View Full Version : Dog days

04-28-2012, 07:49 AM
I just got an english setter puppy. She is really cute and sweet. Anybody out there have one? Any comments or tips are welcome.

S.V. Airlie
04-28-2012, 08:58 AM
Congrats..Take a picture please.:)

04-28-2012, 09:31 AM
Do not serve her sherry or tea after 6PM. Or get used to getting up at 1AM, 2AM,3AM,and 4AM to take little Fidette out for a wee.....
Trust me on this.... We figured that out with Aldo (Except it was Grappa with Aldo) very quickly..... Now that he's a couple of months older, it's no longer an issue, but when their little puppy bladders are so...... little, they really can't help it....
And congratulations! They do make life better.....

04-28-2012, 09:34 AM
I just got an english setter puppy. She is really cute and sweet. Anybody out there have one? Any comments or tips are welcome.I think Dan AKA Betty-B has a setter of some kind, not sure if it's English.

Bob Smalser
04-28-2012, 10:17 AM

We raised and trained several when I was a kid. They are natural hunters bred for hundreds of years to work a couple hundred yards out in front of you. Hence they don't like to heel, stay or be left home. They are also extremely sensitive dogs with gentle personalities, and harsh methods do permanent damage to their confidence very quickly. So while obedience is important, don't overdo it or you can ruin the dog.

Above is a 6-month-old male with his first kill. After play-training with a blank pistol for a couple months we'd toss a live pigeon up and shoot it to give the pup a taste of retrieving, which they will do naturally. Here he's asking how anything this good not be sinful, and while his instinct is to take the bird off and eat it after showing us he has it, we are gently coaxing him to bring it to hand.

The secret to having them hunt within gun range is to teach them the relationship between the (nearby) gun and them handling a warm bird. Hence we'd focus on shooting lots of pigeons over them rather than muscle them around with check cords. Some dogs were quicker on the uptake than others, with females having the edge. But once they grasped the lesson, they never lost it.

So they need space and time to get out and run, and enjoy retrieving, although this isn't a breed to practice "forced retrieving" on. They are also slow to mature, so let them be puppies for a couple years, insuring all training sessions are lots of fun and with little pressure. It took three full years to develop an accomplished pointing dog, but once you had one, there was nothing better. I always considered these a notch smarter that most other pointing breeds, as like a number of breeds bred to work relatively independently, they are accomplished problem-solvers. For you that means they can also become accomplished escape artists, and also being bred to work for anyone, they are an easy dog to steal. So be careful.

04-28-2012, 06:31 PM
[QUOTE]Start her coat maintenance while she's young. The coat requires constant attention, so the earlier they get used to it, the better./QUOTE]

I'll echo this thought. The long haired breeds are beautiful, but you have to stay on top of the coat. Comb and brush every chance you get, and then some. And get a powerful vacuum cleaner :)


04-29-2012, 07:22 AM
Thanks for the tips, guys. She is decended from a long line of close hunting dogs. I know the owners of both parents. I've never been around many setters, most people around here seem to hunt pointers. She is only 8 weeks old now, and seems pretty laid back. She's real good about bedding down in her crate, but doesn't like being alone in her pen. She certainly is good at problem solving. She remembers where everything is, like a toy she was playing with or a stalk of half rotten brocoli in the compost pile.
I live in the woods so I can take her for walks around the pond and local fields and medows. There are actually a lot of quail around here in summer. I hear them calling and see them crossing the driveway and yard a lot. I've flushed 'em within 40' of my front door. They get pretty scarce duing hunting season though. She doesn't like to get her feet wet and hates going out in the rain.

Bob Smalser
04-29-2012, 09:34 AM
This small female (here 4-5 months old) was a kennel-shy rescue dog who turned into the smartest gun dog I've ever seen.


What I like about Donn's video is it demonstrates how a pointer behaves when the bird is running from cover to cover. Most pointing demonstrations are with anchored birds and casual views don't realize that it's OK for a pointing dog to move once its on the bird. In fact with pheasants, which are notorious runners, pointers will learn to work the running birds in a circle to trap them between dog and gun.

She doesn't like to get her feet wet and hates going out in the rain.

Use an incentive to get her outside in bad weather. Treats or toys. Get her to look forward to getting wet. Otherwise she'll develop into a dog that forgets her potty training when it suits her.

Bob Smalser
04-30-2012, 01:16 PM
Cute puppy training video.