SkyHigh Golden Retrievers - Training, Puppies, Boarding
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SkyHigh Retrievers - Our Clients


Rory, owner of Stella

Mike...

Thought I would share some photos of Stella's first upland bird hunting trip that we did in Montana near Custer. She did incredible! Very impressed with her obedience. Thanks for all the time you have spent with Stella, it has paid off. Also, we did get one huge Canada! She hunted out of her dog blind. Thanks again.

Rory with Stella Stella after a day of upland hunting Stella with her Canada Goose


Rick Curtis, owner of Ace

Rick and Ace earn their Senior Hunter title at the Sand and Sage Hunt Test, October 2010 Mike,

Just a quick note of thanks for all the training you've done for Ace...and me!

He definitely learned a lot and came back a better dog after the winter trip in '09 when you worked on basics...Force fetch, pile work, general obedience etc... and, how could any of us forget, line manners!

Your continued help by phone and when I was able to get out and train with you has truly been invaluable as I've continued Ace's training. I can't thank you enough for all the time you've spent letting me pick your brain to help get us over the hump with whatever we were working on at the time.

Also, the difference in his blind running and handling after the short trip to Montana was amazing.

The plan is to work on getting his Senior Hunter title this year with Master Hunter and maybe a qual or two thrown in just for fun for next year and beyond.

I have no doubt that with the foundation Ace received with you and the advice you've given to me, both as a handler and trainer, that we'll both acheive our goals.

Good luck on the current winter trip and I look forward to meeting up again with you both when you're back up North for the summer.

Thanks again,
Rick Curtis



Tom and Phyllis, owners of Grady and Maddie

After almost 2-years, and well overdue, we wanted to let you know how pleased we are with Grady’s hunting skills.  This year marks his 2nd year hunting upland and he hasn’t flawed a bit from the skills you have taught him.  Everything from staying close, to quartering, marking, and retrieving birds to hand has been exceptional.  Last year he retrieved 200 plus birds and this year he’s up to 85.  I can honestly say this is the best hunting dog our family has ever had. 

Although we had an atypical waterfowl season this year due to a late grain harvest followed by significant snow, we were still able to get him out goose hunting.  I always worried about Grady “busting” on decoying birds in the field, especially his first few times out.  The steadiness, obedience, and ground blind rules you taught him really paid off.  We shot several decoying geese and he never left his blind early.  It was pretty impressive to see him sit so patiently, retrieve the birds, and then kennel like he’s been doing it for years. 
We certainly don’t want to leave Maddie out either.  What a great companion to Grady she has turned out to be.  They get along unbelievably in both the house and the field.  Their first upland hunting trip together was really nice.  Even though they hunted independently they also complimented each other perfectly.  Neither showed any signs of jealousy or aggressiveness toward each other.  Fortunately they were both successful in flushing and retrieving birds.  They really seem to enjoy hunting together.

Maddie with her rooster pheasantWe appreciate everything you taught Grady (“All Ears”) and thinking enough of us to accept ownership of such a great dog as Maddie.  We also appreciate everything you have taught the both of us.  Your willingness to answer all of our questions along with the field handling demonstrations is a testament to your professionalism and dedication.  Through the many trips we have made to participate in Grady’s training we have never heard any other client or professional saying anything but great things about your training program.

We’re grateful for your patience with such an over-the-top prey crazy dog as Grady.  We’ll never forget the first day you handled Grady when you shoved a pigeon in his face and then complimented his steadiness as the pigeon flew away.  We were very impressed and left WA knowing Grady was in good hands...Your training certainly has paid off as Grady’s turned out to be one fantastic hunting dog.  Rest assured, we’re relying on you for any future training and certainly look forward to being part of it.

Please let Ben know he didn’t miss out on any great goose hunting this year, just good cooking.  Ben’s hard work hasn’t gone unappreciated either.

Talk to you soon, your friends,

Tom & Phyllis


Richard, owner of Country - California

"You have worked miracles.  He is definitely a different pup. 

"Here is what I experienced with him:

"During Chukar hunting he ranged well and was definitely looking for birds.  We did not jump any so I do not know how well he will point.   We are going again the weekend of Nov 5-8 so hopefully we will jump something then.

