Ronnie Smith Kennels Training Facilities
Ronnie Smith Kennels has two separate dog kenneling facilities. The Main Kennel building has indoor/outdoor runs measuring a total of 18 feet long and 5 feet wide. During professional training rotations the Main Kennel houses all client dogs. The additional facilities house the Kennel's personal dogs which are used in guiding wild bird hunts in Texas. Everyone at Ronnie Smith Kennels continuously works to maintain the kennels as a safe and clean environment for dogs.
The training day often begins with the stakeout chain. It is here that the dogs essentially "clock in". The stakeout chain facilitates learning on many levels. Initially, it teaches young dogs to yield to pressure on the collar, this makes heeling and handling easier to teach. Also, the stakeout chain is situated to allow the dogs a view of the training grounds. Every bird flushed within view of the stakeout chain adds to the excitement and level of prey drive of the class on the chain. To keep the dogs comfortable while on the stakeout there is a shade tarp covering the entire area. Also, there is a misting system down the entire length of the stakeout chain. In the hot summer months the stakeout chain remains cool. Staff routinely checks that all dogs in the class have access to water.
The Training Field
The main training field consists of 40 acres with dog proof fencing. The fields are managed to produce the maximum hunting education environment for dogs. Our pasture management techniques include prescribed burning, food plots, and projects to encourage growth of native plant species. In this field dogs will learn to hunt to natural objectives, learn the basics of working scent in adverse conditions and learn to travel with their handlers, whether on foot or in a vehicle.
The Polaris Ranger
The Kennels regularly utilize a 6 wheel Polaris Ranger. The Ranger is equipped with a 6 crate hunt box, storage, water, and a bench seat to make handling those far ranging dogs easier. Being routinely transported in the Ranger helps dogs learn to remain relaxed and calm while in a crate, whether on a long road trip or across the pasture in a hunt rig. The Ranger is also adapted to allow the Kennels to road dogs. Roading, an effective form of strength training, is done off the Ranger by safely harnessing dogs to the removable roading frame and allowing them to naturally pull against the Ranger as the dogs run.
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