by Tom Quinn
The classic book for the training, care, and handing of retrievers for hunting and field trials (excerpt from page 234 Published by The Lyons Press)
Today, Hunting well over my dogs means a great deal to me. Even when we get skunked, I feel good after a hunt. Sometimes better than good: improved, replenished, restored. When the bird season ends, I try to spread the ceremony of it over the rest of the year by training and trialing. This keeps us in the laps of swamps and the beauty of birds, and offers enough morning exercise to get our hearts started.
I'll probably always hunt. Who but a hunter or an ornithologist can tell you where to look for a snipe's eats how his bill hinges and why there are spots on it, or how he sends his eerie spring music through the thick evening air? Who but a savvy retriever can find him when he is down? And if this exquisite creature should fall before the diminutive barrels of a .410, how much more appropriare! Often only my dogs and I are there to appreciate it if the shot does connect. As with much of my retriever training, I usually hunt without the company of other people. I like the solitude and freedom to change my dog much of the richness of the hunt would be gone.
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