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Beagles

Postby rodeorulz » Thu Feb 03, 2011 10:04 am

Anyone have any pointers on training beagles to rabbit hunt? We've got some pointers, but could really use some more help/guidance especially with training them to try and chase the rabbit back by us to shoot. As well as what is the good way, if there is a way, to help a dog get over being gun shy? Any other help is greatly appreciated. What would be even better is if someone in this area (Sheridan County) has beagles that they hunt rabbits with and would be willing to let ours try and learn from them through field experience :)


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Re: Beagles

Postby Tbush » Thu Feb 03, 2011 12:19 pm

roderulz, How gun shy,sound,sight what has happened and what does it do?? and tell me why/how it is gun shy, and how does it react around other noises,tractor, lawn mower, vaccum cleaner etc.. and rabbits when pushed tend to circle back to thier territory.... first thing first the "gun issue" just need to separate all the problems and address them one at a time :)
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Re: Beagles

Postby rodeorulz » Thu Feb 03, 2011 12:40 pm

Well I'm not sure what caused her to be gun shy. We've had her since a pup and have shot rifles, pistols, and shotguns around the house there quite a bit so I'm not sure if that is what caused it or not. She's real bad though. If we are at the house and any shots are fired she is instantly in the far back corner of the dog house curled up shaking and you pretty much have to drag her out or she'll stay in there until she is ready to come back out. We've even had her out when we've shot prairie dogs before and we had to leave her in the pickup because she would get so scared. I'm not sure if she gets scared when she sees the gun or if it is just when we shoot, I guess I haven't paid that much attention. As far as other noises goes...I think she's ok, I can't think of anything else that get's her like gun shots do. She was pretty goofy about my husband's work pickup when he started bringing it home and parking it near the kennel, she wasn't sure what to think about that, but I think that it must have smelt different and was just out of the ordinary for her. I don't think she's too fond of the vacuum cleaner though...it seems like she steers clear of that thing, but it's been a while since she's been in the house when someone has been doing that. We don't have a lawn mower and she hasn't been around tractors enough to know. I just hope the other two are never this bad! I don't think there has been much gunfire around the other two at all so I'm not sure about them. So...I hope that was enough information to help :)
I always wondered how that worked to get the rabbit back by you to shoot! lol thanks!
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Re: Beagles

Postby Tbush » Thu Feb 03, 2011 1:26 pm

Heres to bottom line Truth..for her personality. she probably was not a very socal dogto start with and Q. things anyhow. the way she was intro. to gun fire caused to to make a choice and in her mind a wise choice kinda like a horse that spooks unloading you can beat it for that but you'll make it worse you need to just teach it that its a good thing and the best for them with repatition or (because your a rodeo chick)you'll understand a horse thats afraid of a barrel the first time and second time you make it a good thing by feeding them off the barrel :D When a dog has issues with something (afraid) they are alot like a horse and need to be re-taught/re-assured, same with the gun issue, she needs postive assocation toward the noise, this can be as simple as petting her while holding a long gun and just carry it around when she is out,then put it away and do some thing she likes play ball, chase you and play hard,food! and just add a noise while doing it NOW the noise is NOT gun fire but clapping your hands together IF OK, try 2 boards slapping together 5-6 times and be done for a couple hours IF NOT OK make it less threating softer etc... IF OK move to more noise louder board slapping, pots and pans and a spoon now this might have to be done with someone else making the noises at a distance and moveing closer over time, IF OK 22 cal rifle not a pistol (to load) and do the same stuff over and over Now to get to this point might take a couple weeks don't rush it your trying to re-train her brain that fun stuff happens and a noise is with it.... Now if this starts to look ok get a dead bunny tease her and get her excited about it don't let her have it and run around and chew on it ..Not yet anyhow IF shes into the bunny and the noises have been going ok do the same thing with the bunny and add noises to it while playing start with hand clapping and move up to the 22 in time WHEN you get this far I'll get you onto the next steps.OK..... Now you can't make her like all this you are only giving her oppertunity to make a choice....... NOW if the other dogs are young and not shy or you don't know? do the same with them..BUT do them each seperate with out the other interfiering (sp)?? it take's time and patients and lots of repo. O yah NO MORE SHOOTING AROUND HOME FOR AWHILE :D
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Re: Beagles

Postby Coyotehunter » Thu Feb 03, 2011 1:40 pm

great info
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Re: Beagles

Postby LeviM » Thu Feb 03, 2011 1:44 pm

Great info Terry!
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Re: Beagles

Postby rodeorulz » Thu Feb 03, 2011 1:49 pm

As far as social dog, she's always been socialized with lots of people and other animals and different places. But the introduction to loud noises, especially gunfire, was most likely not done in the correct manner (obviously).
I was kinda thinking that maybe it is because of the shooting around the house and not always reminding her that it is a "good" noise. When we realized that she didn't like it we've tried to hold and pet her as much as possible during/after the shooting, I'm not sure if it's been helping much though. But I have to agree, repetition, repetition, repetition and gradually moving along. This all makes sense, I don't know why we haven't been doing this...busy I suppose :S I know that's the worst excuse ever.
Yah, she already knows she likes to chase rabbits :) She seems to get a kick out of that! My husband has live trapped some coons around our place and they seem to love getting fired up about that...kinda worried they may see one out and about and think they are tough stuff though and get the crap kicked out of them!! Anyways, the other two are right around the same age as this one (Changes - 6/09, Baxter - 7/09, & Hershey 11/09) so that is kinda the part that sucks. And we got Baxter at about 9 months old and Hershey at 1 year 1 month and neither had much training at all :S So those two just need more general training...especially in the listening department. We did borrow my in-law's shock collars and did some training Saturday and made some progress so hopefully things continue to go good there so we can keep moving along with those two.
About the shooting around the house...what if there's a coyote in the back yard?!?! Not to mention all the other critters we get traveling along the irrigation ditch?! lol
Hopefully there isn't any of that until we can get some more training done with these 3. But I'd rather shoot around them regardless of their training to protect them from some dumb rabid animal (already had to do that last October!!).


