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Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Dubya, a young wirehaired dachshund, and his tracking season in Missouri

This e-mail and pictures came from Matt Willis from Missouri (thank you Matt!). Matt and Jenny are a young couple who own Dubya, a year-and-a-half-old son of Moose and Paika (Strut von Moosbach-Zuzelek).

Jenny Willis with Dubya (Strut von Moosbach-Zuzelek, Sky's littermate)

Jolanta, I hope this message finds you and yours well.  It is amazing how fast the time flies, it is hard for me to believe we are approaching the third month of 2013 already.

2012 presented some unexpected challenges for our tracking training. We were generally able to get 2 tracks per week with Dubya the early part of the year until the heat hit us. It is generally warm here during the summer months and not uncommon to see highs in the 90s with humidity above 90% to match in July and August. This year was unusually hot. We coped with this by training earlier and earlier in the morning, sometimes beginning at or before daylight. Eventually the temps even early in the morning were in the 80s and we began to wonder if we should continue the training as it seemed to get less fun for Dubya. Needless to say we were thankful for your post about training in hot weather and made us feel better about taking a break during the heat wave. We spent as many of the hot days as possible in the water, which Dubya has decided he really likes.

Dubya and I got our first call during youth firearm season. It was a 7 year old boy who shot his first deer and wasn't able to find it. Our interview revealed the track would be 24 hours old by the time we were on it and had been tromped on by every person the hunter and his family know. The scenting condition was very dry, we weren't very optimistic but really wanted to give it a try. We arrived on site and learned the shot had been about 50 yards through some very thick stuff. The deer took 30 minutes to move 60 yards where it bedded down, eventually got up and "crawled" over the hill. It was at this point the hunters Dad went after the deer expecting to find it over the hill. Feeling less confident at this point we decided to begin the track at the bed site. Dubya wondered around the bed for a couple minutes then began working in the direction the hunter said the deer travelled. Dubya seemed to have the track for about 250 yards and then he just turned around never seemed to find it again. We tried to restart a couple times but that didn't yield any better results. We only found blood about ten yards from the bed and then nothing.

I enclosed a couple pictures of a bow kill of mine that Dubya tracked through a bean field. It was the first time we had tracked through beans and was interesting to see him navigate through. It was not an old track and he completed it with little difficulty.

 Dubya also got some work at deer camp this past year. One of the tracks I thought was particularly notable. The shot was taken right at dark and not marked well. It was about 2 hours later we came back to the hit site and couldn't find any blood. We walked around the hit site looking for some sign when Dubya looked like he'd found the track, which I was able to confirm with a small spot of blood. He continued down the line for about 100 yards and just as I was feeling really good about it he turned around 180 degrees and headed back the way we came. At this point I was wondering what was going on but I decided to keep going because his body language was telling me he was still on the correct line. After walking 50 yards back the way we came he shot off to the right and continued on, another 50 yards and my light hit a white belly. I have never been on a track like that before and was really impressed with the way Dubya handled it. I really enjoy watching him sort these tracks out. He continues to remind me I am the one doing the learning.

Monday, February 25, 2013

UBT Trackfest 2013 and East Coast Lacy Fun Day

The United Blood Trackers is going to hold a three day Blood Tracking Workshop on JUNE 1-3 at Coon Rock Horse and Hunt Club, Arena, WI, 45 minutes west of Madison. This workshop is for both beginner and advanced dogs and handlers as well as anyone else interested in learning more about the use of blood tracking dogs for the recovery of wounded big game. There will be plenty of hands-on training in the field for dogs and handlers as well as presentations on topics such as Training Techniques, Working with Puppies and Adolescents, Equipment Choices, GPS Use, and Working with Hunters. As a new feature this year we will also be holding a Hit Site Evaluation Seminar. This new seminar will focus on reading sign at the hit site as well as reading sign found along the trail in order to develop the proper strategy for tracking that particular animal. The Workshop Instructors will be UBT Judges: John Jeanneney (NY), Larry Gohlke (WI), Andy Bensing (PA), Cheri Faust (WI), Chuck Collier (MI) and Al Wade (AL).

