Sunnynook Large Munsterlanders

The Z Litter

Joe & Sheila Schmutz, R.R. 2 Box 123, Saskatoon, SK Canada S7K 3J5

last updated December 8, 2013 by Sheila Schmutz

The Sunnynook Z litter was born on Feb. 28, 2013. There were 2 females and 2 males. Three are in their new homes, and Zenaida is staying here.

They began to show some individual personality. They began to play with toys during the March 30 puppy visit. The Two Spot Girl "Zenaida" is carrying the purple octopus toy.

By the time the pups left for their new homes at 9-10 weeks, they already showed hunting instincts by chasing a wing, retrieving a wing, and nice pointing manners.

Z-Owner Reports: The first 6 month

We are keen to follow the pups' hunting performance and personality through the years. That's how we decide whether to use the parents again for breeding and in what combination. We encouraged our owners to report on how the pups are doing – and we were not disappointed. We particularly value reports of field performance and conformation from trained judges.

Zuke went to interior British Columbia. One of the things he had to learn first is to be well mannered in a fishing boat.

In the picture at the right, he shows that he'd also learned what tracking was all about.

A mere two months after Zoe went to her home among the mountain peaks of southeastern British Columbia, she already worked chukars. Here she is shown with her first full sequence: point-to-retrieve, way to go Zoe!

Zero went to his new home in Calgary, Alberta but once in a while he'd return to visit at Sunnynook. The video shows him on one of these visits, working homing pigeons. Zero is on a check cord. His owner is correctly shaping a young dog's behaviour, and is ready and able to help when needed. Notice the slack in the cord. Zero did it all on his own: working into the scent and then pointing the bird in the aspen saplings with cooperation, intensity and style, at a mere 5 months.

For us in the sparsely populated northwest (mind you, the hunting is far better for it), sanctioned field tests are few and far between. Timing being what it is, we decided to enter Zero and his sister Zenaida, or Zeni for short, in the Versatile Hunting Dog Federation's (VHDF) Hunting Aptitude Evaluation or HAE test. Here are their scores, at a tender 5.5 months of age:

HAE Scores

Name Search Pointing Tracking Water Nose Desire Cooperation Total Score
Zenaida 9 9 10 10 10 10 10 68
Zero 4 8 10 10 9 7 8 56

Zeni did well in all categories. At this early age what the judges see is raw natural ability. One can't speak of training at this age, that is the beauty of this test if run early, as it should be. Zeni was at the edge of exuberance, shifting from keen hunting to staunch pointing in the nick of time. On the pheasant track, careful and calm handling at the start got her to focus on the sparse foot-scent left by a released pheasant. She worked every turn of scent. Some 100 m down the trail, when the pheasant saw the dog approach down the track, the pheasant was able to lift off and fly out of sight, perfect!

In the field search, Zero found it hard with his short legs to negotiate the tall and dense cover. What's more, it was his owner's first testing and Zero detected his caution, preoccupying his novice canine mind during the search.

On the track, Zero shined. Like his sister, he'd seen only one true peasant track ever; though both knew what a game drag was all about. Zero's pheasant hoofed it across the short alfalfa re-growth at top speed. Zero worked out every hook in the track and caught up with the rooster 150 m down the way – this dog will be sure to put birds in the bag.

Zero also came to hunt ducks at Sunnynook. He'll need to learn patience at the blind, but when ducks were down, he caught on very quickly and retrieved through decoys with enthusiasm.

Zeni never had to settle into a new home. She got to stay with mom and her kennel mates. In the photo below, she is pointing sharp-tailed grouse, with her in front and her favorite playmate Otus in the rear of the scent cone.

The Parents: Veery and Bones

Veery traces back to our first pair of LMs imported to Sunnynook Kennel over 30 years ago. On the Sunnynook side of the pedigree, over 80% of Veery's ancestors have been tested at both puppy and hunting levels and have passed a conformation test.

