I traveled up to Maryland yesterday to go digging for groundhogs with Patrick (Terrierman). It was a perfect day - though maybe a bit warm. Gracie, the mini schnauzer, went along to see what she could do.
Gracie is a great little dog. She minds well, she likes to sit with you on the couch, and rarely wanders out of the yard. you can go anywhere with her off lead, and she won't go too far. But Gracie has very little prey drive, and she is too big to fit in a groundhog hole. I will give her an A for effort though.
I met up with Patrick at a little mom and pop store and we headed off to a nearby farm field. i'd been here before and there is usually plenty of game on the land. The dogs seemed to get along fine, though Patrick's dog, pearl, stayed home for this one. Mountain and Gracie started exploring the creek which meandered through the bottom land. It wasn't long before Mountian found in a hole near the edge of the creek. It was actually two holes, one went into the bank along the edge of the creek, and the other wormed its way up into the ancient root system of an old tree.
Mountian went from one hole to the next baying it up in both places. We heard the groundhog whistling in the root ball, and saw the groundhog in the other hole, but Mountian couldn't get to either one. We dug a bunch of holes and worked up a sweat, but Mountian just couldn't get them.
We ended up closing the holes and moving on. Gracie started to get into it, but she still wasn't sure what it was all about. Then Mountian found a Whistlepig above ground. He nabbed it and Gracie got a chance to see what it was she'd been smelling.
We moved up into the plowed field and came across another nice hole. Mountian popped in, and this time Gracie wiggled her way in and started to dig. Go Gracie!
We had to dig a bunch of holes, it looked like a mine field when we were done, but Gracie got in there and tried to pull some fur. We ended up pulling two hogs from this set of holes, and I can truly say Gracie enjoyed herself.
We moved spots and walked some fields. Mountian bolted a fox from one set, But we didn't get the occasion to dig again. We ended the day around one as I had to drive back home that night.
Will Gracie ever be a great Groundhog hunter? No, probably not. We had fun though and hopefully we'll do it again.
Thanks for the ice cream Patrick. Next time, I buy the Subs & Pizza.