Category Archives: Dock Diving
~Propel them through the Water
The Weimaraner is a powerful swimmer once they get going. The trick is getting to take the first step. Their toes are webbed making them better equipped to paddle.
There is no one way to get them to swim; however, we find having a love of the retrieve ingrained goes a long way towards accomplishing this discipline. (Sorry to some of you!) For the non-hunter, many times the retrieve is not viewed as essential. All too many of you allow the Weimaraner to abscond and run around the yard with the toy or the bumper–instead of bringing back to hand. Yes, this is a hoot–although it is just one more Weim antic, this is one we suggest you not allow to take root. The idea of achieving the swim is only one reason in a myriad of why you need to get the rock-solid retrieve. We won’t list those as we are speaking about achieving the Water Retrieve.
You want the Weimaraner coming when called. The Recall is a safety issue and the underpinning of compliance. Two areas where compromise cannot be allowed (in our opinion). Depending on your approach to training there are various ways to get this done–we will forgo the discussion on methodology. Let’s just say get this done! It is going to help you with achieving more than a Water Retrieve.
Cliff suggests you find a place to do this exercise. One location that works well is a hallway. Close all the adjoining doors (so they cannot take off with the bumper of the toy). Make this a special event and stop before they tire–while they are still begging for more. He also suggests you use a dedicated toy or bumper you save for this activity only. Depending on your pup’s attention and skill level keep the number of reps down–at first maybe as few as three. Bear in mind; the idea is to make this celebratory and fun. You want them having the desire. This activity will serve you well on so many levels and enhance your training outcome positively.
Weather Permitting the OwyheeStar puppy will see the water before they depart. You saw the video we shared, if not we included it here. Nevertheless, this is not going to ensure that your pup will swim. It will still require time, effort, and patience to get your Weimaraner to swim–plus a bit of knack. A few suddenly jump in but don’t wait for that to happen. Oh–and if you doubt, the Weimaraner is more than likely going to read your thoughts and agree with you.
You might wonder how to begin. Cliff does it this way–your situation may require you to adapt. Using the reliable retrieve, you work along the edges of a pond. Just play in the water’s edge–a tiny bit on their feet initially. Slowly ease them into the water beyond their comfort zone. It might take a few tries, a few days, or a few weeks. It takes as long as it takes, but if you follow this protocol, you will achieve the goal. Like anything with the concrete thinking Weimaraner, you want to make this part of the early life training. Then it becomes the norm. Oh, and you notice he mentions using the pond. Waves could spook them. You want to avoid that scenario.
Imagine the possibilities!
A Few Final Thoughts
- Weims who balk at the sight of rain or a sprinkler often achieve the swim.
- Don’t go in with the *pre-conceived idea that it cannot be achieved.
- Select the venue to work on this carefully.
- Go in with the idea it takes as long as it takes.
- Make this part of your young pup’s agenda.
- If you *failed to achieve the swim early on, don’t believe it is impossible.
- Some people use a life vest**. The vests are not necessary.
- Often Cliff is teaching a Weimaraner who has not swum since they were a puppy. They might be 2 years old or older. They always learn. Cliff knows it can be achieved. Sometimes it is challenging but, with patience, it always happens.
- Deem this as invaluable to your process. It is a healthy activity that can burn off the excess energy and not take such a toll on the hips and joints. It is good for their cardiovascular as well.
~ We hope this helps someone achieve the swim! ~ Cliff and Shela
*You would be shocked to learn how many folks achieved the swim after they told us it was impossible.
**Life Vests–just a note here that Cliff never uses one. The only vest he might use is a Neoprene one if he were to swim them in inclement weather–like for Duck Hunting. Some of you need this for peace of mind. It might help the Weimaraner take their first few steps, but again–it is not necessary. A lot of clients who live in cold water regions cannot keep their Weims out of the water. This scenario is true even in the winter.
Joins Skeeter Valentine
~ At the Pool
January 23, 2017–Kaliece wrote
Hi! Wow, time flies.
So Virgil is doing great and I just can’t be more pleased with my Skeeter girl. She has accepted him so well and for the most part is really helpful in his training…except when she’s not haha. They are going to be best friends forever. So I have been doing loose leash training with Virgil and it is soooo beneficial to start from the get-go. He totally gets it, now the human needs to continue to follow through haha.Skeeter is really helpful in this area as she stays by me for the most part. So, super excited about this…
I booked Virgil’s swim assessment at Paw’s aquatic on February 2nd. I’m trying to make it so Skeeter can swim at the same time.
We captured this you tube video so we could let you know how it went. We’re excited to see him swim–thought he did great for his first time.
It is great to hear from you and to see Virgil doing so well with training. We are glad you were able to have them swim in tandem. It is going to be great fun for all concerned. Thank you, for keeping us in the loop.
Not so long ago she was seen on the blog learning how to dock dive. The Blog was titled Do Not Despise Small Beginnings. We know there is limited time and opportunity to work on, the dock diving; however, Kaliece brings us phenomenal news!
Just wanted to let you and Cliff know Skeeter went to her first dock diving event this weekend. The group is x-treme air dogs Northwest. I’ve only been able to practice a few times and not with a trainer so that being said I’m super proud of her. She made it into the amateur division with a 14.4 ft jump. She was 2nd in the division after the first day, and we went to finals today where she placed 4th. It was a great experience for both of us. She’s mentally exhausted. Haha. She had so much to think about and get over because the event was held at the pool we swim her at. So when we got there, she had to wait and wait and wait to get in the pool when normally she just jumps in right away. Also, there were a lot of people, dogs, crates, loud music, donuts, hotdogs, etc.etc. in HER playground! She dealt with it well, though. I was just happy that she didn’t break her sit stay with all that going on when she was on deck. Everyone commented on what a beautiful dog she is and so sweet. She truly is an awesome representation of the breed; she always makes me proud, and she reflects well on Owyheestar.
Happy New Year.
I took Skeeter to the pool for some dock practice…only the 2nd time and she’s doing great.
I sent you a you tube video from Gary’s phone.
You have to be patient, but when you see Skeeter’s Recent Dock Dive you will be impressed. Maybe you remember their first outing. If not, click here to revisit that blog featuring Skeeter.