Yesterday I went about an hour south of Berea to spend the morning with Harold Banks a 75 year old dog trainer. At his kennel Harold has about 15 to 20 acres of pasture with a wooded edge down two sides. After talking dogs in the kennel office for a while he was gracious enough to put out a few pigeons for Glo and Sammie. Glo wasn’t real sure about the pigeons in the traps until the third one and then styled up real nice. Sam hit the first one (see below), took a couple of steps and then locked up. She’s usually standing high on both ends on wild birds, but I think this first pigeon surprised her and she dropped down in front and then pulled her tail a little. It was interesting that Harold only saw Sam on three birds and agreed my unspoken assessment that she’s about ready to break. That will be the program for a lot of the young dogs at the kennel this summer. They’ll get work in both the bird field and on wild birds as they progress.
|Wild Apple Samantha got right on top of this pigeon in a trap.
After working my two pups Harold showed me some of his dogs. A setter and a pointer pup that are both coming along nicely and then he let out four of the older dogs together. They took turns pointing the planted pigeons with the other three backing. Next week I’m going down to work dogs with Harold again and he’s going to take me to a farm to see if the pups can’t find a couple coveys of quail that are reported to be hanging out there.
It was interesting watching Harold work with his launchers. Timing is everything and he knew exactly when to release the birds based on the actions of the dog. He was using Dogtra traps and I found it compelling that the traps have a locator beeper built in. He used this a couple times to help Glo and one of his young dogs zero in on the bird scent when they were having trouble sorting it out. It was something knew that may force me to go out and replace my old Innotek launchers as we often have trouble with dogs scenting pigeons in traps during the heat of the day. I may have sneak some of those in on the Evil Clowne’s bill. 😉
|The dog in the middle is pointing the other two plus one off camera is backing.
|Working dogs on foot day in and day out keeps Harold going.