#1. I have several dogs that are finished in their own right and hunt for me,
And... I couldn't disagree more!
Toulouse with his nose on the ground...
But first.... let's consider what you could be missing by NOT having a tracking dog
that WILL work for you NOW!
Your daughter's first deer
~photo courtesy of Sarah Whatley Stringer~
this fine 12 point that was harvested in Michigan yesterday and.... was tracked and found courtesy of Michigan's deer tracking dogs, and he can be reached at: (810) 240-4891
here is another shot of this 12 pt. just so you can compare it to this BIG man...
Just shoot that and try to suffer NOT finding it without a dog if there is no blood visable!
Back to blood tracking dogs for sale...
But actually what may be the quickest, and in the long run the easiest means of owning a tracking dog in this season is in getting a started puppy,
And... if you really want a finished dog, remembering the title of this post... why is it that this is the absolute best time of the year, now that deer season is in progress? Because when it comes to training a started OR finished tracking dog, the rubber meets the road
Remember that they were trained to track FOR ME, NOT YOU! And therefore, no mater how well trained they were by me, they were trained to track for me, not you.
95% of those people think if it is a "good" dog, it will hunt for anyone, anywhere, and anytime! And if #2 were actually true, then getting a finished dog makes a lot of sense, but the truth is: tracking dogs are part of a team of men and dogs, and if they don't know you, they won't hunt for you...
and because dogs are neuvo-phobic, meaning they are afraid of anyone or anything new, and a new place often causes them to stay close to your side, and not range out very far, so that way they don't lose you OR get left behind, so YOU must give them time to adjust, and work with them by moving them along, on leash or off leash until they warm up, ...and if the dog is having a bad day, they won't hunt FOR YOU any and every time you want them to.
Why? For instance if a dog has broken ribs, because they fought with a live healthy buck yesterday on the last track, and every breath now hurts, they may not be as aggressive a hunter as they were yesterday. And you may want to bring in the back up dog,,,, Or if their best hunting partner is not around(such as their momma, or brother,) they may not hunt because(in the dogs mind) the team is not all there. Although an older dog works well solo, often times a younger dog will not work alone, or just works better as a team with other older and more experienced dogs.
And....I'll let you in on one of my secret training methods, I don't train pups, my older dogs train the pups...sssuuussshhhhhh!
Here is the bottom line: If you wanted a finished dog for this hunting season, why didn't you buy a well bred puppy that was weaned on deer meat 3 or 4 years ago?
Let me share a true story, one that is repeated again and again among Catahoula breeders...
OK, ... Now here we are, I have several fine, well bred, well raised, well trained, and experienced blood tracking dogs for sale, and someone comes and picks one up and is convinced in less than 1 week that this dog will never be a blood tracking dog even though it has already found deer with me AND them, AND in less then one week they presume to know the dog better than I do, and I have spent years with the dog!(this a true story!)
And here is the problem: I told him the dog would go through an adjustment period and the best thing for him to do to help the dog in this transition would be to keep the dog for a week or two, and if it slows down, then bring it back to me for a time, and then bring it back to the hunting club again, and see if it can get more comfortable with the program of tracking for other people(and this customer lived close enough to make the transport back and forth very practical).
Here is the solution: If I sell a finished dog, you must work with me in person or over the phone to facilitate as smooth a transition as possible.
So... I call, leave messages, get no call back, and then a month later, he called to advise me that the dog is not working for his family! Big surprise! You failed to communicate with the breeder/trainer who spent many months OR YEARS with the dog, raising, training, socializing and knows a lot of tricks of the trade to help you connect with the dog, and facilitate a smooth transition!
And... here is the rest of the story: After five days of the dog doing really well with him, as I told him it would, he left the dog with his family contrary to my advise while he went offshore for 30 days to work, and the dog did not like being abandoned by the new owner! Although it was doing well for a few days with the new owner, when that man left, the dog was suddenly abandoned by his new friend and felt all alone because he was left with people he didn't know and maybe didn't like, and really needed to come home to me for it all to end well. Then if the dog had went back at the end of the 30 days it might have gotten into the hunting season and the new owner had a tracking dog that had been there before and all ended well last time simply because it got to come home again in the first "transition" period.
I had been calling to help you facilitate the transition from me to you, but you don't communicate with me, and only communicate rejection to the dog by only looking for faults in the dogs performance, and thus the dog gets no positive reinforcement for THE THINGS DONE RIGHT.
And believe me,
And then before you actually give the dog a chance to warm up and work for you, you reject the dog under the presumption that this one year old PUPPY should be acting like a 5 year old, well trained, and experienced blood tracking dog that YOU actually raised from a pup!
If you want to SAVE TIME and short cut raising a dog from a pup, you will pay for it in other ways, starting with the fact that I am putting 1 or 2 years of MY TIME AND MONEY into making YOUR FINISHED DOG a finished dog, because I travel thousands of miles every year visiting hunting clubs, and tracking for many difficult, hard to find deer, and some are not dead and are fighting mad when we get there as can be seen in the injuries Jessie girl sustained tracking a 9 point this month!
In case you are wondering, this buck was shot in the foreleg, and was otherwise a very healthy buck in full rut, when the dogs got there. Every time the deer tried to run, Jessie was nipping and biting it on the ass so bad, it had to turn and fight! As a result of his assaults on her head with hooves and antlers, you can see in the photo above that her head was still swollen 3 days later!
And here is smiles from some of my satisfied customers who bought puppies that ran blood tracks 500-600 yards long at only 3-4 months old!!
and I store heads, skins and legs during the hunting season...
and, I am constantly collecting deer, sheep, goat, and beef ribcages year round to simulate blood trail dog training exercises AND THE FEAST AT THE END OF THE BLOOD!
Not to fail to mention the cost of feeding, watering, medicating, worming, etc....
Another way you will pay is that a finished dog no matter how experienced, OR HOW MUCH YOU PAID FOR IT, will not work for you until you invest time into developing a close personal, warm relationship,
*SO, IF YOU BUY A FINISHED DOG, AT THE VERY LEAST, 'YOU' NEED TO BE TRAINED!
And...Most people who want a finished dog have grossly unrealistic expectations of what a "finished dog" should be doing and at what age. In my opinion: a dog is never finished until they die because they just get better and better the older they get. Just get a puppy and invest in the long haul...and if you get a smart one based upon genetics, they may actually teach you how to track!
And if you buy a finished dog, there will always be a reality check on the fact that it is not now nor will it ever be the same dog with you as it is was with me! It could be better or it could be worse. Sorry there is no getting around the best way to have a finished dog is to raise them from a pup. This truth is not open to negotiation or discussion, and you can believe what ever you want. I and all the old timers can't ALL be wrong...so if you have to learn the hard way... good, because I don't want to argue about it.
So if you want a blood tracking dog, you can call me at 337 298 2630 and I will be posting more photos of finished and started dogs in my sell sites ASAP.
for a link: de la Houssaye's Catahoulas www.bloodtraildogs.com www.delahoussayes.com