"Duck hunting: he got along and played well with 5-6 other loose dogs roaming around the duck club.  He refused to get into the dog box attached to the duck blind....  After two introductions he got in very willingly the rest of the times.  He sat very quietly in the box which has an opening into the blind so he can poke his head in to see me and I can pet him.... When I was done hunting I tested him getting into the box and he got in readily many times.  In fact, he would not get out when we were ready to leave. 

"After I introduced him to getting into and riding in a boat (to get to the blinds) he willingly sat down next to me.  EVERY other dog at this club rides standing up with their feet on the bow and many lose their balance and fall in during sharp turns.  I "AIN'T" running over my pup!!

"If he saw where a duck fell in the pond he was right on it.  If it was a blind retrieve he did not look for or follow any instructions (you had informed me about this so I was not surprised).

"I took him out into the ponds to work with him on retrieves (for blind retrieves I kept him leashed so he could not see where I threw the ducks and then I turned him loose to find them) and he worked until he found the thrown bird and brought it right to me.  When I let him watch me throw the ducks he would sit until I released him (this impressed the poo out of the other hunters who were watching) and he would go directly to the spot where it landed.   I tried double retrieves and he understood that after he brought me the first duck he was to look for the second - he pretty much just roamed until he found it.  During all of this training time he always brought the duck around to my left side and sat, and released on command.

"I am sure that with some refresher work when you are in Lost Hills he will be great.

"Side benefit:  he is now very calm and sits still when I pet him.  Before he would act like the Tasmanian Devil.  What ever drugs you gave him have a lasting effect.  Can you send me some for my wife??

"Is there any way I can teach him to NOT pee and poop in certain places in my back yard??  He is the most creative dog I have ever had at finding unusual places to leave his 'mark.'  We have had some remodeling done to our new home and he climbed up on top of the scrap pile and pooped there.  Or maybe I should just roll with it and send pictures to Americas Funniest Home Videos and win $10,000.

"Affectionately,
Richard"

 


Mark and Fran, owners of Jack - Texas

Jack"Hi Mike,

"We wanted to let you know how Jack did on his first real Pheasant hunt with us. He did Great. I was so proud of him when he pointed his first bird. I went out to Cavins a friend of mines farm in North Dakota, He had a buddy Eric who came out and hunted with us as well. The first tree row that we walked we did not find any birds but on the second one about 200 yards into it Jack went on point. I told Eric to get ready I was going in to flush it. Jack stayed steady to flush and to shot. Eric shot and the Rooster & hit the ground and was up and running in about 3 seconds. Jack could not take it any more and tore off after it. The bird saw him coming and hit the heavy cover and would have been gone if not for Jack. That's all you could see was the tall grass thrashing around. I was yelling "get him boy get him" Jack came out with the bird in his mouth and dropped him about a foot from me. My buddy was giving me a hard time because I had told him that I thought that for the first hunt I would take my camcorder instead of my gun. So I could work Jack and get some film. Of course I could not bring myself to leaving my gun and left the camcorder instead. It was a textbook point and retrieve that I wish I would have had it on film.  I could not have been any prouder of him and had a smile on my face the rest of the day and into the next. He did great the rest of that trip. Fran was not feeling well and did not hunt that trip so we are heading back up next Friday so she can hunt with Jack and I for a couple of weeks.

"Thanks Again for a Wonderful hunting dog and an even better little Buddy!!!!!"

Mark 

 


Brad, owner of Bailey and Zeke - Bozeman, MT

Bailey and Brad waiting for geese"Just wanted to drop you a note and let you know that Bailey had an amazing year.  Lots of changes for her and she has been just a rock star in all that has been asked of her.  She has become more tolerant of other dogs and just loves her foster-brother Zeke to no end…I mean 'true love' in every sense of the word!  She has had a busy year for sure and escaped the year MOSTLY unharmed…but for an unfortunate porcupine event.  So a bit about that…

"She started to get birdy around this bush…then exited quickly with some puffs of air but no whimper.  She ran up to me with a face full of quills…I could not believe it.  She would not leave them alone so we made the decision to take them out…good thing we had 4 big guys…we needed every ounce of the strength we could muster.  After a tough 10 minutes on both man and dog we all lay back trying to catch our breath…completely rung out.  Bailey drank some water and came over to me as I was sitting on the ground…looked at me square in the eyes…(like she always does)…and here goes the tail...wag, wag, wag.  I had no idea what to do as the last thing on my mind was to keep hunting…so I called Mike.

