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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Yeah I know, before I get piled on..... Wife and and I have a Havanese. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Havanese

She is 4 months old and has a big time drive to chase deer. She is only 6 lbs. She swims in rivers already and tries to kill just about anything she can get her mouth on. She has a stronger drive outside than my previous lab did. We live near the woods and she actively seeks out deer.

Not thinking one day I let her off her leash when a doe was about 5 yards away thinking that she would maybe go up and sniff at worst. Well the does stuck her head out towards my pup and my pup instantlypounced right at her face and the doe took off. She chased the deer for about 50 yards until I called her back.

All this got me thinking, that I could probably teach my dog to track things. She already has her nose to the ground constantly. She is always looking for something and she is always looking for squirrels to chase. So as of this minute I have some vension thawing with and I thought when some of the blood dripped out I would put it in a cup and take her out for a 100 or 200 yards and see if she will follow it.

Anyone else ever used a "toy breed" to track? I did a bit of googling onthe Havanese breed and found that they are used as helper dogs quite often, and are very easily trainable and eager to please.

They are still a pretty uncommon breed in the US but they are getting more popular. They are absolutly awesome though. Not yippy, relatively easy to potty train and very, very bright.

I will just have to keep her groomed well. Brushing her out after she has been through the "stickers" is a miserable experinence for us both.
 

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1) sure ..why not

2) however, that is NOT a dog - its a gerbil on steroids (but give it a shot anyway) :evil:

gotta be 40 lbs or more to be a "dog"
 

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In the South they have a breed called a feist. They're primarily Jack Russell with sometimes this or that, like Wirehaired rat terrier or there's another small terrier breed I forget that has shorter legs. These are excellent trackers and will take on just about anything they can get hold of. Tenacious, fearless and relentlessly.

South they use walkers and reds to get Coons or badger holed-up. Then they send a feist down to convince the critter his place of refuge is no long safe.

Today that kind of hunting still occurs today, but less publicity as most states now have regulations against molestation in dens.

It used to be a way of life for a lot of folk. Those dogs lived with the family, protected livestock, kept snakes, rats and other vermin at bay from the house. With 15-20 of those running loose around a farm house, there was nothing near that place.

I bet the dog you got has a gene or two in her lineage! Is it a female? If it turns good I got a male feist that would love a girl friend! LOL probably be some interesting results!

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Why not?It's not like the dog is hunting and catching a live deer.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Why not?It's not like the dog is hunting and catching a live deer.
Oh I think she would try....haha


I did put her on some blood today. Only about 40 yards worth. Didn't seem overly interested at 1st, but we kept slow and I had her on a short lead. The 1st 10 yards she didn't understand, but we went over it a couple times and a few spots where I marked the blood she was really interested.

The last 15-20 yards or so she seemed to get the general idea. She definatly followed the same path that I had laid the blood down. Im not sure she was truly "tracking" it, but she was very interested in the blood smell. At the end there was a small container with the last few drops of blood in it which she promptly stuck her face in. There was also a new bone awaiting her at the end.

So i guess I will just keep with it, take her out once or twice a week and see what happens. Hopefully I will have some pics of her standing on some deer.
 

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if you are truly interested in training your dog to track, once to twice a week is not nearly enough training, the first few weeks of training are the most important, you need to instill in your dog a second nature that you are in fact asking them to follow a scent, and when you ask them to follow a scent that there is in fact something out there for them to find, small breeds i would recommend 3 to 4 training sessions a week, when i start a dog it is 5 days a week training, 2 days of play, training "sessions" in the first few weeks should last no more than a half an hour, and should include 2 to 3 consecutive tracks, just like teaching a dog to sit, you don't only ask them to do it 1 or 2 times a week, your work on it repeatedly/daily/and multiple times in a row. It can take days, weeks or in some cases months of repeating one excercise before a dog understands, i hear a command, i perform an action, i get a reward.

if you have any questions feel free to pm me.

good luck with the training
 

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Boy it would be a rough weekend at my camp for the guy who got bailed out by that thing. Lmao.

In all seriousness if you have the time and patience why not go for it. IMO the more tracking dogs we have around the better.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
if you are truly interested in training your dog to track, once to twice a week is not nearly enough training, the first few weeks of training are the most important, you need to instill in your dog a second nature that you are in fact asking them to follow a scent, and when you ask them to follow a scent that there is in fact something out there for them to find, small breeds i would recommend 3 to 4 training sessions a week, when i start a dog it is 5 days a week training, 2 days of play, training "sessions" in the first few weeks should last no more than a half an hour, and should include 2 to 3 consecutive tracks, just like teaching a dog to sit, you don't only ask them to do it 1 or 2 times a week, your work on it repeatedly/daily/and multiple times in a row. It can take days, weeks or in some cases months of repeating one excercise before a dog understands, i hear a command, i perform an action, i get a reward.

if you have any questions feel free to pm me.

good luck with the training
Thanks for the advice! I will work with her more frequently.
 
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