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Problem Gun Dogs by Bill Tarrant

Learn how to identify and correct your dog's faults.

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Code: 10423
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Problem Gun Dogs back cover

Copyright 1992, 180 pages, softcover, b/w photos

This book picks up where other books leave off by teaching handlers how to correct flaws in a dog's behavior in the field.

What is a problem gun dog? "A perfectly trained dog is that dog with only those problems you'll put up with. If the dog has a problem you can't stand -- then that is a problem." -- Bill Tarrant

In reviewing basic training techniques for bird dogs, Tarrant discusses the power bar for teaching heel, the whoa post for teaching whoa and come, and the chain gang for training with the help of other dogs. Then he offers advice for correcting bolting, hard mouth, chasing cars, gun shyness, and other problems. An entire chapter is devoted to the "magic table," Tarrant's sure-fire method for teaching pointing dogs to retrieve.

Tarrant focuses on correcting faults unique to retrievers by offering solutions for common problems with marks on land -- breaking, mismarking, balking, running away with the bird -- and in water -- water shyness, running the bank, heading for another shore, and retrieving decoys. Two chapters deal with the special difficulties of land and water blinds.

Since flushing dogs perform many tasks common to bird dogs and retrievers, many of their problems can be solved by applying the techniques prescribed for those breeds. Springers and Cocker Spaniels are particularly sensitive, however, so Tarrant devotes a chapter to correcting their unique faults.

Table of Contents:


Introduction to the Gun Dog

Part One -- The Dog
  • Chapter 1: Getting Started
    1. Analyzing What We've Got
    2. Laying out a Plan
    3. Knowing the Dog
  • Chapter 2: Physical Characteristics
    1. Feet
    2. Forearm
    3. Length of Leg
    4. Hips
    5. Neck
    6. Eyes
    7. Nose
    8. Ears
    9. Bite
    10. Skin
    11. Tail
    12. Teats and Testicles
    13. Great Heart Girth
    14. Brains and Trainability
    15. High Pain Threshold
    16. Endurance
    17. Conclusion

    Part Two -- The Bird Dog
  • Chapter 3: Correcting the Bird Dog
    1. The Basics
    2. Whoa and Come
    3. The Whoa Post
    4. Back to the Power Bar
    5. Turning the Power Bar Around
  • Chapter 4: Wing and Shot
    1. Hobbling the Bird
    2. The Bird Boy
    3. The Chain Gang
    4. The Walking Chain Gang
    5. So Where are We?
    6. Honoring Another Dog's Work
    7. Kenneling
  • Chapter 5: Bird Dog Problems
    1. Heel
    2. Sit
    3. Stay
    4. Come
    5. Hie On
    6. Blinking
    7. Pointing Unproductives
    8. Bolting
    9. Cutting Back
    10. Ranging Too Far
    11. Bush Pointing
    12. Trailing
    13. Gun Shyness
    14. Running Trash
    15. Water Shyness
    16. Hard Mouth
    17. Eating the Bird
    18. Refusing to Retrieve or Running Away with the Bird
    19. Fighting
    20. Horse Shyness or Horse Defiance
    21. Catwalking
    22. Relocating
    23. Stop to Flush
    24. Running Livestock
    25. Dropping on Point
    26. Pointing Nongame
    27. Stealing Point
    28. Chasing Cars
    29. Cribbing
    30. Digging
    31. Barking
    32. Bump and Run
  • Chapter 6: The Magic Table
    1. Building the Magic Table
    2. Introducing the Dowel
    3. The Nerve Hitch
    4. The Dummy
    5. Introduction to the Bird
    6. The Good Earth
    7. Pup Fetching Afield
    8. So That's About It
  • Chapter 7: Wrapping Up

  • Part Three: The Retrievers
  • Chapter 8: The Retrievers -- Heel, Sit, Stay, Come
  • Chapter 9: Problems with Marks
    1. Breaking
    2. Honoring
    3. Mismarking
    4. Switching Dummies
    5. No-Go or Balking
    6. Refusing to Watch a Mark Down
    7. Overmarking and Undermarking
    8. Noise on Line
    9. Chewing the Bird or Hard Mouth
    10. Running Away with the Bird
    11. Running out of Control
  • Chapter 10: Water
    1. Introducing Pup to Water Marks
    2. No-Go
    3. Running the Bank
    4. Heading for Another Shore
    5. Spitting the Duck Out
    6. Leaving a Diving Cripple
    7. Retrieving Decoys
    8. Retrieving from a Dog Box
    9. Going to Land
    10. Conclusion
  • Chapter 11: Land Blinds
    1. Refusing to Take a Hand Signal
    2. Refusing to Answer a Whistle
    3. Refusing to Fetch the Bird
    4. Unable to Handle Cover
    5. Problems with Cold Land Blinds
    6. The Pop
  • Chapter 12: Water Blinds
    1. Going to Land
    2. Swimming Against the Wind
    3. Handling the Diversion Bird
    4. Running Water
    5. Hunting Versus Trialing
    6. Knowing When to Handle
    7. Running a Straight Line
    8. Marking off Guns

    Part Four: The Flushers
  • Chapter 13: The Flushing Dogs
    1. The English Springer Spaniel
    2. The English Cocker Spaniel
    3. The Total Training Program
    4. Fetching
    5. Happy Timing
    6. The Cast
    7. Review
    8. Range
    9. Pointing
    10. Blinking
    11. Cast Refusal
  • Chapter 14: From Head to Tail

  • Index

    Country of Origin: Made in USA.

    Problem Gun Dogs by Bill Tarrant
    Item # 10423
    List: $18.95
    Order Yours: $16.95


    Usually ships the next business day.
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