Bailey on a sharptail hunt"Mike says…”It’s Bailey…if she wants to hunt, you better hunt.” 

"So we did and yet again…was the best dog in the field.

"Fast forward to just a few weeks ago (where I fall through the ice on a Montana hunt but that is a different story) where I took both Bailey and Zeke out together on a season ending pheasant hunt.  Normally you would not want to hunt a pointer and a flusher together but Bailey gives Zeke such a wide berth and honors his position if he is on a bird without interference.  Since I can cast Bailey anywhere into any cover, I sent her into a cat tail patch that was too much for my young Zeke.  As Bailey is thrashing around like she does, she get on a big, old, late season, wily rooster.  This bird will not get up…and that is when Zeke clues into what is going on and gets a whiff of the bird.  Zeke and Bailey are about 50 feet apart, on opposite sides, and as Zeke holds…Bailey drives the bird right to Zeke…and at THE last possible minute…flushes straight up.  He was as big as a peacock…and even my brother would not have missed that shot!

"So its all good…Bailey is doing great and I have learned to be sneaky about getting ready for the hunt…as she can detect it days away! "

Brad

 


Doug and Sheila, owner of Hunter - Seattle, WA

"Just got back from North Dakota with Hunter.  He is doing awesome.  This was his second trip.  I will have to tell you about his retrieve when we see each other.  It was incredible.  No one can believe he is only 11 months old.  They want to know who trained him.  Thanks so much.  We are very happy with the results so far."

Doug & Sheila

 


Steve, owner of Buff, and his hunting partners - Utah

Hi Steve, Thanks for the great picture of Buff and his roosters! We are glad to hear how well he did for you this hunting season, and it is nice to have him back in training to advance him even further. I don't think he'll have any trouble in the pointing Lab competitions.

He is doing great so far, and has retained his training very well. Buff was a joy to raise as a Headstart Puppy, and is still a sweetheart. It is amazing to see how much he has grown, though!

Mike

 

Jim and Ronda, owners of Ranger - Las Vegas, Nevada

Ranger, a former Headstart Puppy, has a great time hunting with his owner!

"Some of last weekends birds. We shot 60 last weekend and 85 the weekend before. Ranger worked great by himself and with the pointer."

Ronda and Jim

 


Mark and Tess, owners of Sierra and Cash - Seattle, WA

"Here are some of the pics from the Hunt Test yesterday.  Will send the disk to you this week of all the actual tests...  Of course, I will include Sierra and Mark!

"Great time and....what an experience!  Although Sierra needs more help in the blind (which is Mark's job now),  when she got to the line, she was fantastic!  I was absolutely speechless watching her run straight lines and she never once faltered!  I was sooooo impressed.  I actually got choked up at one point when she did the water marks because she had a disadvantage with the banks, but it didn't phase her one bit.  She stayed true to what you had trained her and punched through without a break.  That dog does not know she is handicapped one bit.  You were absolutely right!

"What was amazing to us was watching all the other dogs run their tests and the difference in their marking abilities to Sierra's training!   Also, all the dogs that were trained by you marked very well.   To see other dogs in comparison and how they ran and handled did not compare to what you guys are doing.   Many dogs were so well behaved in the holding blinds to the point of actually laying down but when they came to the line, they didn't seem to have that excitement and willingness to get the prize.  We noticed that many did not mark very well and decoys were a huge distraction for other dogs.  They didn't run with conviction and a sense of urgency like your trained dogs.  In fact,  I had several people ask me who trained the dogs and they commented on how well your dogs marked and how focused they were at the line.  Of course, I told them exactly who you guys were and where you were at.  Anytime you need a spokesman for Sky High Retrievers you got Mark and I!  We are salesmen to the 'T'. 

"Besides, if you can make the short dog do what she did today....you guys are something special, that is for sure.

"So, thank you for the awesome dog we have.  Sierra is just what we wanted and more!  Of course, we expect even more from Cash - LOL!!!!  We can't wait to see him in action when he's ready!  Cruz is going to have his work cut out for him if he wants to continue to be the BIG DOG on the truck!"

Tess (and Mark)

Sierra, a chocolate Lab, and her Hunt Test ribbon Clients Mitch and Mark Taylor, and clients Adam and Jerry with their AKC Hunt Test ribbons


John, owner of Chief - Wyoming

"Hi Mike...

