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Author Topic: Still learning: Florida cracker curs  (Read 1068 times)
jstankus
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« on: July 14, 2020, 01:48:49 pm »

Haven't posted in a while, been very busy with work but wanted to vent on my current situation. My grown dogs are getting old/passed and I have been restarting this past year. My first generation of pups are now 3 years old, kept a female and male. Both are running good but not producing hogs like the parents. The second generation (line bred back to uncle), are now 11 months old. I had 4 puppies I was carrying to the woods and rotating them with grown dogs and felt like I have been spinning my wheels (8 dogs in the box). Keep in mind my hunting partner has 3 pups from the same litter in his box. They were more focused on playing around than hunting and only a few would take off with the pack when they jumped a hog (despite running a pup with grown dogs).

I feel like maybe it's a quality over quantity matter. So I gave 2 pups away yesterday leaving me with two pups to take to the woods. I've been so worried on keeping the best puppies of the litter, I forgot my original dogs I invested a lot time in them handling and giving them more time on the ground. I feel like maybe I did this wrong with the first generation I bred and maybe that is why I'm having such a issue getting them to actually stop a hog. Not sure if anyone has struggled with this. The pups I kept one is going with the grown dogs 500-800 yards running a hog and then will fall behind (she's 11 months), the other male is the biggest dog in the litter and isn't showing interest in the hog at the bay, I figured he needs more time to mature. I have another litter dropping in a couple of months and plan to keep just 1 pup and focus more my time with it. Has anyone struggled with this? Maybe I'm culling way too late or hanging on too long. Feel like I should pick one or two and focus on them only. Just haven't seem to reproduce the quality of the parents yet.
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Cajun
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« Reply #1 on: July 14, 2020, 03:54:15 pm »

  It is easy to get overloaded. I would just focus on a pair at a time. Some crosses just do not make it, no matter how good the parents are.
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« Reply #2 on: July 14, 2020, 04:41:21 pm »

I feel your pain. Cajun is right in my opinion. You may or may not keep the "best" pup out a litter, but in my opinion, if there is that much difference in them, they probably shouldn't be bred anyway. Consistency of a litter is huge when I consider breeding a dog. I have bred dogs that I would've bet a lot of money would've been barn burners and turned out they needed to be burned in the barn. Sometimes it just isn't a niche. There are so many variables I raising good dogs. Its amazing that anyone does to me. I don't get to hunt enough to keep over a pair of pups. I like to start one and once it has the idea then start the other. Or if I make several hunts close together I might rotate them. I also start my pups on live hunts at one year old. I do this because of mental maturity. They might be physically able to keep up but it doesn't mean they are mentally able to keep up or deal with some pretty harsh adversity sometimes. You don't see 13 year olds fighting for boxing championships, you may see 18 or 19 year olds though. Everyone has their way and what works for them. This has been mine.

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jstankus
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« Reply #3 on: July 14, 2020, 05:39:29 pm »

Overloaded is a great term. I’m gonna stock to pairs for sure. Thanks for the input.


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Goose87
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« Reply #4 on: July 14, 2020, 11:38:18 pm »

