As a primer to the upcoming bird season, I was flipping through Common Sense Grouse and Woodcock Training by Roy W. Strickland today.
Roy Strickland was a revered gun dog trainer. Is his 60+ year career, he trained lots of great grouse dogs and saw many more. The fifth chapter of his handy little book is called “What Makes a Grouse Dog Different?” The chapter is a few pages long, but it’s summed up in the third paragraph and I though it was sharing.
“In a long, long lifetime of training dogs, I have seen a number of big-running dogs who could handle grouse with incredible precision. I have witnessed some close-working dogs who were equally successful Wide of close, fast or slow, the good grouse dog is careful. He learn that he cannot get to close to the bird without flushing it, and therefore points his birds, generally speaking, from a greater distance than a pheasant, quail, or woodcock dog does.”
So “careful” – that’s the difference.