There are a number of options in who to choose to train your dog – and it can be a very difficult decision when thinking of sending your precious friend away to someone who will be shaping it's future! So what do we think a person should consider when looking for a trainer?
- EXPERIENCE. We have over 30 years working with, training and hunting bird dogs. Ken has been an AKC Field Performance judge since 1992. He has hunt tested all levels personally. He has competed successfully in both walking and horseback Field trials from Local to the National Level.
- PERSONAL CONNECTION. By this we mean that if you feel uncomfortable with the person who his going to take your dog, it's best to keep looking. This is a commitment between the trainer, the owner and the dog and should never be taken lightly. Together you will be working to take your dog to the next level and there must be trust between all involved.
- TRAINING PHILOSOPHY. What is the training philosophy of the trainer? If they cannot describe in detail the methodology of training – the how and why – perhaps another choice might be in order.
In that vein, Our philosophy is:
- Each dog is an individual. Our goal is to Maximize your dog's Natural Abilities. There is no “one program” that works for every dog. Each student will go through learning processes at a different pace. Having the experience of multiple breeds and multiple methods of helping the dog learn set us apart from other trainers. We train on the dogs learning ability.
- CAPACITY. There are trainers who will take any dog that comes along, so long as there is a check involved for as long as the owners are willing to pay it. We suggest you do some math – if there is one trainer and they have 30 dogs, how can they possibly get individual attention?
- LOCATIONS. We all love the convenience of a close by trainer. The problem most people face is that there are no good grounds nearby where they can train a bird dog. All dogs can be started in the neighborhood lot, but there comes a time in every dogs learning process where they need more and varied training locations. Does the trainer train in the same place everyday, year round? This will produce a dog that will work very well on those grounds (technical caveat - dogs are very good discriminators, but not very good generalists), and not well on new or other grounds.
- We board/train from May 15th to September 15th in South Dakota. We do Private lessons and Seminars around the country beginning mid-September combined with the field trial circuit. Personal hunting Dogs generally go home mid-September, ready for the hunting season. If they stay with us, the dogs travel with us and train on varying grounds around the country depending on where the trials are held. We also endeavor to get training time in before and after trials to expose the dog to multiple locations and maximize their learning potential.
Airport Pickup and Delivery is available. We can also arrange transport to locations near us.