Border Terrier - high hopes...

Wiltsire Ron

Well-Known Member
Welcome to Waffle, my 7 week old (mostly) Border Terrier (the children named her!). I hope she's got it in her, but any top terrier training tips gratefully received. I've only ever had spaniels, and they do as they're told...
 

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Uncle Norm

Well-Known Member
If you don't want her to go to ground, keep her away from holes, culverts, field drains etc.
It will save you much time, angst and vets bills. My Border is now ten and a half but will still go to ground at the slightest opportunity. I simply have to keep him on a lead if there is the slightest risk that he will visit Charlie at home.
His last visit to the vet, following a fox encounter, cost me £130 but the vet did a good job and he lived to fight another day.
Little barsteward but you have to admire his courage.
 

Wiltsire Ron

Well-Known Member
Thanks Norm, good advice - at this size she can get down anything, and already feisty and feigning deafness.
Ron
 

Peter Eaton

Well-Known Member
MY Border has never gone to ground but she does have a high prey drive which terriers do. Make your self the most interesting thing in the world when on a walk, let the dog be a dog and let her sniff and explore the world around her. The first 13 weeks are the most important, that is when she will learn most.

I kept my dog on a very light long lead (25 metre), she could go off and explore but when she got to the end I recalled her and praised her. This was highly beneficial as she was not put in the position of being 'set up to fail' ie if she wanted to chase a squirrel she would only be able to get to the end of the long leash...and then recalled...yes sometimes it took a fair bit of time to get her to switch off and want to come back but once she came back she was praised. Now she is 3 it is a very very rare event to see her go after a squirrel as she knows if I call her she will get rewarded.

Deer to her and scent trails mean fun and a game we both join in..simple as that. She loves to follow tails and loves things that challenge her brain...ie something as simple as a treat in a loo roll hidden inside a box full of newspaper then hidden in the house....great game to get a pup using its brain.

I also take her with me when I go to cafes , pubs and shops which has taught her to sit and be calm and watch the world around her , no whining no messing about. She just lies there and snoozes....

I have never hit my dog, raised my voice to her, told her she is naughty, scruffed her nor used any aversion techniques....that's the crap Ceaser Milan does....a man with no dog training qualifications. If you want the number of a brilliant girl near Fordingbridge (dog behaviourist) who will help you train your dog , well actually she will train you ))) as I found out, PM me and I will pass on her details

Great dogs and have huge hearts ....
 

HWWC

Well-Known Member
No tips i'm afraid as experience similarly limited to spaniels but I do know one that seems remarkable at finding beasts whatever the cover so there is hope of having a great deer dog. Considering a border too at some point when cocker has retired.
 

Wiltsire Ron

Well-Known Member
Thanks chaps - I agree completely with you Chickenman, motivation is at it's most powerful when it's positive, aversion techniques break the trust, and one ends up with a confused dog. I have the extender lead and will go with the long leash technique, but what do you call her with - whistle/ voice/ clicker? I'm going to have to vary the games though, spaniels bring toys back, this terrier just does a good impression of a velociraptor with them, and them moves on! Thanks for the tip on the 'hide and seek', that'll be revealing.

Regards
Ron
 

starr shot

Well-Known Member
Mine enjoy chasing anything that moves.Going to ground last time it cost me £1250.00 when her self and sister found a badger at home .They enjoy very long walks but are equally just as happy just to run around the garden for 10 minuets .They love any sort of fun and games mostly hide and seek they hide I seek.Excellent with children.The only tip I can give you on them though is they will train you not you them.Good luck
 

Peter Eaton

Well-Known Member
Wilts

I use a plastic whistle or whistle myself to recall her. I only use clicks to het her attention as such. You mention using clicker, the clicker should only be used to mark a behaviour if it is used correctly and you must be spot on when you mark the behaviour, ie if you use the clicker when training her to sit the click must be bang on the moment her bum touches the floor....to early or late then our not marking the behaviour you are wanting to. Personally I would ditch the extender lead as if your not paying attention the dog gets to the end and gets a good yank on the neck. Better to use a harness and the long tape...tapes are on ebay for a few quid.

