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400_racer

Two ESSs

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    We have the opportunity to re-home two springers, a mother and daughter aged about 7.5 and 2.5.  They are a gamekeepers dogs and are well trained already as flushing dogs.  

    Weve always said we’d like to get a dog one day, and now these have come up we need to decide if they’re right for us.  Always thought we’d have a Labrador (though not set in stone) and just the one, so two springers is a bit of a curve ball to consider shall we say!  Do like the thought of it though :)

    Two main things to consider at the moment are they are not house trained (they’d still be kept outside but would like them house trained) nor have either done any picking up, which is what I’d primarlily want in a gundog. 

    What are people’s thoughts with house training and re-training for picking up given their ages and existing training?  From what I’ve read house training both should be ok, as ever with patience?  Could both be taught to pick up too, given they’re flushing dogs currently?  I’m thinking yes but welcome thoughts and opinions from those more experienced, just want to make sure we’re as informed as we can be.  Thanks 

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    Fair play for rehoming the two springers, house training should be easy enough just keep letting them out regularly. I don't see a problem with teaching them to pick up after all training is just repartition of what you want. The only thing I can see is it may take you a bit longer to do, but with patience and kindness you should be able to do it. 

    Best of luck with them if you go ahead but we will need pictures. 

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    You are not only training them, like if they were pups, but you will need to "un train" them from a job they have been used to doing. The younger one will ,most likely, be the easier to bring around but the older one will depend on the Dogs nature - the vast majority of Springer's are very biddable but you can get the odd one that is downright obstinate. If you take your time and don't go in heavy handed (a Springer should never need any more than a gentle tug on it's ear and growl from you as punishment) then you should soon see rewards, they are superb dogs to work with if they have the right breeding line.

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    Have the dogs done some retrieving?   I would have thought that a keeper’s dog, even if only ever kept in the beating line would have done its fair share of retrieves.  If that natural ability is there then all that you need is good control.  If you pick up at the end of a drive and have to send into cover just try to keep them in sight, at least they can’t flush birds from an area that has been beaten through. The house training principles are the same as for puppies, but may take a bit longer.  What can go wrong?  Well a few little things maybe, but no disasters.  I can see the potential for plenty of fun and rewarding too.  Go for it and enjoy.

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    Hi, not 100% yes but highly likely it will be :)  Fantastic gesture from the keeper as we’ve been invited on a shoot tomorrow where we can meet them and see them “in action”, just waiting for final confirmation. Fingers crossed.  Am guessing as soon as we see them, it’ll be a resounding yes!

    Appreciate all the responses, to answer a few points raised; I believe they have strong bloodlines with the elder being registered, so hopefully they’ve got it in them to do some picking up.  I’m not after a FT champ or anything, just be nice for in the hide and the odd days beating/picking up.  I don’t believe they have done any picking up before as he had another dog for that but don’t see it as a deal breaker, hopefully we should be alright, will be fun training, may just try with the younger one.  

    Doesn’t sound like house training will be a problem with time and patience, same as picking up I guess.  From what I’ve heard they are very nicely trained so hopefully stand us in good stead.  Just need to hope they learn to see us/me as their new master as much as their current one.

    Mixture of nerves and excitement tonight, gradually turning more and more to excitement!

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