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Negotiating Fences

A little training can save your dog from a serious injury.

Negotiating Fences

Retriever Spotlight: Susie was sired by Upperaughton Rocky "Benson." In our opinion, he is the best dog we have imported from England. Susie has tons of drive, style and has proven herself as an outstanding hunting dog.

Is the area you are planning to hunt bordered by a hog wire or a barbed wire fence? If so, a little training on negotiating these type fences could prevent injuries and avoid some costly vet bills. If you don’t want your dog to hit a hog wire fence or barbed wire at full speed and suffer the broken bones or gashes that these fences can inflict, take some time before the hunt to teach your dog to go under wire and stop at a hog wire fence. It is fairly easy to do.

For barbed wire, simply heel the dog up to a barbed wire fence, stop him, raise the bottom wire with your hand and cast him through. Repeat on his return. After several sessions, the dog should approach the fence, stop, and crawl under the bottom wire. When dealing with a hog wire fence, stop the dog at the fence, find an opening, and re-cast. After a short period, your dog should recognize the fence (barrier) and stop.

One final note: I do not allow my dogs to jump fences for several reasons. First, the adverse effect of repeated impacts on hips and elbows. Second, there’s a chance of the dog entangling a leg in the fence and possibly causing a severe leg injury. Third is the risk associated with being gouged by a barb, causing a cut or gash that needs immediate medical attention, and in some cases this could be fatal.

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