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Re: Beagles

Postby lyonch » Fri Feb 04, 2011 3:43 am

Great post Tbush!! Lots of good info their to be had by all :D
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Re: Beagles

Postby Tbush » Fri Feb 04, 2011 10:14 am

Rodeorulz, If you choose to shoot around them w/o addressing the noise issue's. you'll be digging a much deeper hole to try and get out of and maybe even mutiple hole's. I gave you the best possible way to try and fix this :D now I'll ask you.. is she afraid of the sight of the gun, or smell of the gun???. IF she is its very diffucult to get her out of it with positve assocation, and you may have to go to a tolerant assoc. as a last resort which can be even harder :( But agian if she has a good play drive, predator drive, ok social skills, you can get her out of this problem..Its all on your shoulders now.

As a example I have probably had between 175-200+ gun shy dogs in 25+ years and I would bet I have gotten 8 out of 10 to turn around and become great hunters, The ones that didn't make good choices usually had no desire, no play drive or were over exposed to the gun and it was tatooed to their brain as bad!!
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Re: Beagles

Postby rodeorulz » Fri Feb 04, 2011 10:29 am

Well if it comes down to protecting my animals I or my husband WILL and I repeat WILL shoot any of the animals I have already mentioned in our backyard. Their safety is much more important to both of us. Now, as far as shooting to enjoy ourselves or site our guns in, we are both more than willing to find somewhere away from our house and the dogs to do so.
I was talking to my husband last night and we are both positive she is not afraid of the sight/smell of guns, just the noise from the gun shots.
Just out of curiosity, do they make earplugs for dogs? Do you think this might help her to get used to gunfire? You know, use the earplugs to help gradually get her used to the noise and hopefully as she continues to get used to it they could be removed. Just curious, I know there make them for horses and a lot of people in the CMSA will use them with their horses.
Thanks again for the help.


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Re: Beagles

Postby Tbush » Fri Feb 04, 2011 11:21 am

Most of the time if ear plugs are used in animals ears its so they don't loose any hearing,not to help them with a gun issue.... There is NO quick cure for her problem..Good luck
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Re: Beagles

Postby rodeorulz » Fri Feb 04, 2011 12:19 pm

That makes sense, but they are used to help minimize the noise and thus I would think they could be used to help her get used to it a little better as well as safer. Just incorporating them into the steps you gave me would help I would think. For instance, I would think using them in the last steps when she is getting associated with gunshots it would be helpful to first use the earplugs, get her used to that level of noise and then when ready to move on remove the earplugs so she can then learn to get used to the noise without them. I'm no pro at training dogs and I won't claim to be, that's why I've asked for help, but doesn't this make sense? Has anyone tried incorporating earplugs into training a dog to either get used to gunshots or get over being gun shy?
I don't expect there to be a quick cure to her problem, although I sure wish there was.
Thanks again for the tips :)


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Re: Beagles

Postby Tbush » Fri Feb 04, 2011 12:59 pm

I would not mess with ear plugs, Just keep the distance away from her to minimize the DB of the noise and move closer as she shows no sign's of being afraid, you will know how well she is doing once you start with the hand clapping and move forward... everything you add to HER ie; ear plugs its just one more step to get her used to do it with out them.... kinda like paper training a new pup to to piss and poo on the paper, eventually you have to un-train it, just adding more steps ?? Make sense?? Just get her mind sooooo involved into fun stuff and add the noise the noise will not be the focal point anymore the fun will and over time you can make the niose and she will look for the fun, I was just out shooting and looked over and the horses were at the gate..WHY ?? when we gun broke the horses we would grain them and treat them so when the gun goes off they come to the gate, use it in the pasture also. want the horses to come shoot a shot gun and they come, no diff. when I ran hounds I would go back to the truck and honk the horn they were taught to come back to the truck and I would never have to go get them. So we need your dogs to think when they hear a gun it means (eventually) bunny time,fun time :D
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Re: Beagles

Postby rodeorulz » Fri Feb 04, 2011 1:18 pm

Well as it turns out there really isn't anything available for dogs for earplugs...kinda surprised me. Although, there is something called Mutt Muffs, but they are not what I was thinking anyways. I can't imagined they'd be very comfortable on big eared dogs either! lol!
Makes sense :)
So we need to make it fun for her and gradually move up with the noise. Which she loves having fun and playing, they all 3 do :)
Thanks again for the tips, I can't wait to get going on this training! Although, it would be so much easier if we didn't have 3 dogs to do this with!lol, What were we thinking!!!

I've got to get a pic of all three of them together and post on here...I tried to get my husband to take a picture when we had them all in the house the other day. They were all being so good trying to earn their treats too...and let me tell you that rarely happens!! All three behaving at once...needed a pic of that! Oh well...hopefully there will be a next time :)


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Re: Beagles

Postby Tim Anderson » Thu Mar 06, 2014 12:10 pm

I realize this is a old topic but wondering how the dogs are coming along? Did you get them trained to hunt and did you cure the gun shy issue??


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