Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Orthopedic Foundation for Animals and Bailey

I took Bailey this morning into our local vet to get his hips and elbows x-rayed for certification with the OFA.

Along with this I had him micro chipped again because his original chip had moved way down onto his leg.

Next I will send off the DNA sample to AKC for registration.  This is needed if Bailey makes it to the Vizsla Nationals one day.  To register the DNA you need a micro chip or tattoo registration attached. 
Now that Bailey is over two, we need to make sure his joints are good and that there are no signs of hip dysplasia.

If there is hip dysplaia or other signs of weak joints, then breeding and field trialing are not options.  The goal of breeding is to breed solid healthy hunters.  We believe he will come through with flying colors. but won't know for about three weeks. 

Here is a section from the OFA website:

Over Forty Years of Dedication to the Advancement of Canine Health

Founded and originally incorporated as a private not for profit foundation in 1966, the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA) has passed its 40th birthday and is moving into the future.

Credit for the formation of the OFA is generally attributed to John M. Olin, well known inventor, industrialist, philanthropist, conservationist, and sportsman. John Olin was an avid sportsman, hunter, and field trial participant. When hip dysplasia began to impact the performance of Olin’s dogs, he organized an initial meeting with representatives of the veterinary community, the Golden Retriever Club of America, and the German Shepherd Dog Club of America to discuss means of limiting the disease. This ultimately led to the formation and incorporation of the OFA in 1966. Its initial mission: To provide radiographic evaluation, data management, and genetic counseling for canine hip dysplasia.

While the OFA continues to focus on hip dysplasia, today’s OFA Mission, “To improve the health and well being of companion animals through a reduction in the incidence of genetic disease,” reflects the organization’s expansion into other inherited diseases and other companion animals such as cats.

The OFA is guided by the following four specific objectives:

To collate and disseminate information concerning orthopedic and genetic diseases of animals.

To advise, encourage and establish control programs to lower the incidence of orthopedic and genetic diseases.

To encourage and finance research in orthopedic and genetic disease in animals.

To receive funds and make grants to carry out these objectives

Monday, September 27, 2010

Planned Pheasant Hunt with Bailey

Bailey and I head off with our friend, Ken Kuivenhoven for his farm house on the plains of South Dakota on October 15th.

Outside of Ken's front door is fifty square miles of public access hunting lands.

Two of the dogs going are Ken and Janet's great young Vizslas, Scarlet and Hank (Bailey's Vizsla field trial buddies.)

This video, I found on You Tube, shows pheasants EVERYWHERE. 
In South Dakota, hunting time does not start until 10:00 am, so you can walk the fields for a couple hours and look but not fire your gun. 

I don't think we will see this many, but maybe.

I am very excited to take my newly trained bird dog to this upland bird hunting paradise.   "A Dog's purpose" fulfilled.

Another redbirddog adventure is coming up.

The "Redbirddog" blog has just crossed the 10,000 internet visit plateau.   Thank you for visiting.  Come back soon.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Bailey is home!

After three months away at "boot camp" Bailey came home this morning.
  I am happy to have our boy home. 

We had one more training session out at Hasting Island with our professional trainer, Randy Barry. 

 Bailey handled perfectly on three planted birds and on the retrieve, he brought the downed bird right to my outstretched hand. 

Bailey had left our house in mid-June an accomplished "derby dog." 

 Now in late-September, I brought him home a "green broke" hunting / field trial dog.  We can give the German Shorthairs and other great pointers good competition as we get better and better.

November 22, 2009 I wrote to this blog:

Well, Bailey and I spent the weekend at the German Wirehair Pointer Club field trial in the wonderful foothills of the Sierras around Sonora.

There were 9 dogs in Open Derby (Under 2-year-olds). Five German shorthairs and four Vizslas. "Open" allows for professional handlers. This was a horseback handled field trial so all contestant's were upon their mounts. I borrowed a friend's horse for the event.

All the other eight dogs were handled by professionals or long-time field trial folk riding their own steeds.

We came home from the weekend and I felt every bit the amateur I am.

Can I compete against much more knowledgable handlers? Can Bailey compete against stronger and tougher dogs?

