It doesn’t have to be a chore to train the dogs in preparation for the season. It is ALMOST time to get on the moor to count the grouse broods, but the retrieving training is still going on without disturbing ground nesting birds.
In order to train my Gaia, I plant dummies from my car so I don’t walk out with the dummy and hence creating a “trail” for her to follow. If I drive the car out, there is less scent for her to “cheat”. I make sure I put the dummies somewhere where I can mark the place well for directing her. Sometimes she has to go out to find a blind dummy at over 100 meters distance and I have to be able to pinpoint exactly where to send her.
I then drive to a place where I feel it’s a challenge for Gaia to go out in a straight line and get directed to the scent of the dummy. I set her up and send her off.
As she gets nearer the dummy, I sit her down for further directions till she finds it and comes back.
Sending off for the other hidden dummy.