Our NAVHDA NA test

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Our NAVHDA NA test

Post by wems2371 » Sun Oct 27, 2013 3:21 pm

I had posted in early Summer, asking what people's opinions were of testing young pups in NAVHDA's Natural Ability test. It was a question of testing 4-5 month old puppies, and would they be ready. So this is a follow up on the two pups we kept from our litter. I dropped the ball on getting a photo of the pups at their recent NAVHDA test, so these are from 10/26. Both pups tested at almost 5 months old on October 11th, with the Heartland NAVHDA Chapter, near Thurman, Iowa.

Clint handled Hawk Haven’s Happy Go Lucky. Lucky was our little ace in the hole, as most things have seemed to come so easily and solid for him. So it was disappointing to discover him lame the day we had to leave, but we decided to make the trip anyway, and he was fine on test day. Test day started with utility dogs running first and then our 2 NA pups. Clint was a little disappointed that Lucky wasn’t his normal snappy running self in the field, but Lucky had 5 judges trailing behind him, and seemed a little taken aback by that at first. From what I saw from over on the next hill, Lucky did great and Clint was just having those over critical jitters, that we all sometimes get. Clint says he was attentive, looking back occasionally to locate Clint, turned easily with Clint, and came for watering. Lucky left the field with one very nice point. His water work was stellar. His tracking was also excellent, although Clint was again overly critical. There are many ways a pup can do a track, from dead on, to downwind, to looping circles. Maybe it was the shorter alfalfa, or the way the wind was blowing, but Lucky did looping circles. I couldn’t tell you what he normally does, because he’d only ever done one other live bird track. He followed the track for 8’, then circled downwind, back into the track for 8’, and then circled downwind, and so on and so forth. He did it beautifully and reached the tall grass prairie strip in no time, to which the judges called him back, that they’d seen enough. I was very proud of these two and terribly happy to hear a Score 112 Prize 1 announced, for this true natural ability puppy.


I handled Hawk Haven’s Flash N Dash Franki next. Franki had had the same exposures as Lucky, which included being on birds approximately 5 times, bumpers on the water, and one pheasant track. She however, was much more a diamond in the rough, in regards to pointing. It occurred to me several times, to scratch her entry, including the morning of the test when we got lost and were running late. So I entered the NA bird field with zero expectations. For the first minute or two, she was rather close, and checked the judges out. Then she got into some scent off to my left flank and I saw her tracking. I attempted to call her off, knowing that she may very well track and bump her first bird, and that was not how we wanted to start. Franki’s ears are underdeveloped when she’s off leash, so that was fruitless. I figured I’d just keep walking, and maybe that would encourage her not to be left behind. I took 2 steps and a quail ran from the cover and across the mowed path, flushing in front of me. Fortunately she didn’t see it happen. But after getting into the scent she had, she turned up the heat on her search. Now my worries went the other way, as I often couldn’t see her with the gently rolling hills and the way the weeds lined up. I’d have no doubt that she was 70 yards out and maybe 100 at one point. When we got into the corner pocket of the field, the judges directed me to turn her. She was actually coming with, until she caught scent at the bottom of an embankment, that led to another property. Another intense track ensued, and was heading her up the embankment, towards a barbed wire fence. The judges wanted me to call her, so I tried, again fruitlessly. She crossed the fence and my apprentice judge and I followed and collared her on the other side. The judges had me reenter our field and turn her loose farther away from that site. Sure enough she rocketed back to it, tracked up the embankment and through the fence again. We raced over, just in time to see her standing point about 15 yards into the tall grass prairie. The top of her head and her staunch rear end and tail were about all that could be seen, along with the quail that flushed seconds later. Franki chased the bird into the tall grass, so it took a minute or two to catch her. As I was leading her out, and almost to the fence, my apprentice judge yelled “Point”. I looked down to my right, and there was Franki on point, on leash. I thought that she was truly on old scent from the previous bird, until a quail again flushed a couple seconds later in front of us. I could not have been prouder of my little wild child, and had to have been grinning from ear to ear. Back to the official field we went. We weren’t in it for more than 2 minutes when someone yelled “Point” again. She was about 20 yards off of my left flank, standing tall. I didn't get there in time to flush, as Franki made her move. The bird flushed, and of course headed straight for that tall grass prairie on the other side of the barbed wire fence, with Franki in hot pursuit. Our time was up then, and on the way back to the lodge, I reflected on how happy I was to not have scratched her entry. Her water work was stellar also. And as we left for the tracking field, I was informed that Franki didn’t have to do a separate track, as they’d seen what they needed to see with her fieldwork. Franki also was graced with a Score 112 Prize 1.


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Re: Our NAVHDA NA test

Post by ACooper » Sun Oct 27, 2013 3:37 pm

Fantastic! I am glad you decided to go ahead and test. Congratulations. Well on your way to NA Breeder's award.

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Re: Our NAVHDA NA test

Post by hustonmc » Sun Oct 27, 2013 9:21 pm

Great job, you did it right!! A true Natural Ability performance.

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Re: Our NAVHDA NA test

Post by Munster » Fri Nov 01, 2013 6:56 pm

Very very nice! Might make me think about getting a shorthair.......................................... :wink:

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Re: Our NAVHDA NA test

Post by Ms. Cage » Fri Nov 01, 2013 8:27 pm

Way to go, Congrats!!!

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Re: Our NAVHDA NA test

Post by bhulisa » Fri Nov 08, 2013 2:02 am

Beautiful and talented pups! Congrats :D

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Re: Our NAVHDA NA test

Post by sdoliver » Fri Nov 08, 2013 8:39 am

Great Job!!!! I always enjoy reading your stories and seeing your pics. You have a great way with words and your photography is topnotch.

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Re: Our NAVHDA NA test

Post by northern cajun » Fri Nov 08, 2013 12:50 pm

Great job!


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Re: Our NAVHDA NA test

Post by ezzy333 » Fri Nov 08, 2013 5:06 pm

Great job and as it should be for the pups that have that "natural" ability bred in rather than trained. Absolutely love it.


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Re: Our NAVHDA NA test

Post by Carolina Gundogs » Fri Nov 08, 2013 5:55 pm

Great job!

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Re: Our NAVHDA NA test

Post by snips » Fri Nov 15, 2013 12:24 pm

Big Congrats U guys!!! It is so special to see pups doing this test successfully!!!!

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Re: Our NAVHDA NA test

Post by High Voltage » Fri Nov 15, 2013 12:51 pm

Just saw this! It was awesome watching these two with their pups. Wish I could have got a pic of Clint's face when a 4 was call for the tracking score, as Denise said he didn't think the pup did good because of the looping track. Wasn't sure where Franki was headed when she went through the fence, boy did she give us a show! Great pups, hope you UT test with us :D

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Re: Our NAVHDA NA test

Post by rkappes » Fri Nov 15, 2013 1:56 pm

Congrats! That Franki sure is a looker!

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