"TEAM PLAYER"Whilst hunting woodcock, I jumped this cottontail and decided in a snapshot of the moment that a nice rabbit dinner would be delicious. I took the bunny just as it was entering a swale and disappeared out of sight. Me gun dog TRAD was not in position to see the rabbit but quickly got on the track and followed into the understory, Wearing a bell, I could tell TRAD had tracked the rabbit another 30 feet into the heavy cover and I soon heard the scream of the distressed rabbit. Shortly thereafter TRAD emerged with the rabbit in his mouth and came o'er to make the classic presentation to hand he is conditioned to do. He had never before handled any mammal, strictly birds. T'was interesting that he approached the scenario with the same tenacity he has for birds. A "team player", if I shoot it, TRAD will retrieve it. I thought of his British bloodlines and the fact that Labrador Retrievers in the UK are often used to pick up hare. Perhaps he was hardwired by some code in his DNA to recover bunnies . I might likely never shoot another rabbit with TRAD present, but it was most interesting how aptly he made the retrieve.
This rendering is the reworking of a photograph I took whilst afield with TRAD moments after he presented the rabbit into my hand. I used digital post production editing to create this image, one that might likely have been rendered long, long, ago. It seems a styalistically very fitting treatment of the subject at hand.