Join Our Team
Jim and Denise Keller operate Wildwind Kennels in rural Knox, Maine, with the help of their daughters, Deanna and Kalina.
In.the.past,.Jim worked for some of the finest sporting camps in the state of Maine as a professional guide specializing in grouse and woodcock hunting. With an abundance of dog training experience since the start of his career in 1987, he is now exclusively devoted to training and handling spaniels. His record is impressive as Jim has successfully trained spaniels which have achieved 131 field titles and national championships.
Recognition.for his expertise and success received a nod when Jim was twice honored with the prestigious Martin J. Hogan Memorial Award in 2014 and, again, in 2017 as the top professional handler in the United States. In 2015, he was named second.
Denise.is a very active participant in our program as she assists with kennel operations and chores while we are on the road or training late.
Kalina.is our greatest cheerleader. She has been involved in caring for the dogs and socializing several tremendous puppies. Kalina is a valuable help around the kennel when home from college where she is studying to become a music teacher.
Deanna.is.the Kennel Manager and Assistant Trainer. She joined the team full time in 2021 after she graduated from college with a dual major in Biology and Art History. She's grown up with Wildwind and offers years of experience in animal husbandry as well as training and running dogs in hunting and performance events. Deanna has been very important in our overall successes for many years.
Our.philosophy is simple: positive re-enforcement through birds, fun and repetition. Everything in our program is based on building confidence.
Contact.us. We look forward to helping you with your upland flushing dog.
Over.the span of a career which began in 1987, Jim Keller has trained and handled four springers to their National Open Championship title wins.
In.addition.to his professional dog training experience, he has field championed many spaniels with placements across the United States and Canada.
Jim Keller has professionally trained spaniels which achieved the following notable accomplishments:
- 131 All Age Field Champion Titles
- 9 National Championship Titles:
- 2022 US National Open Springer
- 2021 US National Amateur Springer
- 2015 US National Open Springer
- 2015 US National Amateur Springer
- 2014 US National Open Springer
- 2013 National Canadian Amateur Springer
- 2010 US National Amateur Springer
- 2009 US National Open Cocker
- 2006 US National Open Springer
- 4 National High Point Open Titles
- 53 US and Canadian National Placements - includes Certificates of Merit
- 1 Highest-Point Spaniel of All Time
- 4 Bird Dog Hall of Fame Inductees: Zip, Jake, Scratch and Annie
Jim's impressive experience with spaniels extends beyond his notable field trial successes. He has trained countless AKC Master Hunters, Senior Hunters, Junior Hunters and truly superb upland hunting companions. Additionally, Jim Keller has been personally recognized and honored to be named the recipient of the annual Hogan Award for outstanding Professional Handlers using a weighted points system:
- 2017 Hogan Award Winner
- 2015 Hogan Award Runner Up
- 2014 Hogan Award Winner
Let Wildwind Kennels assist you with achieving your goals!
