Unlike many general pointing-dog training books, this one concentrates on one species—the ruffed grouse. Grouse are notorious for their caginess, their wariness and their difficulty in being pinned down so a hunter can get close enough to flush and shoot. It takes a dog trained nearly from birth to handle that task, and no one knows how to do it better than Craig Doherty.
When not afield, the author is a New Hampshire school teacher. He was the driving focus behind Field Trial magazine and is a columnist for The Pointing Dog Journal. Doherty regularly competes in grouse trials throughout the Northeast and professionally trains grouse dogs for clients from all over the country. He also guides grouse hunters using his own dogs trained in his outstanding methods—important because paying clients expect results, and birds in hand can only come consistently only by guns following dogs that know the game.
A number of how-to training books tell you what to do from beginning to end, step by step. But if you have started your own trainingbefore becoming aware of this illuminating book, and run into problems, you may be frustrated by advice something along the lines of, “Well, you messed up because you didn’t do X, Y and Z. Remember that so you won’t ruin your next dog!” Not Craig. If you run into a snag in bringing along your current dog, Craig tells you what to do to get past it—on with the dog’s complete training.
If your aim is to own and hunt behind a finished grouse dog at home and effective in the coverts, Building a Grouse Dog is an extraordinarily useful instructional guide for you and your dog.