Sunday, November 1, 2009

The field trial life

Two short years ago if you had told me I would be sleeping in my own motor home in a field full of dogs and horses at the end of October 2009, I would not have believed it. But here we were Friday afternoon and Saturday morning at the Gordon Setter Field Trials in Santa Nella, California. Here are pictures of what a field of dreams looks like.

People I have met so far in this sport are very special people. This trial had dog owners and handlers who were as young as 20 to one of my Vizsla owner heroes, Gordon Strohmeier, who is just turning 80. Mr. Strohmeier still has that sparkle in his eyes when he talks of his dogs and the adventures they had doing field trials over the years.

Others, like the couple Jim and Pat Searles, are just entering their 70's. They still love to share their knowledge with us rookies as they train their dogs to the levels most people will never achieve.

My friends, Ken and Janet Kuivenhoven, were there, along with my neighbors, Catherine and Henry Pokorny. Catherine loves these Hungarian red bird dogs so much that she has given of herself to become the president of the Northern California Vizsla Club for the last couple years.

The passion these folks have for their dogs is contagious. I am enjoying this new adventure. How Bailey and I did is for another post.

For now, I would just recommend that if you are reading this and you never have been to a field trial, look under the AKC website:

Find the state you live in to find a trial coming near you (for field trials, 100 miles away is close). It doesn't have to be your breed's trial; if it says "open," then any pointing breed can compete.

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