RetrieverTraining.Net - the RTF banner
1 - 5 of 5 Posts

3,234 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This was originally published in THE RETRIEVER (Vol. 1, no. 3) in 1969. It is a little long, but read the whole thing, you won't be sorry. --

Field Trialer's Prayer

Oh Lord, who in Your bountiful wisdom,
permitted the retrievers to develop
into our staunch and faithful servants,
and bestowed upon these several breeds,
the remarkable instinct to retrieve
fallen game, unharmed, to hand,
let us never abuse Your handsome gift.

Let neither the burden of heavy entry fees,
professional training, feeding, vet bills
nor long hours of our precious time,
spent cleaning kennels, training,
driving to and from distant field trials,
ever obscure what benefit we receive
from our association with Your retrievers.

Give us the grace to accept manfully
the inevitable disappointments we face
in playing this, the artificial game
we have imposed upon ourselves, and worse,
upon these patient dogs.

Help us to always remember that
these beautiful animals, unlike
their vain and superficial masters
have no comprehension of the value
of ribbons, cups, points, F.C.'s
nor even the initials "N.F.C."

Enlighten our weak mentalities
with charity and forgiveness
so that we may reflect that
the same desire to work,
without which useless parasites
they would be, will sometimes cause,
our eager friends to slip unsent
or run a tempting bank
in their great desire to please.
May such reflections sooth
our troubled minds and hearts
when dark and bitter thoughts
assail us as callbacks are announced.

Bestow upon us, the handlers,
in further gift of faith
in all our fellow field trialers,
who suffer each the same affliction,
an excessive desire to win,
at this, our foolish game.
And let no rancor mar
our feelings toward the winner
when a JAM was our reward.

Perhaps he's longer traveled
through this veil of tears
in search of that tough dog
which few of us will find.

Keep still our busy tongues
when we gather round to watch
the test dog fail the test
we know we'll have to run.
For crude and unkind comments
will wound the sensitive judge
who seeks only separation
not our poor excuse for wit.
Rather, help us to remember
some recent tests which we
have smilingly inflicted
when we last judged a trial.

But most of all dear Lord,
continue to look after
Your Labs, both black and yellow,
and all your elegant Golden dogs.
You might even cast your eye
upon those errant Chessies
who seem to swear allegiance
to only one man for life.

Protect them all from evil,
bad hips, heartworms, and hard mouth
and in that final series
when they dig out for good
to make their last long pick up
have Gabriel blow his Gonia
and whistle each one in
to Your heavenly Trial Grounds
where even the minor stakes
can run without delay.

When one by one they check back
to You, from whence they came,
please keep their kennels warm and dry
so with happy tails they'll
greet us when, hopefully, we enter.

And in Your infinite mercy
let none slip Gabriel's whistle
nor bolt to that Other Place.
For some of their old handlers
would surely have to follow.
Once there, a conflicting circuit
might reduce Your own entry
for some of us might enter Hell
in search of one more point
if we though the field was small.

9,442 Posts
Very nice...

2,059 Posts

Very Nice!!!!


3,234 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I like the sentiment toward the dogs, of course.

But I get a chuckle about "Gabriel blowing his Gonia." :D

2,074 Posts
Isn't that nice! :D
1 - 5 of 5 Posts