The premium list for this event is located at
We hope to see you there. We'd also appreciate any help you can give the UBT in getting the word out about this event.

UBT testing will also be available at East Coast Lacy Fun Day, where all breeds are welcomed. This event is going to take place soon, on March 15-16, in LaGrange, GA. For more information contact Rebecca Ferrell at or 850-508-6981.

You get to see all kinds of  tracking dogs at a UBT Trackfest. The below pics were taken at various trackfests in the past.


Sunday, February 24, 2013

A walk down the memory lane: 54 Absolute wins in 22 years

A year ago I was cleaning up my office before its long overdue renovation. I went through 5-6 boxes of ribbons collected at field trials over the years and tried to sort them out. The ones that represent most prestigious  "Absolute Winner" title were aired and then reboxed. Maybe one day I'll have enough time to come up with an idea how to display them on one of the walls. I snapped this picture when they were hanging outside on the fence.

These ribbons, 54 of them, were collected by our dogs (dogs owned and handled by us) in the last 22 years. Of course, John has been breeding dachshunds since 1968, but we are not going to go that far into the past.

Below there is a list of the 19 dogs, all Field Champions, who won the Absolutes since 1991, in alphabetical order. I skipped all their titles but I marked the dogs that were imported by their country of origin. The dogs who have in their names "Moosbach", "Zuzelek" or "von Moosbach-Zuzelek" have been bred by us. This list does not include dogs that we have bred but they are owned by other field trialers - some of them have been extremely successful.

We usually do not post too much information about field trials on this blog because blood tracking is our primary interest and it is hard to keep up with just that. However, we have been attending field trials for many years, and some of our dogs have done really well.

FC and Can. Ch. Fausto de la Grande Fuataie, CG, JE
 March 20, 1990November 13, 2002
Fausto was bred by Mme Aline Lachiver from France,
and he was imported by Jolanta while she lived in Canada.
He is a great-great-great-great-great grandsire of Sky and Tuesday.  
Alfi Von Der Hardt-Hohe (Germany)
Billy Von Moosbach-Zuzelek
Darin Von Moosbach-Zuzelek
Elli Von Moosbach-Zuzelek
Falko V Moosbach-Zuzelek
Fausto De La Grande Futaie (France)
Gela Von Rauthenstein (Germany)
Gerte V Dornenfeld (Germany)
Gilda V Moosbach-Zuzelek
Zuzelek's Gold Digging Gita
Ida Von Moosbach-Zuzelek
Joeri Vom Nonnenschlag (Germany)
Keena Von Moosbach-Zuzelek
Zuzelek's Globetrotter
Mielikki Raptor (Czech Republic)
Nora Von Moosbach
Paika V Moosbach-Zuzelek
Sabina Von Moosbach-Zuzelek
Vamba Von Moosbach-Zuzelek

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Another successful tracking season for Copper, a young Southern Black Mouth Cur from Alabama

Roger Barnhill III is a United Blood Trackers member from Loxley, Alabama. His tracking canine Copper is a two-and-a-half-year old Southern Black Mouth Cur. Roger says: This was her third tracking season. About 50% of her tracks were off-leash. She was successful with both on and off leash tracks, even though this was her first year to experience tracking on leash. Other than the 17-hour track she trailed at UBT II test, which she passed, the next oldest track has been 14 1/2 hours.

We finished the 2012/13 hunting season in South Alabama with 27 calls and 17 finds, which was similar to last year when we had 29 calls and 16 finds.  One of the finds this year was my seven-year-old son's first big 8 point.  This deer was shot in the rear hind quarter and ran off the plot.  There was no blood the first 100 yards where we found a fresh wound bed. I could tell the buck had just gotten up so I released Copper.  She ran the deer a half mile and bayed where we were able to recover the deer.  This was the most exciting track of the year, not only because it was my son's first big buck but also to see Copper work.   Another deer was tracked one mile across two county paved roads, through a yard within five feet of a house, and through a vehicle salvage yard.  The deer had been shot in the rear leg at the knee.


