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Teaching an outrun

Guest Nancy Obernier

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You are asking something that is easily evident when you do it, and not easy to discuss for the benefit of those really not knowing a thing a bout it. That will not be you, of course.

I start all work at hand, and hope to God I have a natural outrunner.

Bobby Dalziel made an enjoyable comment about the difference between Wisp and his equally famous Dryden Joe. He said Joe was the natural outrunner, a trait which Wisp lacked. But Wisp was the easier dog to send by redirection because he did not have the natural conviction of Joe.

Maybe I lack the tenacity of Bobby Dalziel, but I like natural outrunner. Those who share my affection for it scrambled for Dryden Joe in the immediate pedigrees of their dogs, and I think with good reason.

Having said all that, I have the natural outrunners, with Joe in their pedigrees, I let them go, left and right. I stop them at 12 o’clock. I like it when I see them pull up on their own at the logical place to pull up and control the sheep. I say “lie down,” and the dog says “great.” I love that. If they slice corners or sting the sheep, I scold them, not severely. When I think the dog says “great” at 12 o’clock consistently and with civility, I stretch them out. I do that slowly.

This training is usually mine in the winter, when stretching out is more a luxury than something on which I hone. I work closely in the winter, as much out of habit as necessity. Everything at hand.

I got in a lucky month of training just this last month, when I would normally be shut down to snow or ice. But only once in the month did I really think of going to a big field and then only because the wind was dreadful in my regular training field. Maybe it’s that I lack imagination but I believe my dogs are better for all the work at hand. They are outrunning well over bigger distances, (now that I have tried them, I know) and they are responsive and pliable in their fetches.

So I slowly stretch out what goes well at hand. That is a circuitous answer to a question for a process everyone should sit down and watch, or do, and not read about.

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Guest Nancy Obernier
He said Joe was the natural outrunner, a trait which Wisp lacked.
Ah, so THAT'S why I seem to have such problems with developing outruns on my dogs, they are from the Wisp lines :rolleyes:


Seriously though, I'll be starting another pup, again from the Wisp lines, it just seems to take me much longer to develop the outrun, and I spend what seems an enormous amount of time working on the outrun close at hand. But once they get it, it seems to transfer to any distance.


Thanks for your reply.



Nancy O

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