Gundog Training Programs

Training a gundog is a process of building on a strong foundation.  If that foundation is not continually reinforced, it will start to fail.
— Chris Butz

The programs below are our basic programs.  For more on our Bespoke Afield™ and Gundog Experience™ programs, please click here.

Chris’ ability to look at a dog and diagnose its challenges is unmatched in the area. The British methods he uses are based on not only positive reinforcement, but also on getting your gundog to work for you and not itself. I should know because I’m from the UK!
— Ash James

Foundational Gundog Obedience
(8 wks to 3-4 months)

 Also known as "yard work", this is the foundation for training ANY dog.  It is through obedience training that the dog learns to look to its owner/handler for direction and to trust him/her.  We teach obedience as "natural environment" training that works into your day to day interactions with your puppy and young dog.  Sit, stay, heel and steadiness with increasing distractions make a strong foundation to build upon.

Obedience is the foundation for all future training.  Most people are very excited about their new dog.  However, if you don't correctly assert yourself as the leader and bond with the puppy, then it makes training more difficult as you progress.  We will teach you skills like "owning the eyes" so that your dog looks to you for direction and works for you rather than himself.

You will have an initial one on one with us where we will go over the basics of how a dog learns and the importance of timing and tempo in training.  You will leave with a Bespoke training program that reinforces "functional gundog training" that works in your everyday life.

Some of the areas of focus are on:

-Housebreaking -Place Training -Crate Training -Socialization/Desensitization -Eye Contact       
-Leadership Patterns-Collars/Lead/Lead Work  

-Sit/Stand in Place-Beginning Steadiness       
-Whistle Introduction (3 mos)


Primary Gundog Training
Levels I and II (4-6 months)

NOTE:  Stop retrieves from 4.5-6 months because of teething!

Early gundog training really can be considered Obedience + Beginning Gundog Activities.  We continue to reinforce the Foundational teachings in functional, day-to-day activities and add in more advanced work such as:

Level I-

-Own The Eyes
-Advanced Lead Work and Agility
-Off-Lead Work
-Trailing Memory Retrieves      
-Introduce Water      
-Introduce Birds (at 6 months)

Level II-

-Hand Signals
-Advanced Steadiness
-Steady to Flush
-Recall with Distractions
-Simulated Hunting-specific Situations


Secondary Gundog Training (6-12 months)


Advanced Gundog Training
(Years 2-3 and 2 Hunting Seasons)