It’s a big Kentucky Life moment as Buddy and Jackson, host Doug Flynn’s golden retrievers, make their on-screen debut. Doug, his wife Olga, and their two canine family members met with Kim Littlefield of Littlefield Dog Training in Versailles.
“We do a lot of teaching, both in classes and one-on-one,” says Littlefield. “We do basic pet obedience and some competition obedience. [We do] a lot of agility training. We also have a small kennel in the back and keep some dogs and train the dogs that are here. It’s a busy place.”
Through obedience training, dogs become good pets and members of the family. Littlefield also works with dog owners who are having trouble with a particular behavior problem, and that can make a huge difference in the dog’s future.
“Ninety-nine percent of the business is pets—people want to have a dog they can stand to live with—so it’s sit, down, stay come, walk on a loose lead, that kind of thing,” says Littlefield. “We get a lot of people who have problems with the dog. I’m always trying to solve those problems so they can keep the dog in the home and have a successful family.”
Both obedience and agility training not only help solidify the bond between dogs and their people, but they’re a lot of fun, too.
“Whatever game you want to play with your dog, you need to start with a foundation of obedience,” Littlefield explains. “Once we’ve got that, we start with agility stuff, little tunnels and other obstacles. Most of my agility students are just looking to have a good time. They enjoy working with their dog and it’s a great venue for continuing to work on your obedience where the dogs are having fun.”
Littlefield says that it’s “absolutely imperative” that the dogs are having fun when they go into a training session. Play is naturally incorporated into training. And her philosophy works—clients tell her that their dogs perk up and get excited as soon as they turn down Troy Pike toward “dog school.”
Like the Flynns, Littlefield’s own dogs are golden retrievers. She competes in field trials with her dogs, which plays into the traits that have been bred for in retrievers for generations.
“These dogs are high drive dogs,” says Littlefield. “They love to work, whether that’s field work where we’re swimming and picking up ducks or agility or basic obedience. Whatever we’re going to do, they’re gung-ho.”
This segment is part of Kentucky Life episode #2305, which originally aired on November 4, 2017. Watch the full episode.