GL American Water Spaniel Club logoLast updated on:  November 6, 2017

Training hunting spaniels since 1993

an AKC licensed club     




GLAWSC – 2013 Inaugral AKC Spaniel Hunt Test

The weekend of April 28 and 29 marked the running of our first licensed hunt test run under the rules of the American Kennel Club. As you will read below, the weekend was a big success with a nice turnout of dogs and an above average number of members and friends showing up to help us put on the show.

The two days of tests were held at Colonial Farms, a game preserve and training facility located in Chelsea, MI. There were two sets of judges each day with each set comprised of one judge from Michigan and another from out-of-state. The first pair of judges was Andrea Hasse of Durand, MI teamed up with Susan Willingham of Atlanta, GA. Their colleagues were Brandon Short of Bay City, MI judging alongside of Mark Wheeler from Kansas City, KS. Judging commenced soon after 8:00 AM and was completed by around 3:00 PM each day. A number of breeds showed up for the test including American Water Spaniels, Airedales, English Cocker Spaniels, English Springer Spaniels, Cocker Spaniels, Field Spaniels and Curly-Coated Retrievers. Also in attendance was Tom Meyer, an American Kennel Club field representative, and I am happy to report that his feedback to us was very positive.

Hunt test meeting

Participants and spectators gather for instructions regarding the hunt test.

Each day started off with coffee and snacks available, a brief check-in with the hunt test secretary, Tonja McCullough, and then a meeting of all participants and judges prior to heading out to the field. The club held a brown-bag raffle on Saturday as a way to help offset some of the costs incurred by holding our first test. Raffle tickets were sold that morning and the winning tickets drawn following lunch. Because of the generosity of many of our members and supporting companies we ended up with 22 bags of goodies for the raffle. Raffle ticket holders had a chance to win everything from gift certificates, to dog treats, to training and hunting gear. If the number of tickets sold and the participation of those attending are any indication, the raffle was a huge success as it brought in over $700. We want to thank all of those who donated to the event but especially Gerda Smith from Penn Yan, NY who organized so much of the raffle and was responsible for sending out those thank you cards!

Master hunt dead

Handlers gather to watch the Master hunt dead.

Saturday’s events were run under a blue sky with plenty of sunshine and a gentle breeze. Due to the late season snow fall and flooding conditions the fields were not quite as exemplary as they typically are but we got by and the dogs put on a good show. We used chukar each day and Saturday’s birds flew quite well. Our gunners were very experienced spaniel hunt test and field trial gunners working under the direction of Ernie Hasse, one of the key people who helped to establish the spaniel field trial gunning program. In the morning the dogs ran the field portions of the test format, and then there was a lunch break before heading to the pond for the water tests. Following the water tests the judges tallied their scores and those dogs that passed the tests were announced. Our event marked the first time a Curly-Coated Retriever passed the AKC Spaniel Hunt Test Master Hunter level. It was a real joy to watch Rhino work the field.

On Saturday evening a number of us met for dinner along with the judges and the AKC rep at an award winning restaurant in Chelsea. The judges that attended were treated to a night out on the club.

If Saturday’s weather gave us a near perfect day then Sunday was, well, let’s just say less than perfect. It started out with a light mist that turned into the occasional drizzle and a cold breeze. We were spared down pours and high winds but by no means was it as pleasant as Saturday’s weather. In fact, many people took advantage of the canopies we had setup at each field and sheltered themselves from some of the rain and cold. As one would expect, the conditions affected the birds, dogs, gunners and most of the others that attended. Still, the dogs did what they had to do and there were almost as many qualifiers on Sunday as there had been on Saturday. Instead of handing out ribbons and making announcements outside under a beautiful sky we all huddled up in the club house at Colonial Farms and took advantage of being out of the elements.

As was mentioned earlier, this event would not have been as successful as it was without the support and participation of a lot of our members. We are all be proud of the work, effort, and dedication displayed that weekend. It really says a lot about our members, supporters and friends. Thanks everyone!!

