Training Retrievers is a team sport and there is no better feeling than going waterfowl or upland hunting with a retriever that you confidently know has the natural abilities and trained skills to perform, ending with an enjoyable day afield. Or, attending an AKC or HRC Hunt Test with a retriever is an exciting day or weekend. Especially when attending with a dog that you confidently know has the control and training to qualify.
Pond View Retrievers has formulated a retriever training program that has been developed over years of training practice and attending seminars. My methods of training retrievers is done in an environment of concept building and repetition thus creating a proper foundation. What most people do not understand about training a companion, Gundog or hunt test dog alike is that the early stages of training can begin as early as 7 weeks. A lot of the early stages of training is done at home and in the yard. Through the implementation of structure and repetition building one concept at a time, a dog learns quickly. As the dog gains knowledge of different concepts they are then brought together, at PVR this is called “Yard Work”. When several concepts are completed in the yard it is now time to transition that knowledge to the “Field work”.
Training starts the moment you bring the new pup home. Teaching a puppy how to become a good citizen and family member first. We work on desensitizing, socialization and conditioning obedience to provide a great beginning for the future. PVR suggests starting a puppy with several developmental private lessons until the age of six months. The adult program begins after six months of age.
Here at PVR we have introduced a unique retriever training system that develops a dog’s consistent performance through a conditioned response with the use of light pressure. The use of these light pressure training methods and techniques establishes a proper foundation without the dog worrying about heavy corrections which in turn can and in most cases does effect the dogs performance. This unique system maintains a stylish happy retriever. This lighter training method provides a focused working frame of mind that allows a handler to attain a more bonded leadership role. PVR breaks the program down into three steps. This allows us to fulfil the requirements of the AKC hunt test levels or different demands of a working gundog.
Yardwork- On Leash obedience (sit/heel/recall), establish point of contact and lightness to cues, Transition to e-collar conditioning, teach “HOLD” as a command, e-collar Force fetch, Intro to duck calls/birds/decoys/gunshots, simple yard marks teaching steadiness, off leash obedience with added distraction.
Fieldwork- Simple single marked retrieves, establish controlled mechanics of retrieve, increase difficulty of land marks. Intro to non-cheating water marks, increase difficulty of water marks, simple water de-cheating single marks.
Yardwork- Single-t, Double-t, Wagon wheel lining drill, Split pile handling drill, Christmas Tree handling drill, Swim-by.
Fieldwork- Pattern Blinds, Pattern Blinds with distraction, structured teaching blinds, disciplined casting drill, double marked retrieves on land, teach diversion birds, remote sit while marking, teaching land blinds outside marking area, cold blinds on land outside marking area, double marked retrieves in water, teaching water blinds, tune up water blinds, cold water blinds, formal de-cheating.
Fieldwork- Triple marked retrieves on both land and water, blind retrieves within marking area, poison bird blinds, interrupted marked retrieves, increased difficulty tune blinds on land and water, extended wagon wheel, 3 or 4 peat blinds.
Weather your goal is a dog you can take upland hunting, waterfowl hunting or to Title to the highest level, we try hard to provide the very best knowledge for both the handler and the dog. It is my pleasure to help you achieve your goals and have a wonderful companion to be part of your family.
Specialized Training for Hunting Dogs
Specific requirements for individual hunting situations can be adapted after the completion of the intermediate and Master programs. Examples of this would be: Mutt Huts, open water boat hunting, raised platform use, upland bird hunting, etc.