"I am in South Dakota returning to Wyoming after Chief's first real pheasant hunt.  We hunted three days and he was fantastic.  I could see progress day to day.  The highlight for me was the first drive of day 2.  I took a long shot on a rooster and must have hit the lung.  The bird sailed way out and died.  Chief stayed with him and made a 300+yard retrieve right to hand with no drops.  The outfitter looked at me and said, "Wow!"  One of the other hunters in our group wants to breed his female lab to Chief after he passes his OFA and eyes.  I had a great time with Chief; thanks for all your good training.  It sure did stick.  I'll send a picture when I get home."

Sincerely,
John Birbari

 


Kim and Lois, owners of Shed - New Jersey

"Hi Folks,

"I just had to send some pictures from our first test [Certified Pointing Retriever, CPR]!  Mike I have to say thank you for the work you did with Shed and all the help you have given me on his and my continuing training. The boy is outstanding! He covered the field so  well and found the 3 birds in under time. He had style with full time points and fast retrieves to hand! His prey drive is so high. It is hard for him to be steady but he was thanks to you!! He did encounter one running bird and grabbed it. We need to work on that. I have to thank you on introducing him to water and water retrieves. He scored a 5 in water straight to the duck and straight back to me and then sit at heal and deliver to hand. He is so much fun to work with. We got a lot of compliments from everyone watching on his style and his drive. It was more Shed than me he knows what to do!! Not too bad for a city / house / TDI dog that hunts on Saturdays and goes to the nursing home on Sundays to visit with the residents. They also enjoy him and his visits.

"I also have to thank you for helping me with picking out Noah he is working out very well. He is a really nice dog and he can do his jobs. The boys are now getting along very good and are becoming pals. He has helped  Shed a lot with his shyness its fun to see him push Noah out of the way so he can get the attention. Friends that know him can't believe the difference in him. And yes Noah passed also not with as high a score as Shed but he did pass.  Noah didn't have your training and it shows.

"It's almost hunting season and time to continue their training so we can get ready for next year's tests. I'm looking forward to all of it!

Your friends,
Kim, Lois,
Shed and Noah

Shed, a pointing Labrador, earns his first CPR ribbon Shed, a pointing Lab, at the CPR test Shed, a pointing Lab, at the CPR test Shed, a pointing Lab,  at the CPR test


Neal, owner of "little" Zeke - Billings, MT

Neal with Zeke and his first Huns

"Zeke and I went on our first hunt this past weekend.  Zeke handled very well and responded quickly to commands in the field.  It was great to watch him work the fields -- a little hyped, but well behaved.  It wasn't a long hunt, but he was able to get me on several groups of hungarian partridge.  I have attached a picture of us after the hunt.

"Thank you - I'm very happy with his training!"

Neal

 

Rod Williamson, owner of Maddie - Kansas City, Missouri

"Hi guys! 

"Hope you had a nice Thanksgiving! As you can see, Maddie and I did. 6 hours of scouting and 40 minutes of shooting and retrieving. We hunted some timber. Maddie 'placed' on a decoy bag for the entire time. Didn't break or whimper or dance or anything when hens kept landing in the decoys. She really held steady. Also held steady for all 5 drakes. Had a couple of em splashing after they hit and she just stood there and watched, waiting to hear her name. It was OUTSTANDING! 

"Great job Mike! Thanks again for helping me to have the BEST dog ever! OK, I'm biased..........  Headed out now to see if we can do it again. More pix later."

Rod with Maddie and her first pheasants Maddie loafs in her duck boat Maddie got her limit on Thanksgiving Maddie, her owner Rod, and her mallards
Click the pictures to enlarge them

"Hi there! Here is proof! Yeah, I'm trying to get it all this spring!  Actually, I am going to do a one day JR the 17th and try to title on June 14th or so. Maddie is starting school today.... We are going to work on getting her ready for Seasoned possibly this fall. You guys have made us proud. I get so many complements on her looks, drive and style. She is also one of the calmest in the holding blinds.....even though she does try to peek! these tests were real tests. Had to do a water retrieve over a point of land....which she went straight up over the point, got the duck and came straight back over the same line on the land and back to me....even the judge said "good dog!" Had to do a long water up against the bank, a land retrieve thru a 2-3 ft ditch, water in a bunch of reeds and a land that was over a hump. All things you showed her and encouraged me to keep up. We are both good students!  

"...I really would like to try to get out there at the end of the summer. Never know.

