Tracking/hunting behaviour

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bendog
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Tracking/hunting behaviour

Post by bendog » Sun Jun 15, 2014 6:12 am

Might be boring for most, but Nettle, Wufwuf and any other dog behaviour/terrier fans might be interested.

This is a little clip from our walk yesterday evening. We went past this spot twice during the walk.

The first time Pops got pretty interested, but I didn't see anything, but I put her on lead anyway as was clear she had scented something.

The second time, I spotted a hare, sitting on the bare soil patch, luckily we had just come from the road so Pops was still on lead (and I was being extra cautious since she had got so interested the first time - although the reaction the first time was nowhere near as intense as the 2nd reaction when the hare had been there even more recently - first time she would recall, 2nd time - the one on video- I would have stood no chance)

http://youtu.be/UZz7cae67_E

None of the dogs saw the hare, but when we reached the area it had been sitting 20 seconds earlier, Pops went into overdrive. Don't think you can tell from the video, but you could actually hear her sniffing really loudly. And she was crying a bit when I stopped her from following. After I stopped filming she cried a bit more when I tried to encourage her away.

Just find it interesting - firstly to watch her tracking (and if she had been off lead she would have been GONE and there is absolutely F all I would have been able to do about it) but also the difference between her and the boys. The boys were sniffing, but nowhere near as extreme or intense reaction, and they weren't going looking for the source like Poppy was. Charlie will chase (and kill) something if it appears right under his nose, but doesn't go hunting the same way Pops does, although he is the one that is more excited by the rabbit skin flirt toy, and tugging and killing toys.

ClareMarsh
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Re: Tracking/hunting behaviour

Post by ClareMarsh » Sun Jun 15, 2014 6:19 am

The boys remind more of what Ted would be like if he found an interesting scent, it's interesting but his life isn't going to end if he doesn't find the source.
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JudyN
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Re: Tracking/hunting behaviour

Post by JudyN » Sun Jun 15, 2014 6:41 am

It's interesting to compare her with a worky sighthound - Jasper can also be very intense, but depending on what he's seen/heard/scented, he will stand stock still, or walk forward veeeery sloooooowly, but with his whole body thrumming with focus and energy ready to be released. If he's in an area that smells very rabbitty he will range round, following scents and sticking his head down rabbit holes - then he'll be loping, rather than zig zagging round a smaller area like a terrier is likely to do.

I love watching worky dogs, and I think 'thrumming' sums up their body language very well when they're in hunting mode :D
Jasper, lurcher, born December 2009

bendog
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Re: Tracking/hunting behaviour

Post by bendog » Sun Jun 15, 2014 8:07 am

Pops will drop into a down, or stand dead still and then stalk and charge if she sees something out in the open (that hasn't seen her eg ducks on the canal) - that is amazing to watch too, and totally different. Head goes really low, and forward, and her whole body hunches low to the ground like a lioness or something and she creeps.

I find it fascinating to watch the different reactions and hunting styles too.
But does also give some of you an idea of what I'm up against trying to train a solid recall!!!! :roll:

JudyN
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Re: Tracking/hunting behaviour

Post by JudyN » Sun Jun 15, 2014 8:32 am

bendog wrote:But does also give some of you an idea of what I'm up against trying to train a solid recall!!!! :roll:
I think an advantage of a sighthound brain is that the dog isn't 'gone' until it is quite literally gone (there is only a millisecond between 'going' and a dot on the horizon :lol: ). A well-trained sighthound (Jasper on a good day, definitely not Jasper on a bad day) can be recalled when he's still thinking 'Is there something over there?' or 'I'm sure there must be a rabbit round here somewhere', but if a dog works with its nose, once it's picked up a scent, he's 'gone', even if he's still only feet away from you (from what I've seen, beagles are 'gone' the moment you step out of the front door with them :lol: ).

Lurcher owners will often train hard so they can recall their dog when they're still in the 'thinking about going' stage, but many, including me, simply don't bother once the dog is 'gone'.

This is just based on my observations & experience, Nettle will put me right if I'm wrong :wink:
Jasper, lurcher, born December 2009

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Nettle
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Re: Tracking/hunting behaviour

Post by Nettle » Sun Jun 15, 2014 10:46 am

Absolutely correct Judy :) no sense wasting your breath on the space where your dog was.
A dog is never bad or naughty - it is simply being a dog

SET YOURSELF UP FOR SUCCESS

bendog
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Re: Tracking/hunting behaviour

Post by bendog » Sun Jun 15, 2014 11:26 am

Hmmm funny I posted this, she got a young bunny today! :shock:

I took it off her because she was settling down to eat it, but it's now in freezer for future dinner.
Didn't get any warning for this one. Walk walk walk, BOOM gone. Bunny didn't even realise she was there until she was on top of it. I didn't realise it was there until she had shot off.

JudyN
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Re: Tracking/hunting behaviour

Post by JudyN » Sun Jun 15, 2014 12:49 pm

You've got to admire the skill, haven't you? 8) :D it's mortifying if there's little children and their mums watching, but otherwise, enjoy it for what it is. And respect for being able to take the bunny off her, that's something I can only dream about :D
Jasper, lurcher, born December 2009

WufWuf
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Re: Tracking/hunting behaviour

Post by WufWuf » Mon Jun 23, 2014 11:08 am

This is JUST like Honey, I'm pretty sure that she would be like Pops if she was walked in such awesome places :wink: . She's recently had some duck bum IN her mouth but wigged herself out (thank goodness) I'm sure it wouldn't take to many of those before she had a little nibble...
Operant conditioning rocks but classical conditioning rules

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