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Talking About

Water

     ~ and the Weimaraner (photos of Stackhouse)

Recently, we have been discussing the Weimaraner and water. Many of you have succeeded beyond your wildest dreams. Others have doubts that you will ever see such a thing happen. Comments from some naysayers include the struggles with water in any form–the bath, the sprinkler, and for heaven’s sake that stuff that falls from the sky. It is out to get your beloved family member. Nevertheless, there are some that are Okay with a bath, and not with a pond. Some wallow in every puddle they find–the muddy ones are their favorite. Swimming has nothing do with their joyful mud bath.

We have exhorted you to get the Weimaraner water-friendly. Achieving the retrieve and working them into a pond is how we at OwyheeStar approach this process. Nonetheless, Weims may swim for many reasons.

For Example, This!

     ~Cal’s Luke in the Pool

Cal writes, “he loves – loves – loves the pool – he even jumps without a

Retrieve task just to be with me”.

Water Weims

Webbed Toes

     ~Propel them through the Water

cranes-lucy9111

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.

The Recall

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.

Early On

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.

Water Exposure

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!

Crane's Lucy 957

A Few Final Thoughts

  1. Weims who balk at the sight of rain or a sprinkler often achieve the swim.
  2. Don’t go in with the *pre-conceived idea that it cannot be achieved.
  3. Select the venue to work on this carefully.
  4. Go in with the idea it takes as long as it takes.
  5. Make this part of your young pup’s agenda.
  6. If you *failed to achieve the swim early on, don’t believe it is impossible.
  7. Some people use a life vest**. The vests are not necessary.
  8. 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.
  9. 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.

 

 

 

Extraordinary

Weim Families

     ~ Like Virginia

dog-pond

Here is a picture of the pond I had built for my babies Dusty and Stormy (Weims).

Mom I don't look like a Blue, ....I am a Blue Weimaraner. I love this pond you built Mom...

Breeder’s Comment

Maybe you follow OwyheeStar Weimaraners both here and on Facebook. If so, you know about the late Stormy and our aging Dusty.

Seriously I thought I was the go-to person

 

These are not the same Weims–they are Virginia’s Stormy and Dusty. Ours and Virginia’s Weims are all the Blue Weimaraner. Virginia’s Stormy is a Blue Longhair Weimaraner.

OwyheeStar’s Dusty is the father of both of Virginia’s pups. He is a smooth-coated Weimaraner (pictured to the left), but he carries the DNA marker for the Longhair. This Story originally ran some time ago.–click here to read the full story.

This Can Happen

If Your Weim 

     ~ Doesn’t Swim

 

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Goldee’s First Swim

 

Yesterday, we shared what happens during our puppy swim–something we do weather permitting with each litter. Doesn’t this guarantee the Weimaraner will take naturally to the water? No. Nonetheless, it expands their experience, imprints the idea of the water, and gives their family inspiration to keep them swimming.

Not every Weim that swims at OwyheeStar takes to the water. This concrete-thinking breed can get a notion that they don’t want to do that. They can get spooked–that is never a good thing. If that happens, don’t make the mistake of ingraining the fear by babying them. Stay matter of fact and move forward as if everything is just fine–because it is.

The extremes our OwyheeStar folks to achieve the Swim is impressive. The benefits are too many to list here. You know–it is a great way to get a lot of exercise without damaging the young Weim’s joints. It is a fabulous way to expend a lot of energy–speaking of the water retrieve. (Once the Weimaraner embraces that activity), then you have a lifetime of tossing the ball for the retrieve. We used to use a rocket launcher to toss the bumper way out in the reservoir. Cliff’s arm could only make so many throws–this solved that solution. Even then, we stopped sending before the Weims were ready. They would swim for the bumper until they could no longer go if allowed.

If you are looking for Inspiration, look no further.

 

Training

Breeder Comment

Gardener's Jaeger Early 2018You no doubt remember our opportunistic Cat Tree Sitting Weimar. This happened not so long ago on the homefront; however, Jaeger is busy working on his field training too!

The Savvy Weimaraner

     ~Trainable Natual Ability is a Plus!

