Zeke the wonder mutt!

K

Kodiak

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Mill City, Oregon
So back in December I bought a chessie puppy that died of parvo within a few days of comming home. It left an increadable pain in my family as chessies have always been a big part of my family since my son was born. Being raised old school, I have never kept an animal that won't pull its own weight...same reason I got rid of my ex-wife. After a while my son suggested we get a "grown up" dog so we don't worry about parvo with this one.
We began looking online for somebody that might have older trained dogs that would be workable..price tag $1200.00+...sooo not happening. I found this website called CBR Rescue. They specialize in finding homes for chessies with owners that understand the breed and what to expect. Most of the dogs appeared to be the who's who of pain-in-the-rear-ville.

Meet vicking...one eye, diabetes, slow roasts children.

Meet sally...friendly and loving, incontenent, great home protector, has eaten 3 mail men, good with cats.

But I found these two dogs...Zeke and Dillion. 3.5-4yrs old, great dogs. While in the logical front portion of my mind said not on your life, the impractical, romantic what-are-you stupid side screamed CALL THE LADY. So I did. After trying to find out info on the dog the care taker called back and was eager to bring him to me...uh oh. I tried to back pedal but just couldn't shake this chick, and now Zeke was being delivered. After giving her Autofishers address she still managed to show up in Mill city with the "pup". At our introduction her jeep wrangler heaved a sigh of relief when 120lbs of food bowl elimination barrled out on to the ground and promptly tried to take a nap. My daughter weighing in at all of 40lbs wraps her arms around his neck and proceads to attempt to lift "her brand new puppy" into my car. After a short walk around the park my greatest fears were confirmed. A group of honkers locked up and set down in the field right next to us, the dog completely ignored them...like he didn't even see them, or hear them, or even care. I didn't think that was possible for a chesapeake. After comming home this 120lb behemouth cowered and hid from the most insedious of creatures...the family cat. I couldn't help but think that I would be spending the next 10 yrs with a throw rug that couldn't defend my daughter from a slug.
Now he is on a diet and lost 10lbs in less than a month. His "chessieness" is beging to show through. His activity level has increased and he quit running from the cat. He figured out to make his new master be happy is pick up the stupid bumper and bring it back when he throws it, and geese don't taste that bad. In recent developments he has decided that if you throw the bumper into the water the whole fetch thing is a lot more fun and trying to catch honkers is a riot.
As zeke and I make progress I will post here and chronicle our misadventures in turning him into a duck dog, both our success and failures and trade training tips with anyone who wants too.
 
L

lizardman

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Boardman
Nice write-up Kodiak, and congratulations to you for rescuing a pup.

Dave
 
K

Kodiak

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Mill City, Oregon
I found out a little more about Zeke this weekend. He was picked up out of a pound in Idaho when he was around 1 yr. His owner had big plans for him but nver followed through. He has Adopted my son as "his" kid and is more than happy to lie down on the floor while my son 6yrs old and 60 lbs, lies down on him and wraps his arms around his neck. Then the dog stands up goes about his day, packing my son all over the house. I know its not good for the dog but its funny to watch.

The last week the ruber has begun to meet the road with sit stay heel and come down pat. We have begun playing some uncontrolled simple fetch in water and on land. The introduction to birds went verry well, without a refusal to retrieve and some promising agresiveness towards the birds and no hesitation with feathers. We tried a simple hunt with Zeke saterday. Froliking and playing and retrieving the decoys was a blast in the darkness. As dawn began to break I teathered Zeke to a small pin oak next to our blind just to be on the safe side, didn't want an incident with guns in the blind and a huge dog that hasn't been tested around gun shots to end badly. Right at shoot time a group of teal swung to the dekes and lighting within feet of the blind. As we jumped to shoot zeke hit the end of his check cord, and there is no longer a tree by our blind. Two teal fell from the sky with the volley and zeke, with tree in tow headed for the truck. I caught the dog calmed him down and brought him back to the blind where he happily retrieved his first shot double. Throught the day as birds would swing to the decoys he would become more and more secure in what was about to happen. He still doesn't care for the report of a gun, but seams to be much happier with the results. At the end of the day a goose was hit hard and sailed verry long into some deep thick brambles. I sent zeke and it was a sight to behold. He marked the fall of the bird in the brambles (70 yrds out side the decoys...110yrds overall) and swung instinctivley to the down wind side and began his search. He soon disapeared into a pile of blackberry vines thicker than I could climb into. Upon reaching him we found zeke suspended and climbing about 6 ft off the ground, another 4 ft above him was the goose.As hard as he tried he could not get higher, and the bird would not come down. It took about a half hour to reach my dog and another three hours to get him to leave the berries alone....next season should be interesting. I now have a better view of what this dog will do and what we have to work on....this should be a lot of fun.

If anyone has some tricks to help him not be so gun shy that would be great.
 
L

lilsalmon

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Oct 19, 2009
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Location
Albany, Oregon
What a good idea....I look forward to reading your progress....I know nothing about training a dog like a Chessie...can't even get my terripoo to stay off people when they come over...she catches a ball in the air really well tho......keep the updates coming....
 
D

dude young

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Dec 16, 2008
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245
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So-Po (Y'know, South of Powell)
Oh man. Awesome story, Kodi. And, what sounds like an awesome dog already. We made the choice to get a "post-pup" after Caesar passed and could not be happier with the results and the fact that I got to skip the sleepless, potty training nights.

As far as getting Zeke a bit more comfy with boom-boom, find a gun club and bring him there during a public shoot. Start out just close enough to hear the shots. Play bumper with him for a bit. As he gets comfortable, movecloser. Over time, he won't even notice the sound anymore
and you will see that you are practically on the shooting line. Once he is good with that, start training with blanks or a starter pistol.

Looking forward to more "Chronicals of Zeke".
 
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