If you ask a duck hunter why on earth they like to get up at 4 am and hunker down on the edge of a frozen marsh, they will likely say it is because of the dog. Ask any upland bird hunter what drives them to hike over hills and yonder through miles of muck and brush, and their answer will no doubt be the dog. Speak with the family members of these same folks, and ask what they miss the most when their loved ones are off hunting, and you can bet it is the dog.
The incredible bond between people and their dogs is well-chronicled and widespread. All dogs provide unconditional love and devotion to the members in their pack. However, within the vast community of canines, there is an extra special place reserved for bird dogs.
Bird dogs have garnered this distinction because of the added enjoyment they bring to the human experience. In the home, bird dogs are loyal and trusted members of the family. On a hunt, bird dogs understand they are your partner, bringing skill and an indefatigable determination to overcome challenge under any circumstance.
These are the qualities unique to a bird dog, and when they are stewarded by a responsible hunter and faithful friend, events that might otherwise seem impossible become a reality. Take the challenge of tracking down a lone pheasant hiding in a mass of thorny thickets like a needle in haystack. A bird dog will do it with ease, and they will patiently hold the bird in place until the hunter can move into range for a steady shot. Imagine trying to retrieve a downed drake from the swirling currents of an icy river channel. A bird dog will navigate the waters like it was born to do so and artfully bring your game back to your hand. Bird dogs turn these miraculous feats into the routine, and they do it with joy and zero expectation of a reward other than the chance to do it again.