Today was the day. JD and I headed out to the barn. Graduation day! I put her in the with the big dogs while I eased out to the bird pen with a couple of mesh bird cages in my hand. The big dogs knew exactly what was coming, and they started making a ruckus. The fur-missile just sat at the gate and watched me.
I grabbed two quail and headed out to the fresh cut pasture. I put the two birds down quite a ways apart, then returned for JD. I took her to the edge of the pasture, told her "bird in here!" and turned her loose. It's fun to watch a young dog just torn up with bird finding!
She hit the first one a lttle loose, then locked up. I waited a bit, then stepped on the edge of the cage. The bird flushed, but low. Too low to shoot, so I let her chase and then yelled "leave it" and watched her pull away and return. "Let's go. Bird in here, JD!" I said. Off she went. It didn't take long at all for her to wind the second bird and point. This time the bird got up high enough to shoot. It dropped and she was on it, and flipped over on her back, then came back to pick it up. It was right to hand.
That was the first killed bird over her for a retrieve. It's been about 2 months since I started her on the training table. At this point, she is showing a great deal of promise. September is coming.....