We were very fortunate to find Chad and Crystal at Cahokia Creek Kennels. We knew our Golden Retriever Beau was a great pup but he needed direction to channel his natural ability. We met with Chad and Crystal and they agreed to take Beau for training and he developed into a wonderfully disciplined hunting companion. Along the way he competed in UKC Hunt Tests and earned his HRCH and UH Titles. Chad and Crystal are so easy to work with. They communicate well, they are very fair in training costs and take personal interest in both the dogs and clients. The facility is immaculate which is important to maintain the health of the dogs. Crystal is a perfectionist with the care of all the dogs. They are both great people/trainers and very professional at what they do. The advice they give and the information they share led us to develop a well trained working dog who absolutely loves what he does. Beau is a wonder! We have nothing but high praise for Chad and Crystal and their program!
David and Julie Ehler
When we first got Mojo my husband was very adamant about him going to training, I however was not. The thought of him being gone for months with someone else was not okay with me. He brought Cahokia Creek Kennels up, and after completing some research I decided that I would meet with Chad and Crystal. After meeting with them I realized that they were both very caring people who are always looking out for a dog’s best interest. Additionally they are very good at Cahokia Creek about keeping the owners updated every step of the way though the training process. It was at this point that I decided this would be the best place to have our dog trained.
We started out deciding that our dog was going to go through obedience training, and see how he progressed from there. When we dropped Mojo off Crystal was so nice and understanding with the fact that leaving him was very hard for me. She assured me that she would send updated photos and take good care of him. We had to wait 2 weeks before coming to visit, and when we did it was like Mojo was a whole new dog. Seeing how he obeyed Chad was unbelievable. I honestly asked if they switched my dog out for another. Even though Chad agreed that Mojo was a very stubborn dog, he did wonders on him. He has a way to connect with each dog that is indescribable.
Mojo ended up staying at Cahokia Creek for Started training and the longer he stayed the closer we got with Chad and Crystal and realized how great of people they are. Chad and I even came to an understanding that when I was there, training was done with love and treats, and the real training was discussed with my husband. Upon the completion of Started training with Chad and Crystal we became involved in a local HRC Club and began to trial. Mojo received his SHR title in the fall of 2015. It was at this time; do to health reasons, that we stopped Mojo’s training. He is currently at home and looking forward to Duck Season. To wrap it all up there is not a better pair of people, and the training there is top notch. So much so that with the help of Crystal we were able to find another lab, and currently have him training with Cahokia Creek Kennels.
Skylar and Paige Paul.
My fiancé and I heard about Chad and Crystal from a former client of theirs and we could not be happier with the decision to send our chocolate lab, Drake, to them for training. Drake completed 3 months of training and we were and still are nothing short of impressed with the training he received. Brad has taken him dove hunting on a few different occasions and his obedience and retrieving ability has caught the attention of other hunters and even got Brad a couple of offers for him. ha Drake loves the game and is good at it! Unfortunately he suffers from an inner ear problem which is why he was only able to complete Started training. We had noticed that he was “crooked” and would get dizzy after shaking or swimming. We told Chad and Crystal about this when we dropped him off just to give them a heads up. Throughout his training Chad and Crystal noticed his crooked stance and him getting dizzy during times that were not normal and contacted us and said that we needed to seek further medical attention for him and they were concerned. Crystal had contacted a vet to discuss his condition and did research on her own to see what was going on and what could be done. We ended up taking Drake to Columbia for scans, x-rays and other tests to diagnose his issue. It turns out that there is nothing that can be done for Drake. He is happy and healthy – he just is crooked sometimes! But I really appreciated the concern that Chad and Crystal showed for his health. It made me feel very comfortable with them that they were able to notice and care about Drake so much when they had so many other dogs at the kennel. It showed me how professional they are and how seriously they take their responsibility to care for and look out for each and every dog they have in their kennel.
We had gone through a lot with Chad and Crystal in the time Drake was at CCK and we have become quite good friends. We hang out with them, go hunting and on trips with them and even bought our 2nd dog, Diesel, from their Gauge litter. We developed a real interest in field trials and the entire process of dog training that we wanted another dog that could go the distance. That is exactly what we found in Diesel. He is currently in his Finished level of training. He has his HR and UH titles and training for his HRCH title and seems to just keep getting more skilled each time we see him. We love going to the hunt tests and watching all the dogs compete and get out there and do what they all seem love and enjoy so much. You can always tell at those tests which dogs are “CCK” or “Chad’s dogs” compared to the other dogs competing. There is a certain level of professionalism that each dog possesses. I have said many times that I am not sure who I am more impressed with, the dogs or Chad. His ability to teach his dogs to be so talented and skilled is beyond amazing. Brad and I have been privileged enough to witness dogs arriving at the kennel, wild and crazy, and leave with a skill set that most people can only wish for in their own dogs. Watching Chad work with each dog individually and learn their personality and what technique works best for them is truly a one of kind talent you just don’t ever see. Their entire goal is to see that each dog they train, succeeds.
Brad and I are so grateful that we took the advise of a past client and were able to develop a friendship with two such amazing people. They are the only one’s I would recommend to anyone who is looking to train or board their dog. They run a completely professional.. and the cleanest… kennel I have ever seen! We cannot thank them enough for everything they have done for us! They are the absolute best at what they do and it shows in each and every one of their dogs!
Laura and Brad
St. Louis MO
I have to admit I was very reluctant when my husband suggested we send our 10 month old Golden Retriever Sophie to obedience training with Chad and Crystal. How could I leave her for a whole month, 230 miles away!
We traveled to visit her after her first 2 weeks & I couldn’t believe how well she was doing! I knew then that it was the right decision having her trained at Cahokia Creek Kennels. It was very apparent how much both Chad and Crystal love and care for our dog, along with all the other dogs at Cahokia.
Sophie has been home now for 2 weeks and we’ve had no problems transferring what she learned with Chad to her home environment. The best part is the peace of mind her training gives us because we are confident that she will obey our commands keeping her out of unsafe situations.
A whole month seemed long at the time but I know we will benefit from Sophie being well trained for many years to come. It was well worth it and I couldn’t recommend Chad and Crystal enough!
Donna and Tim Ayers
We cannot say enough great things about Chad & Crystal at Cahokia Creek Kennels. We needed someone to help us train our lab, Trapp, for snow goose & dove hunting! After my first phone conversation with Crystal I knew this was the place for Trapp! I immediately felt that they wanted what was best for Trapp before they had even met him, and that feeling never changed throughout his entire 3 month stay with them for his started training!
Chad & Crystal (and Wyatt!) work together so well to bring out the best in every dog they train! All of our expectations for Trapp’s outcome were totally exceeded! They also work hard to ensure we (his owners) are trained to continue his training & obedience at home! Every visit we had to the kennel was very informative & enjoyable, just to spend the time with Chad & Crystal that they knew we needed! We never felt rushed & I always knew we could ask any question we had! The kennel is very clean & each dog has plenty of room to live comfortably! We will always use Cahokia Creek Kennels for any dog training we need in the future! We are so happy with Trapp’s behavior & talent now and we owe it all to the knowledge & hard work of Chad & Crystal!!
Kim & Bryan Cearlock
I contacted Cahokia Creek Kennels on the advice of a friend and I was not disappointed. Chad and Crystal made the whole process from pup selection to a seasoned retriever a positive and enjoyable experience. After two hunting seasons with Jagger they were always there to answer and resolve any questions I had. I am fortunate that Jagger is the caliber of dog he is and all credit goes to CCK.Overall they exceeded my expectations and I don’t see how anyone could do better.