CCR at water test

A Curly Coated Retriever set to run in the Master water test

We want to thank all our judges for providing us with a quality judging experience.
Pictured from left to right are Andrea Hasse (Durand, MI), Brandon Short (Bay City, MI),
Mark Wheeler (Kansas City, KS) and Susan Willingham (Atlanta, GA)

Judge Andrea Hasse   Judge Brandon Short Judge Mark Wheeler   Judge Susan Willingham

Below is a list of the dogs that qualified each day:

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Master

1 - Rhino - CCR
GCh Podunk's Better Days Ahead MH WCQ UWC, SR 41584104
Owner: Alex Shull, Greenville, MI    Handler: Sarah Shull

3 - Mai Tye - FS
GCH CH Killara's Here Comes The Sun VCD1 GN RE SH MX MXJ XF, SR 39732108
Owner: Karen Balinski, Rockford, MI    Handler: Karen Balinski

Senior

SA 1 - Sparkle - AWS
Little Brownies Sparkling Star JH, SR 61721008<
Owner: Paul & Lynn Morrison, Howell, MI    Handler: Paul Morrison

SA 2 - Finn - ESS
Zehs Finely of Northhampton, SR 63870710
Owner: Herbert Zeh, Allison Park, PA    Handler: Herbert Zeh

SA 4 - Fern - CCR
Ch Mathel Looking Ahead WCQ UWC, SR 58099710
Owner: Sarah & Alex Shull, Greenville, MI    Handler: Sarah Shull

SB 2 - Finn - ESS
Worspan's Finn of Connemara, JH, SR 46207302
Owner: Janell & Mike Minnick, Holly, MI    Handler: Mike Minnick

SB 3 - Libby - ESS
Doorcreeks Liberate My Soul, SR 62689204
Owner: Matthew Johnson, Janesville, WI    Handler: Matthew Johnson

Junior

2 - Brutus - AWS
Edie's Brutus Orion, SR 22912306
Owner: Gary & Tonja McCullough, Wyoming, MI    Handler: Gary McCullough

3 - Harry - ECS
Y-Knot's Wonder of the Wind, SR 63883202
Owner: Roxanne Fegley, Sharpsville, IN    Handler: Roxanne Fegley

4 - Force - Airedale
Eclipse No Zone Enforcer, RN 19263901
Owner: Carrie LaCombe, W Lafayette, IN    Handler: Carrie LaCombe

6 - Kali - AWS
California Artemis Kali, SR 03635409
Owner: Gary & Tonja McCullough, Wyoming, MI    Handler: Gary McCullough

7 - Riley - AWS
Little Brownies Riley, SR 57908805
Owner: Jim Brown, Hale, MI    Handler: Jim Brown

9 - Quill - CCR
Ch Riverwatch Stamp of Approval WCX, SR 68729403
Owner: Sarah & Alex Shull, Greenville, MI    Handler: Sarah Shull

10 - Peanut - AWS
Little Brownies Peanut M and M, SR 61721009
Owner: Paul & Lynn Morrison, Howell, MI    Handler: Paul Morrison

Sunday - April 28, 2013

Master

5 - Rhino - CCR
GCh Podunk's Better Days Ahead MH WCQ UWC, SR 41584104
Owner: Alex Shull, Greenville, MI    Handler: Sarah Shull

6 - Mai Tye - FS
GCH CH Killara's Here Comes The Sun VCD1 GN RE SH MX MXJ XF, SR 39732108
Owner: Karen Balinski, Rockford, MI    Handler: Karen Balinski

Senior

SA 2 - Sparkle - AWS
Little Brownies Sparkling Star JH, SR 61721008
Owner: Paul & Lynn Morrison, Howell, MI    Handler: Paul Morrison

SA 3 - Fern - CCR
Ch Mathel Looking Ahead WCQ UWC, SR 58099710
Owner: Sarah & Alex Shull, Greenville, MI    Handler: Sarah Shull

SA 4 - Senzi - ESS
Hellfire's Senzi, SR 59691806
Owner: Craig Hindes, Freemont, MI    Handler: Craig Hindes

SB 1 - Libby - ESS
Doorcreeks Liberate My Soul, SR 62689204
Owner: Matthew Johnson, Janesville, WI    Handler: Matthew Johnson

SB 3 - Finn - ESS
Worspan's Finn of Connemara, JH, SR 46207302
Owner: Janell & Mike Minnick, Holly, MI    Handler: Mike Minnick

Junior

3 - Rigby - ESS
Columbias Ramblin' Rigby, SR 55696904
Owner: Philip C. Davis, Tipton, MI    Handler: Philip C. Davis

5 - Force - Airedale
Eclipse No Zone Enforcer, RN 19263901
Owner: Carrie LaCombe, W Lafayette, IN    Handler: Carrie LaCombe

6 - Ziva - Airedale
Ziva vom Riesenhof, 01/0142277 GR
Owner: Tom & Kim McPeek, Chillicothe, OH    Handler: Tom McPeek

7 - Quill - CCR
Ch Riverwatch Stamp of Approval WCX, SR 68729403
Owner: Sarah & Alex Shull, Greenville, MI    Handler: Sarah Shull

8 - Peanut - AWS
Little Brownies Peanut M and M, SR 61721009
Owner: Paul & Lynn Morrison, Howell, MI    Handler: Paul Morrison