Field Champions and National Placements
Wildwind trained dogs have earned the following:
2022.NFC.FC.AFC.CFC Mojo's Joey Two Dots 2020 US National Amateur High Point CM 2019 US National Amateur
FC.AFC.Pheasant Feathers Precious Pearl "June" 3rd place 2022 US National Open 2022 US National Amateur High Point
FC.Newstarts Northern Ninja "Ronin"
FC.Mojos Most Wanted "Whitey"
2021.NAFC.FC.AFC Sunrise Uncle Bailey CM 2019 Canadian National Open
CFC Pheasant Feathers Bourfield Addie
FC.AFC.Mojos.Wildwind Oligos "Ollie" CM 2020 US National Amateur 2019 Canadian National Open
FC.AFC.Hearthrock's.Polar Vortex "Ice" 2nd Place Canadian National Open
AFC.Crosswind's Proof is in the Pudding 2nd place 2016 US National Amateur national placement
FC.Hearthrock's Family Ties "Sis"
AFC.Carpe Avem "Rex"
FC.AFC.CFC.Juneau's Gypsy Girl "Juneau" CM 2021 US National Amateur 2019 US National Open
AFC.Pheasant Feathers Blossom of Marymount "Petals"
AFC.Hearthrock's Rio Lobo CM 2020 US National Amateur
FC.AFC.Pheasant Feathers Cutting Edge "Saber" 4th place 2019 US National Open, CM 2018 US National Open
FC.AFC.Trendsetters Mr. Biggs MH
FC.Trendsetters Super Sue
FC.AFC Pinecroft's Lord Calvin 4th place 2016 US National Amateur Championship
FC.AFC.Pheasant Feathers Marymount's Elizabeth Keene Lizzy 2020 CM US National Open, 2017 US Open CM
CFC.CAFC.Hearthrock's Mayhem 3rd place 2020 Canadian National, CM 2016 Canadian National Amateur Field Championship
FC.AFC.CFC.CAFC Pheasant Feathers Badger 2020 US National Open High Point 4th place 2019 Canadian National Open
FC.AFC.CFC.Pinecrofts Princess Peyton 4th place 2015 US National Amateur Championship, CM 2016 US National Amateur Championship, CM 2016 US National Open Championship
CFC.Sunrise Little Rascal "Spanky" 2007 CM US National Open
FC.Fallen.Wings Stonewalker Jazzman "Duke" 4th place US National Cocker Championship
FC.AFC.Z.&.Z's Sky Dancer of Fallen Wings
AFC.Harvest Moon's.Amazing Spider-Man of Marymount "Spidey"
2014.&.2015.2xNFC.FC Hearthrock's All In "Scratch" 2014 US National Open Champion, 2015 US National Open Champion, 2015 US National Open High Point Dog, CM 2016 and 2017 US National Open Championship
FC.AFC.CFC.Pheasant.Feathers Black Sapphire of Marymount 4th place 2020 US National Amateur Championship
NAFC.FC.CFC.Stonington's Expressways Marshall 2nd place 2015 US National Amateur Championship
FC.AFC.CFC.Windy.Plains High Voltage "Sparkey" 3rd place 2013 US National Amateur Championship
2015.NAFC.FC.AFC.CFC.Expressways Retrevin Fool "Treeva" CM 2013 US National Amateur Championship
FC.AFC.Sunups Dreamcatchers Tatonka "Tonka"
FC.AFC.CFC.Frostfields Tommy, 2 CMs US National Open Championships
FC.Sunrise.Montgomery Veevo Vivo Vum "Monty"
FC Buellers Day Off of Fallen Wings "Bueller" 2nd 2012 US National Cocker Championship, 3rd 2016 US National Cocker Championship
FC AFC Crosswinds Beauty of T5R9 "Bella"
AFC Crosswinds 4 Hire "Spencer"
FC CFC Crosswinds Itchin to Go "Itch"
AFC Tridon Orions Slick Willie "Willie"
2010.NAFC.2013.NCAFC.FC.AFC.CFC.CAFC Flushingwing Annie 2010 US National Amateur Champion, 2013 National Canadian Amateur Champion, 2011 CM US National Open, 2011 CM US National Amateur, 2014 National High Point Open, 2014 US National Open Championship 2nd Place, 2014 Canadian National Open Championship 2nd Place, Highest-Point Spaniel of All Time!
