Andy Bensing, President of United Blood Trackers, found the first deer to be legally tracked by a tracking dog in New Jersey with his dog Arno. The New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife had just set up an experimental leashed tracking dog program under special permit in certain counties of the state.
The bowshot deer tracked by Andy was not a big one, but it was very important, nonetheless. Andy and Arno found it dead in thick brush 25 yards behind a house in the suburbs. Dead, stinking deer, lost by hunters, are very bad PR in a state like New Jersey. The find strengthened the case for legalizing leashed tracking dogs there.
New Hampshire is only in the second year of its leashed tracking dog program. Barbie Wills of Concord tracked and found this buck for her husband with their German import Veela. Ed was the point man in the campaign responsible for legalizing leashed tracking dogs in his state.
Alaska is beginning to enjoy the fruits of its tracking program, which was legalized in 2004. Kevin Breaux of Copperas Cove, Texas got this letter from an Alaskan who bought one of his German wirehaired dachshunds:
These photos are from a bear hunt with my brother Bob at the end of May. The boar was with a sow, but Aggie stuck with the boar's track and made recovery a snap. Moose season is open now, but I have had no calls. I don't know if deer season will be much better as the last 2 winters have hammered the deer population. I don't want to wish anybody bad luck on a shot, but it sure is fun working the track with Aggie!Bob (my brother that had the rattlesnake skins) was impressed with the ease that Aggie sorted out the bear tracks and is possibly interested in getting into it himself.
Maine and Ohio are two legal tracking states from which we get very little news. The enabling laws have been in place for several years now, but apparently few people know in these states about the techniques of training a dog and actually finding big game in the woods.
The leadership of United Blood Trackers believes that our two-day tracking workshop would go a long way in helping hunters and dog people in these states realize the potential of leashed tracking dogs.We have given such workshops in Illinois, Louisiana and Pennsylvania, and we have had large turn-outs of people enthusiastic about these “Trackfests’.
We need contacts with people who would be willing to help organize a tracking workshop on the local level in these states. They would be needed to find a location with a club house and at least 500 nearby acres for field work. If you have any ideas about the right person to do this please contact me by phone (518-872-1779) or e-mail. I’m Vice President of United Blood Trackers.