Cahokia Creek Kennels is more than a kennel or dog training facility. Chad and Crystal are not only great at what they do, but they genuinely care about their clients and the dogs that they train. Their love of the sport and love for what they do is obvious the first time you meet them. Our Moose spent 10 months training with Chad and Crystal and I would do it all over again. He is an excellent dog all around – calm demeanor, obedient, strong hunter, and a lover for sure. Chad and Crystal are the best!!
Gary & Stacy Dean
Cahokia Creek kennels was by far the best choice we could have ever made for our Chocolate Lab. When we first went there, we were highly impressed with the facility, from the cleanliness to the passion that Chad & Crystal have for their animals. When we dropped off Hershey for basic obedience training, she was out of control. When she was done with the training, we got back the happiest, most focused dog I have ever seen. Hershey loves working with us on what she learned, and it gave us a great foundation to build on from there. Our family and friends that knew her before and see her now, think it is nothing short of a miracle… I would highly recommend them to anyone, and it was hands down the best investment we could have ever made for our four legged family member.
I would highly recommend Cahokia Creek Kennels for obedience training. Chad and Crystal explained the training program and what their goals for my dog would be. They also explained that I would be responsible for learning and re-enforcing their training to get the results I wanted. My family was second guessing our decision to add an Australian Shepard to our home. Indiana was disobedient, did not listen to commands, nipped at my children, and would not stay in our yard. I had tried some basic obedience classes with Indy but did not get good results. If you want your dog to be a respectful member of your family, I would encourage you to invest the time and money in the obedience program at Cahokia Creek Kennels. I was amazed at the change in our dog. He will now listen when called, walk beside me calmly, and behaves himself around my family. Chad and Crystal do an excellent job and truly care about the dogs they train.
When I decided to start looking for a retriever, I knew I wanted something better than the average duck dog chasing rocks. After some research I was overwhelmed, one of my friends gave me Crystals number and from there the rest was history. Both Chad and Crystal were overly helpful, they brought me out and explained everything they could, showed me examples of each level of training, their immaculately clean kennels and even invited me in to their home to explain even more. When I was ready Crystal was able to direct me towards a litter from their heavily titled Gauge. She walked me though any questions and even helped me pick out my puppy. At six months I brought Coal out for started training. Crystal kept me up to date with all the progress and whenever available I was able to come out see them train. Every time I always learned something new Chad is very knowledgeable and receptive to all questions. He walked me though everything when it was time take Coal home. Even afterwards both Chad and Crystal were receptive to questions and concerns. Coal has now finished his seasoned training and received his Hunting Retriever title and I couldn’t be happier with the results which wouldn’t have been possible with out Cahokia Creek kennels.
I would recommend Cahokia Creek Kennels to anyone looking for training facility that goes above and beyond in everything they do.
Growing up I never had a dog. When I moved out to get my own place the first thing I wanted to do was get a dog of my own. At 8 weeks old I brought home a little Fox Red Labrador Retriever and named him Bevo. At the time I knew that I wanted to hunt with Bevo as he grew older. When he was around 3 or 4 months old I started looking around at placed to send him for training. I found Cahokia Creek Kennels online and they were only an hour or so away from my home in Springfield, IL. When I called the number on the website Crystal immediately answered, and I could tell by her polite and professional demeanor that CCK was going to be a place that I wanted to look further into. After talking with Chad and Crystal we decided to bring Bevo down to Edwardsville to visit the facility and check out the demeanor of my dog. Bevo being the difficult puppy that he was, acted extremely skittish and uncomfortable. Chad expressed his concerns with me that maybe Bevo didn’t have the fire inside to make it through school. They told me they were willing to give him a try and I dropped Bevo off right around his 6 month birthday. I mentioned earlier that I wanted a dog to hunt with, but I also wanted a dog that could live in the house with me, and even jump on the couch and watch a baseball game. I got all kinds of discouraging advice from people around me telling me that sending Bevo off is going to be a mistake, and that he will come back more of a robot or machine than a loyal companion. I was’t looking for a dog to sleep in an outdoor kennel, I was looking for a dog to sleep at the foot of the bed. And seeing the way Crystal and Chad treated each and every one of the dogs at CCK as if they were their own was a huge selling point. Crystal sent me regular text messages, pictures and videos of Bevo during his stay. I made visits every couple of weeks to see his progress and was blown away after every visit. Chad does an amazing job with each dog, it was amazing to see how Bevo learned and grew during his 3 month stay. At the end of program Chad and Crystal had me down to Edwardsville to teach me how to work with Bevo. They taught me the commands, and how to work the E-Collar. Today Bevo is three years old and he is easily one of the best behaved dogs I have ever been in contact with. I understand that I am a bit biased, but I get endless compliments about his obedience and temperament. Bevo loves to hunt and is still just as sharp as he was the day I picked him up from CCK. When that E-Collar goes on in the field, he is focused and prepared to get the job done. At home, he lounges on the couch and loves to watch Cubs baseball. He will casually play fetch with a tennis ball, or sit by my side steady as ever when were hunting. Sending Bevo to CCK was easily the best decision I have made since getting Bevo. He is a great dog, and I know that my money was well spent sending him to CCK. I can be reached at tyler@sundownone if anyone has any questions for me. I recommend CCK to anyone looking to get the most out of their dog.
Your passion and love working with canines cannot be compared. I wanted to let you know how truly appreciative I am for the wonderful work you both did while training my white German Shepherd, Olive, in your obedience course. From the first phone call, Crystal, you made me feel very comfortable by understanding my concerns with having a timid dog who was leery of men. You were completely honest with your responses to my questions and even accommodating to them by offering me and Olive to come up to meet you both to show me around the facility before committing to anything. Upon meeting you both I felt very confident when making the decision to leave Olive in your care and she did too (Even though I think she thought she was only going to doggy day camp). Olive was a well behaved dog before training although like most dogs, when excited did not listen or would be completely distracted. After Olive had been with you a couple weeks I got to come back up and see her progress… I was amazed! I had tears of joy and also felt disbelief that this was really my dog. Once Chad had shown and taught me the commands and assertiveness I needed to embody in order to work with Olive, I felt like her and I were an unstoppable duo. She has been out of training for about a month now and has still continued to grow, learn, and adapt to new circumstances. I do not believe I could have sent her anywhere else that would have benefited her better! Chad and Crystal, you do an amazing thing with the dogs that come through Cahokia Creek Kennels and I thank you so much for your hard work and time.
P.S. Olive misses her kennel mates and rolling around in the dirt… and is back to being white haha!
Rachel and Olive
We are so FORTUNATE to have found Chad and Crystal. From the very beginning Crystal was so helpful over the phone explaining what size crate to get to recommending a veterinarian. We have a Chesapeake Bay Retriever and my husband and I both work full time. I was dreading the thought of potty training. Crystal was my LIFE SAVER! We brought CJ to her at 11 weeks old for a month and Crystal crate trained and potty trained our puppy. Not to mention all the positive socialization CJ received in Chad and Crystal’s care. It was hard to let this cute adorable puppy leave for a month, but Crystal made me feel at ease. She was in constant contact with me and we got to visit CJ once a week. I am so thankful that Crystal offers this training. It was wonderful to have a 15 week old puppy potty trained. You’re the best Crystal!
We brought CJ back when she was 9 months old for obedience training for a month. She was the Alpha in our family and would jump on me and knock me down. She was STUBBORN true to her breed. She was getting big quickly and was becoming increasingly hard to manage. This is where Chad completely reformed our dog. I was so impressed with the care and patience Chad had with CJ getting comfortable with the shock collar. Unfortunately, CJ had a previously bad experience with a shock collar. Crystal called me after a few days expressing their concern if CJ would be able to continue obedience training bc of how fearful she was of the shock collar. Thanks to Chad and Crystal willing to take it slow, CJ completed obedience training and has found her place in our family. She is still stubborn, but knows who the boss is now. She listens and obeys the commands given to her. She no longer jumps on us or knocks us down. She has become the best family dog ever!