I guess I have to believe in the Hollywood heroine pictured below to carry on.


As of September 25. 2010
Little Mr. Sunshine has arrived and I am slowly getting better at handling him.

We are looking to many great adventures in the wide open fields this fall and winter. 
Hope to see some of you as we continue our escapades in search of birds, ribbons, and some very cool places.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Videos from Madras field trail

Enjoyed my first field trial with a green broke dog. 

Except for the periods of heavy rain, the weekend was full of great dogs, good people and wonderful country.

I wouldn't have changed a thing (well except the downpours.)

Monday, September 20, 2010

Madras - My first Gun dog braces with Bailey

Madras Oregon September 19th.  Ran Bailey in both Amateur Gun Dog and Limited Amateur Gun Dog.

Bailey went "bird less" in Amateur Limited Gun Dog.

Earlier in the day I handled him in the Amateur Gun Dog stake.  This was my first and second time EVER handling a dog in a Gun Dog trail.  He was a "derby dog" before.  Derby was much easier.

Of the four dogs in the stake, Bailey and one other Vizsla qualified for the "call back."

Bailey had run the brace well, but I made some very rookie mistakes, that after Bailey retrieved the bird to hand in the call back he was the only dog to receive a placement.  SECOND with first place withheld.

There is so much more to learn now and I really enjoy the sport.
It rained extremely hard Friday night and Sunday morning with scattered showers the rest of the weekend.
Randy Berry and Kathi Boyd at the "line" ready for a brace.

Videos and more pictures added later.  Had to get home to meet my new human granddaughter "Lily"  who was born this morning.

Stay tuned.  Bailey and I have taken the next step. 

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Hidden Treasure - Coloma Resort

110 miles east of Walnut Creek along the banks of the American River lies the town of Coloma.  Across the historic Coloma bridge (built in 1913) to the great little camping and RV park called "The Coloma Resort."

This is the third year we have gone to this resort in the fall after Labor Day.  It is a family-friendly resort whose owners and managers love our well-behaved dogs.
While Bailey was running his red fur off up at the Pacific Northwest Pointing Breed field trial, Chloe, Joanie and I enjoyed the refreshing waters of the American River.

Our little 1989 Aero Cruiser makes camping enjoyable.  Small enough to get into all spots and large enough to make a weekend away a comfortable vacation.  The raft made floating down the river enjoyable.
And give Chloe the chance to swim after a thrown ball -
 she is in nirvana.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

A Placement for Bailey in Open Gun Dog

This evening, we got the call that Bailey took fourth place at the German Shorthair Pointer Club of Oregon  Field Trial held in Tgyh Valley, Oregon today.

  This was a horseback trial against the strong and tough "Deutschland Uberhunds."
The first three places went to the German dogs.

This was his first run against "the big boys."

  Bailey was handled by Randy Berry, our trainer and mentor.  Bailey has been in training full-time with Randy for three months. 

Placements are given to the top four dogs.  All four winning "Open Gun" dogs were trained and handled by Randy.

There were eighteen dogs in the Open Gun Dog group.

Good boy Bailey.  We are all very proud of you.
I will see Bailey in Madras, Oregon in a couple weeks.  I'll run him in Amateur Gun Dog off horseback. 

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Learning to ride a horse correctly

Three two-hour sessions by a professional horse trainer has been worth the effort and money. 

How to communicate with a horse, saddle one correctly, and how to ride the way a horse wants to be ridden was some of the things learned over the six hours taught by D.J.

Gordon and Linda were very supportive by allowing the training to be done on their great property with Patch, their five-year old Tennessee Walker. 

I am now a rookie horseman to go along with my being a rookie field trial "gun dog" handler.

These lessons are an important part of the our "team" (Bailey and I) training.  Bailey learns to find birds and I learn to ride the horse to get to Bailey "on point" when it is time to work the bird.

Today, Bailey ran his first Open Gun Dog stake of his career.  This took place at the German Shorthair Club of Oregon horseback field trial up in Tygh Valley, Oregon.  He is being handled by Randy Berry.

   Don't know how he did yet.  I'll post when I find out.