Yesterday we went to visit Northern Storm Kennels to do a little training so Jim could see first hand where Sarge was at in training and what it would require of him to CC and FF him. I had been working on HOLD for 2 weeks and he's got it down pretty good now (drops occasionally once heeled upon return). I HATED the idea of not training him myself, BUT after being there and seeing all the equipment and training grounds I couldn't help but think how much better he would be after being there for a few months. I drove up just to train.... and came home without a dog. I truly believe it will make Sarge a more rounded dog and allow him to be tested to his full capability. He's never had to make a retrieve from a launcher before so within the first 10 mins of him being out I asked Jim to launch one into their pond to see how he would react. He stayed steady until I released him and executed the retrieve to hand nicely! I feel like with their knowledge and equipment I will be getting a lot more than just FF & CC during his 8-10 weeks there. It was a rough first night alone, but I know deep down this is a GREAT experience for Sarge and will build his confidence more than I ever could have. I feel very blessed to have met Jim and his son, their training techniques are very similar to how I handle Sarge currently so the transition should be smooth for him!
Our last retrieve together.... I get to go back in 3 weeks, and then every weekend after if I want.