FC AFC Z&Z's Stitch "Stitch"
FC AFC Apple River's Too Many Freckles "Freckles"
FC.Crosswinds Warpaths Firewater "Fire"
FC AFC Fallen Wing's Lisa Marie "Lisa"
FC AFC Fallen Wings Kestrel "Suzy"
CFC CAFC Crosswinds Silver Rally Roo "Rally"
CFC CAFC Gaspereaumtn Dill Pickles "Pickles"
FC.AFC.Crosswind's Heir to Camelot "Pilot" 2nd Place 2010 US National Amateur
FC Windwhistles Woodward "Woody"
FC CFC AFC Fallen Wing's Z and Z's Ringer MH "Ring" CM 2008 US National Open
FC.Crosswind's Ameila "Millie"
CFC Deveraux's Lefty "Lefty"
NFC FC Trendsetters Black Beauty SH "Lucy"
FC.Fallen.Wing's Elvis SH "Elvis" 3rd Place 2009 US Cocker National
CFC.AFC.Crosswind's Ruffian "Ruffy"
NFC.FC.CFC.AFC.Crosswind's Warpath "Zip" 2nd Place 2008 Canadian Nationals, CM 2007 US National Amateur, 2nd Open High Point 2007
FC AFC CFC Crosswind's Jake Bentley 2nd Place 2008 US Open Nationals, 3rd Place 2006 US Open Nationals, US Open High Point 2005, US Amateur High Point 2004
FC AFC CFC Wildwind's John Henry
FC AFC CFC Macheewynn's Flying Solo
CFC Puckerbrush Full Choke Briley 3rd Place 2007 Canadian Nationals
FC Crosswind's Last Nantyr "Llael"
CFC.Rolling.Oaks Pride of Ripley "Rip"
CFC Longbriar Blade "Hank"
CFC Wildwind's Rebel
CFC Macheewynn's Miska CM 2001 Canadian Nationals
CFC Wildwind's Storm MH
NFC FC AFC CFC Crosswinds Warpath "Zip"
In Memory Always
June 14, 2002 - December 11, 2009
"Congratulations on Zippy's 2010 induction into the Bird Dog Hall of Fame. A well deserved honor for a dog who continues to make his mark on the spaniel world."
Zip's Owners Kevin and Betsey Battistoni
2006 US National Open Winner - Handler Jim Keller, Wildwind Kennels
Two articles written by Kevin Battistoni, published by Spaniel Journal:
Started and Finished
Throughout the year we offer several nice started and finished prospects.
A started dog is usually between the age of one or one-and-a-half years old and is ready to hunt. They have been well socialized and house trained. Our started dogs have a nice quartering pattern, have been well shot over and retrieve well to hand. A started dog is basically a very nice intermediate gun dog that has had about 2-3 months of professional training and probably 30-40 bird contacts.
A finished dog usually is two years of age and up. They have usually had a year or more of wild bird experience. Our finished dogs are steady to wing and shot. They demonstrate a very finished automatic quartering pattern and will handle very advanced and complex blind retrieves. All facets of obedience and field work are very advanced and polished.
For both a started or finished dog, the CERF exam has already been performed on the prospect's eyes and an OFA hip x-ray has been completed with a satisfactory grade.
All dogs are unconditionally and fully guaranteed. We want your hunting partner to become an integral part of your home and hunting life. Your satisfaction is important to us. Many people have bought two or more dogs from us over the years which, in and of itself, speaks of our reputation.
For details on our most current available dogs, please contact us.
At Wildwind, we work very closely with several clients who have outstanding spaniels from some of the finest breedings in North America. We have raised and/or trained dogs to various levels of competition and hunting then placed them back with their respective owners. We then work with the owners to produce quality breedings based upon the various traits of the dogs to best produce outstanding hunting and competition spaniels.
Planned breedings take time, so don't expect a puppy instantly. The process involves training a dog to a level of worthiness of breeding, checking hips/eyes and other genetic anomalies, and matching the right sire and dame. We encourage you to contact us regarding your interest in a pup so we can assist in directing you towards an upcoming breeding. Take the time to develop a relationship with the breeder so you both understand each others' expectations. This is what we call a quality breeding with a quality breeder.
After your quest for a quality breeding, consider utilizing our training services for your new prospect.
We began offering memberships to our clients in 2012 with outstanding feedback and results. We received a lot of great comments on the ease of billing, the flexibility of scheduling and overall effectiveness of the program.
