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Related article: Several methods have been ad- vocated for breaking dogs for the gun, some of which are barbarous in their treatment ; others, although of a less stringent nature, are not bereft of a certain amount of cruelty. My endeavour will, how- ever, be to point out how a dog may be taught to be efficient in the field without ill-usage of any sort. When taking a young dog in hand, whether it be a Pointer or a Setter, Retriever or Spaniel, the first object of the trainer should be to gain the full con- fidence of his pupil, and this can- not be done except by kindness. In dealing with the dog, it must not be forgotten that he is highly sympathetic, and is as quick to resent a rebuff as he is to acknow- ledge a favour ; that instinct in his case borders closely upon reason. It is therefore desirable that he be led to look upon him- self as a companion rather than a slave. A golden rule to be strictly followed when breaking a dog is never to lose your temper. A false step in this direction may entirely spoil an otherwise pro- mising puppy. It is not my intention in this paper to follow the plan of break- ing dogs usually adopted by the professional breaker, whose object is to get his work done as quickly as possible and pocket his fee, but rather to endeavour by a few sug- gestions to assist the amateur who has a puppy which he is desirous of training himself; for it goes without saying that the pleasure is greatly increased when you are shooting over a dog that has been broken by yourself. Indeed, there are few occupations more enjoyable to anyone who has the time to spare and the aptitude for the work than breaking a Pointer or Setter puppy. There is as much in the educa- tion of a dog as there is in that of a human being. By constantly having your puppy with you his mind will develop, and he will soon learn what he is required to do, but your duties will be con- siderably lightened if your pupil has been bred from animals that have gained a reputation for work. This fact is brought before us every day. The puppies of dogs that are accustomed to live in the house are, as a rule, naturally clean in their habits from their birth, whilst it is the contrary with those that are kept in kennels. It is, therefore, quite natural to sup- pose that the puppy that is bred from two well- trained and accom- plished dogs will be more easy to break than one whose parents have been improperly broken or who are minus the requirements of a good working Pointer or Set- ter. No definite age can be fixed when a puppy may be taken in hand to receive the first lesson, for one may be as forward at five Calcitriol Rocaltrol months old as another is at ten, but it is safe to begin as soon as the youngster has lost his puppy habits. Nothing, however, must be done in the way of Rocaltrol Calcitriol tuition until the pupil is thoroughly accustomed to the voice and habits of his breaker, and then very little at a time, and some sort of a reward should be given at the conclusion of each day's work ; indeed, when- ever any meritorious action has been done he should be given a tit- bit of some sort or other, which it is well to keep in your pocket ready for the occasion. Attention of this sort and words of praise should always be employed when ' breaking puppies, for no animal is more susceptible to flattery than I899-] BREAKING DOGS FOR THE GUN. IO7 the dog, and by these means he becomes a willing learner and enters with zest into his work. Before taking the puppy into the field to seek game, he must be taught to keep to heel, and it is also advisable that he should have learnt to drop to hand ; the former is easy and can be done very early in life ; the latter requires some care in teaching, but is not difficult. Possibly the quickest way to teach a puppy to drop to hand is by the check cord and peg, but before this is used the wearer must have become accustomed to be tied up, or the fact of being restrained by the cord will drive him frantic and do more harm than good. A more satisfactory plan when teaching the art of dropping to hand is to take the puppy into a fifty-acre field, put him down on his belly and hold up your hand, cautioning him whenever he attempts to move and putting him back to the same place. Then walk backwards, still holding up your hand, and the puppy will soon learn what he is required to do and will remain in the position until he is ordered to move on. When the check cord and peg are used, the peg is driven into the ground and the cord tied to the collar, but this is not necessary at this early stage ■ of tuition and is more generally used when a dog is disinclined to back another that is pointing game. So far the puppy will keep to heel, drop to hand, and will go on at a wave of the arm ; the next step is to let him find birds. In doing so, be careful to give him the wind, but he will probably flush and chase them until they are out of sight. There is no harm in this, as it encourages him to hunt on another occasion, but the whistle must be used when nearing a fence to impress upon him that he must not break field. Then on his return he must be dropped to hand about the place where he was when the birds rose, this with a view to teaching him Rocaltrol 0.25 Mg that he should drop to wing. After a few performances of this description he will show some dis- position to point ; in fact, some young Pointers and Setters will do so the first time they find birds, but these seldom make wide rangers, which is absolutely neces- sary now that the stubbles are cut so close. When your pupil stands at his first point is the time to make much of him. Get to him, if possible, before the birds rise, and drop him to hand directly they do so, at the same time patting him and letting him know that you are pleased with him ; then reward him and take him home. In a few days he will understand that he must drop to wing when birds rise, or to fur if a hare goes away. To chase the latter is a temptation, particularly to a puppy, and there is often great difficulty in making him steady to fur, but it can be done with perseverance and good manage- ment. Where hares are scarce, some breakers will turn down rabbits in front of their pupils, and so teach them to take no notice of ground game on the move. There is yet much to be done before perfection is reached, Buy Rocaltrol which desirable state of things may be frustrated the first time a gun goes off, for the puppy may be gun-shy. The breaker will, how- Rocaltrol 0.25