Age to start pups

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Andyva
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Age to start pups

Postby Andyva » Fri Feb 24, 2017 2:03 am

What age do you guys with running dogs start pups? I'm sure it depends on how they are bred. With coon, you aren't usually going to turn loose on a twenty mile race, so I think some of the coon bred dogs have been selected to start earlier. I've talked to some people that will start pups on fox in pens, with other pups at six months, but I have heard a lot of people say they start at 7 or 8 months, and still others say wait until 10.

I have one that I'm not so darn sure will start running her own rabbit track by 12 months from where she stands now at 8 months, but I'm hoping she might surprise me one day.

Is it maybe somehow good for a dog's mind to wait until it's body is able before it clicks? Bones and ligaments take a while to reach their full strength, even though a pup might be near full size don't mean it is done growing. Not a problem on a hot coon track jumped at a feeder, but a coyote race can be a different deal.
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Re: Age to start pups

Postby Dan Edwards » Fri Feb 24, 2017 12:58 pm

Just depends on when they are born and how the pup acts. I have seen em start at 4 months old and get tossed over and over and still make great dogs later on. I have also seen dogs that wont start running really til 8 months old. Obviously they are gonna get tossed out too a lot but the good ones will make it no matter how many times you "screw up" so to speak. I don't hold pups back but I sure have made some mistakes with them. Speakin of which I kinda got a young male right now that I sorta messed up but he will be fine I think. I got him kinda banged up and he hurt his back leg somehow. I had to put him up and he been on a chain pretty much for a month now and is actin all backwards and such but he was 100% outgoing before all of this. It just happens.
Andyva
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Re: Age to start pups

Postby Andyva » Fri Feb 24, 2017 5:43 pm

This one I've got is going with the older dog. I just don't think she has any idea why. Turns into a bouncing 4 month old pup and wants to play, I believe, when there is a loss. Not good for keeping a track going with just my older gyp. I'm having a hard time deciding whether to let her keep going or let her listen from the box. On one bayup, I saw her get charged and she rolled over and showed the coyote her belly, she was obviously too young at that point, I don't know whether that hurt her permanently or not.
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Re: Age to start pups

Postby pegleg » Sat Feb 25, 2017 4:01 am

Starting pups and hunting pups means different things to me. I don't have a exact age I hold as a absolute. However I do tend not to hunt them until older then most guys. But even though I wait I still have two dogs right now that probably could have been better if I had waited a little. One has some slight damage to his front leg from over exertion. The other is a bit shy and harder to handle from horseback because of a run in with a mule at the wrong age. I once had a dog that was outstanding on cats or bear but wouldn't take a coon track on a bet. She dived over a log into a coon at a young age I suspect expecting it to be gone and it wasn't.
The things I look at are these. A older dog is less likely to be greatly impacted by one event. There is more room for error or mistakes and just plain bad luck and accidents. Its also easier to correct something a dog picks up after a certain age. There's plenty for young dogs to learn that are best taught in a controlled environment. I just won't hunt a dog less then eight months on a real hunt. I don't advocate leaving them in a kennel or chain this causes more harm. But I don't expose them to situations I can't control pretty well either
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Re: Age to start pups

Postby Dan Edwards » Tue Feb 28, 2017 12:36 pm

Andyva,

I don't think it hurt her one bit if she was meant to be a good one.


pegleg,

I agree with you. I'm not advocating starting all dogs at a very young age and yes I do think dogs can have bad things happen to them young that really suck and its a risk that sometimes we just take. We don't have to that's for sure but we do at times. I know pups that literally run loose til they are damn near a year old sometimes and the ones that survive are so far ahead of the dogs I raise at the same age that its a bit embarrassing to be honest.
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Re: Age to start pups

Postby pegleg » Wed Mar 01, 2017 2:27 am

I have thought about the whole running loose thing. I've been able to do it and more often some sort of variable. Its alot like anything it sometimes work better then others. Up to a certain age they all learn more and mature better. But after a certain age for each line it seems to go the other way a little. And some strains just do best with limited freedom. And out of this all some types of prey is just best left to mature dogs. Some styles of hunting are also beyond pups. If your pups don't have to work hard for hours or really apply themselves more then they're capable or face game to dangerous it doesn't have as much of a chance to hurt the dog. Years ago people across the country had similar ideas on what age hounds should hunt or when horses oxen etc. Should be put to hard work. They had experience to back this up. I know it's nice to see some behaviors in young hounds and gives you hope in their future. But it's easy to over do it on biggame hounds to early
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Re: Age to start pups

Postby Andyva » Wed Mar 01, 2017 3:10 am

This one has been with the older gyp I have some. I think I'm going to back up with her some and get her running her own rabbit, then take her to a fox pen a couple times and then see if she will run coyote. By then the coyotes will probably have pups and get kind of testy so I might wait til about august or september. Might be august or september anyway at the rate she is going.
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Re: Age to start pups

Postby Dan Edwards » Wed Mar 01, 2017 1:08 pm

Ya I would definitely NOT start a young dog in the corn fields. That's a no go all the way. At least for me it is. I don't let a dog run in the cornfields usually til after they have had a full winter season and they have shown that they will not get tossed out at all.

Edited to add this to pegleg kinda.

Once again I agree with most you said. I just know that them young dogs that run loose stay in races that no way would my young dogs be able to stay in and they are the same dogs. I'm talking even littermates. That being said a lot of them wont live to see their 1st birthday either so that's not good at all for ya unless ya got a lot of dogs.
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Re: Age to start pups

Postby Andyva » Wed Mar 01, 2017 4:50 pm

Dan, we don't have much in the way of corn around here. What time of year would you say is a no go for pups. I was figuring, based on what I know, from about mid april to maybe september. I'm assuming you are talking about coyotes with pups getting too rough. I haven't been doing it long, but from what I can see, time of year plays a big role in how they run.
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Re: Age to start pups

Postby Dan Edwards » Wed Mar 01, 2017 6:32 pm

Bout June when the corn gets bout knee high or better they get damn rough. You better have a few dogs that can make one run then cuz they are a different critter at night and they will dang sure put the fear of God into one.
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Re: Age to start pups

Postby Andyva » Thu Mar 02, 2017 10:37 pm

I guess it is all about them having their pups up big enough that they don't really stay in a den and they start letting them follow to their hunting grounds. Do you think if you caught one out by itself in more of a pasture field it would run the right direction that time of year? It seemed to work for me last summer, I would catch one out by itself with a spotlight and give it a run, but if I heard a whole passel of them howling I kind of steered clear of that area.
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Re: Age to start pups

Postby Dan Edwards » Fri Mar 03, 2017 12:30 pm

Where there is one there "can be" 2 or 3 more there in a matter of minutes "if" they want to be. Some coyotes run, some don't. It just all depends on the coyote and the situation. A very smart man once explained to me over the phone what's really goin on out there when dogs get stood up. Id say he knows since he was head of the ADC most of his life and witnessed more coyote behavior than I could ever dream of. HAHA!

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