Versatile Training

I am an upland bird hunter. I’m fortunate to hunt exclusively wild birds. My training programs are geared towards bringing a young dog along to cooperate and hunt as a team with its owner/handler. Once we’ve paired two strong pedigrees together and have a young prospect pup, it’s time to start training. I specialize in training dogs for the on-foot upland bird hunter. I also prepare dogs for NAVHDA Natural Ability and Utility tests.



This program is tailored to young puppies 6 to 12 months of age. Most pups in the Best Start Program are Hardtrigger puppies. This program is designed as foundation training to get the puppy started off in the right direction in becoming an exceptional companion and gun dog. Crate training, socialization, field work, introduction to birds, building desire, introduction to the gun, introduction to water and elementary retrieving are introduced in a low pressure, positive manner.


Intermediate training is for young dogs 10 to 18 months old or older. We introduce and/or reinforce basic obedience which the pup may have been exposed to prior to coming to Hardtrigger. We introduce or continue with more advanced bird work building desire, teaching the dog to go with us, come back to us and to stand still. This is the beginning of our field foundation training. Exposure to water and game tracking are also introduced at this time. Introduction to an e-collar is begun. This is usually a 3-4 month training. Dogs completing this training will be well started and ready to hunt. At the end of intermediate training the dog will search for birds, find birds and hold point until the flush. It is at this time the young dog will be ready for NAVHDA Natural Ability testing or its first season of hunting upland birds. This training exposure will give the owner/handler a well started gun dog.


This program is for dogs 18 to 36 months of age. It is the next step for dogs which have successfully completed intermediate training and are ready for more advanced gun dog work. Gun dog training will finish the dog creating the dog we all want to hunt behind. Obedience is the cornerstone in gun dog training. Conditioned retrieve training is one of the most important processes and a process that can take some time to fully accomplish. Holding point, steadiness to flush, wing, shot, fall and a direct retrieve are taught and reinforced. Searching and recovering downed game in a water environment along with remaining quiet and steady by the blind are taught. Tracking scent and retrieving drags are taught as well. Our goal at the end of gun dog training is having a NAVHDA Utility Test level dog. A trained gun dog that is field ready and can be hunted successfully and enjoyably on upland birds. The length of time to train a finished gun dog will vary but is usually 4-6 to month process. Follow-up sessions… I include two follow-up sessions of one hour each where you return with your dog and together we’ll run it through commands and ensure you can continue training your dog successfully.

I specialize and enjoy training Pudelpointers. I am a low-pressure trainer and bring training prospects along at their pace, not a predetermined schedule to get the next dog in the kennel. I encourage you to train your own dog. The bond and level of trust you build with your dog by training it yourself cannot be understated. If you prefer, I do schedule training sessions where you can bring your dog to my facility and I will help you train your own dog. This is a fee-based service. Contact me for additional information. I train dogs about 6 months out of the year. The rest of the year is spent hunting upland birds. I train a limited number of dogs at any one time. Hardtrigger Gun Dogs take preference in openings. Please contact me for more information and fee schedules if you are interested in the training of your gun dog.