by Martha Windisch


Windisch’s Turbulent Indigo, “Blue” the red Golden Retriever, earned his TD on a beautiful October 15 at Port Chester’s test at the Mohonk fields near New Paltz, NY. His handler, Martha Windisch, had had only about four hours of sleep in her van because the motel rooms had been booked for several months in advance due to homecoming at a college in New Paltz. She hung onto the rope and went for a ride - actually she did have to do some thinking and handling at the corners and at an area where the ground had a slight dip. She also had to be very careful not to let the rope contact bare skin through several holes in her worn handling gloves. She had planned to purchase new gloves prior to the test, but never had gotten around to it.

Blue, as usual, tracked hard and fast the entire way. Even though Martha was tired and felt like dead weight, it helps to be dead weight when Blue is tracking down a leg - dead weight slows him down some - and it is good to slow him some!!! Fortunately, besides fast, Blue tracked very accurately and was very easy to read. A ways down the last leg (his handler of course at the time didn’t know it was the last leg), Blue stopped and started sniffing and circling and searching an area. His handler thought perhaps he was at the glove or looking for the next turn. Nothing was found on the ground, and soon Blue started pulling hard and straight again. He pulled clear to a change of cover and quickly made a right turn along the cover change. His handler was suspicious about this but followed because Blue clearly said so. At this time the whistle was heard, and the judges said that he missed the glove - he was tracking the tracklayer off the field. The two judges, the tracklayer, and the handler all searched the track for the glove. The tracklayer remembered placing the glove and thought that Blue had definitely searched where it had been.

It would have been nice for Blue to find a glove. Luckily for Blue Martha hadn’t purchased new handling gloves and threw him one of hers to reward him after the real one was not found. She definitely would not have been as eager to toss Blue, alias the “Glove Destroyer,” a brand new handling glove (although she probably would have anyhow).

P.S. Martha hung out on the grounds after the test to take a nap and then take a walk and enjoy the fall colors on the nearby mountains. Before packing up, she decided to let Blue quarter the field where his track had been, and he came up with the glove. The glove had ended up closer to the woods line than the last leg of his track had gone. The mystery is how did it get there? The track was about 45 minutes old, and there were no people seen in the field. Was a critter preparing for the cold winter and needed a glove??? I guess we will never know.

Use your back button to sniff out a new story