I don’t know your situation with raising pups but if you can let them run loose until they start becoming a nuisance or running game on their own, if you can’t, but have access to go shine rabbits take them one at a time and go shine when you see one don’t say anything to the pup but walk in that direction and wait for Mother Nature to take over, might have to shine one that the pup sees and keep the light on it and see if pup gives chase, after a few times of this and no prey drive kicking in then you might have your work cut out for you, for the pup running but not staying, has it ever got to complete a race and see the end result, if not it could simply be that the pup just doesn’t fully know what’s going on yet and hasn’t connected A-to-B yet and had that ahaaa moment, if you can hobble a shoat and turn it loose and the pup right behind it, put the odds in the pups favor, a smaller hog than the dog to give the pup a confident feeling, and it can’t blow out and leave the pup standing there, at a slower pace at a level the pup can maintain eye contact majority of the time and learn to connect the dots when using its nose, take her out when she’s extremely excited and leave her wanting more, even if it’s not as long as you’d hope for, some times in the long run less is more, if it’s in her she should progress, if you can do this once or twice a week and hunt her on weekends or whenever you hunt she should come around and figure it out, this is just my opinion and not a golden rule by any means but at the 18 month mark if they’re not at least making the race or the majority of it then they don’t stay on my yard and by 2 yrs if they aren’t capable of producing a hog by themselves at least a few times by that age then they don’t stay, but that’s just my standards as long as I’ve done my part in getting the pup raised up the right way and started the right way I’ll hang on a little longer if for whatever reason I didn’t get to raise and start the pup in a way to it’s benefit, as far as the male goes I’d first try live trapping a coon and leave it in the trap and put a cord on it so you can drag it, get the pup away from any major distractions and tap the trap to make the coon hiss and fuss, or put some sort of treat just out of reach of the coon next to the trap, when the pup goes for it the coon should fight at and hiss at the pup, if that don’t fire him off and ignite him then I’d say you got your work cut out there as well, you might have to turn his littermate loose or another dog he connects well with and let them get the coon fired up and fighting, and maybe it may take the monkey see monkey do route, I have no idea what it is about a pis$ed off coon in a cage that makes a dog fire off like they do, if you have a small terrier or heeler type dog that will bay and fight at the coon that the pup knows then that’s even better, after a few rounds of this if you can take him to an open bay pen then I’d suggest leashing him to the pen and making him watch the other dogs work even might have to let them bay at the coon if he’s fired off on it but leave him leashed and pissed off that he had to miss out, on the next run in the pen if he’s barking wanting loose turn him loose but with a long piece of weedeater string so you can pull him out while he’s baying, only allow him to bay for a few minutes once he starts and pull him out while the others are still working and leash him up again to tease and entice him, a few of those runs and he should start putting it together, I’d even take him when messing with the gyp just to watch and be enticed, the biggest factor to figure out here is what is YOUR standard and end goal, another method that we’ve used in the past on a dog that just didn’t want anything to do with a hog off an all star cross and high turn out litter, we put him in the pen with a hog and didn’t feed either one of them for 4 or 5 days, then we put the dog food in the trough used to feed the hog, hunger is what drives all living things, when the hog tried to come up and get the dogs food he wasn’t about to have that and the savage came out in him and from that moment forward he was a HOGDOG, it just all came together for him at once like a light bulb went off, it may sound cruel and harsh to some but desperate times call for desperate attempts, I’ve started doing the rabbit shining the last 5-6 years and it has become my best training tool, the pups learn to use their nose and how to work a scent trail and can figure out the right end of a track all on their own once they start actually running them I quit and by that time I’ve started baying them, when it’s time to hit the woods for the first time they already know how to use their nose and work out scent, and that puts me months ahead of most right out of the gate, I very rarely have problem with them trashing on rabbits later on, mostly right at the beginning, before making a cross I look at the litter average of the parents if most of their litter didn’t make good dogs then I won’t breed them, everybody has to start from somewhere so be real with your self and come up with a set of standards and don’t stray to far from them even if it means scrapping what you got and finding other stock, if you can keep the whole litter and set a standard and time frame for results at different age stages and cull accordingly what’s not up to par at whatever age you have a standard to meet, hopes all this rambling nonsense can help you out the slightest bit...


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Goose87
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« Reply #5 on: July 14, 2020, 11:45:33 pm »

Yhyhythyhyhyhyyyyyyyyhyhy  Mt ytyt


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Goose87
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« Reply #6 on: July 14, 2020, 11:45:47 pm »

Lmk p


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jstankus
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« Reply #7 on: July 15, 2020, 08:50:09 am »

Goose, thanks for info. I turned out the chickens when they were little pups to see who had the high prey drive and that the female I kept was the one running chickens until they gave out and I have to grab her before she could hurt my chicken. The other dog has good size and block head which I prefer since all my dogs catch and I've yet to need a catch dog in almost ten years. So I am really hoping maybe he will flip the switch but we'll see. Here in Florida it's pretty strict on how to train animals, I have turned a boar hog loose in my club~150 lbs and turned out my female with a handful of other puppies, they chased it down and bayed it, but I will attempt turn a shout loose in the woods and she if she can finish the race. Thanks for the help.
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cajunl
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« Reply #8 on: July 20, 2020, 12:42:02 pm »

It frustrating.....but you really want to see what your young dogs do, just hunt them. No older dogs and 1-2 at a time all the time. The cream will rise to the top quickly.

They will miss hogs, they will get outrun. Each time they get outrun they will learn. They stop and bay 2-3 hogs themselves they lean 10x faster than just following and going to an older dog bayed.

Much easier with 1-2 dogs than 6-8 dogs.

Good luck! It is a long haul.

I hunt a bunch up in N. Fl
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Austesus
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« Reply #9 on: July 25, 2020, 02:24:42 pm »

Glad to see this post. I’ve been struggling with stopping hogs since my older dogs died. Finally been having a bit of luck again. I have an older female that I got from a buddy, a nice finished dog. I just got her bred 2 weeks ago. I’m hoping that she took and all pups are born healthy. I have another female that I had put up to breed and she came in heat right after I bred this female. I was going to breed her too but decided it would probably be better to limit how many pups I have so I can put more time and focus in to each one of them. This is my first planned litter, I plan to keep all but 2-3 of them (if she has Cool. At what age do y’all begin to cull down the pups? I know that some will be superstars that start late but I want to focus on the early starters


