Grouse Camp Begins

Even though the new kennel is behind schedule, all the dogs for the summer program will be here by this afternoon.  They range in age from Zephyr who’s a 7 month old English setter puppy to Brandy and Sam who will be shooting dogs in the fall.  Once the new kennel is built we’ll be adding a couple of shooting dogs that will be coming in for a pre-season tune-up for both hunting and the fall cover dog trials.  I won’t be really back in the woods for a few weeks to give the young grouse a chance to get flying.  In the meantime, It’s yard work and relatively short runs to work on handling and conditioning.


Grouse nest from a couple years ago.

Hopefully the grouse will hold off hatching for a few more days as we have a three day stretch of relatively cool temperatures and rain.  Considering the lateness of the spring I would expect the hatch hasn’t really started yet and we should be all set as it will warm up and dry out by the middle of the week.


To avoid the rain today, we did a little table work in the garage.


Once you teach a dog something, it usually sticks. Dottie got good a heel and whoa this winter in Kentucky and obviously remembers her lessons well as she picked right up where we left off in March.


This was Zephyr’s first time up on the barrel with me. The first thing I want to do when a new dog comes in for training is establish a link with them. Up on the barrel removes other distractions and lets me get my hands on them while they are relatively quiet. Once the kennel boy finds his clippers Zephyr and Jess (the other setter at camp) will get a nice short haircut.

In the next few days all the new arrivals will get more yard work as well as time in the bird field with pigeons.  They are all here for the wild bird exposure I can give them but we need to be sure we’re all on the same page when we hit the woods.  Depending on how quickly each dog progresses on wild birds, there will be supplemental work on pigeons to staunch them up and start the steadying process.

Posted in Bird Dog Training, Current News, Elhew Pointers, English Pointers, Grouse Hunting, Wild Apple Kennel.

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