Tiegan and I are members of our local gun dog club, Dove Valley Working Gun dog Club, and train with them regularly during the summer months. They do have a retriever section but train spaniels separately as their work on a shoot is so different. Today we met up in some woodland on the edge of the Peak District and for once it didn’t rain!
Spaniels need to work closely with their handler, hunting a zig zag pattern in front of them, flushing any game which is hiding in the undergrowth then sit as soon as the birds fly (that’s the difficult bit!) They will often make retrieves as well (those labradors need all the help they can get 😉 ) and much of the training is a mixture of hunting closely, sitting as a shot is fired near them and hunting out hidden dummies. Today we were also doing retrieves over a low wall and I discovered that whatever part of the wall I focused on, you could guarantee that the spaniel would pop up a little further over!
It was a fun afternoon. Great dogs, great company, and my asbo spaniel did pretty well for herself today.
I didn’t realise until I started taking photos that we have a whole lot of liver and white springers!!