Scent control when planting birds

Jake300win

Member
Has anyone tried using something like dead down wind on their cloths and shoes while planting birds for training. I have a puppy I'm working and thought it couldn't hurt to help eliminate as much human scent as possible. Thoughts?
 

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jonnyB

Well-known member
Have not heard about the product - probably won't hurt...

Recall training my Golden on planted birds, placed near a flag...he soon caught on. With future placements he looked for the flags. Smart dog!
 

Golden Hour

Well-known member
Are you worried that the pup is going to follow your smell and not that of the bird? If so, don't worry about that. If it were me, I would walk cross wind and chuck the bird into the grass and then bring the pup out.

The biggest thing is getting the dog into the type of environ that you'll be hunting. Kind of like riding a bike. Get out and have them practice and once they get it, they've got it.
 

Jake300win

Member
Are you worried that the pup is going to follow your smell and not that of the bird? If so, don't worry about that. If it were me, I would walk cross wind and chuck the bird into the grass and then bring the pup out.

The biggest thing is getting the dog into the type of environ that you'll be hunting. Kind of like riding a bike. Get out and have them practice and once they get it, they've got it.
 

Jake300win

Member
more so following human scent, or associating my scent with the birds. And I just had the stuff already for deer hunting so It had me wondering.
 

Golden Hour

Well-known member
more so following human scent, or associating my scent with the birds. And I just had the stuff already for deer hunting so It had me wondering.

Gotcha. Like A5 said, it couldn't hurt, but probably isn't going to give much assistance. Given that humans have about 5 million olfactory receptors and a dog has 250 to 300 million olfactory receptors, plus their genetic prey drive, they're not going to associate a bird with anything other than their instinctual drive to get it.
 

Munster927

Well-known member
I wouldn't worry about it at all when planting birds. I did however, make a drag stick when I was training my dogs for a NAVHDA test. I used a shovel handle with some string on it so I could hold it away from my body when dragging the bird to train them to track. Probably hardly made any difference in the world.
 

jackrabbit

Active member
I rarely use live birds while training, but have done a lot with bumpers and such. I usually put some "pheasant scent" product (have no clue if it actually works or is a realistic scent?) on the bumper, attach it to a 30' check cord and drag it behind me as a zig zag through the field, then unhook it, go back to the dog, send the dog off to find it, or walk through the grass in a hunting like scenario until he finds it.
 

A5 Sweet 16

Well-known member
I rarely use live birds while training, but have done a lot with bumpers and such. I usually put some "pheasant scent" product (have no clue if it actually works or is a realistic scent?) on the bumper, attach it to a 30' check cord and drag it behind me as a zig zag through the field, then unhook it, go back to the dog, send the dog off to find it, or walk through the grass in a hunting like scenario until he finds it.
So lets say you're "hunting" back through to find the bumper. Does doggy actually seem to follow the path the bumper laid down?
And on the "hot" scale of 1-10, 10 being hot on the trail of an actual rooster, where is he on the scale when tracking the bumper?
 

jackrabbit

Active member
So lets say you're "hunting" back through to find the bumper. Does doggy actually seem to follow the path the bumper laid down?
And on the "hot" scale of 1-10, 10 being hot on the trail of an actual rooster, where is he on the scale when tracking the bumper?
He doesn't follow the actual path that I walked, about half the time I'll approach it from a different angle than I walked (I like to hunt into the wind, so I usually do the drag not into the wind, then do the hunting scenario drill into the wind just like if we were hunting), other half I do it near the same zig zag path I walked to work on finding/following a scent trail. Once he comes across the bumper he usually acts exactly like he does when he's just about to flush a wild rooster (he's a lab that has developed a false/flash/2 second point/pause right before going in for the flush), only difference is it's then a bumper he picks up and brings back to me as opposed to a flushing rooster. I have also sometimes shot a .22 blank pistol when he finds the bumper, however I like to associate gunshot with a retrieve and it's borderline if that scenario is an actual retrieve or not.

I would say a 5, but I think that number is lower because a lot of our training is done in the months when it's a bit hotter outside and he wears out quick in the heat. If I did this in the fall/winter, I'm sure it would be a 8-9.
 

A5 Sweet 16

Well-known member
He doesn't follow the actual path that I walked, about half the time I'll approach it from a different angle than I walked (I like to hunt into the wind, so I usually do the drag not into the wind, then do the hunting scenario drill into the wind just like if we were hunting).
Nice. I'm surprised to hear you say he gets so excited about "fake" scent. But you've got me hooked. How long of a drag are we talking about here? And if you're doing a drag NOT into the wind, drop the bumper, & hunt or send the dog back into the wind....what was the point of the drag?
 

hyresmack

Active member
Gotcha. Like A5 said, it couldn't hurt, but probably isn't going to give much assistance. Given that humans have about 5 million olfactory receptors and a dog has 250 to 300 million olfactory receptors, plus their genetic prey drive, they're not going to associate a bird with anything other than their instinctual drive to get it.
I don't see the point in those phez sents neither.
 

Winchester30

Active member
Has anyone tried using something like dead down wind on their cloths and shoes while planting birds for training. I have a puppy I'm working and thought it couldn't hurt to help eliminate as much human scent as possible. Thoughts?
Just don’t walk a straight line to and from the bird either when planting the bird or when training the dog.
 

Hunthemup

Member
I waited on one of my GSP (now in dog heaven) until he was 5 years old before I felt that his retrieving needed a pro to get it done right. Before then I had him on all kinds of birds wild and pen raised, Work on his confidence and field work. However after I got him back from the "pro" his retrieves were not what I expected. After a re-introduction with the trainer & I together, he did what the trainer asked but not me ( lesson learned here).
Long story, I had to work with him on his confidence in pointing again and I settled for his weak retrieves. My thinking was "if he finds them and I get them, I can take a few steps and get the bird.
My other GSPs have all been natural retrievers ( lucky I guess) - Best of luck
 

Winchester30

Active member
Scent, if associated with something the dog enjoys or gets rewarded for, is something they will always go to whether it’s a wild bird or “fake” scent. Think about how they train bomb, drug, and cancer detecting dogs.
 
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