Veery herself is a one-person dog, eager to please her master, but slow to warm up to strangers. Her temperament tends to be on the active side, and at times overly cautious in novel situations. When hunting, she has a one-track mind, and can be uncharacteristically strong willed. Veery has been field tested at three levels including one of the most demanding versatile dog tests North America has to offer, VHDF's Performance Evaluation.

Given Veery's capable but complicated temperament, we have chosen as her mate the least flappable male we know. SaskElkana's Bones is the calm workhorse personified. He has proven so not only with his hunt-aholic owner but also on arms-length tests with trained judges. In all of the 20 different field-test tasks, of which Veery did 18, Bones completed them if not with prancing showiness, then with a working dog's solid purpose and ability.

Both Veery and Bones live up to the name "Large" Munsterlander and we expect the puppies to fall in the upper half of the LM's size standard. Both are healthy, apart from minor ailments at times. Veery went lame for a time as a pup, which we attribute to strain on a shoulder from her obsessive butterfly hunting, one would think a pup would soon catch all the butterflies and it'd be over. Not so, those cabbage butterflies are surprisingly nimble in the air. Veery kept twisting in the air and pounding her joints, without giving up. Bones and Veery are HD-free with hips rated Excellent. Veery is also certified free of Elbow dysplasia.

Bones had sired 4 litters previously, two of which have received Progeny Performance Awards. Sunnynook's Z-litter was Veery's first.

Veery is shown on the right. Photo by Craig Koshyk.

A full bag of Saskatchewan roosters, thanks to Sunnynook's Veery!

Sunnynook's Veery, the Dam

Veery was born on December 23, 2007 at Sunnynook. She is the daughter of Sunnynook's Sora and Snowy Oaks Fen. See more about her siblings from this litter on the Sunnynook V Litter page.

Veery was radiographed at 18 months and her hips were rated excellent and elbows normal. She obtained a score of Good in HAE (57) and Very Good in AHAE (165) in the Versatile Hunting Dog Federation testing system, detailed scores below. She also received 187 points (Very Good) in the VHDF Performance Evaluation test. Veery has received a Very Good in Body/Gait and Good in Coat in her Conformation Evaluation. Veery has been DNA tested at HealthGene and does not carry Black Hair Follicular Dysplasia or brown. Veery has an extra upper premolar 1 on both sides.

Detailed scores for Veery and Bones are shown below. See another webpage for more information about these tests.

HAE Scores

Name Search Pointing Tracking Water Nose Desire Cooperation
Veery 8 7 9 6 10 7 10
Bones 10 10 7 10 7 9 7

AHAE Scores

Name Search Pointing Duck Search Nose Desire Cooperation Steadiness Retrieve Shot Bird Marked Water Retrieve Blind Water Entry Game Drag Obedience
Veery 10 10 7 10 9 10 10 10 7 9 8 9

PE Scores

Name Water Search Search Behind Duck Field Search Pointing Backing Nose Desire Cooperation Blind Water Retrieve Steadiness Retrieve Shot Bird Drag Obedience
Veery 6 10 10 10 8 10 9 10 8 5 10 10 8
Bones 10 9 10 10 9 10 10 10 9 9 9 10 10

SaskElkana's Bones, the sire of the Sunnynook Z Litter

SaskElkana's Bones lives with Rick and Pat Schryer and their 3 daughters and 2 other LMs. He is the son of Northwind's Belle and Odin vom Bergwald.

Bones was radiographed at 25 months and his hips were rated excellent. Bones has run several tests in both the NAVDA and VHDF systems. He obtained a score of 60 (Very Good) in HAE and 89 (III) in NAT. He received 190 (I) in UT and 203 (VG) in PE. Bones has received a Very Good in Body/Gait and in Coat in his Conformation Evaluation.Bones has been DNA tested at HealthGene and does not carry Black Hair Follicular Dysplasia or brown.

Our performance-breeding commitment is exemplified in the pedigree below.

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For more information on the Large Munsterlander in Canada

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