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Lab Rapport

Story from Covey Rise magazine

July 2014

Labrador retrievers are the most popular dog breed in the U.S. Here are reasons why they excel in upland hunting situations.

Brett Arnold’s High Country Sporting Dogs in DeBeque, Colorado, breeds a few select litters each year, many based from the Grand River Retriever lines known for their hunting ability and agility developed in dusky grouse high country. Brett’s training experience has brought dogs under his tutelage many titles in hunt tests and trials including master-level retrievers–the highest designation for competition retrievers. Brett and his son Robbie are among the top father-son training teams in the country.

“Labs have a working mind and a desire to work with their handler, unlike the greater independence you see in a pointer,” Brett says, adding that their desire to retrieve is huge, and as a trainer he can build everything off that drive. “It’s amazing what you can do with that. Our first test of a pup comes at five or six weeks old. When we see them retrieving at that age, we know their trainability level is high. No dog is a handling dog like a Lab is.”

Robbie Arnold uses the words “hunting companion” to describe the Labs’ exceptional handling. When he puts Regan, Rowdy, and Angus through their paces at The High Lonesome Ranch in Colorado on a warm October day, the brilliant blue Colorado sky provides high contrast between the Labs’ onyx coats and the golden wheat grass.

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We are much more than a Guest Ranch

We are a Guest Ranch because we believe in stewarding this large western landscape and sharing it with others. We have a working model of sustainability that maintains biodiversity and ecological connectivity, enhances the lives of wildlife and fish, and preserves and restores degraded habitat while promoting a mix of uses...

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