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After 12 hunting seasons with my old buddy Colby in the blind, I had to make the hard choice to retire him. My wife decided to rehome a 2yo washout that could not handle being on a dog truck. She wasn't a great marker and could handle OK for her age, but just didn't have "it". Well, we made the trip to my lease in Arkansas to try it. I really wasn't sure she would be able to hunt (fear of being gun shy with shots over her head). Day one, was iced bad so I didn't hunt her. Day 2, she handled shots fine from my 28ga and retrieved 11 of the 12 birds we shot. She semi blinked every non-mallard we shot as if to say, this? Wasn't real sure headed out to the blind. Day 3, she picked up 13 of 14 (including two geese) and learned how to find cripples diving after handling back to a few. Still not real sure headed out to the blind. Day 4, hunted with 5 guns. She was like a different dog headed out to the blind. She picked up all 15 of the 30 birds with style and confidence and honored the other dog very well. Day 5, she had a few cripples and a couple of 200+ yard retrieves. Picked up 10 of the 20 we killed. She found her confidence and calling. It was really neat watching her development over the 4 days.
Water Sky Bird Cloud Vertebrate
 

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Heart warming!
 

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Heck, her getting to watch the sky, hear the wings, listen to the cackle of the calls, see the guns rise and hear the click as the safety goes off then see them fall. She's gonna get to play the really fun game that a lot of dogs never see. Her 'washing out' may just have been the start of the best thing to happen to both of you!
 

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Best money saving quotes ever...

"Ted doesn't want to be a Field Champion"

Since then, my beloved goofy Chesapeake has been hunting the Columbia River with my Brother in Law and napping on the couch with my sister. Wrapped up quite a few limits in his first few outings and gotten cold tail, slept in the boat and the blind in zero degree Temps doing what they're supposed to do without painfully exuberant Facebook posts. But, Ted IS the MAN! Haha
 

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Bubba, good on you. I have one that is talented enough but too many "ghosts" from the past (not me). She is an outstanding hunting dog and loves it. Still train some in the off season, just not AA. See you next month at Acadiana.

Jeff
 
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