Yesterday was a big day for Tex. Not quite 6 months old we put him on live birds for the first time. By nature Tex is a very sweet, mellow dog and we love him in the house but you wonder what will happen when he has feathers in his face. Will he have interest, not to mention intensity and an enthusiasm to hunt? Is he going to get it and fulfill his bird dog destiny, or is he going to lay in the shade under the truck and lick his balls?
Not to worry, Tex gets it. Within 45 minutes he went from mildly curious to a bird dog with fire in his eyes. With guidance from our trainer, John Augustine of Nickel Creek Gun Dogs, we had a tremendously successful day. Tex learned what a game bird is, what they smell like and how they taste. To see the light come on, to see the instinct kick in, to see your puppy perform is an incredible experience. I think I am tearing up.
Tex worked the field well, he picked up scent and worked it to the bird. He pointed and held point well and we were able to shoot over him with no ill effect. You always worry about gun shyness, but happily there was none of that. He did pretty good on the retrieve as well. Being his first time, none of this was flawless or executed consistently but the skills are certainly there. Most importantly he was into it and we have the opportunity to develop a terrific gun dog and also have a wonderful pal back at the ranch.
My friend Grant from Melville, LA has an awesome litter of GSPs on the ground.
Here is what he says:
Tomorrow Tex is 5 months old. He still is a puppy but at 48 pounds sometimes it doesn’t seem like it.
Here is more Tex! He is 81 days old and, in the 4 weeks since he arrived, he has more than doubled in size. These wonderful puppy days are moving by too fast!
Tex left his littermates at Valhalla and came home on Saturday morning. It was a perfect weekend of puppy fun that started with a quiet, reserved pooch trying to understand a new world and ended with a marauding alpha dog full of vinegar and armed with needles for teeth. Tex is confident, fearless and a very happy dog. We could not be more pleased with him.
These sweet pups are 24 days old. The litter has 4 females and 2 males and we will pick between these two males. One is about the largest dog in the litter and the other is the smallest. Other than the female in pink, which one would you choose?
Moose? This little fellow turns out to be our Tex!
Who doesn’t love a puppy! Here is a litter of irresistible black and white GSPs. Beautiful pups at 5 weeks.
Today is bird dog Rio’s birthday. It has been a wonderful 6 years. We miss her puppy days, as destructive as they were at times, but now she is at her bird hunting peak and sweet as pie.
Whoever said “Money can’t buy happiness” never bought a puppy!
We love West Texas quail hunting for a lot of reasons but mostly because we get to hunt behind these beautiful pointers. I can’t imagine hunting without them. Below are some of the superb animals at First Shot Outfitters. These are hardworking dogs, tools of the trade who spend their lives doing exactly what they were put on earth to do. I can’t think of a place I would rather be than walking up on one of these puppies pointing the way to old Bob.
Capturing the intensity of a covey nailed is a tough assignment. Most attempts fall short but not this piece that I read in Sporting Classics some years ago. It is by far the best I have found. It was written by Tom Davis, the Senior Editor and Gundogs columnist for Sporting Classics and author of “The Tattered Autumn Sky: Bird Hunting in the Heartland.”
“You turn the dogs loose and let them roll, and as they sift the wind – miners panning for gold – you feel yourself pulled along in the slipstream of their intense, unfettered joy.
And when they strike point, transformed in a blazing instant from pure kinetic energy to living statuary, it’s as if the earth stops spinning, There is no past or future; there is only this moment, and what hangs in the balance, awaiting resolution, is nothing less than everything.”
– Tom Davis