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I would highly recommend Tim. I understand and appreciate anyone doing research before handing your dog over to a trainer. I did quite a bit of it myself two years ago. I looked at kennels in Nevada, California, Idaho and Oregon. I spoke with several dog owners that had experience with field training and kept hearing about Central Oregon Sporting Dogs.
When I read Tim’s article in Gun Dog magazine, that was all I needed to make up my mind that he was the one. I visited his kennel and watched him train other dogs and was very impressed. My dog was with Tim for 3 months last year and will be there 2 months this year. She was almost two when I first brought her up – which is old for starting training and quite raw. In a few weeks she was pointing and retrieving quite well. When I picked her up and took her hunting, she was amazing!
What made me feel comfortable enough, was meeting and visiting with Tim. He loves dogs and loves training them. You can really see that when you see him work. I do think my dog enjoys it as well. The first time I took her up she was quite nervous about being in a new place and showed it. When I took her up a few weeks ago, she bounded out and ran to the training field. I think she really enjoys the work there. I was amazed at the results and with the follow up. I called Tim several times to get tips and help with continuing her training and he is always glad to help.
I have hunted over Tim’s dogs for several years now. I have always had Goldens (4) and all have been trained by different trainers.
One of the most important aspects of a trainer that I now look for, is their demeanor. Tim is consistent, calm, firm and demanding of the dogs and never have I seen him lose his temper. He has high expectations of the dogs he trains and the dogs know it. It is like someone riding a horse for the first time – the horse knows it.
I have not yet been able to hunt with our dog since he finished her training at the end of June, however I can tell you she is going to be really, really good. Don’t worry, you are not the only one concerned about leaving your dog. My wife was the same way, but after several visits during training, she was very happy about leaving her in Tim’s care.
Tim is currently training our Brittany, Cooper. I went over four weeks ago for a mid-session update and the progress was really impressive. Training started when Cooper was right at one year old and at Tim’s suggestion we let him just be a pup for his first year without any intensive training, mostly just letting him have fun and explore, and live with us as a family pet. At five weeks of training he was quickly finding and pointing birds and holding mostly steady on flush. He was attentive and quickly responded to Tim’s commands.
I think Tim’s extensive experience with many breeds allows him to quickly assess a dog’s strengths and weaknesses and what the dog is thinking just by watching what the dog is doing. The Highland Hills Ranch is a great training facility and I’m sure the dogs enjoy their time there. Lots of birds everywhere. I think you will be very pleased with Tim’s training methods. We pick Cooper up next weekend and I’m really looking forward to his first hunting season next fall.