POWERHOUSE'S ROADWORK KEEP
Copied from gamedogs.com
This will be a 6-week program, with a 2-week pre keep:
Day 2- got your weight pull harness ready?? walk the dog out for about at least 20 minutes, making sure he's empty, then hook him up to the weight pull harness with a 5-10 LB chain on the end (depending on the size and strength of the dog) and get him moving at a good pace for about 30 min, which is equivalent to a bout 2 miles or so, give or take...now you're ready to take the weight off, and finish up with a cool down walk for about 1 hr. a warm bath and a good rubdown is how I like to end day 2.... and don't forget to rubdown the dog too. LOL
Day 3- dog should be ready for some work when you go out to greet him. Get your walking shoes on cause its 2 hrs at a fast walk today. Also you might throw in 15 min or so of some ball work
Day 4- same as day 3 minus the ball work
Day 5- same as day 2 with a little flirt pole to start the day
Day 6- rest day, 20 min walk out.
Day 7-(new cycle)
Each week I will increase the walking time by 1 hr, so by peak week I will be up to 4-5 hrs of walking, which is equivalent to about 15-20 miles. I will keep the 15-30 min of "playing" the same, and the 2 miles or so of weight pull stays the same thru-out the keep. I will cycle down on the work once we reach our peak, and the dog will have its last day of real work 1 week out...from 6 days out to 4 days out, all he's doing is some light hand walking.... dialing in his feed appropriately. 3 days out till the weight pull only time he's going out, is to empty. *** Thru out the whole keep, its IMPERATIVE to monitor your dogs pads CONSTANTLY.
I will try and start out the dog on a 6 on 1 off cycle, or maybe a 5-1, but this is just an outline. I have to take a lot of things into account such as the weather, how the dog is acting, how I am feeling, etc. and then make some minor adjustments in how were going to achieve our goals. You can never make up for lost time, so don't try to...lol if you need a couple of days off, or your dog needs a couple, then by all means, TAKE THE TIME OFF. But don't try and make that time back up by putting undo stress on the dog; it's a gradual process.
Many dogs have been conditioned SOLELY on electric mills with great success. I've seen dogmen work their dogs for a few hours on the e-mill at 3-4 mph and come in and win. The e-mill is a great tool, but nothing compares to getting out there with your dog and hitting the road.
Now if you take the basic concept of this keep, add a swim tank, or a mill, a jenny, some bite work etc. make some adjustments, add your own flavor, you're going to have a happy, healthy, well adjusted dog that's going to come in with lots of air, and some serious strength. No matter what form of exercise regime you use, there is no substitute for solid dedication, common sense.........and a good dog.
The above keep has been used by us 4 times, we're 3-1 with it...the loss was a game pick up at 2:03. I hope this helped some of the folks that had questions about roadwork.