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t-dog
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« Reply #10 on: July 25, 2020, 02:56:48 pm »

That's a hard question in a way. You have to have a standard anytime you have dogs. Puppies are no exception. If you see things that are on your absolutely not list then you cull that pup right then. All it will do by keeping it is take time and food from a good pup. Hopefully you won't have much of that no breeding is full proof no matter what the parents are or how good they are. I know why I make certain matings and if the pups aren't going to produce what I bred them to do then they are useless to me. They may work fine and be exactly what someone else wants but I cut my losses and move them and go.back to the drawing board. That happens less the deeper you get into a family of dogs I think, but at first there is a lot of trial and error and having standards and sticking to them is the shortest way to your end result. Over time, you won't have to worry nearly as much about picking a good pup or be worries nearly as much about how the are going to work style wise if you stick to your standards because you will start to isolate the genes you prefer. I like to see my pups potential early but I don't usually start hunting them until they are 1 year old. I do mess with them and they think they are hog dogs when I start hunting them. Everyone doesn't do it like this. Over the last couple years I have done less of this and just started them in the woods. But it has cost me a couple of young dogs that might have been worthy of breeding one day. I feel like if had educated them ahead of time they might not have gotten dead before they got smart. The mock hunts allow me to see a lot more from.the pups too. I get to see and pay closer attention to them that way than I would in a live hunt situation. It allows me to see what separates pups if I have more than one. I get to see who the work horses are, who's riding shirt tails or if it's an all out let's see who's first every trip out. To me that is pretty fun.

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Austesus
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« Reply #11 on: July 25, 2020, 04:08:23 pm »

Thanks for the response, I have several things I plan on doing differently with these pups. From day one i want to start working on basic commands. My older dogs that are dead now had that because they were all inside at one point or another. My younger dogs don’t because I didn’t spend time with them hoping it would make them less attached and better at casting. I learned from it, they don’t handle well and I don’t think it made much of a difference on how they hunt. This round I want to make sure the dogs listen well and are easy to deal with.

Had a lot going on when I was raising the last few and didn’t get to work them like i wanted. This time I want to really start taking them down to the creek by my house almost daily to let them get used to going through the swamp before I ever even put them on hogs. I’m also going to try that tip about spotlighting rabbits


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Birdslayer86
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« Reply #12 on: July 26, 2020, 12:00:47 am »

I whole heartedly believe the bite ole Florida curs were so well known for has slowly been bred away from for a bay dog because that’s what everyone wanted. Now everyone has a good bay dog but can’t manage to catch a hog without a big catch dog they lead in on a leash Or 6 to 8 head of piranhas on the ground. I’m slowly getting back in myself as I got out for awhile. I’ve never hunted more then 2 dogs and I can never remember any old timer I was raised around or any you saw around town on a regular basis have more then 1 or 2 dogs with them. Yes they may of had half a dozen pens full at home but never left with more then 2. Yes your going to loose some good dogs along the way but the great ones get smarter and live longer. I also believe people in general have become softer and the tool of “culling” is extremely under utilized because they can come up with half a dozen excuses why the dog/animal failed to meet a said expectation. I’ve had some great dogs over the days but don’t have a damn thing now but one pup. I don’t like hunting more then one pup at a time and normal solo. I don’t want them running around playing grab ass. We are here to do a job and I expect you to start figuring that out. We will normally start pups a couple at a time with a pig they can man handle and a tie rope around a back leg. If they show the interest we are after my sister and brother in law have a horse shoe shaped pond and it’s fantastic for turning a pig loose in the mouth of it and having a fake hunt so to say. I’ve always made sure the first few hogs they see the pup can man handle them and not the hog man handling the pup. I normally spend the first 8 to 12 months putting a handle on dogs and hauling them around making them mind there manners in the box and just used to every day life before I put much hunt to them. I usually expect a female to start earlier then a male. Just my thoughts. Now for breeding and raising my own pups I keep the entire little. By 6 months I’ll thin to half the litter and around a year I’ll cut it in half again. By a year and a half there probably won’t be but a couple or few left I want to continue on with. If I’ve got dogs I’m hoping to reproduce from I normally breed them 3 times and like above keeping the whole litter and seeing if they reproduce true and to the standard. Very very few if any will make it to the public and the only reason they did is because they went to someone I fully trusted to put them to work and give me there honest opinions even if it’s I culled it. I don’t claim to know it all or be able to make a dog out of any dog and I’ve been called cold hearted more then once but I personally have a standard some say it’s to high but I know what I want and expect out of a dog and I’ll cull one and move one way before I make an excuse as to what and why.
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Austesus
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« Reply #13 on: July 26, 2020, 08:23:41 pm »

Good post bird slayer. What’s the personal list you have for deterring if you’re going to cull a pup?