I highly recommend Chad and Crystal to train your dog. You know from the start these two are dog lovers. They are very professional and explain everything from start to finish. You will not be disappointed with the results. I am truly grateful for the excellent care they provided CJ.
Thank you so much Chad and Crystal
Kristin and John Hobson
I can’t state enough how great Chad and Crystal are and how passionate they are about the dogs. I tried to train our dog Simba, but from the beginning, I found out he was going to be a challenge. Chad and Crystal worked with him and I almost did not recognize him when I would visit him. They had his obedience down and brought out his retrieving drive that I could not. Their passion for each dog is unbelievable. They know each dog as an individual and what it takes to bring out the best in each dog. Simba is almost through his first duck season and I could not be happier.
I just want to thank Chad and Crystal for what they have done.
I have owned, bred, and trained gun dogs of various types all of my life. But when I bought my first Chessie after having Labs for the past 30 years it did not take me long to realize I was in over my head and not dealing with a curly haired Lab. In fact my hunting buddies would look at my 8 week old pup and comment on how independent he was for such a young dog. I have never seen a pup that could so pointedly ignore you when he did not want to pay attention, but well it kind of goes with the breed. On top of it Cy is so smart that the inmates definitely have the capacity to start running the asylum. I needed some professional help.
I contacted Cahokia Creek and both Crystal and Chad were exceedingly helpful. They helped me out on what to do until I sent Cy to them. And once they had him for three months of started training they kept me very well informed. You are never too old or too smart to learn things and they taught me a lot. Including how to handle Cy and get his started title with four passes in four tries when I picked him up. Since he has come home I have had a wonderful base to work with including teaching him to handle and it all came easy since he had such good basic training. I take him to the store with me and do not use a leash and strangers comment on how well trained he is. I always say thanks, but I cannot claim credit for it because it all started at Cahokia Creek.
Fast forward about a year from when I first contacted Cahokia Creek. Obedience is nice, but I am an avid wing shooter and waterfowl hunter who travels across three states. My retriever simply has got to be top notch because I ask more of them than many gundogs are asked in a lifetime. In the first two weeks of September 2015, at the ripe old age of 18 months, Cy has picked up about 100 dove and teal. His first real hunting experience and it has been nearly flawless. The first day I took him dove hunting he picked up a limit for me without a single break or slip. On teal one afternoon we dropped 9 out of a flock in muddy, extreme conditions and he came back with all of them including a cripple that was probably 100 yards away before he got to it.
Simply perfect and outstanding and I owe that kind of performance to the fine training Cy got at Cahokia Creek Kennels.
Green Valley, Illinois
My husband and 1 decided to surprise our daughter with a new puppy in March 2013. We adopted our lab/shepherd mix from Partners 4 Pets and although she is an extremely friendly, lovable dog, she was totally out of control!! It reached a point that we had to decide if we could even continue to handle her. Our friends told us about Chad and Crystal and we decided to try their program before making and significant decisions. Wow!! They are awesome!! Not only are they professionals, but they are also very kind, caring people who are true dog lovers. Their program completely transformed our dog. She is still our fun, friendly, playful dog, but now listens and obeys. We went from frustrated and overwhelmed to loving and enjoying our new family member. Chad and Crystal are the best and I would highly recommend them to any dog owner!
“WOW! AMAZING! GREAT! THE BEST! Just a few words describing Chad & Crystal with Cahokia Creek Kennels! They are excellent trainers who really know their stuff. Prior to the start of his obedience training, we kenneled our Gus (our sweet double doodle) there for a weekend….the cleanest kennel I’ve ever seen! You can just tell they take tremendous care of the dogs they board (the only place we’ll board Gus now, because he loves it there!) When Gus turned 6 months it was time for him to train. We didn’t get to see him for the first 2 weeks (a little tearful) but WOW, we can’t explain what a difference only 2 weeks of being with Chad made! Watching Chad work Gus was incredible, just remarkable. This may sound goofy, but you could see the communication between him and our Gus. It was like he knew what Gus was going to do or try to do before Gus did! Chad and Crystal understand dogs and they train the owners from the dog’s point of view.
We want to spend a lifetime enjoying our 60# lapdog (ha ha) which means having him obey/listen in very situation. Well, that’s what we got….AMAZ1NG results and the BEST dog in the world! We were instructed to train with Gus after his month of training with Chad and Crystal….they answered all of our questions and addressed all issues or potential issues (which we had none!) prior to Gus going home. If you truly want your dog trained, go to Cahokia Creek Kennel, because they don’t come any better…they are GREAT! We feel we got so much more than our money’s worth!
We highly recommend Chad and Crystal with Cahokia Creek Kennels!!!”
Christy and Wayne Kiel & our “Gus”
It’s very hard to describe how great Chad and Crystal are at what they do! I recently sent my dog Buck through started training and after every visit to the kennel I couldn’t believe that this was my dog doing these things. Chad knows dogs and I could see he knew how to cater to each and every one to get the desired results. Buck was my best buddy and dropping him off for the first time was pretty difficult but Crystal made things way easier by keeping me updated with how he was doing and with pictures and videos. Chad and Crystal are very professional and run a fantastic kennel and I highly recommend them to anyone. If you are in search of a trainer, look no further!
We knew we wanted to have our new black lab puppy, Sawyer, trained for obedience and to duck hunt. We previously had sent one of our labs to Kansas City for 6 months of training, and I did not want that again. So I did some research, and came across Chad and Crystal at Cahokia Creek Kennels. We are so, so glad that we found them!
When I called and talked to Crystal the first time, I immediately felt comfortable. She is so friendly and knowledgeable, and wants to make sure that you feel comfortable with them. They wanted to meet with us and Sawyer before we came to an agreement on training, which was refreshing. Other places I looked into were ready to just have me drop Sawyer off and that was that. Chad and Crystal are different, they really want to do what is best for the dog. We made our appointment to meet with them, and drove up with Sawyer.
Cahokia Creek Kennels is a great facility! It is clean, organized, the land and pond they have for training is great, and you can tell that the dogs are happy! It also made me feel good to know that Chad and Crystal live on the premises, so if there were any issues at all, they were right there. We talked, and we asked questions, and so did they. They wanted to make sure that Sawyer came from parents who had been screened for major health issues, was up to date on his shots, and that he had the temperament for training. Sawyer was 6 months old, and a bit shy. Chad and Crystal were up front, and told us that if he was not mature enough, or did not have the temperament and drive for hunting, that they would let us know. They did not want us to waste our money training a dog that would not be able to handle all the hunting part of training involved and it wouldn’t be fair to Sawyer either. We left our meeting that day and told them we would think about it.
After a few days of more research and phone calls, we knew we wanted Sawyer at Cahokia Creek Kennels. I called Crystal and we arranged on a day to drop Sawyer off. It was so hard!! Crystal was so understanding and supportive-I cried when we had to leave. She promised photos and regular updates, and she was great! She put up with me texting her several times a day for the first few days, and sent regular pictures and news on what Sawyer was working on. Sawyer started with the obedience training, and Chad and Crystal were still not sure how Sawyer would do as the training advanced. Once he got to the retrieve portion of training though, he became a new dog. Because Sawyer LOVES to retrieve!! And Chad has trained him so well that Sawyer could pass a started dog hunt test.
Before you take your dog home after started training, Chad and Crystal have you come out and work with your dog (several times over a few weekends if you can), so that you know exactly what words to use, where the dog should be and what he should be doing, and you feel in complete control when working with your dog. They give you all of the tools for you and your dog to be a team.
We are so happy with the results! Sawyer is well trained and we cannot wait for our first duck season to begin! If you are looking for a well trained hunting partner, or even just a well behaved and obedient dog, call Chad and Crystal. They are wonderful trainers and great people! We are so grateful that we found them!
