Home' Smart Farmer : April 2011 Contents April 2011
AST month, we talked about
bringing your new working
dog home and discussed the
choice of a pup, started, well started
and trained dog. We also addressed
the issue of preparation such as
housing and knowing your tones
We are going to deal with training
a pup and in later articles we will
discuss started, well started and
All training is done in stages and
at the end of every stage you need to
know that your dog fully under-
stands the stage you're working on.
It must fully understand. I call this
'the exam' and, if you want to have a
happy and rewarding time with your
dog, you must pass every exam. No
Before you start doing anything
with your pup you need to know
what his mental stage is.
At eight weeks old, he is equiva-
lent to a two-year-old child. His
attention span is less than one
minute and he is definitely not ready
for the pressure of training. He
wants to have fun and he doesn't
need continuous correction to spoil
his fun. However, he is ready to go
out on short walks with you at least
twice a day. The duration of the walk
at this stage should be about five
minutes and no longer then 10 min-
utes. Keep it short and vary the
walk. Don't always follow the same
These short walks are extremely
important. This is the time he bonds
with you and learns to come back.
Here is how you do it.
Grab your plastic rake (remember
last month I told you that you'd
need one), and let your mate out of
his run (the one you made -- up off
the ground), and go for a wander,
using your plastic rake as a pretend
Plastic bit on the ground. Don't
hurry, go in a safe direction down
the paddock towards the dam. If
you wander slowly with your eight-
week-old pup, you'll only cover
about 100 metres out and then
I can't emphasise enough that you
need to take your time.
During this walk don't stare at
your dog. Take notice of what he is
doing but walk tall and don't make it
obvious that you are watching him.
Remember you are the leader.
Behave like one.
During your walk, don't speak or
continuously bend down and pat
him. Leaders don't pay regular atten-
tion to their pack members.
There are other times you can play
and, if you pat him constantly, or
talk to him, he sees that as playing.
This time is a form of mini-train-
ing and it will set you up for life.
However, there is a time you need
exactly the right time. This is how
you do it.
When you are on your ramble
with the pup and pretending you
aren't taking any notice of him he
will, at various stages, look in your
direction and come running back.
He'll run up to you and touch your
leg with his nose and then run away
again. It's his method of 'checking in
with the leader'. This is the time you
talk but the timing must be right on
As he turns and comes towards
you, turn, and placing your hand
with the palm upwards (yes
upwards) you say, 'Andy, here, here'.
Say the tone softly and in an asking
fashion. When he gets to you, just
lightly touch him under the chin
and then stand up tall and wander
Watch carefully and repeat the
exercise every time he turns and
comes to you.
You are effectively putting a 'label'
on the natural behaviour of a dog.
He will quickly learn that the tone
of 'here, here' means 'come to me'
and when he arrives he gets recogni-
tion from his pack leader.
Next month: Stage 2 of your
• Need to know more?
Leadership qualities in
training of a new pup
He is only a baby after all, and has a limited
It is important to differentiate play time from training.
Ensure each lesson is fully
Remember your pup has limited
Reinforce natural 'pack' behaviour
with BEN PAGE,
Pages Working Dog Centre
THERE are hundreds of thousands of
kilometres of hidden underground
pipes and cables which carry our
essential services to households and
businesses around the country each
and every day of the year.
The extent to which we rely on
them is enormous and many of
them lie just below the surface.
Underground assets link hospitals,
emergency services, schools, homes
And they are found everywhere -
across residential property and farm-
land, along roads, railway corridors
and in public places.
It doesn't take too much thought
to realise that damaging these links
can lead to significant disruption in
On rural properties, there are
many activities which can damage
underground assets - cultivating,
planting, fencing, installing irrigation
and post driving to name a few.
To ensure these activities are car-
ried out safely, people need to get
their hands on up-to-date plans of
the area in which they plan to work.
Dial Before You Dig is a unique
partnership between Australia's
communications, electricity, gas and
water providers, and many other
owners of underground pipes and
Dial Before You Dig essentially
plays a middle man role and the
way it works is simple.
The company, once given the loca-
tion of a planned excavation, pro-
vides the affected underground
asset owners with those details.
The asset owners then send the
information, normally in the form of
plans, directly to the client within
two or three working days.
Lodging a standard enquiry is free
and using the simple online service
enables people to access the service
24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Damaging underground infra-
structure can result in large financial
penalties, injury and, in the worst
case scenario, even death - so it is
vital to use the service for every pro-
Dial Before You Dig the is the
essential first step of any excava-
Understand what assets are in
and around your property.
• Need to know more?
Dial first and dig later
Business of the month:
Digging a garden plot is fine but, if underground cables are cut, the exercise
may be costly or result in serious injury.
TAKE A STAB?
The Essential First Step
Take the guess work out of digging - Locate underground pipes & cables first.
An Essential Service for Every Landowner
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