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jstankus
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« Reply #14 on: July 26, 2020, 08:44:53 pm »

I appreciate all the advice. I’m just gonna keep 2 and get a good handle on them this next litter. I did that when I first started and the dogs were great. I’ve been hanging on to so many dogs spinning my wheels and there all timid and don’t feel like they hunt like they should. I want them to feel like a part of the family and it might give them confidence they need to be good hunting dogs. The pack this past weekend. My buddies dogs are stacked in there too.


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Austesus
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« Reply #15 on: July 27, 2020, 10:25:44 am »

I agree with you Jstankus,

My dogs that I decided not to handle much as pups are timid and hard to deal with when it comes to listening around the yard and loading up. I used to run 6-8 dogs on the ground between me and a buddy, now I’m wanting to get to where I can just take two rough curs and get it done


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warrent423
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« Reply #16 on: July 27, 2020, 01:37:26 pm »

I whole heartedly believe the bite ole Florida curs were so well known for has slowly been bred away from for a bay dog because that’s what everyone wanted. Now everyone has a good bay dog but can’t manage to catch a hog without a big catch dog they lead in on a leash Or 6 to 8 head of piranhas on the ground. I’m slowly getting back in myself as I got out for awhile. I’ve never hunted more then 2 dogs and I can never remember any old timer I was raised around or any you saw around town on a regular basis have more then 1 or 2 dogs with them. Yes they may of had half a dozen pens full at home but never left with more then 2. Yes your going to loose some good dogs along the way but the great ones get smarter and live longer. I also believe people in general have become softer and the tool of “culling” is extremely under utilized because they can come up with half a dozen excuses why the dog/animal failed to meet a said expectation. I’ve had some great dogs over the days but don’t have a damn thing now but one pup. I don’t like hunting more then one pup at a time and normal solo. I don’t want them running around playing grab ass. We are here to do a job and I expect you to start figuring that out. We will normally start pups a couple at a time with a pig they can man handle and a tie rope around a back leg. If they show the interest we are after my sister and brother in law have a horse shoe shaped pond and it’s fantastic for turning a pig loose in the mouth of it and having a fake hunt so to say. I’ve always made sure the first few hogs they see the pup can man handle them and not the hog man handling the pup. I normally spend the first 8 to 12 months putting a handle on dogs and hauling them around making them mind there manners in the box and just used to every day life before I put much hunt to them. I usually expect a female to start earlier then a male. Just my thoughts. Now for breeding and raising my own pups I keep the entire little. By 6 months I’ll thin to half the litter and around a year I’ll cut it in half again. By a year and a half there probably won’t be but a couple or few left I want to continue on with. If I’ve got dogs I’m hoping to reproduce from I normally breed them 3 times and like above keeping the whole litter and seeing if they reproduce true and to the standard. Very very few if any will make it to the public and the only reason they did is because they went to someone I fully trusted to put them to work and give me there honest opinions even if it’s I culled it. I don’t claim to know it all or be able to make a dog out of any dog and I’ve been called cold hearted more then once but I personally have a standard some say it’s to high but I know what I want and expect out of a dog and I’ll cull one and move one way before I make an excuse as to what and why.
If the two Cur Dogs on the ground can't wind, find, stop, and attempt to "hold" any hog they come across, you need to kill those two and try you two new 'uns. The one or maybe two we put on the ground, unless cut down, stroked out, or broke up inside, on our command, will be coming Wink From weened to 12 months of age, they will be given every possible opportunity to prove themselves of this ability. For the record, my dogs are always started on cattle. "Metal" is first tested on rank cattle.
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Birdslayer86
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« Reply #17 on: July 27, 2020, 05:32:58 pm »

Well stated warrent!!! What you describe is what I’ve always known a FL cur to be. I wish I had the ability to start some on cows because there normally seems to be a mix that some take better to a cow and some take better to a hog and the greats do what they are expected and asked. Hell some work cows by day and catch hogs by night. Seems you have some of the good ones for sure. Do you breed often or have pics of what your using now ?? Thanks in advance
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Birdslayer86
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« Reply #18 on: July 27, 2020, 05:45:56 pm »

Man just by that pic that looks like more fun then a couple fellers could handle. ...... it would be hard to put a list together really and I’m a little different with my likings then most...things I like ... trainability... common sense... one man band type ... use of there nose ... willingness to please ... grit etc etc ... some things I don’t like hard headed ... overly people friendly ... food aggressive... bad pen manners ... dog or animal aggressive Not respecting a pen or fence  etc etc but you have to be easy on the eyes too I prefer females so the males are already a step behind
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jstankus
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« Reply #19 on: July 27, 2020, 06:24:21 pm »

I just need em to stop a hog and not number 2 in the box. Box number 2ters are the worse. Lol.


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