Yeah- the digging on your proofing spots and on trace odor in complex scenarios is a frustrated behavior because she is going to what has produced success in the past.
Keep proofing and ignoring, encouraging away from those scenarios when it happens.
Cacti in the paw is never good! Poor Daisy!
Hard fetches and stuffed animal play don?t create those tendencies in of themselves. Don?t beat yourself up over it. She has a prey drive and you can see it in hunting. Cats running away creates a stimulus reaction that is really hard for most dogs to ignore even when conditioned to it- especially those with stalk/chase prey drives. Even bird dogs who point, usually do have a chase/ bite instinct- it has just been suppressed through training, and the pointing alert rewarded until the dog is released to chase.
You can Praise, click, treat reward Daisy when she is near said kitty (and this can mean even within like 200 ft) and sees it, but then returns attention to you. Takes practice, but it is doable to close that gap and distance over time. Will they ever be friends? Doubtful, but you never know.
A lot of dogs stalk at some point in their lives. It won?t necessarily be a natural adult behavior for her, so know that. You can encourage and reinforce it when it does happen- but you want to be careful because it can manifest in ways you don?t intend. SO if you want to nurture that aspect of her personality, we would recommend working with a gun dog trainer specifically. Of which neither Kristin nor I are. I know some about it, but frankly I am not qualified or experienced enough in that realm any more than a general trainer would be.
You may know this but the chain of behaviors is as follows: eye (or orient)- stalk- chase- bite- kill bite- dissect- consume.
All dogs fit somewhere on this chain of behaviors in what they manifest. Certain breeds omit certain aspects- and that?s why you have a border collie and also a golden retriever. They manifest different traits.
I would argue she does still point- I saw it in one of the videos!!! You just have to try to capture those moments as they arise, or try to create scenarios specifically for that purpose! You can do that kind of with pulling a toy along the ground and shaking it, and if she hesitates at all (or points!) and i mean AT ALL- you can click and reward that. A lot of it would be timing in the beginning. But again, Gun dog behaviors- of which this specific behavior you are talking about belongs to that group- are not my specialty.
She may not have a lifted leg like when she was puppy, but remember, think incrementally. Just like you have done with alerts in truffle training. Build to the alert (in this case the point and the leg lift) gradually. Over time, and with some clever and timely reinforcement, you can teach her just about anything.
There likely are some Fenzi courses that can help with this as well. I haven?t checked the current upcoming schedule recently to remember what is there for this specifically, but read through- and if you have questions, we can try to answer if we know.
There are 3 levels at Fenzi. Bronze is $65, Silver is $130, and Gold (where you participate actively by sending videos- like you do here- and have discussion) is $265. Bronze you can read all the written material, and read the forums for that class for as long as they are up (which is about 8 weeks)- Lecture material you have for a 1 yr, but you can?t ask questions. Silver is in-between. You can ask questions about assignments or what is going on, but you don?t post videos for analysis.
I don?t know if they have a package tuition. You could certainly email Fenzi and ask for them to create that option (I bet it would be popular), but pretty sure they don?t as of right now. She does offer scholarships and there is a Tab at the top of the website that goes over that.
We can try to help you locate a local trainer if you want to email us what kinds of things you are looking for as we do have contacts who may know someone in your area. But I would think there would be gun dog trainers in your area- just be careful with that and ask questions to the prospective trainer to make sure they fit within what you are thinking of in terms of methods used.
Love your enthusiasm for all the classes offered at Fenzi and your general enthusiasm and dedication and focus in training Daisy. It is commendable!
There really are world class instructors teaching there, and that?s why we mentioned it. We think you & Daisy would fit in well with the student base who is very active and engaged with their dogs. Meant as a compliment. But yes, lots of great offerings. I want to take many myself 🙂