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Retriever Training 

Harpeth River's backbone and passion is in its Retriever Training program. With having trained dogs from all over the country our program will fit the hunters from the swamps of Louisiana to the Saskatewean Prairie. Whether you hunt a handful of times a year or your a guide that travels the flyway we keep the same expectation and goals in mind for your dog. If a client has a special want or need we are happy to incorporate that into the process shape your dog into what you hope he or she would always be.

At the end of our basic retriever training program we strive to accomplish:

-Formal Obedience 

-Working multiple marks land and water

-Steady to shot

-E-Collar conditioned with very light use to keep a happy and bold dog

-Mouth conditioning to ensure proper delivery of game 

-Working off dog stands, boats, blinds and pits

-Honoring other dogs

-Exposure to decoys

-Picking up simulated cripples

-Quiet blind manners

-Riding safely on a four wheeler


We offer a obedience program that can be shaped for the individual needs of our clients. Our basic program will include sit, here, on and off leash heeling, down, stay, place, no jumping, waiting at doorways, down to a dog bed, going into a kennel, honoring other dogs, Typically a 6-8 week program. owner will be shown, taught and given all information needed when dog is at home. 
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Jeremy Dembenski

Service Manager, Boat Warehouse

The work David did with Fern was far beyond what we had expected. From her manners in the house and at work to her disposition in the field  she has been spot on!

Chris Franks

Owner, Encore Construction

Have sent our dogs off to other trainers in the past years and David by far has impressed us the most with the way he communicates with the dogs to the way he made us feel comfortable with working with our Sadie 

Richard Morris

Benny spent 7 weeks with David for basic obedience. David showed us a more mature and happy Benny when we came to pick him up.

Very pleased!!


In order to achieve this goal we recommend that you get your dog its basic training and then do a evaluation. That evaluation will determine whether we move into the next steps of teaching your dog hand signals or we look at hunting that dog for season and building some confidence by getting out and experiencing what comes with being in the field then come back and move into advanced training. The process we look to follow has been groomed to fit the needs of our clients over the past decade.

Advanced Training would include:

  • Three Way Casting including Left/Right backs

  • Long Memory Retrieves

  • Pile Work

  • Site Blinds

  • Pattern Blinds on land and water.

  • T Drill on Land and Water

  • Honoring multiple dogs

  • Cold Blinds on Land and Water.

  • Wagon Wheel

  • Advanced Steadiness

  • Long Marks

  • Advanced Nose work

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If you would like to look at your pup learning to quarter and flush or work to teach your dog to point we are happy to offer this as well. With live birds on site we can put pheasants, quail or chuckars in front of your dog. This region of the country has lot to offer with game preserves and adds some fun in the off season from waterfowl.

Started Dogs


We do offer Started dogs at Harpeth River but only usually only look to see a couple of them a year that way we can put in the necessary effort and attention needed to shape them correctly.


If you have interest in a started dog please send Email or Call to inquire.

Imported Dogs

If you have any interest in importing a puppy or a already trained dog please feel free to call and ask us about this. 

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