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I have a 2 yr old lab that I have worked off and on with since she was about 16 weeks old. I worked hard with her till she was about 9 months old, then due to work and some other family matters it become intermittent at best. Last season she found 5 antlers on two outtings, which I thought was pretty good considering how much I had worked with her. The one main command that I taught her when she was very young was the word "search". She learned very quickly that there was something that she needed to find, and she needed the help of her nose. That and "find the bone". If I say either of these commands, its GAME ON!!!

I have been working her pretty hard the last month or so, and she is doing good. Her primary purpose is a family pet, shed antler hunting is her "side job". I feel like she will do pretty good this year, as our field work as of late and the fact she is more mature should make for a good shed season in a few weeks.

Anyone else have a dog that hunts/finds sheds??

(here is a pic of her doing the family thing on Christmas)


(and a pic of her when she was about 1 1/2 yrs old)
 

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I have a yellow lab too. All she seems to find while we are out shed hunting is deer poop to roll around in.
 

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lol he hunts too... Thank you and it was 2009 sometimes i forget just how old he is lol... seems just like yesterday i was picking him up at 8 weeks lol
 

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Discussion Starter #8
pretty lab... gonna have to put my chocolate down here soon. cancer. she's 14 this March.

enjoy the time!
So very sorry, I too have a chocolate that is about 14 yrs old. I can't tell of any bad problems with her. She has had both ACL's torn (surgery to repair one of them), and she can't hear very good or see very good. Other than that she's in pretty good shape. I can't let her know I'm leaving the yard though or she follows the me on the ATV or by foot. If I don't watch she tries to still tag along and keep up, and I just know she's going to have a heart attack like that. Never had a more humble, loyal dog than her though!!! I dread the day she dies!!! I no doubt will cry like a baby!
 

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lol he hunts too... Thank you and it was 2009 sometimes i forget just how old he is lol... seems just like yesterday i was picking him up at 8 weeks lol
I remember that cover photo well.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I have a yellow lab too. All she seems to find while we are out shed hunting is deer poop to roll around in.
them girls and their perfume!...
 

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them girls and their perfume!...
Yep, she dreads being sprayed off with the hose, but somewhere deep down inside she secretly must love it. Couldn't ask for a better animal around kids. She's been shot with plastic arrows, nerf bullets, chopped by foam swords and just loves it.
 

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I have a 4 month old female chocolate that I am working with. We will see how she does this season! Can't wait for that/bird hunting, and blood trailing. Good luck


-Donovan
 

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Yep, them labs are a SPECIAL breed. I think only lab owners can truly understand what I mean.
 

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Long haired weiner dog...He is insane when it comes to finding the bone, only problem is getting to him quickly enough before he chews them all to hell... When he is not in search mode he is pretty much worthless...


Got a lab now too, she is about as dumb as a brick wall...Couldnt do much with her as a pupy cause she had a broken leg. The Min Pin is truly worthless...
 

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Start with fetch with the sheds, move to placing them around the yard and having them retrieve the sheds. Start hiding them and commanding them to find the shed. Walla, shed dog!


-Donovan
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Start with fetch with the sheds, move to placing them around the yard and having them retrieve the sheds. Start hiding them and commanding them to find the shed. Walla, shed dog!


-Donovan
HaHa! Mine wasn't that easy, thats for sure! But in a nut shell thats it.

I started by doing basic obedience training. After a short 10 min session of that a day. I would play fetch with her with a ball with an antler tine through it. Gradually, I decreased the size of the ball, and increased the antler size (I started with a batting cage ball, the yellow dimpled kind, with an antler tine through the middle). This was her main toy, and she knew it was time for play when she seen it.

At about 3 months, I began by laying small treats in the floor and telling her "search" and she would find and eat them. Gradually I began hiding them in a room, and eventually even up on chairs, etc... so she would have to use here nose as well as her eyes. Eventually, her nose became her primary searching tool for these treats and ever since when I say the word search, she sounds like a pig vacumming for scent.

At about 4 or 5 months, I began to blend these 2 things together. I made it real easy at first as we just played fetch with the antler. Then I would give her the command of "stay", and go around my house and put the antler in the back yard. Then return to her and give her the "search" command. Pretty quickly, she figured out what we were looking for. Gradually I began hiding it in the back yard. Then eventually I would go to an old field, and lay out 2 or 3 antlers, then return with her and begin the search process. Finally, I would do the same, but leave them there for about a week, and let it rain real good before we returned so that the human scent would wash off. It took alot of patience, as some days she was just more into it than others. Again, let me say, IT TAKES A LOT OF PATIENCE.

I'm probably making it sound more like I'm responsible for training her than I am. They are very intelligent dogs, and have a tremendous desire to please. The hardest part is training her to find what it is YOU are looking for, in this case its antlers.
 

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HaHa! Mine wasn't that easy, thats for sure! But in a nut shell thats it.

I started by doing basic obedience training. After a short 10 min session of that a day. I would play fetch with her with a ball with an antler tine through it. Gradually, I decreased the size of the ball, and increased the antler size (I started with a batting cage ball, the yellow dimpled kind, with an antler tine through the middle). This was her main toy, and she knew it was time for play when she seen it.

At about 3 months, I began by laying small treats in the floor and telling her "search" and she would find and eat them. Gradually I began hiding them in a room, and eventually even up on chairs, etc... so she would have to use here nose as well as her eyes. Eventually, her nose became her primary searching tool for these treats and ever since when I say the word search, she sounds like a pig vacumming for scent.

At about 4 or 5 months, I began to blend these 2 things together. I made it real easy at first as we just played fetch with the antler. Then I would give her the command of "stay", and go around my house and put the antler in the back yard. Then return to her and give her the "search" command. Pretty quickly, she figured out what we were looking for. Gradually I began hiding it in the back yard. Then eventually I would go to an old field, and lay out 2 or 3 antlers, then return with her and begin the search process. Finally, I would do the same, but leave them there for about a week, and let it rain real good before we returned so that the human scent would wash off. It took alot of patience, as some days she was just more into it than others. Again, let me say, IT TAKES A LOT OF PATIENCE.

I'm probably making it sound more like I'm responsible for training her than I am. They are very intelligent dogs, and have a tremendous desire to please. The hardest part is training her to find what it is YOU are looking for, in this case its antlers.
Hey Scrape,

Is there any book out there that you would recommend for training a dog? I'm gettin a new one here pretty soon and I wanted to try and train him.
 
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