A New Addition

 Anyone that has been reading this blog for a while knows that loyalty and friendship are traits that I believe our bird dogs demonstrate as they share not just the woods and fields with us but also our homes. They are tough as nails as they lead us through the uplands but when we get home, they ensure they are there to spend time in the yard or on the couch with the family. These are traits that are demonstrated by some of the greatest leaders in history. 

 With that in mind and in keeping with naming our dogs after a great leader or warrior from history we chose to name our new addition after the legendary king of Sparta. We called him Leonidas; we use Leo as his call name.

Leo Showing Some Style

 The new pup is a step in a direction that I have not gone before. He is a breed that I wanted for a while but never found a breeding that was something that I liked and that was close enough for me to actually bring home. That said and with instructions from my wife that it needs to look a specific way the decision was made to get a Gordon Setter.

Nailed One

  He came to live with us at the end of September from a breeder in Florida. He hails from Shadowfax lines. In the Gordon world the Shadowfax kennel is known for producing successful field trial dogs. While we all know that the lines don’t guarantee anything it sure does give you a good place to start and it increases the odds of being successful.

  Since he has come to live with us, he has been introduced to birds. He started with some pigeon chases like every puppy. Then he quickly picked up that he is supposed to point them when they are planted or in the launcher. He is pretty staunch and has overcome the puppy flagging that sometimes comes with excitement.

Leo and I in the beginning.

  We have done our gun introduction and there are no signs of any gun issues. As we all know this is one of the most important hurdles, a gun dog that is gun shy is not really a gun dog.

 In addition, we are working on searching the field and learning to go with me. This little dog loves to go and has the race and range to be impressive. After we master his handling and cooperation, it will be exciting to watch him in the field this upcoming season.

  We have had him pick up freshly shot birds and he doesn’t have any issue with picking them up and carrying them. He doesn’t always make it to me, but he is definitely making the retrieving game pretty easy. I am looking forward to building on this natural trait.

 Another thing we have started working on is backing which he seems to be picking up pretty naturally.

Leo backing Ruger

  He will honor another dog, but he is a very competitive dog, and he really doesn’t like it so he makes a few passes before he finally stops. He will get it before the season begins in a few months.

  So as the summer goes on we will talk more about our progress and setbacks as Leo works towards his first season in the field.

 To say that I am excited about having him and my other setter in the field this season is an understatement.

Max backing Leo.

These two hopefully will complement each other and that is going to be fun.

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