The Winn Family,
We took Zuess for obedience training at Cahokia Creek Kennels. At first I was nervous, Zuess is a German Sheppard and they are not the easiest dogs to train. Zuess was all puppy and he did what he wanted. I thought there was no hope and I thought he was going to have to go through the puppy stage first. Zuess was a little over 6 months when we took him and I was worried that Chad and Crystal were going to call and tell me to come get him that he was too much but two weeks went by and we got to go see him and I was shocked not only did he listen he never left Chad’s side which is a big deal since Zuess is a mommy’s boy. Chad showed me how to work Zuess and he has been doing great ever since. Taking Zuess to Cahokia Creek Kennels was the best thing I could do for all of us and I am happy to say 6 months later Zuess is doing great. Cahokia Creek Kennels will be the only place I will take my dogs to for training. It was nothing short of the best!!!
Thank you so much,
I would have to recommend Crystal and Chad for any of your dog training needs. I have an Aussie and he was a handful! Max is his name. Max would not listen to a word that I would say. I could yell and I could talk in a normal voice either way Max was on his own track of what he wanted to do and would pay no attention to me. I took Max to Crystal and Chad for obedience training and I went for several sessions as well to learn the commands so that Max and I could understand each other. Max and I get along very well now. When I tell Max a command he listens to me now and follows that command. Max is so much better now. There is peace in our house now. If you have a unruly dog I would suggest Crystal and Chad. They did an awesome job with Max. Crystal keeps you informed and also sends you pictures of what is going on through out the training process. Thank you Crystal and Chad,
We recently sent our pit/lab mix Bella to Cahokia Creek Kennels for obedience training. We were referred by a friend. I was a little skeptical at first because upon reviewing them they had only worked with pure breeds and I wondered if my mix had a chance. After meeting Chad and Crystal I knew I had found two amazing people who truly loved and cared for animals. They assured me that my Bella would be in good hands. It was hard for my family to leave our baby. Two weeks went by and I was able to finally go and see her for the first time since she started her training. The only words I can use to describe Bella when I got there was blown away! Bella wasn’t a bad dog before we took her, but she did have some issues and needed some guidance. Boy did she find it and his name is Chad! Her transformation in just two weeks was unbelievable. I couldn’t believe she was my dog! Crystal and Chad worked with me on her training needs and helped me feel comfortable when I was working her. They answered my questions, kept me posted on Bella’s progress and sent picture and videos of her training. Our experience with Cahokia Creek Kennels has been nothing but great! I would recommend them to anyone looking for training, obedience or boarding. We started with a good dog, and left with a great dog!! Thanks so much!!!!
Lisa Steele & family
I had been looking to buy a lab to be trained for a while and my brother told me about a guy he worked with, Chad. My brother said that Chad and Crystal were great people and were the best trainers around. After talking with Chad and Crystal they hooked me up with a great bloodline and beautiful lab for a great price. I grew up with two labs in my teenage years and after training them myself I knew how much work and patience goes into a well trained dog, which I obviously didn’t have at that time. I was skeptical about sending my dog, Maverick, off for three months since he was always by my side 24/7. During the time he was at CCK, Crystal kept me updated constantly and let me come down to see Maverick anytime I wanted. When I would see Maverick I was always very impressed with the progress he was making. After the long three months had finally passed I got my boy back and he was already a hunting machine. I am an avid dove hunter and daily waterfowl hunter and CCK gave me the best hunting tool and companion I’ve ever owned. I am now glad I forced myself to be away from my dog for three months and can’t wait to see how he turns out after sending him back for seasoned training in the spring. If you become a client of CCK, I can assure you that Chad and Crystal will do anything for you that is possible and will treat you and your dog like part of their family. They recently just hooked me up with a pup out of their GRHRCH UH MH Gauge, which I can’t wait to bring home in a few weeks. Thank you Chad and Crystal for everything you have done for me, you guys are awesome!!!
I highly recommend Cahokia Creek Kennels to anyone looking for a quality trainer. I took my Chesapeake retriever, Remi, to CCK last summer to begin his “started” training. Chad and crystal are the real deal!l They have a passion for the animals as if they were their children. Remi progressed through obedience (amazing how obedient he is now), force fetch and retrieving marks, however there were a couple setback throughout those 3 months they had to overcome. First, Remi was not a very strong swimmer. Crystal was bound determined to correct that. She spent numerous hours in their pond, Crystal was literally in the pond), helping Remi learn to swim. She knew I was concerned and assured me they would do what it takes to correct it. She always kept me informed of how he was improving throughout the weeks. lt’s now February 2014 and I can say Remi conquered the swimming setback, thanks to Crystal’s perseverance. The second setback was around retrieving a duck.. Seriously, my dog did not want to retrieve a feathered bird which was the main reason I purchased him. To say the least, I was concerned! Chad and Crystal continued working with Remi on different techniques and finally had me come out to discuss my options. One thing I want to share, each dog is different and not all dogs will make it. Chad and Crystal will be upfront with you if they don’t think your dog will progress any further so you don’t waste your money. ln my situation, they had one last trick up their sleeve. When I arrived the day of the meeting& they were honest with me. Chad was running out of ideas to get Remi interested in picking up a duck. Keep in mind; he was retrieving bumpers just fine. The last technique was to have me (the owner) handle Remi to see how he would react. To this day, l’m still amazed of the outcome; Remi retrieved a duck for the first time!l Chad and Crystal understand dogs, I couldn’t believe it! Long story short, if you are looking for a quality trainer, clean kennel (heated & cooled), and a personal touch give Chad and Crystal a call, you won’t go wrong!! During Remi’s first duck season, I was extremely impressed with his retrieving abilities and his obedience. I will be going back!!
Thank you Chad & Crystal!!
Chad and Crystal are awesome! I took my lab, Gus, to Chad and Crystal for his started training. I stumbled upon their website while browsing for kennels in the area and after talking to a few kennels closer to my home I decided to call Cahokia Creek. Crystal was glad to discuss not only how their training was set up, but also general information on raising my puppy before he reached their required 6 month age. My dog had no pedigree whatsoever going into training so Chad and Crystal were very upfront about what my expectations should be. After going for a meet and greet visit and viewing their excellent facilities I decided to give it a try. After the first month of training my pup didn’t seem to be taking to it. We discussed the possibility of ending the training after the first month, but thank goodness we didn’t. They tried an alternative approach to training Gus and boy did he flourish! By the time I came back for my next visit he was doing excellent! It is a testament to Chad and Crystal’s perseverance and adaptability. They know every dog has different needs and adjust their training style for such. After Gus finished his started training he had accomplished everything I had hoped for and more. Being 2 ½ hours away it was hard for me to get to the kennel as often as I would have liked, but Crystal was sure to keep me in the loop through phone calls and text messages. I can’t wait to get him back up there in a couple months for his seasoned training.
We cannot thank Chad and Crystal enough! We took our 10-month old lab to obedience training at Cahokia Creek, and a month later, we were ecstatic to pick up our new dog! Ellie has always been a sweet dog but lacked any self-control in a social situation. Whenever another dog or person came into Ellie’s sight, she would become so excited and focused that she was unable to respond to any command. A walk around the neighborhood was extremely difficult because she was always pulling towards whatever interested her. I always assumed her behavior was typical of a lab puppy, but after her training, I realized what she was truly capable of. She responds to any command regardless of what distraction may be in front of her. Another dog can come into our yard, and Ellie will heel immediately upon command. If we are passing other dogs on walks, she will sit at my heel while the other dog goes right by us. I remember Chad telling us that ‘no’ would be the most powerful word we used with Ellie, but I had my doubts, as that command didn’t always work with Ellie. After training, she immediately halts when either of her owners use that command. And while we were impressed with her training, we were also grateful for the love and care we knew she received while being away from her owners! Crystal treated Ellie like she was her own dog, which made her month away from us so much easier. We were also allowed to see Ellie whenever we needed, as a month away from our puppy was hard for mom and dad! For those of you who might question the need for obedience training, or who might be chalking it up to ‘puppy behavior’ like I did, know that we now feel it was the best thing we did for Ellie. The month away from her was well worth the wait when we got her back home!
