Tracy Hayes has lived a lifetime with gun dogs. His first two dogs were a gift from a family friend he received when he was 9 years old. Coming from a birddog family, his youth was filled with pointing dogs, quail, grouse and pointing dog field trials. In his early twenties, after graduating from Virginia Tech, he acquired his first lab and it’s been a life-long affair.
For nearly twenty years, agriculture was his vocation but retrievers were his passion. In 1990, he saw a sign that said NAHRA hunt tests. He stopped and watched Charlie Jurney, Allen Pleasants and a few other hunt test trainers and his life was never the same. He co-founded Big Elkin Creek Waterfowl and Retrievers in 1993. Over the next several years, with the help of Charlie Jurney, he learned the art and skill of training retrievers. In the late nineties, he started training professionally and founded Quail Hill Farm Kennels—the rest is history.
At Quail Hill Farm Kennels, training hunting retrievers for the true hunter is paramount. With several acres to train on they almost never have to leave the property to give their gun dogs excellent training opportunities. They train almost exclusively for working gun dogs and HRC hunt tests with the top dogs participating in every HRC Grand. They take pride in training owners to become very proficient handlers for their retrievers.
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