“As a breeder and trainer of Field Trial quality labradors, for more than 15 years, I have used many training aids – some good and some not so good. The oval shaped dummies supplied by the Working Dog Company™ I have found to be superb for many reasons. It is not uncommon to find an otherwise good dog to be shy of opening their mouth wide enough to accommodate a good grip on a large freshly shot pheasant. The skin on such a bird is often loose and the dog needs to extend its jaw to the maximum to accommodate a good grip that will hold without having to put the bird down half way through the retrieve, and readjust while returning to the handler.
The rugby ball shaped dummies manufactured by the Working Dog Company™ are excellent in acclimatising such a dog to use the full gape of their mouth. They are supplied in two sizes, thereby enabling a trainer to avoid the problem mentioned above from very early puppy training.
Additionally, I find that giving young dogs seen retrieves using the oval dummy, encourages the young dog to hunt an area, because the dummy – being shaped as it is – bounces erratically in any direction and does not stay where it has fallen, as does the conventional retrieving dummy. This encouragement to hunt an area to find the rugby ball shaped dummy which has not stayed in the place it fell, but bounced away from the fall area, is invaluable.”
(Ken Byron breeds and trains the Copperwheat Labradors at Wyboston, Bedfordshire – further information can be obtained from www.copperwheat.net.)