Thanks Chad and Crystal for everything you did!
Adam Jones and Grace Havis
I want to thank you and Chad so much for the transformation in Pevely since his obedience training at Cahokia Creek Kennels. I brought you a lunkhead and you gave me back a more mature, beautifully trained companion who learns new things easily!
Before he came to you, Pevely was fearful of strangers and other dogs so he had become a poorly socialized fear barker who terrified people walking by. He wasn’t getting the exercise he needed because he couldn’t be trusted off a leash and couldn’t be walked easily on one, so he was acting out with destructive chewing. He was dominant toward our other dogs and tried to be dominant toward us by jumping and pawing … and he was a counter surfer.
Now when we go outside I don’t even have to tell him what I want, he automatically walks at heel unless I release him. We can go for long walks without a leash and he can sniff and run around all he wants, but comes immediately back and sits by me with nothing but a “Pevely, here!” He no longer barks at passersby, which is wonderful for them and for us.
But he really past the acid test yesterday. When I contacted you I was worried about an upcoming one year birthday reunion with his litter mates. Taking him to a gathering of strangers WITH strange dogs who would want to run off leash and play seemed like a recipe for disaster. Fortunately, his sister, Hazel, had been to you for obedience training and her owner, Justin, had high praise for the results.
Yesterday was the birthday reunion and it was a complete success! Hazel and Pevely almost seemed to recognize each other. After a brief moment of hesitation he ran to her and their tails were going 1000 wpm as they stood with their noses pressed together looking at each other. Then they took off running and playing with those big silly open-mouthed grins and never stopped until the party was over. Two other litter mates also came and Pevely was just as friendly with them, too. When a few carloads of children arrived to play baseball, he just stood and watched them intently, but never barked or became fearful of them. I’d say he’s a completely different dog, but it’s even better than that. He’s the same lovable dog with the goofy personality I love … but now with manners and confidence.
Now that we can go anywhere and he gets plenty of exercise our entire household is happier! Hazel and Pevely say “thanks” too!
We have taken two dogs to Cahokia Creek Kennels for training. Chad and Crystal are very professional, yet caring. We do not hunt test or use our dogs for hunting, they are just our family pets, so we weren’t sure this was what we needed; but after researching and calling Chad, then going to meet Chad and Crystal we decided this was the place we wanted to take our dog and the people we felt best to train her. Our first dog Zoey, a chocolate lab was 11 months old when we took her. We were beside ourselves wondering if we had made a mistake getting a puppy. She was so wild and did not mind us at all. She ran our house that is for sure. We could not believe the difference when she had finished her training. She was so well behaved, it was amazing, but it didn’t change her personality in any way that she was not still our house pet. Just an easier to deal with one. Sadly, we lost Zoey to an auto-immune disease. We later purchased another chocolate lab, Hershi, and even though we thought a puppy couldn’t be any more crazy than our first, we were proven wrong. We knew exactly where needed to go. To see Chad and Crystal at CCK when she was old enough. We took Hershi to Cahokia Creek Kennels when she was 7 months old and they did a fantastic job of training her also. The two dogs had completely different personalities and Chad and Crystal recognize that and train accordingly. I can’t say enough about how happy we are with the training we received for our dogs and the results. We have purchased another dog, a silver lab, Rylee, so Hershi will have a companion. As soon as she is old enough we will be taking her to Cahokia Creek Kennels. Chad and Crystal are wonderful and very knowledgeable at what they do. We appreciate all the work they put in and them returning our dogs to us so well trained.
Thanks for everything, Casey & Sheri Laumbattus
We heard about Cahokia Creek Kennels obedience training through a friend. Our dog Sadie was a very head strong lab puppy who would pull while on the leash, jump up on just about everything, and did not like to listen. So we decided that we would give them a call. We took Sadie to what we like to call “Doggie Bootcamp” in August. She was away for four weeks. Each time we visited, it was obvious that Chad was very good at what he does, and that Sadie was responding well to his training and that he truly enjoyed working with her. The place is so clean and well managed. Crystal works very hard at assuring that each dog is well taken care of and we appreciate how she gave Sadie the attention she needed as well as the socialization she so desperately needed. It is obvious that both Chad and Crystal enjoy what they do. Knowing this made us feel very good about leaving her. We received our training sessions at scheduled intervals to ensure we knew how to reinforce Chad’s techniques. Sadie has been home now for two weeks. She is doing great. We now can take her outside without a leash and she obeys. Walking her is a breeze. We also have fun taking her to the local ballfield and playing fetch with her without worring about her trying to get away. She is so much easier to handle. She has become more patient and not so demanding like she was before we took her for obedience training. Rob and I highly recommend obedience trainging with Cahokia Creek Kennels.
Thanks so much!Rob and Laura House
I would like to take the time and opportunity to thank Chad and Crystal for helping me find my new hunting companion.
I looked off and on for over a year when I ran into them at a fund raiser. The said they were training a pup that would be just what I was looking for.
The next day I went to Cahokia Creek Kennels and I was impressed – with their very clean A/C-heated kennel and lake that was built just for working the dogs.
Needless to say Gauge was just what I was looking for! Chad and Crystal took the time to show me how to keep working with Gauge and answered all my questions and concerns very professionally.
Gauge will be a year old the end of Sept. and all ready has retrieved numerous doves and a few Geese.
Thanks again Cahokia Creek Kennels for going above and beyond to make sure everything was just right.
Bart & Samantha Schwalb
Crystal and Chad exceeded our highest expectations in the training of our lab, Bella. From start to finish they were professional, highly skilled, very knowledgeable and made us feel like Bella was as important to them as she is to us. Throughout the time Bella was in training, Chad and Crystal did an amazing job keeping us updated on her progress through texts, pictures and Facebook posts, this ongoing communication enabled us to stay apprised of Bella’s success with their masterful training. Chad and Crystal are excellent dog trainers, and most importantly, we observed that Chad and Crystal treated all dogs in training, including Bella, as if they were their own and to us that was the ultimate!! Chad and Crystal are phenomenal dog trainers with a fabulous facility- they are A +++!!!
Tom Bliven and Christie Dickens
I bought a Yellow Lab back last August and by early spring was looking for a good trainer. I began my search on the internet and saw some in MO and then came across Chad’s website for Cahokia Creek Kennels. Upon further review, I found out he was only 3 miles from my house. How nice. However, I knew I wanted to meet Chad and see how he trains. I have trained Brittanies for over 25 years but had never trained a Lab and was not about to try. Well, after meeting Chad and Crystal and witnessing their love for their dogs and their friendly but honest approach, I was sold. I was able to see Chad handle one of the Senior dogs in for training and was amazed by the work Chad had put into this dog to get him finished.
We decided on 3 months of training and wow was I surprised when I saw the progression along the way. Being away from your dog for 3 months was tough on me and the kids but Chad and Crystal actually encouraged visits. I am so happy with the results after 3 months of training that I am beside myself. I was actually giddy for several days after getting her home and working her on my property. Most importantly, I am still seeing good results during the transition.
Thanks again Chad for your excellent training skills and make sure you save me a spot for next spring. We are definitely coming back for some finished training. If you are still considering other trainers, save your time and go meet Chad and Crystal for yourself. I am glad I did.
