranch in south central Oklahoma where Greg, his wife,...

man and dog and trophiesman and dog and trophies

Lyle Steinman

2 articles

Lyle Steinman began his competitive career at the age of eight, traveling all over the United States showing cattle. He won more than 300 championships on the county, state, and national levels throughout the following 10 years. Lyle competed with Labradors as an amateur for many years before turning a...


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