"All for now. Hope all is well and you are heading North!"

Your friend,
Rod

Rod with Maddie, two AKC Junior Hunter passes Rod and Maddie, HRC Started title Rod and Maddie, first two passes on HRC Started title


Jim and Ronda, owners of Ranger - Las Vegas, NV

Ranger, a golden retriever, visits with his family Ranger, a golden retriever, visits with his family Ranger, a golden retriever, retrieves his first pheasant Ranger retrieves his rooster pheasant
Ranger, a golden retriever, retrieves his pheasant On a family visit, Ranger hunts for pheasants and does a great job! On a family visit, Ranger hunts for pheasants and does a great job! On a family visit, Ranger hunts for pheasants and does a great job!

"Thank-you again for the hospitality. It sure would be nice if we could visit more often. Ranger is a perfect fit for our life style.

"It certainly was good to see that he is so well taken care of. It "tickles us pink" to know how fortunate we were to find both of you as trainers and caretakers of our little guy......

"Thanks again,
"Jim and Ronda

"PS, Tell Ranger that we miss him already and give him a big hug from us......."


 

Bill and Cheryl Blaquiere, owners of Jake - Billings, MT

Jake, a pointing Lab, on a solid point Jake, a pointing Lab, gives Bill his bird Doc, the Blaquiere's old hunting dog Bill with his Labs Doc and Jake, and Rob with his golden retriever Copper and his Lab Tucker
       

"Mike...

"Hope all is well in California and that the weather and the dogs are treating you well.

"[Above] are a few pictures I took on Saturday January 12, 2008 just west of Billings on a game farm known as "Bird Island". This is because the island is in the middle of the Yellowstone River. Bill and Rob bought 20 birds and 'the boys' found 17 of them.

"Jake pointed very well for his first hunt out of 'training camp'. I know for a fact one point lasted over 45 seconds. He retrieves very well and Bill only had to use the collar a couple of times to get him to mind. Thank you for doing such a great job with our 'knucklehead' - Jake! And he really is a knucklehead. He is such a comedian in the house, and what a sense of humor he has! I believe he is a black version of Keeper [Jake's sire from Trieven Kennel].

"We miss you, keep in touch, take care and we will see you this summer!"

Bill & Cheryl Blaquiere


 

Chad and Patrice Nelson, owners of Garth - Minneapolis, MN

Garth, a pointing Lab, on point Garth, a pointing Lab, pointing a bird in the heavy cover

"Dear Mike...

"What a year ’07 has been!

"Our family can’t thank the two of you enough for all of the time that you have spent with us this year.  It has been a pleasure getting to know you both.

"We first of all need to thank you for consulting with us on selecting a Golden Retriever for our family companion and pheasant hunting dog.  We are also glad that you specifically chose Ole for us, knowing his personality even as a young pup, would work out well for our family.  He has been an absolute pleasure.  He is warm, friendly and very intelligent.  When he walks in grass fields, you can see his instincts take over as he charges through the cover!  We know that he will also be a great retriever as he always has a stick, or his toy pheasant in his mouth.  Patrice can not imagine life without her new buddy.

"The two of you were also instrumental in determining whether Garth, our one year old black lab, would be a good fit for us as a started dog.  People think that we are crazy to have picked up a Golden Retriever pup and come home with a young Black Lab as well.  The move has worked out perfectly as Ole has bonded strongly to Patrice and Garth has bonded to me.  Both dogs love everyone in the family, including our two boys, Gunnar (10) and Tor (8).  After living with Garth for over four months now, I still can not describe him any better than you did on our first conversation about him; 'he is a sweet boy'.

"I am sad to say that last weekend was my last pheasant hunting trip of the year.  I am amazed, however, at how Garth has grown from opening day until now.  The limited amount of time that the two of you had to train him provided a solid base for his natural talents to develop each and every time we hunted together.  His retrieving has been amazing.  On opening day he was a little overwhelmed and I was concerned about his marking abilities.  You were happy to discuss my concerns at the time, and provided me with some suggestions, one of which was to be patient and let him develop.  Last weekend he made a blind retrieve of approximately 150 yards.  When he didn’t immediately pick up the scent (he was upwind), he turned and looked at me for direction.  I held my arm out to the left, he ran that direction and immediately picked up the bird and brought it to hand.  He had another retrieve, the next day, on a bird that fell across a creek running with five feet wide of ice cold water.  He charged down and up the steep banks to bring the bird back to hand.  His pointing abilities are also starting to pronounce themselves, as he pointed birds in the snow with regularity.  Again, last weekend, he tracked a wily rooster for about one hundred yards, pointing it twice along the way, before it finally took flight.  Your force-fetch, collar conditioning and quartering training allowed me to effectively hunt with him on our very first season together.  I can honestly say that I would be satisfied with him today if he never got any better, but I know that this is just the beginning.  I also know that I owe it to him to continue to train him to his full potential.

