PONDERING THE FUTURE OF SOME BRILLIANT PUPS
JUST as an impressionable wide-eyed youngster watches their father effortlessly stroke high geese from the sky — so it goes that the young Labrador pup follows its birthright. I sit with a smile on my face knowing what the future holds for one of my four-week-old Labs, with barely the needle-like milk teeth erupting, the pup picks up a wing gently mouthing it, naïve to the fact that in times to come this action will become such a joy for the pup and handler, yes the gundog retriever instinct is an ingrained trait to the Labrador that for hunters who wish to embark on a memorable journey of hunting trips, the Labrador is a hard one to pass up. The Labrador is probably one of the most popular gundogs in the world and for good reason — it’s a quick learner, cooperative, great with children as a household pet and still able to perform retrieving duties when called upon. It will work before the gun, flushing and retrieving on quail, pheasant, foxes and rabbits, it will work as a non-slip retriever on pheasant drives, and in goose decoy spreads.
The Labrador is a no frills dog, solid in chest with a moderate stop, able to sustain a high work rate due to a keen sense of smell and shows no preference whether retrieving over land or water, it sports the “otter tail” and watertight maintenance free coat.
There is much conjecture where the lab came from, however for myself that’s for the purists, the modern lab that we enjoy, came from England, as did others such as rabbits and foxes.
In summing up the Lab; it is a medium to large retriever at home on quail, geese, duck, rabbit, fox and pheasant, is able to flush, push and retrieve game, with a biddable personality striving to gain praise from its handler; the Labrador will do me.
As I sit and watch nine Lab pups compete for attention and dominance in the pack, I reflect on what the future may hold for them: I wonder which ones I will hunt with in the coming years?
The NT Field and Game range is open for practice from 9am till noon this morning, while weekly Friday night practice continues at Micket Creek Shooting Complex, Brandt Rd, Knuckey Lagoon. There are now two grounds with the token system in operation. The ranges will be open from 3pm on Fridays for those who plan ahead and pre purchase ammo and tokens. The sales desk normally opens at 5pm. The next competition is a 75 target Simulated Field event on Sunday, September 17.
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