Family Hunting Traditions from Wisconsin to the East & West Coasts
Northland Dog Supply is about getting the most from your bird dog. Hunting in the Midwest is a popular tradition handed down from generation to generation. My grandfather owned a Wisconsin Dairy Farm where he had various breeds of gun dogs. My father began hunting with him at a young age, and then in turn my father had all of us out in the woods and fields hunting as youngsters. Even when my siblings and I were too young to carry a gun we’d go hunting with the whole group and share in the excitement.
My father has a unique perspective and a great deal of knowledge about our time-honored tradition of hunting. He has become an invaluable resource for us around the shop! His tall tales and memories are an important part of the hunting experience.
One of his memories is when his job as a kid was to run ringneck pheasants back to the farmhouse for my grandfather. My grandmother would make a great tasting meal out of them that evening. Too bad my grandpa didn’t have a pella bird vest with a built in game bag - then my Dad wouldn’t have had to do so much running!. If you asked my dad how it happened he would tell you "it was over a mile each way" and if you had the time to hear the WHOLE story he would tell you "it was uphill in a snowstorm carrying 7 pheasants per run". It would end with something like "the pheasants were a lot smarter in 1947 than any of the ones you guys hunt now".. Ok Dad!!!
Seriously- we most enjoy hearing him talk about the dogs they had on the farm as he grew up. It was not uncommon for unwanted dogs to be left for farmers to find and adopt. "Burp" was a gorgeous black Gordon Setter that Dad was very fond of. Burp had 3 functional legs from an unfortunate encounter with a car before someone left him near the farm. Burp looked a little silly when hunting because he had to swing his tail for balance- but he was the best bird dog my dad ever knew. "Pill" was a Brittany Spaniel who was exceptional at finding pheasants and came in as a close second to Burp!
These are memories that we shared or made together during our hunts, “up north” and everywhere we've hunted. They are invaluable for keeping our hunting tradition alive. In the Midwest we sometimes hunt in sub zero temperatures. Whenever we are scheduled to hunt in such conditions I realize how much we must love what we do!
Creating the Ideal Hunt - Successful Bird Dog Training
The ideal hunt doesn't rely on weather conditions. It is more about seeing all of your bird dog’s training paying off as well as having better aim than you did last time. The great memories will take care of themselves and (hopefully birds) can be brought home with you. Those moments are the ones that will keep your enthusiasm high year round. Even though your hunting seasons end in December or January- when you own a bird-dog you are committed 100% year round to being outside and refining your dog.
“It’s not the hunt- it’s the anticipation!” is an expression my Dad is known for prior to pheasant season. This expression means that sometimes the planning can be as much fun as the actual hunt!
So "in anticipation" every year we look forward to making the list for South Dakota, dragging out the Mud River Kennel Cover, trying on the old upland strap vest again, oiling up the guns, and even organizing our stuff so it all fits in the truck! It is this "anticipation" and enthusiasm for hunting that we hope to be able to share with you.
At Northland Dog Supply we are working to provide the best products that we think will make your time out hunting with your hunting dog the best it can be. We have a lot of exciting things planned – Please be sure to check back often!
As my Dad says:
"It's not the hunt - it's the anticipation!"
Luke M. Huberty
President - Northland Dog Supply