Neal, Jill, Jessica and Jake Benson
We took Hazel, our 6 month old Weimaraner mix puppy, to Cahokia Creek Kennels for obedience training. It was a wonderful experience. If you are considering training for your puppy, I’d suggest scheduling a visit to meet with Chad and Crystal and see for your self their dedication, expertise and professionalism. Don’t even waste your time and money with the pet store “training” classes. I guarantee you won’t get anything like the real results you’ll see from the Cahokia Creek Kennels obedience training.
I really wish I would have taken a few videos before Hazel had the training so we could show everyone a “before & after” video. However, I think the before is probably what most people experience with an untrained dog – jumping on people, pulling on the leash during walks, running away or after people, other dogs or cars, etc. That was Hazel, full of energy! We tried using a variety of things like choke chain collars hoping she’d learn to walk with us and we could enjoy our walks without her dragging us or us pulling her along. We also tried to train her on our own by rewarding/bribing her with treats. I’d say our results with those efforts were poor at best.
However, without exaggerating, here is our experience with Hazel now after the obedience training. When we take her for a walk around the neighborhood we go with no lead or leash at all. She’ll get 20 feet or so away from me getting to check things out, smell everything, and just be a dog but as soon as I say, “Hazel, here!” she turns around and immediately comes back to my side. If we come across other dogs, people walking, kids riding bikes or any other distractions I just call her again and tell her to “heel” and she walks right with me next to my left side. If there’s traffic, I have her heel, then sit, and she stays right next to me until the cars pass. It’s amazing.
We don’t have a fenced in yard and before training letting her out meant putting a leash on her and standing in the cold or rain and going out with her to take her “potty” but now I can open the door, let her do her thing, then simply call out “here!” and she comes right back without me having to worry about her running off, or into the street or just simply refusing to come back in.
Having a well trained dog makes everything more enjoyable for my entire family. The kids (2 and a half and 6 year old) aren’t afraid of the dog jumping all over them and now pet her, play with her, and give her much more attention too. Now that she has been trained and understands what is expected Hazel is also a happier and more mature dog. She understands “no” and actually listens which makes everyone happy!
I highly recommend Cahokia Creek Kennels and can’t thank them enough for their time, effort and dedication. It was a great experience and the results speak for themselves.
Justin Wilson and Family.
I visited Cahokia Creek Kennels when my dog Jaeger was 3 months old and instantly knew that he would be returning in 3 months for training. Jaeger at 6 months was a hyper, crazy, and wild puppy, even had a bad biting problem…after the first month he was a changed dog. I picked him up after just 3 months of training and he was a completely different dog and I loved every minute of it. He is obedient, steady, and ready to retrieve waterfowl at 10 months old, totally exceeded my expectations. One of the main attractions was the kennel. It was completely spotless. Not only the kennel but the whole training ground was spotless. Any type of terrain you wanted to train your dog in they had. The time they put in with the dogs is incredible; the dogs are truly their lives. If I could describe Chad and Crystal in one word it would be “Dedicated”. Not only do they train your dog but they will spend plenty of time with you the handler to know the proper way to handle and train your dog on your own. They are always quick to answer any of my questions that I may have even after I brought him home. When I picked up Jaeger to go home he was treated so well that I don’t really think he wanted to leave with me. Needless to say I can’t wait to take him back in the spring to continue his training. I recommend them to anyone who wants a great pet and or a great duck dog!!!
We cannot thank you enough for the training you have given our dogs. A month ago we left you with two good dogs that just could not be managed. Yesterday we picked up two good dogs that pay attention.
Neither has lost a bit of their personality they are still fun loving puppies, but now when we tell them to something they pay close attention. It is a wonderful change.
We walked them for the first time today with no leads and only the collars and controllers. Amazing. They never left our side even when a distraction caught their eye.
I knew you came highly recommended and now I see why. If we can ever be a reference, please use us. What you two have done for us and our dogs is incredible and we just can’t thank you enough.
Rich and Debbie Valentine
I can’t thank Chad and Crystal enough for taking the time and care to work with my 7 month old German Shepherd. When I began looking into obedience schools in the area, I was unsure because my pup was not a Lab of any sort but the things that I had heard were too good so I had to check it out. When I first visited the kennel, I was very impressed. The kennel was very clean and well kept. I could tell Simba felt comfortable from the start and they took him right in as if he were their own. The first time I came out to see him I was amazed with how much he learned in just two weeks time and how well he listened. I was very happy with how he was able to socialize with the other dogs and learned to play/get along with many other dogs. I could tell that Simba was well taken care of and enjoyed his time at the kennel.
The first night I was able to take Simba home I wanted to show him off to everyone because he was so well behaved. One night, I took him to a bonfire with other dogs and everyone was very impressed with how well he listened on command. We continue to work hard on his training and he’s going to turn out to be a great dog.
I cannot thank Chad and Crystal enough for the work that they have done with him. I would recommend Cahokia Creek Kennels to any interested dog owner. I plan to send Simba back for any future boarding needs.
For the last couple of years I had been seriously looking for a great companion dog that I could have trained as a volunteer service dog/ personal hunting companion for my family members. I ended up with a very rowdy hyperactive fence jumping destructive pup that was very hand shy. I started looking online and asking friends for names of trainers that could help me out. I found Cahokia Creek Kennels through an internet search and the pictures on the website were very impressive. In September of 2011 I took my 3 month old wild child out to the kennel to see the facility for myself. I met originally with Chad and watched as he was working on water with some of the older seasoned dogs. Crystal showed up not long after and took me on a tour around the kennel. After spending the afternoon at the kennel with Chad and Crystal I knew at that time that my search for a trainer was over.
In January of 2012 I brought Willow my Curly Coated Retriever back to Chad and Crystal at Cahokia Creek Kennel for started training. I am an extremely over protective momma to my fur kid and the thought of leaving her anywhere was heart wrenching the only solace I had on that day and many days after was Crystal’s posts on facebook with the updates on her progress. Crystal made herself available several times throughout the weeks so that I could come and visit and I always looked forward to working with Chad on the weekends and seeing Willow’s progress. Chad and Crystal have a true gift when working with the dogs. I knew I had a very smart devious pup that I was dropping off (she jumped the fence in the airing yard on the first day before i had even left). I had no idea that i would be bringing home such a great companion in such a short time of training. I now have a dog that goes to work with me just about everyday at a golf course where she greets all the golfers and rids the greens of birds but also a great hunting buddy who received her started title this fall and is as steady as they come. I am excited to see the progress that she will make next spring and summer.
I cannot thank Chad and Crystal enough for the excellent and extensive compassionate care that they showed toward my very shy puppy. They truly are a wonderful pair and the work that they do is by far the best. Not only have I got a great loyal friend at home now, but I have made some great friends in the process.
Jennifer E. Collins
I wanted to take this opportunity to thank Cahokia Creek Kennels for all the time and hard work you have shown Drake. Last year I had to make one of the toughest decisions I have made in a long time, and that was if I was going to train my hunting partner or let someone else do it.
I spent a lot of time looking into places to take Drake; some were even 5 and 6 hours away. One of our friends asked us if we have looked into Cahokia Creek Kennels. Later that evening I looked them up and seen that they were only a few minutes away. I sent Crystal an e-mail that night and within a few minutes she had responded and wanted my wife Ashley and I to come out and see the facility and meet with them. After meeting with Chad and Crystal we knew that’s where we were going to take Drake.
The day we dropped off Drake was a pretty emotional day, especially when we hit the rock driveway but we knew we were making the right decision. Just a few weeks into training Ashley and I went to see Drake and how he was progressing. To say the least we were amazed on how well he was doing. The next few months I went out to see Chad and Crystal work the dogs as much as possible; it was all worth it when Drake brought home four passes in his first two hunt test and we owe it all to Cahokia Creek Kennel.