"Your enthusiasm before we purchased our dogs, through the training of Garth and your continuing willingness to help us with questions or concerns sets the two of you apart.  It is obvious that you are involved in something you both love to do.  We thank you for your talent and the way that you implement it.  We wish you much success.

"Please find attached a couple of pictures of Garth from last weekend.  You can see a picture of our whole gang, including Ole, on our Christmas Card, which is heading your way."

Sincerely,
Patrice and Chad Nelson



 

Bill Blaquiere, owner of Jake - Billings, Montana

"Mike...

"Keep up the good work with Jake!  Thank you for keeping in touch with us regarding his progress.  Sounds like he's doing well in his upland training.  And I'm happy to hear the timing of our visit to Chewelah helped his frame of mind and now he realizes that everything is ok.

"Cheryl and I enjoyed our visit with you, Jake and the other dogs in training at the Burlington Ranch. Attending the field trials in Spokane on Saturday was an educational experience.  It was amazing to Cheryl and I just how talented and smart these dogs are!

"Congratulations on your 1st and 2nd place with Maddie & Cruz in the Derby.  I'm happy we were there to help you celebrate and congratulate you on your wins. We are very lucky to have you train our dog.  Keep up the good work!

"Our yellow lab, Doc, enjoyed his bird hunting at the ranch and has been a hunting fool ever since.  I look forward to the day when I can take both Doc & Jake out for a bird hunt.  Maybe the young dog can teach the old dog some new tricks.  Or visa versa.

"Again, congratulations on your wins!  And thank you for training our black lab, Jake."




Bill Percival, owner of Riley

"Dear Mike...

"I am writing this letter for two purposes. One to thank you guys and also if you choose to do so, you can use it as a letter of reference.

"It was obvious from the start that Mike was more than willing to talk/coach me over the phone. We had several hours of phone conversations before I even sent my first dog (a Trieven / Sungold male Golden named Riley) out to him. He definitely gave some helpful pointers while working with “Riley”. Mike helped me develop a realistic plan on what I wanted to accomplish with Riley while he was being trained. He really wanted to tailor (no pun intended!) the training to what I wanted. I wanted an upland dog first and a duck dog second. Mike thought it would take about 4 months. Mike also discussed my coming out and spending some time with him when Riley was finished and dropping off a 2nd puppy Diesel who is a 7 month old male Chessie.

"I was surprised when Mike informed me after 2 ½ months Riley was forced-fetched, very obedient, and an excellent quartering upland dog. I was amazed at the difference in Riley. Because of my lack of experience with Goldens, I had definitely burned Riley out with too much pressure and repetitive drills. Riley was obviously bored and unresponsive when I sent him out. He was a responsive, eager to please, fired-up dog when I picked him up.

"When I went out to train with Mike, it was obvious from the start how much Riley liked and respected Mike, and how much fun he was having. My dogs are family to me and I was concerned about their well-being. That concern was immediately put to rest. I trained with Mike for 2 ½ days and I think I benefited more than Riley did. I work very hard at training my dogs, I do it 12 months a year and hunt about 6 months out of the year. I live in Nebraska where I have an abundance of hunting/training opportunities. Mike had Riley looking like a seasoned pro digging pheasants and chukars out of heavy cover, and his marking ability was great. I also got to see Mike train 10 very different dogs (labs and goldens) and how he handled them each totally differently. He had very aggressive Labs to very sensitive female goldens and he had them all doing great. I was also amazed how well behaved four 12 week old puppies were doing...They were also were retrieving great! Through my trip, I learned how many mistakes I had been making! I had read numerous books and have been doing it actively for ten years. I learned more in that trip than in all my past experiences (I will give myself some credit as I am very successful on wild Nebraska pheasants on both private and public ground, and regularly get compliments on my dogs). After my time with Mike, I have my 6 year old Chessie doing things I never dreamed she would be capable of. I had no reservations about leaving Diesel with Mike to be trained as well. I was immediately impressed on how Diesel responded to Mike in those couple of days! He pretty much ignored everyone but me till that point. I would STRONGLY recommend anyone having their dog trained go out for a couple days to spend with Mike...

