"Since I was about 13 years old, watching Hunting with Hank on TV, I dreamt of having a talented English setter, and that has absolutely come true"
Mark Bertucci & Gus
Northwind Setters raised and trained in the Grouse Woods
Focused - Driven - Biddable and a loyal hunting companion
Defining a grouse dog
What is a grouse dog? One hunters definition vs. another can be totally different based on their level of experience as a grouse hunter, their understanding of birds and cover, and their understanding of how to get the most out of their grouse dog.
Training of a Northwind's grouse dog
A grouse dog is one that is capable of working less scent than a lot of scent
A dog that scents from a distance and can trail a running bird
They naturally quarter
They understand hand signals as well as verbal commands
A dog that knows how to relocate and release without putting too much pressure on the bird
These are dogs you do not have to talk to and rarely if ever have to use the e collar.
The working range is when the dog goes on point you don't need run or use a gps to locate the dog
With a grouse dog they just point but they are also allowed to work a running bird
A grouse dog can retrieve to hand, or locate dead birds
A dog you say very little to in the woods and they shift when you shift
A grouse dog is a dog that posses an "Off Switch"
A family dog that is well mannered in the house but turns it on in the grouse woods
All of the above represents just part of the training that goes into one of our dogs. These dogs are highly socialized and can easily visit nursing homes, be with the elderly and young alike. These dogs want to be with you just as much as they want to hunt.
Intense - Focused and Cautious
Kenzie working a running grouse
Having guided hunters for grouse and woodcock for almost 20 years in the north woods of Wisconsin, I know what I need in a grouse dog. A dog that works with me and is biddable, possessing the ability to scent, wind and work a running bird. Dogs that have a drive to find birds but once the bird is located possess a level of cautiousness around these birds so as to not to push the birds.
These same dogs are house broke and a wonderful family dog but once they are back in the woods they "flip a switch" and become a dog that is driven in it's pursuit to locate and hold the bird for the hunter.
A grouse dog does not happen in a short period of time. These are specialized dogs that need work in the woods, and need experience working grouse.
The owner needs to understand cover, how these birds react to pressure, and the cover they will seek when pressured. All this combined with a dog that has been trained in the foundation needed to become a successful grouse dog.
Our belief has always been that we hunt and train in the cover the bird lives, and we also train for the conditions that these birds are found in.
Our breeding stock needs to be from dogs that possess exceptional noses, are naturally cautious and have the ability to work a running birds. Theses dogs are biddable, easy to control and have a balance of drive mixed with a cautiousness around birds.
When the hunt is over they settle in and are a wonderful companion and a dog that you can be proud to own.
It is one thing to say you hunt grouse and woodcock. It is another level to be a guide for grouse and woodcock. Each hunt your reputation and the quality of your dogs is on the line because you are getting paid to do a job. This is only part of what sets us apart in the quality of dogs that we train here in Northern Wisconsin. We know what a grouse dog should be and we work hard to match the right dog up with what the owner needs.
What also sets us apart is that all of our dogs are house broke before going to their new owner. We also have a vet check done on every dog before they leave our kennel. Lyme and heartworm test are also performed.
Great to hear from you. I thought of stopping by this fall as I was up in Bayfield several weeks. Maybe next time I’ll will stop for Betty to say hi! Betty is a lazy cuddle cat in the house. Great dog. In the field one of the best still. She did great on grouse. We had our best season ever with 31 grouse. She is now working pheasant for physically challenged and my friends. She is doing all I ask and it is now both learning each other hunting styles. She has an amazing nose and is getting much better at tracking runners to not bump them. This is a work in process but happy. I’ll attach some pics of her hard work. Wish I could clone her and have 2 right now!!!!! Keep in touch
Chad. Ps also attached my favorite pic of Betty my buddy took hunting. Sums her up
Northwind Setters training and hunting in Canada
We don't just do setters as a side business or raise a bunch of puppies and sell litter after litter of pups like most kennels. We train and sell started pups for Grouse hunting or more advance started Grouse Dogs.
This is our business along with creating Grouse Habitat and Upland Hunting Maps. Our setters are proven in the grouse woods of Northern Wisconsin, Michigan, Minnesota the New England States and Canada.
We have guided grouse hunters in the Northwood's for over 18 years and conducted hunting seminars in numerous locations across the east coast. Our focus in Grouse and Woodcock and developing the best dogs possible for grouse hunting.
A candid letter why one of my customers picked
Northwind Upland Setters for their next grouse dog
Once I decided that the best hunting habitat in my area was grouse/woodcock habitat I decided I needed a good dog that could help me have success with these birds. I did a lot of research before coming across Ann Jandernoa at Northwind Kennels. Ann is well known by grouse hunters through out the U.S. for her vast knowledge about grouse, their habitat and the type of training a dog needs to be successful in the grouse woods.
I talked with Ann numerous times and eventually asked if I could come up and watch her dogs work. Ann has been doing guided grouse hunts for years so I was very interested in how her dogs work and what may set them apart from other dogs. I was interested in a good pointing dog who would hunt WITH me.
When I arrived it was a very rainy day and not conducive to good dog work, however, that didn't stop Annie, her English Setter. That setter had numerous points, responded perfectly to Ann's instruction and would have been a joy to hunt with. I was sold and only hoped to get a dog some where near that quality.
When you get a dog from Ann you know it has been exposed to wild birds and has spent the majority of its training on grouse.
When I got my pup, Katie, she did a great job matching a pup to what my personality was like. She offered all the help I wanted in training Katie and now I have what may be the best dog I ever owned. Katie is now 2 1/2 years old and has been through two grouse seasons. I was blown away with how well she hunted her first year and she was even better last year. I continue to communicate with Ann about Katie's training and she always takes the time to help.
If you're wondering about the quality of dog she produces, last year Katie and I got out about 25 times, hunted all WI public land and we were able to put up well over 300 grouse. Can't wait for the upcoming fall and watch Katie as she's just entering her prime.
Chuck Holicky avid Wisconsin Grouse and Woodcock Hunter