Drake has been doing great in his first hunting season; he already has 50+ retrieves and loves every second of it. I continue to get complements on how well behaved and trained he is. I cannot wait for this year when we bring Drake back for his next chapter and I’m sure he is ready to see his friends as well. Thank you Cahokia Creek Kennels for everything you have done for Drake and our family. I will continue to recommend you to everyone that is looking for a place that will treat their pets as if they were their own.
Michael and Ashley Riegert
We had been thinking about getting a lab for some time, but I wanted a trainer that was close enough that I could visit on a regular basis and follow the dog’s progress. We first heard of Cahokia Creek Kennels at a DU banquet last spring. We found their website and really liked what we saw. After a call to Chad describing that I was either looking for a good pup or a started dog, Chad said he may have just the dog for me. He asked numerous questions to make sure I was a serious hunter and that the dog would have the opportunity to be hunted on a regular basis. He and Crystal then introduced us to Smoke.
Smoke was a 19 month old “started” dog that was full of drive and energy. We loved him from the very start. After taking him home for a month, he returned to CCK for the summer. There wasn’t a weekend that went by all summer that we didn’t go visit and watch Chad and Crystal work Smoke. He made great progress and when the fall hunt tests came around, he passed his “seasoned” test in three straight passes.
Chad and Crystal are quite the team when it comes to training. Their training skill, patience and work ethic are only surpassed by their love for the dogs. Their kennel is always clean and well maintained and the training grounds are first class also.
Even with a slow duck season, I am having one of my most enjoyable seasons ever. Even though Smoke is a young dog in his first season, I have had numerous compliments on his blind manners, his marking ability and the way he is easily handled. While I intend to enjoy the remainder of this season, I look forward to Smoke returning to Chad and Crystal next summer to work towards his “finished” title.
Bill and Kay Barlow
Chad and Crystal,
Thank you so much for everything you have done! You guys took our 100lb, out of control puppy and turned him into a well behaved young man! We thank you for letting us come visit him any time we wanted, and for taking care of him as if he was one of your own. Not only did you teach us training skills to prolong Ford’s obedience, you educated us on basic health maintenance. You truly are great people and we thank you so much for teaching Ford and us the obedient skills we all needed. Cahokia Creek Kennels has made our lives so much easier!!
Dustin, Brittany & Ford Moist
Early last spring, my wife and I brought home a chocolate lab and named him Tonks. We decided immediately that we would have this one trained up by someone better than myself. We sent Tonks to start his training the day he turned 6 months old with Chad and Crystal at Cahokia Creek Kennels. He was a typical unruly pup; however, after his three month started training session, Tonks was obedient, steady, and nothing short of amazing. As I visited with Chad and Crystal, it became clear that they really understood how to train these dogs well and knew how to get the dogs to learn what is expected of them. I could see that Tonks and all of the other dogs at CCK were so excited whenever it was their turn to work.
I have hunted ducks at Stump Lake since I was young. I have hunted over a lot of dogs throughout the years; my own, or someone else’s. I have never had the pleasure of hunting over such an obedient pup and many of my guests in the blind have commented the same. I have received so many complements on this pup’s behavior and most people don’t even realize that Tonks is only 10 months old. We are at the halfway mark of his first duck season and he just gets better every day. I am amazed at his performance so far as he has exceeded my expectations, and my young boys (ages 2 & 6) just love playing with him without fear of being trampled. I fully intend to bring Tonks back to Cahokia Creek Kennels in the spring for further training. I believe that once he matures, Chad and Crystal will be able to complete his training and I will have nothing short of an outstanding hunting dog. I have to thank Chad and Crystal for all of their hard work. There is no greater joy than watching a well trained dog do his job.
As 2012 comes to a close I wanted to take this opportunity to thank Cahokia Creek Kennels for all of the hard work, compassion and care you have shown towards our prize SHR BIG MUDDY’S LITTLE BILL “WILLY”. When we first met I had the foolish notion that by reading a few books I would soon have a GHRCH; five minutes with the both of you and I was convinced how wrong I was.
The first meeting was a great experience; your straight forward, honest approach and assessment were what made our decision to trust our Lab with you easy. The way you clearly laid out what would take place, what to expect, and some of the challenges/disappointments were a great help in those first few weeks without him. Another truism that I found was that half of this process was to train us, and your patience was very much appreciated. When it came time for his hunts tests again your ability to make us not only feel comfortable; showing us the ropes, but gave us the opportunity to meet a host of new friends. You both have a great sense of humor and this first year is full of those memories.
It is bittersweet that we will be sending Willy to you in March of 2013 for his next leg of training, however we know that the care and training that you will provide will only him that much more enjoyable in the years to come. Jody and I are both proud to have you involved in our family’s lives and look forward to our continued friendship.
Bill and Jody Fontes
This is a testimony in regards to our dog Shelby and the wonderful trainers that she has.
We got Shelby two years ago so my husband would have a hunting dog. We have had other trainers in the past with other labs, but we are very happy with Chad and Crystal. When we first took Shelby to their home, they showed us the grounds and the kennels. Their kennels were very neat and clean. Chad & Crystal would let us know how Shelby was doing in regards to the training she was receiving.
Crystal called one day and said she thought Shelby had EIC, Exercised Induce Collapse. I had no clue what it was, never heard of EIC before. Crystal told me what steps to take , i.e., pick up Shelby, what forms to fill out, take her to the vet, and where to send the blood that was taken from her. Well unfortunately Shelby did have EIC, but we continued to have Chad & Crystal work with her and Shelby is a very good duck hunter.
Chad & Crystal are wonderful trainers, very knowledgeable, and we will bring our future dogs to have them trained.
Glenn and Margaret Wiegmann
Chad and Crystal, Thanks again for all the work that you put in this year to finish him out and get his Champion Title in 4 straight hunt tests. It is now week 4 of the North Missouri duck season and Shooter is there every day with me, making some great retrieves. He is exactly what i was looking for when I asked Chad to find me a started dog. He has made me a very proud owner.
We want to thank you from the bottom of our hearts for the dedication you gave to our 4 legged family member ~ Sissy. It was a great pleasure working with you both. When Sissy came to stay with you, she was an out of control, yet fun & loving maniac. She had a typical “teenager” attitude and mind of her own. Today, because of the time and love you gave to her during her month of training, we are all able to enjoy her companionship. She obeys us all the time (on & off the leash). Sissy’s obedience has improved 100% and we owe it all to you!!!! We will recommend Cahokia Creek Kennels to anyone we know who would benefit from your expertise. We look forward to working with you in the future for more advanced training. YOU ROCK!!!
Mike, Dawn, Hannah, Ryan, Baylor & Sissy
Our dog, Willow, is a yellow lab and golden retriever mix. When we sent her to Cahokia Creek Kennels, she was just 6 months old and our experience with her at that point was almost all negative. While we loved her greatly, our time together was extremely chaotic and downright exhausting. Willow wouldn’t listen, couldn’t walk on the lead without pulling us over, jumped on us, and was into anything and everything she could get her paws and mouth on. Basically, we spent our time together yelling “No Willow”. We were desperate for help.
Willow spent 30 days at Cahokia Creek Kennels and we can honestly say she is a wonderful dog now! She actually BEHAVES!!! At 7 months old she walks nicely on the lead and most of the time we are able to take her outside without the lead. Willow stays off the counters, no longer jumps on us, and is an overall calmer dog. And what has really helped us is that Chad and Crystal took the time to teach us how to work with Willow before we ever left.
We can’t say enough good things about CCK. We recommend everyone who has a new dog, or is contemplating training, to check out CCK. If you’re considering training, go visit Chad and Crystal. You will not be disappointed!
