Glossary of terms for Retrievers



Sit or hup Face wind wind directly blowing into your face.
Back wind wind directly coming from behind.
Side or cheek wind wind direction from left or right.
Pace the speed at which the dog hunts for game or dummies.
Drive the ability and strength to enter and or go through cover.
Style the bodily action of the dog when hunting and working for dummies or game.
Handle  the ability of the dog to be directed when at a distance from the handler.
Marking Watching and memorizing where birds have fallen and gauging the distance.
Eye wipe  to collect a retrieve which another dog or dogs have failed to find. 
Running in  dog leaves the drop without orders for a retrieve.
Pegging catching live uninjured/ or unshot game.
Blinking When a dog locates a retrieve but refuses to pick it.
Giving tongue when a dog makes a noise such as barking or whining, often called squeaking.
Hard mouth when a dog applies sufficient grip to damage game.
Runner wounded game which has moved from place of shot or fall.

Basic Equipment

  • Slip lead 
  • Whistle with lanyard 
  • Dummies/balls

Play Training Commences

Puppy training/playing/retrieving 8weeks to 6/8 months

Basic Training

Basic training can start at 6 to 8 months

  • Teaching your dog to sit and stop on command
  • Stopping on the whistle
  • Sitting and staying 
  • Recalling to whistle 
  • Retrieving 
  • Steadiness to a thrown dummy, from a sitting position and then on the move 
  • Walking to heel

Advanced Training

  • Steadiness to thrown dummies/ or moving game 
  • Handling game 
  • Introducing to gunfire/bangs 
  • Sitting to shot/marking 
  • Direction and control at a distance
  • Jumping fences/walls 
  • Swimming/water work 
  • Laying retrieving lines/simulating running game 
  • Training the retriever as a no slip retriever 
  • Training the retriever to work in a group 
  • The role of the retriever in beating, picking up, rough shooting and as a peg dog on driven shoots

Basic do’s and don’ts

Give the puppy lots of human contact but do not put temptation in his way, if he runs off with your best pair of shoes and you chastise him, do not be surprised when he will not retrieve your dummies when the time comes!

Do not credit your dog with human intelligence or emotion.

Dogs are pack animals, they have a strict pack order, and you must be the Alpha adult.

Your voice is the best tool for praise and/or chastisement.

Never give a lesson if you are not in the correct frame of mind, there is no rush, leave it till you are feeling better!

Never give your dog a command unless you are in a position to enforce compliance.

Dogs only remember their last action, as an example, if your puppy is being steadied to a thrown dummy and he runs in without orders, you must intercept him BEFORE he reaches the dummy, however, if you fail and he gets hold of the dummy you must praise him for retrieving. Do NOT chastise the puppy at this point as the puppy believes he is being punished for his last action ie retrieving.

Always finish your training session on a high and never be afraid of going back to earlier lessons. If your puppy is being particularly obtuse with a particular task, go back to one you know he can do well and praise him. He will eventually accept the new lesson, just give him time.

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