I started out going for a Master Hunter title after our field trial adventures. Realized after seven attempts that maybe Senior Hunter was more like it. So over the last 18 months we have worked on achieving the Senior Hunter title. Just going out to Hastings Island when they held the trials.
Bailey needs five passes, and not the normal four, because he did not compete in Junior Hunt tests to get the title. We were busy working on field trials when he was younger and never thought Junior Hunter fitted the boy. He had proved he could hunt very early on.
As Bailey gets ready for the Vizsla National Gun Dog Championships in Colorado, April 5th through April 10th, Ken (our professional trainer and owner of Willowynd Kennels) took Bailey to Hastings Island to run in two braces in Senior Hunter today.
Bailey has three passes and if he would get through both, on this wonderful Sunday morning, he would get the title:
I went out to watch and was accompanied by Terry, who is looking at getting a Vizsla and wanted to see what a hunt test was about, to watch how Bailey would do.
Bailey did great! After his first run he had pointed and handled through three retrieves, a stolen point by his brace mate, and to finish it off the run, a steady to wing and gun of a cock pheasant that ended up on the course. I could tell by Ken's reaction that he was pleased and my guess was that the judges liked what they saw also.
Half an hour after the run, Terry and I went back to the clubhouse to see if he had passed and gotten the orange rosette of a hunt test leg complete. A Vizsla friend of mine, Walter, who was acting as hunt test secretary for the event, gave me the news Bailey had passed and then showed me the scores. A perfect 10! This was in six categories a 10 and by both judges. He said he has been doing this for years and not seen that in a Senior Hunt test before.
Ken and I agreed to end the day on a high note and not risk problems in the afternoon run and save the boy for Colorado. Everything had gone very well under tough conditions and we had a bigger goal of the National Gun Dog Championship trophy.
One more leg to go. We will get it this spring after they come back from Colorado. The boy is very good. He just needed the right handler.