We whelped Deacon's litter in March of 2015. Later that summer, he traveled to his new home in Beaufort, South Carolina. His owner ran him through a VJP in the spring of 2016, but as a veterinary student, he did not have the time to complete Deac's training for the HZP or VGP. He shipped Deac to us in mid-June and spent the summer preparing Deac for his HZP and VGP.
During his time with us, Deac has really been impressive. He is a very loyal dog so he was a little sulky when he first arrived. But after a few weeks, we finally got to meet the real Deac as he bonded to Cortney and returned to his normal self. He's a happy boy who LOVES to work. He is a very intelligent dog and Cortney was able to complete an entire force-fetch program with him in just over 2 weeks! Deac is a very high-drive dog with an intense love for water...and really any other job. The more confidence he gains, the more he wants to work. He has an excellent nose has been just smoking blood tracks. He completed his first VGP bloodtrack in less than 10 minutes as he cruised through the woods (sounding off most of the track as well). He's an intense pointer and has remained rock solid on all of his retrieves of every type of game.
Deac is a very high-drive dog who performed very well in his tests except for small hiccups that cost him big. In his HZP, he had 10s in every subject up until the last subject of the day, the search behind the live duck. Deac LOVES the water and usually does great, but he got really hung up in one area where he was convinced there was a duck, but unfortunately couldn't produce a duck. Since he did not expand his search, he was marked down to a 6 in that subject (and his desire score was lowered to a 9) while maintaining 10s in everything else.
In his VGP, Deac was acing the test but 3 days in a row of testing (he ran his HZP on a Friday and then immediately continued onto his VGP on that same weekend) was pushing his young nerves a little too much. He barked during the Driven Hunt and failed the test. In the process, I think he became the highest scoring dog (297 points, No Prize) to fail the VGP in North American history. We had to return Deac to his owner immediately following the test so we did not have an opportunity to re-run Deac in the VGP until over a year later. We were dog-sitting for Deac for 10 days and wondered if it might even be possible to run him with so little time to review. Luckily, Deac quickly proved to us that he had retained much of his training from the previous summer. After just 10 days at our house (with 6 days where we could actually train with him) we drove down to Kansas to give Deac a second chance at the VGP. He showed his love of water and his excellent nose earning 4Hs in both of those subjects. He had a few little hiccups. And ultimately his score was lowered to a Prize II because he felt like we should be able to sprint along the blood track instead of walking calmly and methodically tracking. But we definitely cannot complain about a final score of 300 points and a Prize II with two 4Hs!
Deac is one of the most talented dogs that we have trained. He has an outstanding nose and his desire to work is off the charts. He will be an excellent dog for Deutsch Langhaar bitch owners to consider if they are looking to punch up the drive and water love in their lines. He is now back with his owner where he will get to spend his falls hunting waterfowl, grouse, and other upland game. Deac is also lucky enough to be owned by a falconer so many of his hunting adventures this fall with be a Peregine Falcon and a Red-Tailed Hawk in addition to a shotgun.
Deac's incredibly fast progression through force fetch and all of his HZP/VGP training has been phenomenal. He is a "brag-dog" that should impress lots of hunters throughout his career. He certainly has a lot of excellent qualities to pass on to the next generation and we look forward to seeing puppies out of him in the future.