Merimac’s Blu Monday: 2010 – 2016

Ben is primarily a grouse and woodcock hunter so he and Franny spent their memorable days in aspen cuts and alder thickets.

Ben is primarily a grouse and woodcock hunter so he and Franny spent their memorable days in aspen cuts and alder thickets.

Franny taught me more about dogs than I care to admit. She was a thinker. She was different. This is what made her special.
~ Ben McKean

It’s always heartbreaking when a treasured dog dies. But especially awful is when a bird dog dies terribly in the prime of her life.

On what started out as another beautiful Saturday morning in Georgia, I left the house early and headed to the kennel to do my morning chores. Immediately, I noticed Franny, a normally lively five-year-old setter female, in an odd hunched position in her run. Her body was bloated, too, and fearing a twisted stomach, Betsy and I rushed her to our vet. Despite an heroic, two-hour emergency surgery, Franny died.

Franny was owned by Ben and Maureen McKean, long-time clients and friends, of Minnesota. Franny was whelped in March 2010, the last litter from Paul Hauge’s multiple grouse champion Houston’s Belle by Northwoods Blue Ox. Franny was a big, powerful female like her blue-ribbon dam; she inherited the grit and endurance of Ox.

Sometimes it’s hard to remember when a robust bird dog was a cuddly puppy…but not Maureen.

Sometimes it’s hard to remember when a robust bird dog was a cuddly puppy…but not Maureen.

Ben and Maureen entrusted Franny to us for her training and Franny, in turn, excelled. She achieved the highest level of training for a pointing dog—steady to wing, shot and fall. Franny also spent every winter with us, gaining invaluable experience with hours on bobwhite quail. She became the star on our Georgia quail guiding string. The weather didn’t deter and it didn’t matter whether we hunted from foot, jeep or horseback or if we were out one or three hours, Franny loved to hunt and always found birds. And when she pointed, the birds were precisely where she indicated.

The shadows were long when I found Franny on point—strong, staunch and stylish on a large covey of quail—at the end of what was to be her last hunt.

The shadows were long when I found Franny on point—strong, staunch and stylish on a large covey of quail—at the end of what was to be her last hunt.

Ben hunted Franny extensively on grouse and woodcock and her last fall had been her best.

“Last year, Franny and I had better numbers together than any of my other dogs. She handled at a more manageable range in the thick cover and provided better opportunities than the others. I know she had her strongest talent in the south on quail. I am glad that she was able to put grins on the faces people that she was able to hunt with, including mine.  She was an entertainer, a true bird dog and a great friend.  She will be missed.”
~ Ben McKean

Betsy and I agree. Franny was a special dog and we were very proud of her. And yes, she put a smile on my face, too, every time I hunted her.

RIP, Franny.

Comments

    RIP Slate

    Northwoods Slate
    CH Shadow Oak Bo x Northwoods Carbon
    January 2016 - September 2017

    Good stuff about puppies

    blog sidebar carbon litter 250

    A pointing dog’s first hunting season
    Bird and gun introduction
    Early development of puppies
    How to correct a dog
    How to pet a dog
    How to pick a puppy
    Patience and puppies
    Picking puppies: the unimportance of picking order
    Puppies and fireworks
    Puppy buying mistakes
    Raising puppies at Northwoods Bird Dogs
    The pointing instinct
    Training puppies on a stakeout chain

    Good stuff from previous posts

    blog sidebar hunting steve oscar 250

    Finer points on...

    A brace of bird dogs
    Accuracy of location
    Bird finding
    How to flush grouse and woodcock
    Hunting pattern
    Range
    Running grouse
    Scenting ability
    Speed and scenting
    To point a bird, first a dog has to find it
    Using grouse dogs on pheasants

    Training

    A bump or a knock
    Backing point
    Bird dog basics:  hunt, handle, point birds
    Bumping grouse
    Electronic training collars...a little perspective
    How to correct a dog
    How to pet a dog
    Patience and puppies
    The pointing instinct
    Transition to wild birds
    Unproductive points
    WHOA and NO

    Breeding

    Dogs, not averages, matter in breeding
    Evaluating litters
    Pointers of Northwoods Bird Dogs
    Proper conformation
    The tail of a bird dog

    Health

    Bird dogs and hidden traps
    Feeding bird dogs
    Feeding for ideal body condition
    First aid kit for bird dogs
    Get your dog ready for the season
    Hazards in the grouse woods
    How to maintain a good weight for your dog
    Quick lesson on poisoning and how to induce vomiting
    Tick-borne diseases in dogs

     IN LOVING MEMORY

    northwoods dior 250

    NORTHWOODS DIOR

    Strideaway

    Sandy Oaks Art

    Dave Kolter Intarsia

     

     

     

    Northwoods Birds Dogs    53370 Duxbury Road, Sandstone, Minnesota 55072
    Jerry: 651-492-7312     |      Betsy: 651-769-3159     |           |      Directions
    Follow us:
    • Facebook
    • Twitter
    • RSS Feed
    ©2017 Northwoods Bird Dogs  |  Website: The Sportsman’s Cabinet