Starr Shot is right about the hide n seek games and yes the dog will train you and run you ragged with games for sure. Piper is my first dog and I thought there was some black magic to training her to track , not so. If the dog likes to find things she will bond with you and love to do it. The thing to get right are the basics...ie making sure the pup isn't stressed when you leave, doesn't get travel sick, is behaved in the house. Ignore bad behaviour and reward good...simple as that. One thing I do regret is having her speyed before her first season, I think she was way to young and I believe that is most likely one of the reasons she can be nervous at times of some noises.
 

Wiltsire Ron

Well-Known Member
Good advice on the spaying C, I aim to let her have at least one season, maybe more. With regards to the harness did you train her to a slip lead separately, and only use that at heel then? I have never used a clicker, but could try that to show approval, but it will therefore have extremely limited utility, I must do some more reading, and rely less on the black magic!
R
 

Peter Eaton

Well-Known Member
Good advice on the spaying C, I aim to let her have at least one season, maybe more. With regards to the harness did you train her to a slip lead separately, and only use that at heel then? I have never used a clicker, but could try that to show approval, but it will therefore have extremely limited utility, I must do some more reading, and rely less on the black magic!


She is always in the harness as when she goes out on a walk she will want to walk forward of me as eager to use her nose and find things to smell. I don't not make her heel I just let her get on with it, she then calms after ten mins or so. At this point she will be either off the lead or walking to heal naturally......I have never used anything other than a harness as if a dog does pull ...well I know I wouldn't want something choking me if I was her...hence the harness does not do that. I have been told in the past use a harness only when working as the dog will know when its time to work....well with Piper I just have to say 'find the deer' and she is knows it means fun and blood to sniff ))

Regards basic training and clicker training there are some excellent trainers on there , all using positive re-enforcement.
 

tuck1

Well-Known Member
I have a Border. It is kennelled outside, sleeps outside at night and comes in when we are in. Very hardy and doesn't feel the cold. It is very placid with other dogs, although gets grumpier as it gets older. It doesn't go to ground (fortunately for me, with my last terrier a spade was more a requirement than a lead!) but does come out ferreting. It has a brilliant nose, which enables it to locate, and then eat its way into, my mother in laws handbag to devour the chocolate Orange inside. It can also detect the cooking of bacon from a half mile radius, and will appear as if by magic, despite being, ten minutes earlier, to all intents and purposes, dead. It is without doubt the most stupid dog I have ever owned (not typical of the breed). It is a terrible thief, and extremely greedy. It will run in front of, and get run over by, quad bikes, Argo cats and articulated trucks. It never ever learns its lesson. It is, however, amazing with both by children, and has put up with no end of torment, been dressed up, worn sunglasses and covered in blankets, poked, teased and cuddled endlessly. It stinks, and whines a lot. It deals with small vermin with great enthusiasm, but is bizarrely quite well behaved on the beating line, unless a rabbit gets up.
Despite being the most frustrating and annoying dog I have ever known, it is loved by all in the house. Good luck.
 

Wiltsire Ron

Well-Known Member
I have no idea what to make of that reply Tuck! My initial impressions are mine is streetwise rather than smart, endearing while remaining quite feral, and I'm not sure she'll ever be team player enough to be anywhere near a gun line. But it's early days and she's enough of an instinct for self-preservation to know that biting children is beyond the pale, whatever she actually thinks...
answer this - would you ever have another?
Ron
 

biffo

Well-Known Member
Great dogs, had 2 and a couple of litters. Very people centric. Playful all the time. Would recommend.

