NOTE: We here at Ducks Unlimited love our dogs. They are our hunting partners, cuddle buddies, best friends, and much, much more. To honor our favorite four-legged companions, we’ve decided to profile all our favorite dogs of Ducks Unlimited’s Western Region and give them a little recognition. If you would like to submit your buddy to be profiled in the future, email dblankenship @ducks.org. (Only accepting submissions from Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, and Washington)
Owner: Aaron Will – Regional Biologist – Delta and Suisun Marsh
Type: BLACK LABRADOR
Age: 9 going 2
Favorite toy: Anything that is thrown and the newest softest blanket in the house to lay on.
Something interesting: (From Aaron) Tess was born in North Bend, Washington and is an amazing family dog and a great hunting partner, but I’ll be honest, a bit of a Marley when she was a young pup. Her biggest quirk? Tess likes to swim in circles, and with her left paw slashing up the water she bites the splash. Around and around in tight circles she gets so excited that she starts to yelp, which from a distance looks like a dog in serious distress with her back leg caught on something. Which on at least two occasions, has resulted in people calling the fire department to rescue the dog who’s trapped in the middle of the pond.
In her older years, Tess is a spoiled family dog going to the office three days a week and at home with her human mom the other two. She sleeps on the leather couch or on the guest bed, or on the leather chair or, well, you get the picture. In the offseason, Tess tolerates my 5-year-old daughter accommodating tutus, tiaras and assorted dress up parties. Her favorite is the stuffed animal picnics, where Tess usually scores a snack or two from Princess Elsa.
To this day Tess has no sense of self-preservation when it comes to running amuck and retrieving, always giving 115%, still spinning in circles at two a.m. in the morning excited to go hunting, thwacking her tail on the kitchen cabinets and waking up the whole house.
My favorite retrieve of hers to date was in the Yolo Bypass, where she chased a duck from one tule clump to another, through the tules, under water (Tess dives as deep as her feet will touch) all at a distance of 150 yards from me for over 20 minutes. Completely on her own and in her own element. She persevered and she came back with that bird, slogging back as tired as could be one foot barley after the other and me beaming from ear to ear. Tess and I would like to specially thank her “Office Aunties” Susan, Theresa and Maria for all the special treats, potty breaks and extra love in the DU office.