The advantages of our Membership Program enables a further customization of training programs and all dogs will be able to run during optimal conditions. It also provides enhanced communications. By limiting the amount of dogs, we ensure you the highest level of quality for your dog.
Goals of our Membership Program: We will be able to further customize training programs and all dogs will be able to run during optimal conditions. It will also provide enhanced communications. By limiting the amount of dogs, we ensure you the highest level of quality for your dog.
We campaign spaniels throughout the US and Canada. We also prepare spaniels to run in the AKC Hunt Tests. We take pride that many of our spaniels compete with their owners handling them in field events. We specialize in developing young dogs starting with the puppy stakes then convert them to the more demanding Open All Age stakes. Campaigning opportunities are available on a limited basis.
We believe in Quality not Quantity.
Please contact Jim regarding current rates for field trial training.
At Wildwind Kennels, we offer clean, comfortable, first class, heated boarding facilities. We have indoor/outdoor runs, daily walks and a large exercise compound - providing ample opportunity for your dog to settle into a comfortable routine.
Peanut gallery fun from the Wildwind photo album.
Juneau, Lizzy & Saber
at US National Open
with June & Dots
at US National Open
with June, Ronin, Dots & Bailey
Mike Nolan & Skittles
Thanks for visiting!
Directions to the Farm
Built in the late 1700s, we are the seventh generation to live on the farm. Wildwind has hundreds of acres of field and woods consisting of typical New England style apple orchards and stone walls with spectacular views of the White Mountains.
Some.sheep.remain to assist in maintaining the fields and brush, but the main focus is on producing quality grounds for dog training and wildlife management. Deer, turkey, grouse, and geese frequent our walks with the odd pheasant from training.
The.name."Wildwind Kennels" originated from my late grandfather who appreciated a good view and a good stiff wind from the western exposure.
The.main.farmhouse remained from the original farm and we have added on in phases. The two story garage has full upstairs living accommodations and we can access the upper kennel from the lower story. The upper kennel goes into the kennel office, grooming and food prep area. From the office you can access the lower kennel. The kennels are indoor and outdoor runs with eight large pea-gravelled outside excercise areas. It is a modern and clean facility.
Wildwind Kennels is located about 1-1/2 hours from Portland.
If you are coming from Southern Maine:
- Take exit 113 off I95 in Augusta. Follow Route 3 through town. Be careful through the rotaries to watch your route numbers.
- Take route 3 out of Augusta towards Belfast.
- Approximately 15 minutes out of Augusta is Tobey's Store, take a left (Branch Mills Rd) following it through town.
- When you start up a hill beyond the mill, the North Palermo Rd takes a sharp left, continue on the N. Palermo Rd until it merges with route 137.
- Continue straight on 137 through Freedom Village and to the intersection of 137 and route 220 where they meet in Knox. Ingraham Equipment and Hilltop Store are off to your right.
- Go straight on 137 towards Belfast. You will drop down a hill. A sand shed is off to the left.
- Cross the bridge. Immediately after the bridge is a fork to your left with two branches. The lower road is the Bailey Rd, and the upper road is the Webb Rd.
- Go straight on the Webb Rd. We are the fifth house on the left. There is a very tall series of hills... red barn, cedar shingled house and garage with red trim and kennels.
The entire trip takes about 45 minutes... drive safely!
We have a number of options available to our clients, including a very nice private camp approximately 15 minutes away from the kennels and in the midst of prime central Maine upland bird covers.
- Rent a Cabin - rustic lodging, two miles to kennel at Montville Maine (207) 382-6591
- Haunted Mountain Cabin - very nice private lodging, five miles from kennel at Thorndike Maine (207) 631-1023
- Belfast Chamber of Commerce - several options in Belfast Maine and surrounding coastal region offering fine coastal dining and nice accommodations, fifteen miles from kennel (207) 338-5900
Jim & Denise Keller
1368 Webb Rd
Knox, Maine 04986