Every year Copper has progressed with her eagerness to please and perform.  It is apparent watching her that she gets excited about what she does.  I am looking forward to seeing what next year brings for her.

NYS DEC 2013 Leashed Tracking Dog License Exam will be held on Friday, April 19

The Leashed Tracking Dog License Exam exam will be held on Friday, April 19, 2013. In the past the exam was usually given in August. We are not certain at this time whether the April date is an additional one or the only one in 2013.  An exam/license application must be submitted by April 5. Exams will be held at DEC Regional Wildlife Offices statewide from 10 a.m. to noon, except at DEC's Avon Office, which will be held from 1 to 3 p.m.

For more information go to the DEC website at

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Coyotes completely devoured Darren's deer that was left overnight in the woods

Darren Doran from NJ shared with us his recent tracking experience:

I just thought I would tell you about Theo’s latest find. I was bow hunting Tuesday night (a week ago) and I shot a good size doe. I thought the shot was good and I watched the deer run and stop about 70 yds away by a brook. Her tail was going uncontrollably in every direction and I could see blood coming out of the exit wound low behind the right elbow with the naked eye. I thought for sure she was going down right there. She seemed to regain some composure and jumped the brook. I thought I saw her go down in a briar patch on the other side.

I still had deer milling around and I didn’t want to spook them so I waited awhile before I started to climb down. After I got down I left my gear at the tree and went right to the brook. I immediately saw a good amount of blood on my side. I got across and easily followed a good blood trail for another 125 yds. At any minute I expected to find the deer. We crossed the brook again and came to a small cut corn field. I lost the blood trail and it was getting dark. I was so sure I was going to find the deer on the other side of the first brook crossing didn’t bring my light with me. I decided to come back with Theo in the morning and see if we could find this deer. By the amount of blood I had saw on the track I felt real certain the deer was dead.
I started Theo at the hit site and he tracked easily to the brook. The brook here was about 5 ft wide and just under my calf high boots. Theo hesitated at the crossing and was having difficulty figuring out how to get across. We hadn’t done a lot of water work this summer, and I didn’t want to push him on a track so I picked him up and carried him across. He resumed tracking and took the line the next 125 yds very easily. We came to the next brook crossing and by his actions I could tell he knew the deer crossed the brook. This time he hunched up a couple of time like he was going to jump in but chickened out. I again picked him up and waded him across.

I put him down and he tracked right to the corn field and right across the lower end. I didn’t see any blood here but was relying on Theo ability. We left the field edge and tracked into a thick briar choked creek bottom. Theo came to the brook again. This part of the brook was shallower and the banks were closer together and Theo got across on his own. Up to this point I hadn’t seen any more blood, but as soon as I got on the other bank I saw more blood. I could see by the blood the track turned sharply to the right on a deer run and Theo missed the check. He came to a tractor road and started to circle to reacquire the line. He got back in the thicket and found the line and all of a sudden stopped.

A first I didn’t even realize what I was looking at. Theo was standing on what was left of our deer. The coyotes had found it overnight and devoured it. All I had was a cell phone to take the picture, but the deer was completely eaten. The coyotes even pulled the hide off the face and ate the meat off the head exposing the skull and jaw.
There wasn’t enough left of the deer to tell how it was hit and why it went as far as it did. The deer went about 260 yds. This is what I think happened. The stand was 27 or 28 ft high. The deer was broadside at 20 yds. The shot most likely hit the deer high on the left side missing the left lung. The arrow exited low in the front of the right lung. The deer still had one lung to breath with but the major blood vessels in the front of the right lung were cut so bad it finally bled to death. I don’t think a deer with both lungs hit would have went as far as it did.
I’ll never leave a deer overnight in these woods again.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Celebrating Joeri's 5th Birthday

As regular readers of this blog know, Joeri suffered a herniated disc on August 27, 2012. He underwent a surgery almost immediately, and then on November 15 he went down again. At the time we were very close to putting him down as he was paralyzed and he lost bladder control. We put him right away on prednisone and some other drugs such as tramadol, methocarbamol and gabapentin. He also received several acupuncture sessions and cold laser treatments. Luckily Joeri responded well to this conservative treatment and has been improving steadily.

