Quite a few years ago, when I still had the best Beagle I ever owned, one incident of many still sticks in my mind. I've had a few good dogs in all those years, but none to compare with my Bess?. She was a sturdy-built 15 year old female, tri-color with a full black blanket. It seemed like she was just made to run all day. She always ran the last rabbit before quitting time just like the first one in the morning.
The one particular chase that always accompanies my beautiful memories of her happened during the fall season here in Central PA. My Dad, my brother "o?, my brother-in-law Tom and I had gotten together for a Saturday hunt. We were brushing through some overgrown fields on an abandon farm. The cover was mainly goldenrod, patches of green briar and a few scrub pines. We worked the fields as we always do, spread out maintaining a side-by-side line about 20 yards apart. It was mid-morning and we had already taken a few rabbits in front of Bess. Tom was at the far left in line when he jumped a rabbit down to his left. He shot at the bunny on the bounce. He said he rolled it but it kept ongoing. I told him to call Bess down there and put her on the track.
She picked up the trail, took it about 75 yards and suddenly stopped barking.
Everybody except me agreed that she had either lost the rabbit or it had found a hole. I told them, "just wait a while; stand where you are and give her a chance to work this out."
We waited a few minutes and then I saw Bess trotting back toward us with the rabbit in her mouth. She got to about 10 yards from us and stopped, seeming to decide what to do next. She looked first at me, then Dad, then Bo. Then, she trotted over to Tom and dropped the rabbit at his feet. It was as if she was saying, "here it is; you started this, now let's go bounce another one."
Others reading this mini hunting episode may find it hard to believe, but the four of us do. We were there and we saw it. Don't ever think that dogs are not smart and have their own form of reasoning. They do!
I lost Bess when she was 11 years old after 10 great years of rabbit hunting.
I sure miss that girl to this very day!
Jack Sankey, LCS Customer Service
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