Foundation Seminar - Circle, MT
To register for this course, please call the host Todd Lehner at 406-941-3578.
Date: August 12-13, 2023
The Foundation seminar is aptly named, as it is the foundation for all the training elements in the Smith Training Method. This seminar covers all of the techniques necessary for the first 30 workouts with your dog and represents the first of the three levels of training. The principles taught at this level are continually referenced throughout the training system. This is where we begin shaping desired behavior and setting our dogs on the path to be a successfully trained bird dog.
During this seminar your instructor will go over how to begin the process of teaching your dog the three basic bird dog behaviors that all dogs should be well versed in (to stand still, come to you, and go with you). All dogs need to be able to utilize composure to be able to stand still like a lady or a gentleman. If in a heeling scenario, the dog needs to be able to stand on a loose lead beside their owner. In a bird scenario, dogs should be able to stand still and composed on an intense point, as with backing as well. A good recall (or “here”) is an essential element of obedience for any dog and also is the foundation for a good retrieve.
This seminar will walk you through the initial steps to getting your bird dog to go with you. The first of these is to teach a dog to walk beside you (heel) on a loose lead, paying close attention to the cues given by your body language. Check cording in the field introduces that same concept at a distance, having the dog hunt to the front and turn on cue or come to you on cue. You will be introduced to how to teach your dog to stand still on cue, utilizing the controlled environment of a whoa post, to ensure your dog’s success. The whoa post simply teaches a dog to stand still when cued via a point of contact on the flank. This will later transition to be the point of contact by which you will steady your dog on birds.
In addition to the obedience training, attendees will have the opportunity to introduce young dogs to birds in a controlled environment. Each dog will have the opportunity to work multiple birds. The bird workouts will include check cording, learning to work scent, shaping pointing behavior, and introducing the concept of backing or honoring.
Some of the most important elements in the Foundation Level of training are learning how to develop your dog’s ability be a composed, mannerly, and healthy minded individual. Just like our children, dogs require preparation in order to be able to be successful in the world. One of the first steps is “teaching your dog how to learn.” This develops a dog that is willingly and happily looking for leadership from his handler and is a “joined up” member of working team.
Well-mannered bird dogs don’t happen by accident. It takes intentional development and interaction to set a dog up for success. The change in demeanor and relationships from proper training will positively impact your dog for life.
If you feel your dog is not quite ready for formal training, that is okay! Your seminar instructor will give you all the information that you need to develop your young dog and prepare him for the Foundation Level. Don’t let this seminar opportunity pass you by if your dog is not at the age for formal training, there is still lots of to be gained for both you and your dog by attending! This is where the adventure begins!
*Seminars begin at 8:00 each morning. There will be a break for lunch and the seminar will conclude at 4:00 pm each day. Each seminar agenda may fluctuate slightly depending on weather conditions, location, etc. It is a good idea to reach out to your seminar host for detailed information for this particular seminar.
To Register for this course, you must contact the host at the contact information below:
Location & Host
Todd Lehner Kennels
924 Horse Creek Rd.
Circle, MT 59215 (Map It)
BRING A KID
YOU CAN BRING YOUR KID FOR FREE! (ages 10-16). This is a perfect opportunity to get your kid involved in the outdoors, get your kid interested in dogs, AND build the right foundation for training dogs for the rest of their lives.