My trainer and I had another session Friday afternoon with some great and not-so-great performances from the guys. Our third partner in training was unable to make it, so it was just my Spins and Chris’ English Pointer, Max.
We were unable to make it up to our normal training area due to last weekend’s snow and were forced to turn around at the local shooting range. Several people were shooting high-powered rifles and semi-automatics at the time, which may have rattled Mia a little.
At our new training area, we began with Elettra who did a good job of pointing although needing a little bit of steadying. After working on pointing, we turned to retrieving which didn’t work out quite as well, although she’s getting there. She was a little too rough on the bird which didn’t survive the session.
Next out was Doc – talk about some beautiful and solid pointing! During the course of his session, we determined that he isn’t gunshy and while he is a little intimidated by live birds, he happily retrieves dead birds to hand.
Mia and Max were braced together for our last training session, and Mia went into one of those “not today” modes. She refused to spread out and hunt, but rather hovered around me. She did go on point a couple of times when we came across fresh Pheasant tracks. But she wasn’t quite herself, maybe rattled by the earlier gunfire or maybe a little intimidated by Max’s high energy, I’m not sure.
I decided to stay after our training session and let the guys just run free and stretch their legs; specifically, I wanted Mia to leave with the memory of running rather than hovering around me. And run they did! All three of them made a beeline down the ridge where we had been training, checking out each and every spot a pigeon had been planted. At about 250-300 yards I was just about to call them back when Mia stopped for a moment, then headed straight back to me. Elettra and Doc soon followed and at about 50 yards, I could see that Mia had found and was retrieving the dead pigeon from our training, making it about a 250 yard retrieve.