11 days until NA test

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11 days until NA test

Postby Stretch » Tue May 22, 2018 8:49 pm

Barrett my WPG is going to just turn 8 months old before the test. He’s holding really well on point and does a good job tracking. Have him doing water retrieves out of boat and off the ground in many different places. He also has a good recall. Is there anything I’m missing or should work on before the test. I’m nervous as can be and worried I’m going to screw up both of us come test day.
Should I keep running him in the field right up to the test or give him a break. One of the biggest things I’m worried about is he has only been wild pheasant and quail besides two or three short 10 minute sessions with a pigeon.
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Re: 11 days until NA test

Postby orhunter » Tue May 22, 2018 10:38 pm

They don’t use pigeons in the test, just Chukars for field work and phez for tracking. Sounds like you’re set. Stay calm and so will your dog. Don’t need any bad vibes.

Keep your pup off birds till the test. Want your beast hungry for them.
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Re: 11 days until NA test

Postby AverageGuy » Wed May 23, 2018 6:39 am

Stretch, sounds like your pup has the Goods and is ready. Nothing left to do but relax and enjoy the test. It will go well.

I think laying an 8 month old pup up for 11 days would yield more energy than is productive on test day, (particularly for the track), and expect you need to keep running him on your normal schedule. But there is no need to get him on any more training birds before the test. If he finds some wild birds over the next 11 days while running him there will be nothing but upside to that.
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Re: 11 days until NA test

Postby ANick » Wed May 23, 2018 8:28 am

The only test subject I don't see mentioned would be gun sensitivity, but I'm assuming you've introduced the pup to gunfire already?

Have you done much work around other people or dogs? If not, you could do a couple or a few light sessions with some others around, but go easy. That part is better if the exposure is spread over months and the importance is a variable.

If you have been training hard, I would ease up the closer you get to the test. Unless you've missed any of the above, don't do anything radically new. About 5 days out ease up, and a couple days before you travel, take a break. Essentially, go have fun with the pup and give yourselves the chance to relax and have fun. You need to off-load the nervous brow so the pup can too.

It is just one day... enjoy it.
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Re: 11 days until NA test

Postby Stretch » Wed May 23, 2018 5:41 pm

He’s been introduced to gunfire. Prolly shot 20-25 wild birds over him this last season. I started hunting him when he was 3 months old. I’m really hoping it cools down some it’s going to in the 90s all this weekend. I do want to thank everyone on this forum for all advice. If it wasn’t for you guys I don’t think we would be near this far along. There is a lot of information on this forum if willing to take the time and start reading.
One thing I just thought of is I might want to put him chain and a lead considering he’s never been on either. He’s been on a checkcord once.
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Re: 11 days until NA test

Postby JONOV » Thu May 24, 2018 11:06 am

Stretch wrote:He’s been introduced to gunfire. Prolly shot 20-25 wild birds over him this last season. I started hunting him when he was 3 months old. I’m really hoping it cools down some it’s going to in the 90s all this weekend. I do want to thank everyone on this forum for all advice. If it wasn’t for you guys I don’t think we would be near this far along. There is a lot of information on this forum if willing to take the time and start reading.
One thing I just thought of is I might want to put him chain and a lead considering he’s never been on either. He’s been on a checkcord once.

You'll be great. During the field portion, there isn't much to it, just keep him watered. Remember, its ultimately 20 minutes long, so he should be ok. The heat isn't good for scenting conditions but I imagine your dog is good enough, and I think penned birds are stinky enough, that it won't matter.

The track is short. Stand downwind of the feather pile, with your dog between you and the feather pile, and do a two step bowling ball release (hold the collar, one step, two step, release.)

If its 90 degrees that will work to your benefit at the water portion.

Maybe some leash walking so you can walk him around where you need to but not a big deal.

If you have reliable recall, that's a huge plus, but again, obedience isn't judged.

Don't be nervous. The judges will give you a seemingly long intro talk at the beginning of each portion, but there's not much to any of them. Dog hunts and points, dog tracks pheasant, dog swims.

People that don't hunt or haven't hunted hardly at all, or people with goofy temeramented dogs, are the ones that struggle. It doesn't sound like you're dealing with that.
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Re: 11 days until NA test

Postby Urban_Redneck » Sun May 27, 2018 1:44 pm

If you have the opportunity, get the dog to swim where the test will be held, a different bottom can spook a young dog.

I'd lay off tracking practice, it can effect steadiness in the field.

Practice recall, the judge will likely ask you to send the pup after a flying bird to check desire... you need to be able to get him back ;)

Good luck and don't forget to breathe!
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Re: 11 days until NA test

Postby Stretch » Sun Jun 03, 2018 3:19 pm

Today was the big day and Barrett performed excellent. Scored 112 Prize 1 and out did everything on the tracking part of the test. Couldn’t be prouder of my 8 month old pup.
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Re: 11 days until NA test

Postby ANick » Sun Jun 03, 2018 10:16 pm

Well Congrats!!

Amazing how much easier it is... after that first test? :) Really though, good going!
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Re: 11 days until NA test

Postby Meridiandave » Mon Jun 04, 2018 12:21 am

Urban_Redneck wrote:I'd lay off tracking practice, it can effect steadiness in the field.


ironic, I was taught just the opposite. I know an opposite technique has been used on hundreds of dogs. I watched two dogs prize 1 112 with the opposite technique.

Stretch. Congratulations. Sounds like your dog did awesome
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