yes, i did. didn't start out to make him a retriever especially when he was young he hating guns and shooting, but he always loved swimming and retrieving sticks, balls, etc. then i took him out one afternoon on a duck hunt and he grabbed the duck and then spit it out, didn't like the feathers. at that point i thought maybe he had a future and then we kept working. he is great in the water, not so good in the field. on land he will only retriever a bird if he can't see you, which is great for chasing down cripples, but as soon as he sees you he puts the bird down and runs back to the blind.
dogs are great, even if they don't become a great hunting dogs it's nice to have a dog.