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As some of you may know, hubby works on a farm, and farms have problems with rabbit numbers needing to be kept down, so last night we joined one of Tom’s colleagues with his air gun and off we trundled round the fields in the landrover, with 4 interested Labradors bouncing about in the back. One by one the rabbits met their fate, and one by one the dogs were allowed out of the Landrover for a retrieve. The results were a bit like this –

1st retrieve – bunny not quite dead – send experienced 10 year old dog Fife – Ahhh, oooh, yes please Mum! – Bouncy canter out, overshoot, bit of handling, yes Mum? This way? Ahhh, here you are Mum, straight to hand, super duper! Thanks Mum, I REALLY enjoyed that!

2nd retrieve – dead – on a slope surrounded by warrens – send Ash. Experienced picking up dog but we haven’t done bunnies much. ME? OH PLEASE ME? ME ME ME???? YES? May I? I’m sitting, honest, I’m sitting look!!!!! “Back” – I’m gone! I’m hunting!!! OOOOH all these bunny smells!!!! My tail is going as fast as my nose and my paws! What’s that you say? Out? OK, I’m going – oooooh it’s here somewhere, I know it is!!! AHHHH HERE it is!!! Let me just show Dad and Graham what I’ve got – pardon? You want it? Oh, OK then!!! Can I do another one? Yes? PLEASE? OK, I’m going! HERE it is! Pardon? I am coming straight to you, honest, just SOOO happy I had to have a skip and a jump on the way!!! GOD this is GREAT!!!!!! . . . . . . Some time later on . .. . . Me again? Yes PLEASE! Hunt hunt hunt YAH! Here you go Mum, and I’m even sitting in front of you with my delivery now! Look I’m soooooooo good now I have calmed down!!!!!!

1st retrieve on shot rabbit for Oak (has picked a myxi one before by accident!). ME? REALLY? Ooooohhhh great! I’m sitting beside you like an angel, look . . . .Back? I’m OFFFFFFF! Nose down, legs in excocet missile mode, Aha! HERE he is! He’s not quite dead but hey that’s no problem, scooping up as I turn around, try not to trip over my paws I’m going so fast, and WAYHAY here you are Mum! Ooops, I forgot to stop, quick circle round you and present to your knees! Gee that was GREAT!!! Can I go again? Can I? Can I? YES!!!! POW off I go, hunt hunt hunt POUNCE!!!! Shoot back to Mum, skid into her knees, sit and hold up proudly for all to see!!!!! Gosh I am SOOOO good, I am!!!!!

Tom’s Sam has done far less than my boys but hunted nicely and found well. Delivery left a bit to be desired but that is something which needs work and it wasn’t too bad!

It was interesting to see how the experienced dogs were really excited to start with, but calmed down after a few retrieves. Whilst the young dogs would have quickly gone over the top if they had more than just one or two retrieves each.

Tonight we will do a bit on cold bunnies, and then an Agility show tomorrow and 13 miles sponsored charity walk on Sunday – who says they don’t have a varied life living with me?!!

Katy
 

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Used the bunnies cold this evening. Unseen in cover they were a "hi losting" excercise.

Blimey, did they up the anti! I know, and have never pretended otherwise, that Ash is not a dummy dog, he is a game dog, but to see him as keen as Oak made me wish I had a video camera! Ash, my picking up dog, my use your own initative dog, handled like a dream this evening and held his area beautifully - I am made up with him!

Fife of course was the star I expect him to be. Oak was super keen, but did some nice obedience work before, during, and after retrieves. He held his area, and delivered nicely. Then at the end I threw bunnies all around all the boys, waved them under their noses, and they sat steady. On tip paw in Ash's case, but steady!

I'm so chuffed! I had forgotten just quite how good Ash is on game. Can't wait to find some more road kill pheasants or go out bunny bashing again soon!! Roll on the end of October when we start properly!!

Katy
 
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