Greetings from the Big Rivers Chapter! 

The end of January is a bittersweet time. I never enjoy seeing hunting season come to an end but welcome Spring knowing training days and testing season are right around the corner. Having a new pup of my own this year, I look forward to the fellowship with new and old members alike as we all work toward training versatile hunting companions. 

The Big Rivers Chapter is holding four VJPs this Spring: Sulphur Springs, TX; Carthage, MO; Tuttle, OK; and Excello, MO. At the time of writing this, only the Sulphur Springs and Carthage test have been completed. A full VJP update will be included in the next edition. 

Our annual meeting will be held in Tuttle, Oklahoma, at the end of March. This meeting is being hosted by Tyler Wallis, and will be in conjunction with a VJP, breed show, and chukar challenge. Armbruster pre-evals will also be conducted for those who qualify. We look forward to the Armbruster being held in our neck of the woods this year, and hope to have a strong showing from the BRC!

Planning is underway for training days in late spring and summer to prepare for the fall test. I encourage new handlers to try to make as many of these training days as you can. The VJP test is an evaluation of the natural ability of your pup, whereas the HZP requires more training and handler involvement. These training days are excellent opportunities to get advice from experienced handlers and expose your dog to new grounds. Most importantly, it gives you the chance to say “I’ve never seen that before” before the actual test! 

Happy Training! 

Colten Ducote