AKC/UKC hunt tests for Upland Lab

IowaBoy92

New member
I’m getting a new lab puppy in a month and would like to be able to work on some off season training during the spring and summer. This lab will mostly be an upland hunter, but occasionally hunt ducks and sit with me for dove season. I’ve heard from some that for the predominant upland dog, retriever hunt tests will ruin him and he won’t work and quarter the field properly. I’ve also heard the exact opposite. What’s everyone’s opinion on if I can use the tests as off season training and bonding, or if it’s not a good idea.
 

Gatzby

Active member
I have an AKC Qualified All Age dog who is also a Master Hunter (both before 3 years of age) That also won the 2020 Minnesota Pheasant open, and was the NAHRA high point upland dog in the nation (2018). Any one that says you can't do both is full of crap or hasn't tried. Heck most of the dogs and people I train with run tests and trials all summer and guide upland in the fall.
 

david0311

Active member
I have an AKC Qualified All Age dog who is also a Master Hunter (both before 3 years of age) That also won the 2020 Minnesota Pheasant open, and was the NAHRA high point upland dog in the nation (2018). Any one that says you can't do both is full of crap or hasn't tried. Heck most of the dogs and people I train with run tests and trials all summer and guide upland in the fall.
10X—I believe those that come up with that crap do so—BECAUSE—they don’t have the quality of dogs or if they do the brains or ability to train one—
Good post Gatzby👍
 

McPheasant

Member
i was wondering how many on here run hunt tests?? weve been running a few, lots of fun, great people, i think more actual hunters are in hunt tests than field trials?
 

LCR10A

New member
IMO You certainly can do both. HRC has an upland test/title and the HRC Grand 5th series is an upland test. And, if your lab points, there are APLA hunt test which include an upland component. I’m by no means close to an expert when it comes to hunt tests. Hunt test friends tell me that a dog can get “loose” running upland vs. the control that is required for hunt testing. Having said that, I generally don’t think that the upland hunting season overlaps with the test season. Regardless, there’s time after the hunting season to reign the dog in, if needed, before hunt tests begin.
 

birddude

Well-known member
My two cents would be any training is good training done with some common sense. Whomever said it would ruin him is probably talking about overtraining. Not all dogs can take intense training pressure and some dogs thrive on it!
 

dustin mudd

Active member
All comments above are SPOT on! Do what is fun for you and dog. Great chance to meet like minded folks-and potential hunting companions . You will get helpful insights too! Great experiences in the off season.
Google hunt secterary. You can scroll thru ukc ,akc and other other events. Go watch for a day. Go see all levels started ,seasoned, and finished
 

Nimrod

Member
Tests are just that, tests. The UKC Upland focuses on “steady” to wing & shot and nothing else, hardly the definition of a useful upland dog. The AKC Spaniel tests ( which also allow retrievers) require The dog to hunt the wind intelligently and to find, flush and retrieve birds. Judging is quite variable however and too many judges pass dogs that don‘t actually meet the written standard.

If you can find a Spaniel club that holds hunt tests they’ll likely welcome you to training days where you can work your Lab on planted birds and learn to use the wind efficiently, a skill that will put more birds in your vest during hunting season.
 

goldenboy

Well-known member
Nothing funner than sending your dog on a retrieve across a creek where you can't get to the bird. Stop the dog with a whistle and direct them to the downed bird. Then watch them deliver that bird to your hand and not drop it in the creek. Training and obedience are the foundation to a great hunting dog. If the drive is there, the training helps to control it. Training will not produce drive, that is bred into the dog. "good hunting dogs" are in the eye of the beholder!
 

LC Smith

Active member
My 2yr old is out of solid pointing lines and is dual titled in APLA and AKC hunt tests. If you get a dog from good lines, and have the right training, you are a lucky guy to have such a well-rounded retriever.
 

AKSkeeter

Member
I run MH hunt tests and field trials in the summer up here in Alaska, hunt Sept. ducks in AK, then hunt pheasants down in MT Oct to the end of Dec.
FRC.JPGScouts_first_pheasant.jpg
 
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