Tuesday, April 26, 2011

On the Training Table

I reached an "impasse" during my fetch training with my two pups (11-13 mos. old). I am a big fan of Jim and Phyllis Dobbs' technique and have used it many times.  I had the dogs holding anything I put in their mouths and walking around with it and surrendering it on command. But, now was the time to head them to moving the mouth out and taking what I was putting out there for them.  I'm not a fan of a lot of yelling and unnecessary pain on a dog (re-read "unnecessary"), and these are my future dogs, so I was a little apprehensive about where to go next.  The would just clam up when I put the buck on their lips.

I went to the TriTronics website and found their Forum.  I ended up getting some very good advice off the forum and I encourage anyone with training issues to give it a shot. I also read through several posts about upland hunting around the country and was especially intrigued about bird hunting in Alaska, of all places!  Did you know their season is 9 months long?  Give it a look! http://forums.tritronics.com/

Look out pups, here we go again!  They will be ready for next year with some fine retrieves, I'm sure!

Cap at 8 months in NM

Friday, April 22, 2011

It's force-fetch time!

Cap on Table with Bird
It's a long summer and I have plenty of time to do this, so, here we go! Here's my pup, Cap, about 11 mos. old, on the training table.  He is really taking right to the training, which surprises me.  My other pup, Ruby, is much more tentative. Of course, that is the personality difference between them, too.  I'm pretty sure she won't be quilled or skunked next year, either.  Cap, on the other hand,.......well, he's got a little of that "ready, shoot, aim" mentality.  I'd lay odds, he'll jump in on a skunk in a heartbeat. It's a good thing I keep pliers and antibiotics on hand for the porcupines and the skunk elixir ready to go (hydrogen Peroxide, baking soda and dish soap).  

Well, back to the table.....

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Pet Cemetery

Well, we lost another family pet.  This time, it was our little West Highland White Terrier, daughter of Angus of West Georgia fame.  Shuga (southern for "sugar") was an anti-social, territorial, opinionated, little terrier (or "terror" to many a kid that made the mistake of pulling her tail).  Most of all, she was really loved by the family.  Yeah, we had to bury her today after a bout of cancer.  That's three holes in the pet cemetery in six months!  Do you have a pet/dog cemetery?  Ours is in a stand of old pines in one of the pastures.  Lots of memories out there.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011


The one major game bird in this country I have not had occasion to meet- Mr. Chukar.  Last year, I hunted Idaho for a few days and did not do the proper pre-mission intel search.  I ended up leaving early and putting the dogs back on Huns and Sharps in  Montana for a few days before heading back to Georgia.  This year, I'd like to take another stab at them.  Snake River valley, is what they say. Vertical, rough, dry, and cold- perfect! I'm ready and so are my dogs, but I'm not getting any younger (or thinner), and the time to strike is this season- late September! Anyone have any suggestions as to where to drop the tailgate?  I don't need the street and mailbox address- just a place to start looking.  Heck, half the fun is the search, isn't it?

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Thinking about a "Paws on the Ground, Birds in the Bag" Seminar...

I've had some interest in a seminar for the non-hunter who'd like to learn a little about how to go about planning and executing a bird hunting trip.  The perfect attendee would be a pointing dog person (man or woman) with the time, inclination and where-with-all to take a week or so and go on a bird hunt; but they've never done it.  We would cover planning tips, equipment, dog care, species specific hunting techniques, navigation, etc. We'd spend a lot of time in questions and answers, how-to's, and some what-not-to-do's.   
My intention is to spread the word about bird hunting and the value of an outdoor sport in our society.  Is there a place for  a seminar like this?