Professional. Expert. Friendly.
We are Ken and Janet Kuivenhoven. Our shared passion is to develop every dog we encounter to its highest degree possible.
Ken – Owner/Trainer
As an AKC Field Pointing Breed Performance Judge for 25 years, I have a depth of experience not only from training and hunting but also from watching the performance of thousands of dogs afield.
Janet – Owner/Trainer
As avid hunters, we understand the requirements of a personal gun dog owner. As Field trial competitors we understand the high caliber of dog, and the intensive training and dedication required to be a top performer.
The ‘Who’ of Gun Dog Trainer
Ken and Janet
We strive to Maximize your Dog’s Potential. One would think over the years that perhaps this grows old, but we find with each new dog brings new adventure, new experiences, and new friends.
We have owned several breeds of sporting dogs over our lifetime; Irish and Gordon Setters, English Pointers, German Shorthair and Wirehaired Pointers, Vizslas, Golden Retrievers, Yellow Labs, other breeds like a Basset Hound and a Doberman, and the myriad of various rescue mixes that have passed through our life. To say we are dog-centric (aka dog crazy) would be an accurate description.
We breed an occasional litter of Vizsla Pups under the Willowynd Ranch Kennel name. Those from our breeding have achieved great things, including Master Hunter titles, Field Champions and placements at National events. All those titles aside, come hunting season they go hunting.
We have also trained every major sporting breed of dog and several of the less common breeds for their owners. We have competed in Hunt Tests and Field trials developing dogs from Junior Hunter through Master and Puppy stakes through National Field Champion.
We love the rural life and the wide open prairie that holds our modest home.
We are honest, hardworking people that love what we do and the people we encounter through this simple lifestyle.
Who you’ll be dealing with
This is the big question. You will be dealing with Ken and Janet Kuivenhoven directly. We work together to develop the most of each dog and adapt to their needs and personality. Some dogs naturally bond better with one or the other of us, but over time both of us will be involved in the training of your dog.
We occasionally have other professional and serious amateur trainers join us during training season that come in for a few weeks and leave with their own dogs. This works great as it offers us another set of eyes, feedback for each other, collaboration on training ideas, and the opportunity for dogs to work with other dogs they don’t know.
It is an excellent development tool for your dog to work and interact socially with new hunting partners afield. However, for dogs entrusted to us – we are the ones that decide how and what each dog needs for training. No guest trainer actually trains any of the dogs brought to us for training.
We also typically hire local part time help that share our passion for helping in the general care and feeding of the animals over summer, which are trained to our standards and supervised by us.
So why us?
We know there are many choices in choosing the next trainer of your dog.
So why us?
- We train all the dogs entrusted to us ourselves, not sub-contracted to another trainer.
- We are Positive-forward trainers. This means we teach as much as possible using positive training techniques. If needed, we do graduate to properly executed and calculated aversive or corrective training techniques when behaviors are learned for reinforcement or proofing. In our experience this positive forward, while still balanced training methodology leads to an eager to learn, happier pupil.
- We work dogs individually and in pairs with one trainer per dog, plus directed assistants to do things like flush or shoot a bird, etc. depending on the training task. There is no way anyone can get a properly timed reward or correction when handling 4 or more dogs alone at once.
- We only take the number of dogs we can personally work in that manner at a time. When we’re full, we’re full.
- We only train in the best months of the year to give the most advantage we can for you and your dog.
- We have been training, hunting and competing dogs for decades.
- We have competed in and won weekend Bird Hunter Competitions to National Field Trial wins and placements and put numerous Hunt Test titles on dogs.
- Have been a sanctioned active AKC Field Performance Judge since 1992.
- We fill our freezer every fall with game we hunt over dogs owned by us or our clients.
- We think transition training to the owner is as important as training the dog. When you leave with your dog, you’ll know how to handle your Pup and what to expect.
Call now for more information and availability.
Monday – Saturday, 8-6 MT
Always leave a message
(we’re probably working with the dogs)
Calls returned within 1 business day