Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Best $100 Mutt

At fifteen one hundred dollars is a lot of cash. I never batted an eye though when I went to pick up my puppy Lady. My parents were very opposed to me getting a dog. But somehow I convinced them that a boy needs a dog. I think when I told my dad the pups were half Brittany Spaniel his heart melted. He had a Brittany when he was a boy and he always told us stories about the adventures he and his Brittany would go on.
I lied to my parents and told them that the pups were being sold for Fifty Dollars. In my fifteen-year-old head they would never allow me to spend my whole one hundred dollars on a dog.
The mother of the pups was my best friend Landon’s German Shorthair Pointer, Mattie. I had been hunting behind Mattie for two years and I knew she was a good dog. Story has it that down the street from Landon lived a proud Male Brittany Spaniel that often strutted around the neighborhood. One day they came out to feed Mattie and the Prideful Neighborhood Brittany had somehow snuck into Mattie’s Kennel. I guess that is where they get the term puppy love.
Landon gave me first pick and told me he was giving me a deal at one hundred dollars because well I was his best friend. I was ecstatic. Later I discovered, they couldn’t sell the pups very easily because they weren’t purebred they were mutts. They ended up giving most of them away. I guess I didn’t get the best friend deal I thought I was getting. But I’m positive seven years later when Landon hunts behind Lady he would gladly pay a hundred dollars to get her back.
I picked the bigger female of the bunch and gave Landon my one hundred dollars. I named her Lady and we walked home that afternoon. As far as I am concerned there has never been a happier fifteen-year-old. Lady and I were instantly best friends. We spent all our time together, accept for when I had to be in school. I was a little anxious to get her hunting and I might have jumped the gun by taking her hunting at three months. Bad idea, the gun-shots scared her to death and she ran all the way home, she was gun shy. “Shit” is all I could think. I invested in a cap gun, caught some pigeons, cut the feathers on their wings off, and let Lady chase pigeons all over the yard. Just when she would get one in her mouth I would start shooting that cap gun like a drunken Indian warrior. She was quickly over the whole gun-shy thing and had become a dog with a purpose, to hunt for birds.
We had a lot of trails in the early years. She often times would forget she was hunting for me and she would get on the scent of a running rooster pheasant and disappear. Or she would catch a whiff of a rabbit and forget we were hunting birds. The worst was when she found her first deer and chased the damn thing for what seemed hours, she eventually came home. Oh and don’t forget the time she ended up in the dog pound. Luckily I had the cash to bail her out.
Seven years later she is in her prime and everyone we hunt with wants to hunt behind her.

1 comment:

Andrew M. Wayment said...


There ain't nothing like your first bird dog! That $100 may just be the best $100 you ever spent. Thanks for the good story.