Hey guys and Gals,
I have a 4 month old Lab that i have been training to find antlers. I feel like he is really progressing and could be a great shed dog. I just wonder if he is doing as well as i think. I feel like he is doing great, but then again it is my dog.... So here is the situation. I started playing fetch with him when he was only 8 weeks old, he picked that up with no problem. Then at 10 weeks i started asking him "where is the bone" before i through the antler. When he looked at the shed i would throw it. That way he would learn what the name of the object he was looking for was. Then i would start putting a shed out in the middle of the front room and tell him to "find the bone". In a matter of days he had mastered that too, so i started making it more and more difficult for him to find them. (hiding them under tables, around corners, ect.) Once again, within a few days it was to easy. So then i made the bold move and started all over again but outside. So currently i am to the point where i can hide 4-6 antlers in my back yard (1 acre) and he can find them. I hide them in the hedge row, around trees, brush piles, tall grass. He seems to sniff them out with out any problem. My question is should i make the next move and take him to a bigger field? I do not want to discourage him this early in the game, but i want him to be challanged. Any advise or words of wisdom?