The search for my first bird dog has entered the final stretch. I’ve selected a breed, breeder and am now in the position of preparing to put my name down on one of two upcoming litters. For those coming off summer vacation or new to this series, here are the first half dozen “My First Bird Dog” posts to get you up to speed (and there have been so many great reader-submitted comments that those alone are worth a look):
Introducing “My First Bird Dog”
What I’m Looking For
Gun Dog Experts’ #1 Piece of Advice
Just Show Me the DOGFAX
Why Attend a Hunt Test or Field Trial?
What Was Your First Bird Dog?
Now that you’re caught up…I’m in the unenviable position of selecting from two litters – both are fall breedings and puppies are expected in about a month – deadlocking me between a bird dog and a hard place.
Both expected litters have very solid pedigrees, and at various moments the past few days, I’ve found myself madly in love with the parents of each – in that “I could see me with one of your puppies” sort of way. Both litters appear to hold all the characteristics – hunting drive, temperament, bidability – I’m looking for. And not that it would have been an issue, but the price is the same for each. The color scheme of the respective litters is about as major a difference as I can see, and I’ve tried to avoid using that as my deciding factor. The rest is splitting hairs.
I angled to get one puppy from each litter, but Kaily, my partner in bird dog purchasing crime as well as our home’s resident voice of reason, squashed that in a hurry.
Have you or anyone you know been “stuck between two litters”? What were the “make” or “breaks” that led to the final decision?
Anthony’s Antics Afield is written by Anthony Hauck, Pheasants Forever’s Online Editor. Email Anthony at AHauck@pheasantsforever.org and follow him on Twitter @AnthonyHauck.