Hunting Hills Kennel LLC 

UKC Hunter Retriever Club (HRC)

This is a test designed to assess the ability of the dog to follow the flight of the shot bird to the area of the fall, and its ability to go directly to the area of the fall, retrieve the bird and return it to the Handler.

The area of the fall shall be left to the Judges discretion in their consideration of the test and cover, based on the terrain and type of game hunted, but the following should be considered:

1. Is there a clear field of vision for the dog to see the mark?

2. Was the dog attentive at the line?

3. Does the dog react to the attention-getting devices?

4. Did the dog proceed directly to the area of the fall?

5. Did the dog hunt the area of the fall?

I. Hand signals, voice and whistle commands may be utilized by the Handler to encourage the Started Hunting Retriever to perform; however, should excessive handling or noise occur, which in the opinion of the Judges would disturb the hunt, then at the Judges discretion, they may declare failure of the test. The dog is being tested for its marking ability, not handling. However, a clean handle is preferable to an extended hunt.

II. A dog is not required to be steady at the Retrieving line; however, it may have a collar, leash or line around its neck or may be hand-held to assist in achieving steadiness. If the Started Handler opts to shoot the shotgun, the dog may not be restrained. A controlled break shall not fail a dog, but shall be marked down. The Judges should evaluate the dog’s temperament as displayed in its spontaneous behavior in order to assess its suitability as a hunting companion. Hyperactivity, wildness, jumping about, barking, excessive disobedience, lethargy or lack of interest are undesirable.

III. The bird must be delivered to the immediate area of the Handler. Delivery to hand is desirable. Consistent failure to deliver or consistent reluctance to deliver can result in failure.

IV. If a Started dog is unproductive after a second attempt, the Judge will instruct the Handler to pick up their dog and that the test is failed.. At this point, the Judges may recommend that the dog be assisted in completing the retrieve with the help of the Bird Boys or Gunners.

V. Gunners and Bird Boys should be inconspicuous in keeping with the hunting situation. At the discretion of the Judges, not more than once in each event the Gunners may be visible in order to simulate specific hunting situations, such as dove hunting. It is the intent of these regulations to provide the dog with adequate opportunity to focus its attention on the area of the fall.

HRC Started Test