Ripley's progress with hunting
Ripley, the Cocker Spaniel, has been a very tricky pup to train. Suffice it to say, I've never hit so many brick walls whilst trainng a dog before now! As my husband keeps reminding me though, he's been a fantastic learning opportunity. Nobody ever learned by taking the easy route, and Ripley has very generously made things as tricky as he could, at every possible opportunity.
When he was a teeny pup, Ripley had the unpleasant habit of snuffling around, looking for dog-poo to eat whilst out on walks. The (very) frequent tellings off for this behaviour, had the unfortunate side-affect of destroying his natural hunting drive. As far as he knew, every time his little nose went down, he was getting a row...because every time his nose went down, it was to look for more poo!!
After many months of very careful encouragement, enthusiastic praise, and permission to be as naughty as he liked (in order to reverse the problem).....we are slowly making good progress.
Here he is in the middle of a walk near our house. There's no game around and very little scent, but he's starting to gain a bit of his old enthusiasm...