John Rehberger started working with hunting dogs, several breeds, at an early age. John’s father was a crazy, avid bird hunter, dog owner and trap shooter. "My father had a friend that kept and trained dogs for several affluent and avid bird hunters. We spent a lot of time at Ray Klein’s Kennel working his dogs and ours, and it was great. Ray would often tell me I was the best bird boy he’d ever had, and I was very proud to be told so."
John had the bird hunting fever at an early age and learned to really appreciate how valuable a good bird dog is. "It’s always been the ultimate rush to watch the dog you trained; work up, mark and retrieve to hand, the game you just harvested. Having a good dog led me to more trips afield, friends and friends of friends would invite me on trips if I would bring my dog. What did that lead me to, a better dog? The more experience a hunter/trainer and good dog gets, the better they get." Soon John was helping others train their dogs, buying puppies with good lines to train and sell and hunting the entire fall season. John was truly living his dream.
Finally, he decided to research and find an already established, good and proven line of Labrador Retrievers. He picked the Kellogg and Helm’s Point lines. It has turned out to be a very good choice; the pups are beautiful and they turn out to be dogs he can be proud of. Not only are they superior hunters, but the other nine to ten months of the year, they are great to be around, take fishing or whatever you do when not hunting. If you are looking for a puppy that will make you smile and a Labrador to be proud of, you’re at the spot. Take a good look. If it’s a versatile hunting partner you are looking for, one that is a retriever first and foremost and combine pointing instincts, and you will find the pleasurable experience of hunting with the pointing Labrador.
History Summary of Kellogg Kennels:
Note: Mayo Kellogg is known as the “Founding Father” of the pointing Labrador west of the Mississippi River. Jim Helm and Mayo Kellogg were friends, thus you will see Kellogg breeding lines in the start of Helm’s dogs.
The Kellogg/Helm’s dogs have been bred for years to: hunt, point and retrieve to hand and make very friendly, intelligent companions. Helm’s Point Doctor (The sire to our main stud dog) brought much attention to Jim Helm’s Kennel in Ord, Nebraska, and was featured in an Outdoor Life article by Larry Mueller. This article can be seen by CLICKING HERE.
Let’s talk some basics on breeding quality dogs in Minnesota. There are many dog breeders in Minnesota and surrounds some of which are what they claim to be and others not so much. First and foremost, there is only one true reason to breed two dogs, and it is to improve the breed and breed responsively only after a whole lot of research. Two neighbors getting together to breed their dogs for a little extra cash is just a bad idea. The fact is, it is a lot more complicated than that to get good dogs and there are just too many undesirable dogs out there already. But here, in a nutshell, are the basics.
At Rehberger’s we completely understand and base our breeding schedule on the physiology of the dogs A female dog comes into heat twice a year. The heat cycle is approximately 21 days long total. The old timers like to say: 7 days coming into heat, 7 days in standing heat and 7 days going out of heat. If you are going to breed two good dogs, you would want to start trying mating them at about day 7 of her heat cycle and seeing if she will stand for the male. Once she will stand, mate every other day and soon she will not participate any longer. Most Minnesota dog breeders should know that this sounds easy in a perfect world but in reality it can be much more challenging. The gestation period for puppies is sixty three days, typically. If birthing goes well, and it doesn’t always, believe me. The first two weeks is a breeze, all the puppies do is eat, sleep and potty. (Note: if dew claws are to be removed, it is typically done between days 3-5) At about two weeks of age the puppies will start opening their eyes and by three weeks of age they are getting active. Until now, most of the work has been taking care of your female dog. Starting now, the work begins, because at 3-4 weeks the puppies are very active and if you want good puppies that will be good dogs, you need to spend time with them. Socialization skills are very important to getting a good dog and that means you have to spend time every day with them to get them ready for the world and it’s challenges.
At about four weeks of age it’s time to start getting your puppies ready to eat other than just mother’s milk. I like Gerber’s fortified rice and warm water to start and then gradually add in some of the puppy food you will be feeding. (Pick your food wisely and do some research. It is important because a well fed dog is better at learning and many other things. It is a proven fact, just like the studies on our children). By about six weeks puppies should be weaned from their mothers and at 6-7 weeks they are ready for their first vaccinations and veterinary check-up and will be ready to go to new homes by 7-8 weeks of age. If you are looking for more information about the best Minnesota dog breeders, puppies, dogs, stud service or dog training. Contact John with any questions.