This picture was taken this morning in my den on the day of his 5th birthday. We both are so glad that he is with us wagging his tail and slowly regaining his life.
The video below was taken today as well. A direct link to the video is click here. You can see that he is not 100%, not yet, but we are optimistic. He feels very good, would like to jump and run. It's been now only three months since his relapse so we are still restricting his activities. He gave us a scare the other day when all of sudden he tried to jump on the couch. He did not reach the top, fell down on his back (on the carpet), but it seems that nothing happened. He was disappointed that he did not succeed but was not in pain and did not suffer any damage. We hope that by mid-April he will be able to resume normal life.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

United Blood Trackers members from Alabama track with their dachshunds off-lead

Tom and Jackie Munoz are serious deer trackers from Alabama, and they own two wirehaired dachshunds, Meg and Jack, which were bred for blood tracking. Their website is located at

Below are five pictures of the deer recovered by both Meg and Jack during the 2012/2013 tracking season. The dogs recovered 17 deer in spite of the poor, rainy weather. Congratulations!

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Blog on wirehaired dackels and a video on dachshunds

For those who'd like to learn more about European dachshunds from perspective of an American living in Europe, this is a new blog to follow: You will find a link to the blog in our blogroll.

Julie Weidner is a graduate student from Wisconsin, who currently lives in Switzerland, and she has acquired two European wirehaired dachshunds.  We got connected through our blog, and it looks like we are on the same wavelength.

I like Julie's post about dachshunds in the media. If you have 87 minutes to spare, watch the video she refers to at

Julie's comments about the video are right on the money. If you watch the video, you'll see Antonio Palladini, a prominent breeder from Italy Tommy's sire Skuleskogens N Boris is owned by Palladini (Boris was bred in Sweden).

Even if you do not speak German or French (there is no English version as far as I know) the video is worth watching just to see how dachshunds are raised and handled in various countries. I know for sure I would not want to be a dachshund in Japan. I think around 7:30 minutes into the video you will see a dachshund playing with a young lion and standing its ground!

Winter landscapes in the Helderbergs

A week ago we had a visit from winter storm Nemo. Luckily we got only 10 inches of snow, while some places in Maine and Massachusetts had to cope with over 30 inches. The above picture was taken on the "morning after".
This is almost the same view as above but the picture was taken this evening. A beautiful sunset that lasted just few minutes. Thanks to the dogs I was in our yard.      

This shows the cumulative snowfall effect. Tuesday is standing to the left.
Tuesday is enjoying the snow. In this picture she looks very much like Sky, her big and older brother.
This shot was taken on February 12, when the snow and ice produced by Nemo started to slide off the barn roof.
A day later , just before we forced the snow and ice down onto the ground.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Si, a young Bavarian Mountain Bloodhound, is showing a lot of promise for blood tracking

Si, a young Bavarian Mountain Bloodhound, belongs to Art Powers, a UBT member from Alabama. Si was bred by Fred Zoeller from Cooperstown, NY; his sire is Tim Nichols' Bruno. 
Art writes: We went on 21 tracks and found 9 this season. We also jumped 3 other deer that we did not recover. The longest successful track was 800 yards and 17 hours old. We had two tracks of 1.28 miles and 1.2 miles when we jumped the deer. He did the best on the fresher tracks (6 hours or less), but we were able to track some that were 28 hours old. The old tracks were much more difficult. We found one that went 300 yards with no blood, only hair at the shot site. It was a fresh track. Overall, I think Si did real good.
I am going to work with him off lead this summer. Most of my tracks are in such thick cover, I am holding him back and it seems to distract him on the older tracks when we have to stop and start. I believe I can release him next year if we are not near roads and be more successful. Most trackers I talk with in the south say they have better luck tracking off lead.


Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Amendment to allow the use of leashed dogs to track wounded or presumed dead big game passes in the South Dakota House Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee.

Jonathan Eckrich, a United Blood Trackers member from South Dakota reported today:
Today the South Dakota House Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee passed (13 yea : 0 nea) an amendment to allow the use of leashed dogs to track wounded or presumed dead big game.

The bill HB1093 can be found at: Audio of the hearing can be found at
The next step is to get it passed by the full house. This vote should occur today or tomorrow. Then the Senate Ag Committee will review it, and if it passes, send it to the full Senate. Then the governor will have to sign after that. Then the real work of hammering out the details with the GF&P begins.

This is a good start.
Congratulations Jonathan! This is a big step forward.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Theo's groundhog day find

A week ago we received a nice report from Darren Doran about another find for Theo. This e-mail underscores the importance of a handler's role in successful recovery. A big thank you to Darren for all the work he's been putting into Theo, who is just nine months old.
I got a call last night from Casey, a hunter I’ve tracked for in the past. He had shot a doe, and was having a hard time locating any blood. He had thought that he made a good shot, and it looked like the doe was lagging behind the others as they ran. Originally we were going to track last night but Casey had not been able to find any sign of a hit and not knowing what we had we decided to try in the morning.

We met up at about 7 AM.We looked around a little bit and didn’t find any sign. I started Theo at the area where the deer had been standing at the shot. Theo went in the general direction the deer ran and I followed. I didn’t see any blood and Theo kept drifting to the right. I asked him "is that right?" and he lifted his head and changed direction. I was picking him up to re start when Casey called out that he got blood.

I brought Theo to the blood spot and started there. We were finding a spot of blood every now and then, and I knew Theo was right. Theo tracked to the frozen creek and hesitated at the edge. He attempted to cross but was somewhat unsure of how to do it. He then started tracking to the right along the bank. I told Casey that I thought the deer had crossed and asked him to wait at that spot. I let Theo go a ways and he ended up going the same way he did on the first start. I picked him up and told Casey to cross and look for blood. He found some right away on the other side and I waded across with Theo and set him down. Theo immediately started to track and within 70 yards we found the deer.

Unfortunately the coyotes found it first and most of the hind end was eaten. The shot from a 20ga slug had hit the doe in the back of one lung and through the liver. Most likely the deer was dead before Casey ever left the woods last night. If we had tried last night we might have beat the coyotes and gotten the whole deer.


Friday, February 8, 2013

Happy Birthday Billy!

Nine years ago our Elli whelped a litter of eight puppies, six males and two females. This is how Billy came into our lives. He was weighing 280 grams, and was one of the smaller pups in the litter. But almost from the beginning he caught our eye as he was a very enterprising and outgoing puppy. He might not be the best blood tracking dog that we have ever had or bred, but he is one of the most trainable dogs, who loves to please and cooperate. Only those who know him closely can appreciate his flawless temperament and depth of character.

Many happy returns Billy! We love you!

Billy at the age of nine years.

Billy  when one day old.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Seven month old wirehaired teckels sired by FC Billy von Moosbach-Zuzelek

These are seven-month-old puppies that were bred by Brigitte Walkey from British Columbia, Canada. The dam of the pups is  "Penny" - Can & Aust Ch Ozbree Penelope Spring Wire JE. The sire is our FC Billy von Moosbach-Zuzelek, SchwhK, Wa.-T, BHP-1, BHP-2, BHP-3,  natural Deer Search certified tracker of wounded deer and bear. The pups are great looking and show good potential for tracking, and Billy is proud of them :) This litter is going to be repeated soon. 
Billybob and Naya

Billy's son is called Billybob

Naya picked up a first point at a show.