Wednesday, March 24, 2010

My Bird Dog Story- Installment One

                                                   Julia’s Bocephus- My Bird Dog Story

I didn't need another bird dog. I had two National Shoot to Retrieve Field Trial (NSTRA) Champion
 Setters, already, and an everyday workhorse of a Brittany, too. I was living in the city of Marietta, GA.
 and a fourth bird dog would only complicate things. looking back, I really don't know how I happened
 upon myself squinting through a blinding Tennessee rainstorm, driving to pick up a little fur-ball Setter.
 Wade is my dog man. A bird hunter will appreciate it when I say, "I would buy a dog sight unseen from
 him." Since bird dogs take years to train and live for years after that (hopefully). it makes a lot of sense
 to start with the best pup you can get. Knowing and trusting your source is really important. I went to
 Wade when  needed a pup. Three pups over the years, in fact. Two English Setters and one Brittany
 came off his farm in the hills outside Pulaski- all of them incredibly talented, Champion dogs.
 We pulled up to the farmhouse in a cold drizzle; Wade was there to lead us out to the kennels. "I only
 have two left, Randy, but I saved the two best. The one you don't take, I'll keep!" Puppies are always
 cute, always loveable and a lot like that special little present under the Christmas tree. You look at the
 wrapping and dreams of joy and pride and special times run through your head. You can't wait to get
 your hands on it and open it up and see what wonderful times are ahead! I scooped the little, white
 Setter up and smelled his puppy breath; tucked him under my chin and made sure he got a sniff of me,
 too. At forty-nine days old, his brain just switched on. I was his momma, daddy and universe all in one.
 This was going to be a special bird dog.

(to be continued)