We went out to get some fieldwork/playing. Came across a huge chest-deep puddle from the recent melt off. Jaeger followed Ruger in without a pause. Considering that water was cold and he went right in, I’m hoping for good things come spring and summer.

Ruger also pointed some quail, Jaeger pointed Ruger… instinct is such an amazing thing. He is doing great, smart and stubborn (lol), they go hand in hand.

You might remember that our Ruger was not too thrilled with Jaeger, but he tolerated him. Well, Ruger has broke down and finally realized MAYBE Jaeger isn’t always an annoyance. At times, they will play. It is fun to watch the process.

Before the Melt

     ~Playin in the Snow

Water Weims

Webbed Toes

Crane's Lucy911

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 an important thing. They allow their Weimaraner to abscond and run around the yard with the toy or the bumper. 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 Recall

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 upon 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!

Early On

When you first bring your puppy home, there is so much going on, and the atmosphere is ethereal. It is hard to stay focused or to decide what is most important. Housebreaking and crate training is at the top of the list; however, a little retrieving work is a smart investment.

Cliff suggests you find a place to do this exercise. One place 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.

Water Exposure

Weather Permitting the OwyheeStar puppy will see the water before they depart. Nevertheless, this is not going to ensure they will swim. It will still require time, effort, and patience to get your Weimaraner to swim most of the time. A few suddenly jump in but don’t expect it to happen that way.

With the solid retrieve, you can begin working along the edges of a pond and very slowly ease them into the water beyond their comfort. 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.

Imagine the possibilities!

Crane's Lucy 957

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Adventures

With Tripp

Companion Weims are the best! We can agree on that can we not?

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Rachel says, Tripp is amazing, I am so thankful to have him in my life! As you can see, he shares life with me on every level.

Tripp is such a great travel companion and water buddy. Lol as soon as I put my paddle board in the water Tripp jumps right on and is ready to go! Once we’re out in the water he feels so comfortable he gets up walks around, hangs out on the back of the board for awhile and then comes back up to the front and lays down! He’s amazing and I’m very lucky to have e him!

Thank you for Tripp! He truly is an amazing dog, he has so much personality and has adapted to my lifestyle for sure! He loves the outdoors and I’m so happy he loves the water as much as I do!

(lol) I still remember you (Shela) laughing at me through an email that I bought him a life jacket! You were absolutely right, he’s an amazing swimmer! (Lol, again) he swims better than I do and faster too!

I wish you could see him on the paddle board, he’s so good and I don’t even have to encourage him to get on the board, as soon as I put the paddle board in the water he runs over and jumps on, ready to go!

Breeder Comment

Tripp was rehomed with Rachel when his original family suffered a brutal loss during the last economic downturn. They lost their home and were struggling on every level. It was heartbreaking, but they felt finding him another family was in his best interest. We could not have gotten more fortunate for him.

Tripp is a companion Weimaraner sharing life on every level with his Mama. He is the best kind of friend–one who keeps all the secrets, keeps up with you, and celebrates everything you do together.

Dutch

DutchnMolly[1]

Dutch and Molly (my Grandmother’s OwyheeStar Weimar)

This is our Dutch dog. From the very beginning, you could tell he was going to be a great hunter. But to tell you the truth he’s always going to be my kid. When he was just a babe I started him out young training him with pheasant wings and of course ‘the ball.’ Dutch wouldn’t stop..and in his training he became great.
I decided about three years ago to teach him how to swim. ( Oh, he was 2 years old when he first swam.  ) Mind you he always liked the water. Short hairs usually don’t like the water but he’s a mix* because his Dad is a Longhair. I’d thought I’d risk it. We live on some pretty big water in Boring, Oregon along the Sandy River. The day was hot and water just right. I started him off slow throwing him a stick a little farther each time. After a few trial by error and gulps of water Dutch learned to raise his head and use that long whipping tail as a rudder. By that rate I couldn’t stop him from taking the plunge, jumping in and swimming against the strong currents. Dutch is unstoppable. Thank you, soo much for the joy you’ve brought into our lives. He’s really such a great dog!  😘 ~ Bonney

