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Walking the Dog: Troubleshooting Needed

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I'm learning how to walk the dog and it's taking me some practice. I'm using lures like the Zara Spook Puppy and Megabass Pop X. I frequently get my braided line caught in the front treble hook and it seems like I'm spending more time unraveling than fishing. Any tips?

 

Would Mono help? I'll probably add a mono leader for stretch regardless for those treble hook lures. 

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You answered your own question. Mono or copolymer leader would help tremendously. It will still wrap here and there but nearly as much. I use 10-15 pound p-line cxx. 10 For poppers, 15 For walking style baits. Its stiff and strong. I also use an fg knot which is a great leader to main line knot for me personally.

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12 minutes ago, CroakHunter said:

You answered your own question. Mono or copolymer leader would help tremendously. It will still wrap here and there but nearly as much. I use 10-15 pound p-line cxx. 10 For poppers, 15 For walking style baits. Its stiff and strong. I also use an fg knot which is a great leader to main line knot for me personally.

Thank you. I happen to have 12 lb P-Line Floroclear on hand. Never used that for top water though. I didn't like the FG knot on smaller diameter lines (which is mostly what I fish with) so I learned the Alberto knot and never looked back. 

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Mono

 

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yes mono will help.  also, i don't think the pop x is an easy bait to walk.  it can be done and i will do it, but starting out go for a longer pencil style bait.  even the spook puppy you have isn't the easiest spook to walk.  a megabass giant dog x is one of the easiest baits i've used to walk.  a longer bait will help you get that rhythm down and be able to walk almost any bait after that.  and i would try mono for the topwater.  i like to use 12lb trilene big game or 12lb yozuri hybrid.

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While you are learning, I'd stick to just throwing one bait. Each different style can have a slightly different cadence to get it to walk. Switching back and forth between baits may make it more difficult. I taught myself to walk a Zara Spook. A Lucky Craft Sammy does not walk exactly the same way and I always have trouble getting it to walk with my normal retrieve. 

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Sounds like you may be twitching it too hard too. A hard twitch and slack line lets the bait turn greater than 90 degrees and you catch the line on the next twitch.

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Try the Rebel Jumpin Minnow.  It was the first lure I learned to walk.  Since then I have tried many walking baits. and have yet to find one that is as easy to walk.  It also catches fish as well as any I have tried.

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1 hour ago, Crappiebasser said:

Sounds like you may be twitching it too hard too. A hard twitch and slack line lets the bait turn greater than 90 degrees and you catch the line on the next twitch.

 

You know what? I do twitch it pretty hard, almost like a jerk bait. Excellent pointer!

Thanks to all that replied. This is such a helpful community.

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Try a larger bait as the two you mentioned are harder to walk because of their size.

 

Allen

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Skip the braid.  If you want no stretch, try Tuf Line Supercast in 20# size.  The stuff is perfect for topwaters.

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A super spook or a duo pencil 110 would be the best learning baits.  I learned on a frog and that was a lot of fun.  I trim the legs a little on a frog.

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Braid to 2ft mono leader like almost all the pros. Very important when fishing topwater for long casts. And that's where the braid comes in. And remember when u twitch that bait that as soon as u twitch it to u that u immediately go back toward the bait w the rod tip as the bait needs that slack to move. And a loop knot is a must, straight to the eye of the bait.

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I have fish top water dog walking lures using mono like BIg Game 12 lb for decades.

If you want a medium size spook type lure the Owner Cultiva Zip n Ziggy has a weight transfer ball and walks without trying to walk the lure. Baby bass is the color I use and caught a lot big bass on this lure during early summer.

Tom

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Is this happening right off the get go?  If so, simply thumbing your spool before the bait hits the water will solve the problem.  I fish Spooks all the time with 30lb. braid and never run across this.  If it happens somewhere during the retrieve, you're jerking and not twitching the rod tip.  You can get a lure to walk three times it's length to one side or the other with just a twitch. Jerking the tip raises the nose of the bait and when it turns, the nose will cross over the line often times catching it on the front treble.

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13 hours ago, UKCATSBASSER said:

Try a loop knot as well. 

Or a snap. 

 

Also, try some baits that walk easier like a Strike King Sexy Dawg.  They walk without much effort.

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2 hours ago, papajoe222 said:

Is this happening right off the get go?  If so, simply thumbing your spool before the bait hits the water will solve the problem.  I fish Spooks all the time with 30lb. braid and never run across this.  If it happens somewhere during the retrieve, you're jerking and not twitching the rod tip.  You can get a lure to walk three times it's length to one side or the other with just a twitch. Jerking the tip raises the nose of the bait and when it turns, the nose will cross over the line often times catching it on the front treble.

It's tough to gauge when the fouling occurs as I was fishing at night on a pond at a dim lit park. 

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An original Spook or Super Spook Jr. are about as easy as it gets to walk. I fish straight braid with mine and don't have the tangling issues that others seem to have but I don't pause my bait or let them glide very long so that might be the reason for that.

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A Zara Swayback spook if you can find them is the best Lure I have found to learn to walk the dog.   I never understood why they stopped making them, but I can always find them on Ebay if I need to get another.   Here is Heddon's description:

 

When it comes to surface lures Heddon is on top. Designed with a slightly higher pull point than the original Zara Spook, the SwayBack “walks the dog” easier than any bait on the market. The arched back creates a more lifelike silhouette on the water to fool even the most highly pressured fish. With the nose and tail feather above the water’s surface the SwayBack creates tremendous water displacement and sound, causing ferocious blowups. Available in natural baitfish patterns designed to be effective on bass, stripers, and saltwater species.

 

Dug

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I think that doing a walk the dog retrieve with a Lucky Craft Sammie is pretty simple.  I use 17 or 20 lb mono and a rod that is more medium than medium/heavy, with plenty of tip.

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On ‎6‎/‎9‎/‎2017 at 9:22 PM, WRB said:

I have fish top water dog walking lures using mono like BIg Game 12 lb for decades.

 

Tom

 

Like Tom I use 12lb Big Game and have zero problems walking any lure except a Jackall Mudfish.

 

Allen

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Anyone can zigzag any walking lure with any rod and with any line.

The key to dog-walking is having some slack line 'before' and 'after' each twitch

and maintaining a timed rhythm.

 

Roger

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4 hours ago, RoLo said:

The key to dog-walking is having some slack line 'before' and 'after' each twitch

and maintaining a timed rhythm.

 

Roger

Walking is easier if you maintain a timed rhythm, but you'll get more blow-ups if you change cadence or stop it occasionally during the retrieve, at least until you determine what's working best.  Changing the rhythm is a little more difficult to master for beginners, but it's the best way to determine how the fish want it.

I'll often revert back to doing just that when the bite dies off only to discover they wanted it with a wide slow cadence, or a quick start up after a pause when I'd been catching them with a steady quick walk earlier.

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