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This Shorthair Named Himself

Some bird dogs end up in our lives the result of months, even years of planning, with research, time, money and travel all invested into the process. And some bird dogs end up in our lives because of this little thing called “impulse,” when right time meets right place and a pair of eyes and a helpless looking face runs a straight line to the heart, conscience be darned.

Pheasants Forever’s Mike Stephenson and his German shorthaired pointer, “Chance.”

He was born July 8th, 2011. His mother struggled through the birthing process, which included a C-section, and passed away during labor, along with seven of the nine puppies she carried. Two male German shorthaired pointer pups clung to life, and the owners of the late mother did not know how to keep them alive.

As chance would have it, a lady who raises boxers had a litter delivered the same day. When she heard about the two orphaned GSP pups, she and her boxer adopted them, weaned them and nurtured them to health.

Word spread in the community, and one of the pups was claimed. But a few more weeks went by, and one lone pup remained, a hunter-to-be just needing a chance.

Having just moved to Emery, South Dakota, as Pheasants Forever’s new regional representative, 23-year-old Mike Stephenson had a bird dog in his future plans, but wasn’t seriously considering getting a pup just yet. Still, when a Pheasants Forever chapter member told him about the little pointer, Stephenson decided to have a look.

“It seemed like I had to take the ‘Chance’ at this four-legged pup who sat patiently staring at me with those irresistible puppy eyes,” Stephenson said. Soon, there was company in the cab as Stephenson drove around South Dakota to Pheasants Forever chapter meetings and banquets.

“Chance” made his first point and retrieve at just three-months-old. “’He’s been a great companion and my best friend,” Stephenson says, “As much as I don’t want to say this – as I’m young – he’s probably the dog of my lifetime.”

Anthony’s Antics Afield is written by Anthony Hauck, Pheasants Forever’s Online Editor. Email Anthony at AHauck@pheasantsforever.org and follow him on Twitter @AnthonyHauckPF.

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2 Responses to “This Shorthair Named Himself”

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  1. Jack Dennis says:

    Good story and good luck with your dog. You are definitely in the right state to teach him to hunt.

  2. Jenny says:

    What a great story. Cute Dog…and owner! ;)

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