Rick & Ronnie Smith Seminars
With over 80 collective years of experience guiding, trialing, and training, Rick and Ronnie Smith believe "you have to think like a dog to successfully train a dog." This natural approach to training is effective with all dogs, no matter the discipline or breed. The Smith's focus and passion happens to be upland bird dogs. Their life's work has been based on a love and respect for bird dogs and they are dedicated to understanding natural canine instincts and psychology. The training system developed by the Smiths enables people at all levels of proficiency and knowledge to have a better bird dog and to build a better relationship with their bird dog. Whether you are looking for a companion dog that you can take hunting on the weekends or a field trial champion, this training format will benefit you. Start with the Foundation Level and follow the Smith's training steps to a confident finished bird dog.
Experience our entire training format condensed into one day and demonstrated. Your instructor will spend the day giving you an overview of the training system. They will go over the basic philosophy and demonstrate all of the most important steps you will take when training your dog. This is a quick way to see the entire training system in a nutshell and get some great insight on animal behavior!
Main Purpose of the Presentation Seminar:
- provide attendees with a complete overview of the Smith Training Format
The handler's clinic will help you to bring out the best in your trained dog. Each seminar is highly individualized and structured specifically to address each handler's questions and issues. Rick or Ronnie will spend time one-on-one with each attendee developing a game plan to help the handler achieve his or her goals.
Main Purpose of the Handling Clinic:
- help attendees correct specific handling issues with their trained dogs.
A foundation gives you a solid base to build upon and is the first formal step in molding your pup into a good bird dog. With Rick or Ronnie’s guidance, you will actually begin your dog’s formal training during this event. In its simplest form, a bird dog needs to know three behaviors; to go with you, come to you, and stand still. Rick and Ronnie have a way of keeping things simple but giving you information that is applicable throughout your dog’s life.
Principles of the Foundation Level include:
- first steps in shaping behavior on birds,
- heeling with a loose lead,
- developing points of contact for "here," "whoa," and turning in the field,
- and of course, general good bird dog manners!
At the Intermediate Seminar you are well on your way to having your dog trained using our training system! At this point, your dog has a solid foundation, you've completed the whoa post series, and you are ready move on! The Intermediate Seminar will take you through the transition to the e-collar. This transition to light cues with an e-collar allows an off lead heel, handling in the field, honoring another dog’s point, and steadying your dog on game.
If you are not sure if you have completed the whoa post series and are ready for this next level of training, contact us and we can walk you through it!
Elements of the Intermediate Level of Training include:
- transitioning from mechanical cues to remote cues for handling and bird work,
- begin the process of steadying your dog on birds,
- and begin developing learned behavior on birds.
Finishing your bird dog’s training! Our Advanced Seminar takes the lessons learned in the Foundation and Intermediate Seminar and applies the finishing touches to your bird dog’s education. It’s at this level that we are able to transition all cues to the neck and finish steadying up our dogs on their birds. We will be transitioning from pigeons to quail. This seminar will show you how to finish training your dog to a nice polish.
Elements of the Advanced Seminar include:
- transitioning all remote cues to the neck,
- transitioning to game birds,
- finishing steadying your dog on birds,
- transitioning to shooting birds over your dog,
- work with the natural retrieve,
- and putting the finishing touches on a proficient bird dog!