Kit and Lisa Timmons
We are extremely pleased with taking our dog to Cahokia Creek Kennels! Our dog Drake, a pure bred black Labrador Retreiver, was 8 months old when we took him to Chad and Crystal. He’s a lab puppy, so naturally he is wild and full of energy! We didn’t lose the energy from him, but after being at the kennel, he is such a well behaved dog! He listens to our commands, knows when to “heel” and “sit” and doesn’t jump up on people anymore! After being there for about 3 months, he was completely changed and had such a better personality! He’s smart, and an excellent hunter!!! Our experiences with Drake are much more enjoyable because of how well behaved he is! I recommend Cahokia Creek Kennels to anyone who is looking for a better, more fulfilling relationship with their dog! We look forwards to working with them in the future!
Ryan Lybarger and Rachel Barrows
Cahokia Creek Kennels is a top-quality establishment. Each housing facility is individualized and concrete. The dogs
are very well cared for and nurtured. The trainers do not look at them as pets, but rather part of their family.
In March of 2011 I brought them an eight month old hyperactive and jumping Labrador named Drake. In July 2011 I picked up a well trained hunting companion. Through his well organized training sessions, Drake learned obedience, force breaking, and retrieving marks. One of our main concerns for Drake was learning how to interact with our two year old son. After returning from his training sessions he now follows commands not only in the field, but follows behavioral commands when playing with our little boy.
This experience would not have been the same without the wonderful trainers at Cahokia Creek Kennels, Chad and Crystal. Through my weekly visits Chad saw that I was struggling with handling Drake. Being a new dog owner, Chad saw the struggles I was facing and offered one-on-one training sessions with Drake and I. Drake left their facility about five months ago and I still receive monthly checkups from both. Chad and Crystal are not only trainers, but new found friend.
Chad and Crystal had their work cut out for them when I dropped off my 18 month old Chocolate Lab Koda at Cahokia Creek Kennels. But, after only two weeks I already saw great improvement. They were very helpful working with me step by step along with Koda so I could use the same training with him on my own time. The kennel has every needed tool to ensure the best-most life like hunting scenario’s for training. Three months later and I have a fit, obedient, duck dog. They also have been very helpful with tips and advice after I brought Koda home. I would recommend their services to anyone.
Our experience with Cahokia Creek Kennels has been nothing but amazing. We had our yellow lab, Ella, there for 2 months (the first for obedience, the second for force fetching) and we couldn’t have asked for better trainers. They treated Ella like she was one of their own pups. Not only did Ella exceed our expectations, but everything about Cahokia Creek Kennels did as well. She behaves like she is a totally different pup! I am a very over protective parent when it comes to my “baby” and I wouldn’t trust anyone else but Chad and Crystal with her. Their love for the job and every single one of the dogs is truly unbelievable and impressive. Not only do they train your dog, but they work with you as well and want you to be very proactive in the training. They encourage you to come visit with your dog and watch the training process, which I think is amazing. They know how to make the learning fun for your dog. Ella has so much fun and is sooooo happy out there while she is learning. I would recommend Cahokia Creek Kennels to anyone in a heartbeat! When we get a brother or sister for Ella, he or she will definitely be training here. We will also be attending play dates so Ella can see all her buddies she has made here!! THANK YOU so much, we truly appreciate everything you have done us and Miss Ella!!!!
Andy Hawkins and Kelly Masterson
Cahokia Creek Kennels can be best be described as a family like atmosphere, with dedicated trainers, state-of-the-art kennels, and an overall first class operation through and through. To me, the best part of CCK is their patience, both with Pearl and me. I have learned so much about how to properly train a hunting dog, none of which would have been possible if it weren’t for Chad and Jimmy encouraging me to stop by as often as possible and participating in the training sessions. After attending and HRC hunt test this past weekend, I am hoping to one day run Pearl myself with the help of CCK.
I brought my dog Pearl to Chad and Jimmy because I wanted a duck dog, which was well mannered and could be handled by anyone in the blind. Well guess what, I now have a great duck hunting partner in Pearl, but with an added bonus, she recently earned her seasoned HRC title, and we are all looking forward to her finished title.
From my family to the Cahokia Creek Kennels family, thank you for your patience with both Pearl and me. Because of your hard work, I look forward to watching Pearl retrieve ducks this season and can’t wait to bring her back in to your kennel, so she can earn her HRC finished title. Since purchasing Pearl, she has been in training at Cahokia Creek Kennels and I can assure you she will continue her training at your facility for several years to come. By the way, did I mention that Chad and Crystal are great cooks, just go to a HRC hunt test and find out for yourself.
Dave Hurley & Family
When I decided to send my 6 month old dog to training I looked all over to find a trainer I could trust and a facility she would be comfortable in. Cahokia Creek Kennels fit my needs. From the first day there I was impressed with the staff and the top notch program. I’m new to waterfowl dogs and just wanted a dog that would retrieve ducks and listen to commands. It was amazing to see her progress every week that I visited. She was a completely different dog, focused and committed to what she was there for. They treat your dog like their own and you can see the bond between dog and trainer. We love it so much we are going to continue her training and work on her titles.
This was definitely the best thing I ever could have done for my dog. Thank you Cahokia Creek Kennels for the work you have done. Thanks to you, Neka and I can enjoy ourselves on the water and in the field.
We choose Cahokia Creek Kennels to train our dogs because they treat the dogs like one of their own. They take the time to learn each dog’s personality and design training that will best work for that dog. They demonstrated they know how to get the most out of each dog’s potential by using a common sense approach and proven training techniques.
When the training is complete they take the time to personally instruct owners in the handling of their dogs. Because of this the people at CCK have become like family to us, we wouldn’t trust any others with our dogs.
Steve & Edy Bangert
Cahokia Creek Kennels is a first class operation. From the excellent level of care, to the amazing patience, to the “like family” treatment, you won’t find a more caring group of individuals to train your dogs.
The people at Cahokia Creek Kennels truly love animals, and will treat you and your dog as part of their family. Every dog has an individual personality and level of ability. These personalities and abilities are always taken into consideration when working with the dogs. They are gentle and patient while developing a high degree of trust and respect between them. Watching this in action is an amazing site.
The kennels, training ground, and technical pond are the best in the area. They are top notch facilities all around, and Cahokia Creek Kennels continues to improve upon the best.
We enjoy observing training sessions and the opportunities to interact socially with our dog while he is there. This interaction is important since, while at home, our dog is a member of our family. The people at Cahokia Creek Kennels have taken the extra time to ensure that all members of our family are educated with the knowledge of general commands. Even our daughter knows how to handle a dog that weighs more than she does.
Their attention to detail, impeccable facility, and amazing people set Cahokia Creek Kennels apart from the rest.
Pat & Charlotte Weber
Cahokia Creek Kennels can be described as nothing more than perfect for all your training needs. I came to CCK knowing nothing about training a lab to retrieve ducks in the field, nor even how or where to begin on selecting a perfect hunting companion. They advised me on my choice of lab by steering me in the right direction in choosing the proper bloodline and a reputable breeder. After purchasing my new dog, the only thing left was the training. After bringing my dog to them for training, the results were great. I watched my dog go through stages of training. Everything from basic obedience, force breaking, e-collar conditioning, to single marks on land and water at 75 yds and starting on double marks in less than 5 months. I was very pleased with the results. They treat you like more than a client, and more like family, encouraging you to be part of your dogs success, even after the training is over. They also encourage you to challenge your dogs skills via hunt tests and ALL hunting trips. I have to say, my new dog “Chief” has been a vital asset to every hunting trip I’ve been on and has proved his weight in gold more times over. We are also proud to see Chief earn his Started Title, and cannot wait to go for the Seasoned Title in HRC this fall. All of this would have never been possible without the professional skills of Chad Bartles and Crystal Isbell, along with the other staff at Cahokia Creek Kennels.