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Thread: Clumber spaniels

  1. #1

    Clumber spaniels

    Hi all
    Last year to go with the spaniels Emma got me to get a clumber spaniel she has been after one for years. I personally have always resisted as they have been two heavy and mostly show breeding, not the original clumber I remember for 30 or so years ago.
    Eventually I relented and we went to look at a litter of working bred clumbers and we came home with Treacle “Yes I know not my choice of name”
    Now she is doing well in training and obedient, she is not as fast as the Springer’s but she covers the ground very well and who hovers up sent like a vacuum cleaner.
    Because she is a lot slower than the springers she falls behind covering ground And I'm constantly having to wait for her. I'm wondering if it is possible to train her purely as a deer dog as I have been looking for a large Munsterlander or similar some time and been unable to trace one.
    Just to give you an example of the way she scents, if she's in the garden with the springers she can pick up a minute or so on a good scent before the Springer's do. At the back of the house theres a large field full of pheasants, we have a 4 foot wooden fence between us, if all dogs are out in the garden and a pheasant passes by the fence, treacle can pick up on it anything up to a minute before the spaniels. Having sat and watched her for the last year, I am slowly getting used to the way that she works.
    Over the last 20 years i have trained numerous springers and Labrador's to retrieve and flush game, I am now wanting to train a dog track scent so where do we go from here?. I think that treacle has got the ability to be a good scenting dog. Apparantly one of the the biggest assets of the clumber spaniel breed is their ability to send well, however as I found this does make working a lot slower even though she is fast for a clumber, unless I was running a pack of clumbers for picking up I can't see a place for her in the team but she shall still be used singularly.
    As I have never trained a dog to track specific scent i dont know where to start. where do you guys start when training pup or young dog? Any help or advice would be gratefully received and truly welcome. she is now a year old but is still very immature in her mind.
    All the best Ash and Emma

  2. #2
    years ago we bred and trained Columbers
    and back then they were what they said on the package
    these days the breed standard has changed so much , as has the working ability for the better
    i agree that they now are more like a working dog and not just an overgrown pet that could not be bothered wether it hunted or not retreive or not and more often than not they would bury game they found or eat it before they came back with a retreive
    but then if you wanted a dog to be a spinger then why not buy a springer in the first place
    a culumber will track and now has the desire to track with a purpose
    good luck in your training
    start with short tracks with using fresh blood upto 100 yards to start with in straight lines then move to adding a bit of difficulty into it by having a change of direction
    then go to tracks where you hav let the blood tracks dry for upto 3 hours once happy increase the length of tracks to 250 metres then 500 metres one happy change the lay out of the tracks by making them harder so the dog has to think more and work harder
    this is when you will find out how good or bad it is
    keep us posted

  3. #3
    Hi ash,

    As stone said start straight and short, most important thing is to motivate the dog so she knows that when dad asks her to follow a sent if she follows it he will get a prize, dog needs to make connection between track and find. make the prize whatever she wants and turns her on and bags of praise. when she makes the link increase distance and time, keep her on the edge without letting her go over and fail. Always finish the track even if you have to do it for her. don't distract her by talking when she's working if you don't need to.
    Use collar or harness as trigger. Don't rush her. I hate typing and i feel i am in danger of writing one of my novels, so much to say so little time so if you need any help give one of us a pm or a bell. there are also some helpful books out there.
    happy training

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by stone
    but then if you wanted a dog to be a spinger then why not buy a springer in the first place
    Thank you for the wonderful advice stone
    I didn't want another Springer I already have 11 here we used to breed Spanish water dogs and decided to stop reading them because of health we wanted another minority breed to complement the spring is an Emma and was think about the Hawk or something along those lines.
    This may sound like a real novice question does the blood have to be game specific as to what you're trying to track IE the blood of a deer to track and so on and so forth or is it just blood in general. My next question how much you have to put down to introduce a trail am not talking about the basic red line are you more along the lines of one drop every couple meters I don't really know how to lay a trail. I suppose I should go and read a book really
    On a happier note BJ is still text in me and calling me to say thanks that I didn't do anything it was all down to you thank you so much for your help and you going Ragley Hall as I'm led to believe some of the members and meeting up there if you can have a chat about the holster for the 38.
    All the best ash

  5. #5

    My uncle always seemed to have clumbers. Although his line is lighter than most, you will have to accept that she'll never work at the springers rate. If anything, she'll actually get a wee bit slower as she grows into adulrhood and bulks out a bit. Some of the clumbers in circulation now are shocking - i doubt they could work at all.

    They are slow to mature and can prove quite temprimental between 12-18months.
    There's no question that she'll prove a good senting dog - just accept the fact that she's unlikely to be able to keep a deer at bay.

    Blood trail - i started with a bit of hide from which i'd pluck a handful of hair out and cast at the start of the trail before then dragging a cloth with blood from a length of string. The cloth was attached to a broom handle via the string so that i could walk alongside the trail without polluting it with my own sent.
    After a week, i began to reduce the blood amount by spreading it on the bottom of a deer foot and placing this on the grass every 12 inches or so.
    The distace between blooded foot prints was gradually increased to around 4 ft with another unblooded foot used to alternate the prints. The feet are mounted on sticks again to allow a trail to be made without my contamination.

    Stick with it. No matter how she tests you, i doubt she'll try your patience like my Chesapeake Bay Retriever bitch - what a nose on her, but god is she bad tempered!

  6. #6
    just to let you know that the slumber spaniel has finally woken up and is behaving herself and really getting into the tracking. which is good for her as she is now getting out regularly and working hard the steadiness is there no problems at all and she has a real good nose. so we will see!

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