Ref training methods and aversion or negative reinforcement: just remember that it is in fact a natural way for the pups to learn and you might consider this in your training toolkit. Just watch how a breeding bitch with her feisty little pups corrects their behaviour at times, she is not shy on giving a bolloc*ing where warranted !
 

tunskeen

Well-Known Member
I have a Border and vouch for them. Great nose on her from pheasants to deer and loved rats, never went to ground, but I never encouraged that. Slow and steady with training and the teething goes on for ever
 

highland stalker

Well-Known Member
Terrier.jpg

This is where my border terrier loves to be. As soon as you start the bike it gets on, regardless of who is driving or where they are going. Excellent character of dog. She endures no end of torture from the young ones but wouldn't have it any other way. Excellent on rats and deer. Very good at picking up scents. I very rarely use a lead on her, not even required at the vets. A little too keen on feathered things though. Unfortunately my neighbours stag turkey learnt this the hard way.
Oops.
 

tuck1

Well-Known Member
Hi Ron

in answer to your question, yes I would! I've spent most of my time around fell terriers, but this one seems to be completely and utterly different in character traits and temperament, which to be honest has taken some getting used to. When I first watched it out and about scenting it struck me how "hound like" it was compared to fells. Mine is a very slow learner, and I'm told that many terrier men got frustrated with them for the same reason, trying to push them too hard to early, and they fell out of favour. I'm sure you will enjoy the ride, life isn't the same without a terrier around!
 

doyle

Member
They are usually the more canny of the terrier breeds and seem to suit being an all round dog, I have heard and been told by various people that a terrier is too small a dog to track and hold a beast. I can assure anyone this is nonsense ,I have seen and worked terriers,albeit russels and used them to follow and bring wounded deer to bay on lots of occasions over the years.
My next terrier will be a border i think though. I think its important for anyone to remember the more a dog is out the more it learns.I don't subscribe to the method of only taking a dog to find a wounded beast,it should accompany you all the time only then will you get in tune with the dog and it with you.Good luck.
 

Wiltsire Ron

Well-Known Member
Thanks Doyle - that makes absolute sense that the more she sees the more she learns. The challenge of course being whether one has the patience / opportunity to let her learn from mistakes, and that means unsuccessful stalks because she got overly excited, and spoke, or ran on. Whereas all bets are off after the shot, and any help a dog can give is generally welcome, even if sub-optimal.
I will work on the tracking from a young age, and making the most of what should be a good nose. It's the all-round silent partner / getting intune that you mention. My gun dogs have learned a great deal from a season observing other dogs from a peg. This looks to be simpler in some ways, but less forgiving in others - however walking quietly at heel has to be the beginning...
regards
Ron
 

Border

Well-Known Member
I have a 6 yr old Border male. He is a star. Even tempered with a very good nature. Strong hunting instinct. Last week he bought an elk heifer to bay and at times was actually hanging from it's muzzle. An exciting walk that luckily ended without injury to all parties concerned.
 

scotsgun

Well-Known Member
We got ours about 7yrs ago from a litter offered by Brian, the main keeper on the Glen Almond estate near Perth. He's a smelly, bad tempered wee ******* who'll readily start a fight with anything which walks, crawls or flies on this earth. He grew up with 2 Chesapeakes so thinks he is one, usually picks a fight with the biggest beast around and then sits back to watch as the other 2 wade in.
He is however fantastic with my daughter and will readily submit to being dressed up like a doll, smothered in blankets and pushed around in prams. He's also a great guard dog; no one will ever get near our house unannounced.
I hadn't tried him on deer until a few years ago. I've since learned that he's totally committed, will never give up and once found will sit on his find and guard it. It's his; not even I get to approach without a growl and snap or two. The other dogs have long since learned to leave the nasty wee ***** to it. He's deadly on rats and goes berserk when he comes across a Fox.
Lastly, he's small. Approx half the stature of the regular show breed types. I don't think my wife and daughter would ever allow us not to have at least one now.
 
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