Thursday, August 28, 2008
GREAT DOGS AND GOOD MEN PART FIVE
PLEASANT VALLEY CLYDE Paraphrasing the quote that the truly great field trial dog is always on the verge of being lost but comes back perfectly describes the great grouse dog champion PLEASANT VALLEY CLYDE owned and handled by Dr. James Steitler DVM of Dubois Pennsylvania. Doc Steitler could hear a pin drop in the middle of the celebration of a grand slam homerun in Yankee Stadium. He was so attuned to Clyde (or at least it appeared that way) that when most thought he was gone and out of judgment it seldom failed that Doc knew precisely where he was and if he was pointing a bird. Judges, including myself, anticipated Clyde’s brace with both excitement and dread. It seldom failed that Doc would call point after not seeing or hearing Clyde's bell for quite some time. One of the judges would dismount, glance at the other as if to say send a search party if I don’t make it back in two hours and follow Doc well back into the woods and disappear. But, Doc seldom failed to find Clyde majestically pointing a grouse after having pinned it so it could not escape. Clyde was a silky white setter with an evenly marked black mask. He was a relatively large dog with a good deal of leg underneath him and a race you’d think was more suited to all age horseback stakes. He looked very similar to his older kennelmate, CH. Pleasant Valley Liz who won the Grand National in 1972 and 1973. CH. Pleasant Valley Clyde was runner-up in the Grand National Grouse Championship in 1975 and won it convincingly in 1976 and 1979. Clyde’s record was 31 placements, producing 17 winners with total wins of 93. Together, he and Liz produced the wonderful champion Pleasant Valley Mandy.