Saturday, March 7, 2020

Pointing Chukar

Sammi pointing Chukar
Photo by Holly Higgins
Sammi had as a pup, out of the shoot, a ton of point; butterflies, grasshoppers, bumblebees, stalks of grass blowing in the wind; you name it, she'd point it, and with intensity! Initially her pointing, it seemed, was focused on moving objects that caught her eye; something would move, she'd point, and then pounce and chase.... When Sammi was about 6-months old I started running her in the bird field, into electronic launchers loaded with pigeons; she had a great nose and pointed with intensity. From the start, I could get in front of her and launch birds before she would chase. After letting her chase a few times, it didn't take much effort to keep her from chasing more than a few feet. Walking up to flush for her, I could see her drinking up the scent; high tail and head, mouth opening and closing, eyes staring into the distance, body motionless. I remember thinking to myself every time I ran her in a training situation, "this is a bird dog." Toward the end of this bird season I was fortunate to get her into Chukar country and get her into some birds. Unfortunately, on both occasions I had her down, her littermate Ella was down with her, and before I could get to Sammi to kill a bird for her, Ella came in and ripped them...