Putting oomph back into retrieves
My two year-old cocker spaniel has been retrieving well. He sits and waits and when I point and release him on hearing his name he goes and retrieves. However, in the past week or two he’s started to hesitate and now just sits and waits as if he doesn’t know what to do when I say his name. How do I get him back on track?
Graham says: Have you recently been stopping him on the way out to a retrieve, or as he comes back to you? Or, have you been mixing things up by giving him a couple of retrieves in different directions?
If so, advancements of this kind can make a sensitive dog hesitant because they really want to get it right.
What you need to do now is encourage him to go out in the right direction by making your instructions and body language really clear. Heap the dog with praise and see if that helps.
Then again, do not be afraid to lay off all retrieving lessons for a while – cockers can get bored very quickly especially if they are asked to continually do the same thing over and over again.
Cockers can get bored easily if they keep being asked to do the same things