From Bonney’s Mom–Jane

Dutch has been the best of all the Weimaraners that we have owned.  Some of that may be due to our own growth in how to train a hunting dog, but most of it has to do with his personality.
He plays alone with a stick ball or blanket…throwing it up into the air and pouncing on it, tossing it and chasing it on his own while he spins, jumps and prances.
He plays well with other dogs, too and will lower himself to their level if they are small breeds.
Of course, we treat him like a human member of our family, but he has his own dog bed and toys.  Bonney has assisted greatly in his training to hold or stay.  He will allow Sam to walk around the area while he is on point (hold) and Dutch loves to dive into the brush to retrieve.  He does not like to come back empty handed.  He has also been swimming in the Colorado River and loves the water.
Mom’s dog, Molly, was born about 12 days after Dutch.  Mom and Bonney keep me up to date!

Breeder Comment

We are thrilled to get news for both Molly and Dutch. It is so great that they are doing well. Bonney, we thank you for the lovely video of Dutch swimming. 
*Bonney says he is a Mix–she means that Mama (Cindee) was a traditional Silver Gray smooth coat Weimaraner, whereas the litter was sired by Stackhouse who is a Longhair Weimaraner. Although a great percentage of the OwyheeStar pups learn to love the water, Stackhouse most certainly is a strong swimmer. Nevertheless, most Weims swim because a few things happen in the right way. One thing that really helps is getting the strong recall and the love of the retrieve ingrained. This strategy can work in your favor. Some folks who do not want a bird dog allow their Weimaraner too much freedom–they get the idea they can play keep away. They do not retrieve to hand. Achieving these two necessary skills opens additional doors of opportunity for the hunter and the non-hunter. It is important. Believing it is possible also is key. Getting the Weimaraner to swim is doable! Even in the most reluctant of swimmers, it can be achieved, but exposing them to water early on is best. 
Our puppies swim before leaving here when the weather permits. See the first swim of 2017 below.

At OwyheeStar Earlier This Year

The Sadie X Stackhouse Litter

Lucy

At The Lake

Crane's Lucy2bLucy went to the lake for the first time and was introduced to the water and paddle boarding. Crane's Lucy4b
Lucy loves the lake! And still, does really well with car rides!

Breeder Comment

We are thrilled to feature Lucy on the OwyheeStar Weimaraner News Blog two days in a row. It gives people a feel for what can happen in a very short time.  Lucee was born on December 7, 2016. She is six months old. Special thanks to her family–first for the fabulous share, and secondly, for doing so many things with her. Each journey is unique. Although Melissa and Jeff plan to add another Weimaraner soon, it will be different in many ways. Nonetheless, we expect the outcome to be equally fun.

 

Yesterday’s post got a lot of responses on Facebook from folks who have a related OwyheeStar Weim. That was especially fun–a great perk. Thanks to all you who took the opportunity to celebrate your Blue-sired Weimaraner.  We know many of you also receive the Twitter post or read on Linked In. However, you connect we are happy to have you with us!

Maybe you didn’t know, but you can subscribe to our blog–at the top of the right-hand column. In that same column, you can select various tags and links to get more information.For example, if you wanted to see other updates for the Dazee X Blue matings (there has only been one thus far), you would click on that link.

Finally, we want to add our gratitude to all of you faithfully loyal OwyheeStar fans. We love being in this together.

Escaping the Heat

Be Smart like Charlie Blue 

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We cannot emphasize enough how important it is to remember your pets when the heat presses upon us. Summer is time we expect the temperatures to rise above one-hundred degrees. Yesterday, our temperature at OwyheeStar exceeded 105 degrees. In many ways, this is worse than the heat of the summer. No one, pet or person is acclimated to the warmer temps.

Water Sports are a Good Choice

It is important to make sure you, and your pets are hydrated. Make sure you choose shade, and avoid the hottest part of the day. Water sports are always a good choice.

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Wendy and Roo were spotted ending the night with an evening-swim. After all, It’s still so warm out! We doubt it was over a hundred degrees, but hot is hot.