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Fields of Color and Retriever Work

September 28th, 2007

    What a beautiful morning!  It’s cool and crisp, the moon was shining brightly before the sun rose, and a glowing mist rose gently from the pond and fields.   I can’t help but become invigorated by this kind of weather.  I wonder if there are places to live where the temperatures are cool all year long?!  Soon the leaves will be covering the grass with a carpet of color, and we’ll be raking and mowing.  And we’re already thinking about pumpkins and decorating for the season.  

I love how the ground fog rises in the grassy fields… almost glowing with the first rays of the sun.

 Mist glows with the rising sun on a country morning.

The young pup has been working to earn his keep this month.  He’s doing really well on multiple retrieves, and loves to be in the water.  Now we are working on hand signals in the fields.  He follows my signals when he sees me, but I have a hard time getting him to look or turn around when he’s making a retrieve.  We’re also using a whistle, but he is so intent on his retrieve that nothing seems to intrude to his focus.  In the fields, if he runs past or away from a mark/bumper, he will turn and begin a search pattern with his nose.  He hears me yell or signal usually and changes direction.  It’s amazing to watch!  In the water he has even started swimming in circles or from side-to-side if he doesn’t see the bumper.   I’ve been working on trust in our relationship… meaning for blind retrieves, or the ones he doesn’t know that marks/bumpers are out there, he needs to run in the direction I tell him.  Then as he gets out, he is supposed to turn to look at me on my signal, essentially asking, “Okay Boss… where to now?”  He has finally learned trust in that he will take off in the direction I give him… but he doesn’t really look back.  He starts searching about 50-100 yards out, and listens for my signal or yell.  He always finds the mark/bumper, but I’ve still got a lot of work to do.  Not bad for 11 months old however!  He has a lot of heart.

The Yellow Lab makes a water retrieve

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