Wednesday, December 3, 2008

New voice on the blog

I have invited John Yates of Oil City, PA to contribute to Living with Bird Dogs. His first post is just above this one.

John Yates has been involved with sporting dogs since childhood. He grew up in a hunting family that raised beagles and springer spaniels. He developed an interest in the pointing breeds, and worked as an assistant to a professional trainer to put himself through college; he graduated from Clarion University of Pennsylvania in 1971 with a degree in English and psychology. He also has done post-graduate work.

He has been a professional trainer of pointing dogs for the past 40 years, and also breeds English setters. During this period, he worked for 15 years as a newspaper reporter and editor, and was the managing editor of daily newspapers in Montana and Pennsylvania, before pursuing a kennel business full-time. He also has done significant lobbying work for firearms rights and dog owners' groups, was the co-founder of the Pennsylvania Gun Owners' Association, and has done public relations work for political figures and organizations.

A lifelong hunter, john has guided professionally in Montana, North Dakota, Alaska, Oklahoma, Texas and Canada. Over the years, he has trained every breed of pointing dog, handled dogs professionally in competition, developed several champions, and also has owned beagles, coonhounds, Chesapeake Bay retrievers, Labrador retrievers and springer spaniels.

In addition to his expertise on dog training, John is the founder of the American Sporting Dog Alliance, which is dedicated to fighting against poorly concieved and punitive restrictions on the owners of sporting dogs of all types.

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