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  • Page 42 of 42 FirstFirst ... 32404142
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    1. #411
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      07-22-18
      Another successful training session with Steve. Started with hold, then retrieving. Stepped it up a bit with retrieving. She had to sit until released. She is a hard ass but Steve is harder. Finished with quartering drills.

      You know that feeling you get when you are working a young dog up to a planted bird and they catch scent on the wind and follow it to flush?

      I'll tell you I was 'flushed' to watch it.

      Gracie and Belle are getting along much better. She may be at the bottom of the totem pole but she has been accepted by the pack.

    2. #412
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      Circuitry

      07-29-18
      I like to think of a puppy the same way as a fuse box for a new home. First you have to run all the wires. To Gracie that is hold, fetch, sit, heel and find dead. This is the wiring we are working on. Soon all these lessons will be hardwired and we can turn the juice on (hunting season).

      How many of you remember the movie Marley? I bet if I go back a ways in her breeding I'll find him. LOL! Gracie is a strong willed lab. She can test our resolve at home.
      But having her in the field and watching what good breeding can produce, I am so looking forward to hunting behind this dog.

      Gracie turned seven months on the 28th. You can see her confirmation coming together. She is a very good looking field lab. It was a good Sunday morning training with Steve. I use bumpers at home. He uses birds and Gracie loves it.

      We started with hold training, then retrieving, later some quartering drills and lastly Steve planted two dead chukka's and a live one. We worked her first on the two dead ones which she found using the wind. When she put the live bird to flight Steve held off just a bit at the shot so she had a good look at and line the bird was flying. The bird dropped dead after the shot and Gracie retrieved. It was a morning running the wires which will soon be connected to the fuse box.

      On the way home I stopped at a friend's house that has a river in his backyard. Gracie has had swimming lessons in a neighbor's pool but each time we approached water in the wild she was hesitant. Well not any more. Now she knows what those webbed feet can do. I stayed over an hour. She was in the water constantly.

      Thankfully another wire that will soon be connected to the box.

      I read a thread on Upland Journal on Maine Flush Rates and I can tell you that each of my older labs had a chance as pups to hunt Maine. Belle was fresh from Irishwhistler's Summer Camp for Gun Dogs when she took her first trip to Maine in 2014. I told the landowner that trip made that dog a grouse hunter. We had a few days of over 25 flushes or what I call encounters. Bay was even luckier in 2011 and especially in 2012. We had one day of over 50 encounters in which I walked 8 miles that day.

      Gracie is up next!
      Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails -hold-training-1-07-29-18-web-jpg  

    3. #413
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      07-31-18
      My bad and I should have known better.

      Friggin' turkeys.

      We are pool sitting for our vacationing neighbors. Took Gracie over for a swim last evening. Came around the corner into their backyard and there stood five gobblers. Gracie being a budding bird hunter I didn't want to whoa her. If turkey were in season I'd shoot one over any of my dogs.

      She busted them up pretty good, four flew but one ran. When she came back she got on the foot scent and off she went.

      Calling her was to no avail. She was focused and I watched her go out of sight. I tried to follow but had slippers on and she went into a swamp ravine.

      So back to the house for a boots, a whistle and my oldest lab Bay as tracker. I sent my wife in her car around to the next road she was headed to.

      Back down in the ravine I called the local PD to report her missing. The dispatcher said 'is this David? Hold please and I will connect you to the person who has your dog'.

      Talk about a relief. A very nice lady said they had Gracie at their house in the neighborhood across the ravine. She was less than 200 yards from home. I'm sure they could hear me calling and whistling.

      Sadly and gladly the Garmin Alpha was charged back up last night. She will be wearing hardware now anytime off leash.

      I can't fault Gracie. Her hunting drive is intense. At training two weeks ago a clipped wing chukka turned into a runner. Gracie ran after it. About a minute went by and we all started to get concerned. Steve had to go into the choppings. He located her and the only savior was he threw down a dead bird for her to find.

      The moral of the story is to always have a collar on your dog with your name and telephone number. I've had a lot of hunting beagles and those collars have been the charm after any went missing.

      And Oh ya, 'Don't let Gracie flush turkeys'.

      Sometimes you don't know how much you love them until they are gone.

    4. #414
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      After Gracie's out and about last week she was micro chipped on Monday.

      Gracie and her brother Boone are scheduled for a chukka hunt on 09-23-18 at New England Uplands in Hillsborough, NH.

      Anybody ever hear of the 'Shotgun Training Method'? Steve Mulak mentions in his book A Brief Autumn's Passage? He mentions it in reference to his dog Hanna.
      From what I read it equates to a good spanking. Nothing on Google about it.

    5. #415
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      I learned on the book of face this morning that Gracie's dad Ruckus passed away on July 2nd. He was 11 years old.

      I am officially dedicating Gracie's first hunting season to her dad.

      Rest in peace Ruckus. Your legacy lives through your daughter.



      RUCKUS > FC-AFC Contempt of Court

      • FC at 4 years old (young 4)!
      • 2011, 2014, 2015 National Amateur Qualifier
      • 2011 National Open Qualifier!!
      • Amateur Win @ 3 y/o (took 4th in open same weekend); Open Win @ 4 y/o
      • Qual Win at 1st Q! National Derby List- 18 Points!!
      • Conformation Certificate June 13, 2015, Polson, MT



      Justice Retrievers - Boys

    6. #416
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      Double post

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