"After seeing Mike in action, I am confident he can take any dog with talent and make a great hunter out of them! Mike had a dog under his wing that was abused in the past and I couldn’t believe how well that dog was doing. Mike definitely does not take a one size fits all approach. He is obviously passionate about what he does and failure is definitely not in his vocabulary. He obviously understands the different tendencies in breeds and adapts accordingly. I saw Mike successfully work with young dogs that had no training at all when he got them to those were over-trained (like mine!) I am also confident a dog with a desire to hunt will have a great time with Mike...

"When I went out to train with Mike...they were less than a week from changing facilities and moving from Wyoming to Washington. The way they acted and treated the place they were at, you would have thought they owned it and had had no intentions of leaving. They were still making improvements/repairs to the facility in their last several days. What a testament to their character! I can’t say enough about them, other than I plan on sending Riley back for more training and any dog that might be in my future!"

Bill Percival




Rob Baker, owner of Copper

Copper, a golden retriever Copper, a golden retriever, holds a grouse for his owner Rob Rob with Copper and his goose
Click the pictures to enlarge them
Thanks for the pictures, Rob. Glad to hear that Copper is doing so good! - Mike


 

Kim Conover, owner of Shed (a started dog)

"Dear Mike...

"I just wanted to drop you a little note. First I want to tell you how much fun we had out West on our visit to you. I wanted to tell you that the little Shed dog that we purchased from you is doing very well. We wanted to thank you for letting us watch you while you trained the dogs. To see someone work with the dogs at all their different ages and levels of training, to remember all their names and the next step of their learning was just amazing. Your positive training methods pay off and the results are easy to see. The enthusiasm in all of the dogs while working was a pleasure to see. We learned so much from just watching you.

"I wanted to thank you for the follow-up call on Shed. It's very nice to see how much the dogs mean to you, and the follow-up advice you gave me for him is working very well. He is turning into such a good dog. You were right about him on all accounts. You made a perfect match choosing a dog with his temperament and talent for us. He is all we were looking for. He is scheduled to take his TDI (therapy dog) test later this month. We'll keep you informed on how he is doing. We did get him out on birds once so far. Lois and my hunting buddy Rich went with us. They did the shooting and I did the dog-work, although there was no real work. He performed so well, even will all of his drive, he listened and performed better than we could have expected. We will keep you updated on his progress, and I may need more advice as he matures and gets bird-crazy.

"I'm really glad that you like client pictures and updates, as I will be sending you plenty of pictures of our adventures.

"Again, I wanted to thank you for spending so much time with us on our vacation / dog purchase, making sure we all were a right fit.

"Sincerely, Kim Conover."

New Jersey



 

Shaun Burton, owner of Crash (a started dog)

"Crash got his first truly wild pheasant for me the other day on my property. It was actually a double. I think it was the first wild pheasants shot over him unless you think you may have shot one during his training. He did a great job; he went birdy then pointed all in about 1 second... a half second later the first bird flushed. I took two shots at the first bird and in my mind missed and had the bird fly off (again in my mind it turns out). The second bird came out and I nailed it fully. Crash was on it and picked it up then started heading away in the direction of the first bird's path with his head held high sniffing. I called him in and he brought the bird perfectly to hand. I told him to hunt them up again thinking maybe a bird had held tight. He went back out in the direction of the flyaway [and] picked up the first bird which it turns out I did bring down.... Anyway, he did great.

"He is disenchanted with Ohio and its lack of birds. He gets bored quick and ends up pointing mice nests in the hopes they will grow wings and fly... can't say I blame him much. I had the gun on my shoulder for this event, as a matter of fact. [I] didn't think we were going to see anything... he went from ho hum to turned on in the blink of the eye. I could tell the difference huge between this and when he's messing with a mouse or rabbit or deer... he turned on huge like I said, in the blink of an eye. I couldn't get the gun off my shoulder fast enough!

"He's a good boy and really into the family life... he is all about hugs and love and sleeping in the house. Total sweetheart.

"Thanks Mike."


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