Rain was puppy number 4, and wore the white collar in the early puppy pictures.
She was the biggest puppy in the litter, at least partly because of her very healthy appetite,
and had a very silky-feeling coat. Interestingly, this turned into a very curly one!
For her first two years, she lived in Memphis, Tennessee, with Jim Wallace, the curator and guiding light behind the
National Ornamental Metal Museum. During the week
she was the museum dog and official greeter. On the weekends, she was Mr. Wallace's hunting
partner in Arkansas. In 2008, Wally retired and now he and Rain live full time in Arkansas.
News about Rain, December 26, 2009
Pictures are from South Dakota. This one is from Dove Season opening day. Rain made over 50 retrieves.
We recovered every bird, even those in chest deep soybeans. Me with a broken foot. Sure glad I have a
South Dakota, November 3, 2009. Me, Rain and brother Matt. In four days of hunting, we did not recover 4 birds.
Stray camp shot. Rain retrieved about 1/4 of those birds on that drive.
Rain got to swim in the Pacific. The high surf sure threw her for a loop, but dead seagulls were great to roll in.
The drive home through Colorado was good. Elk leg was drug back to the truck from someplace and she rolled in the rest. The
drive home was ripe.
Looking forward to late season ducks and geese.
March 21, 2009
I have been meaning to write for some time. With no email (by choice), I use a lot of stamps, and don't always get
to all the notes I should.
I retired January 1, 2008, for which I was somewhat prepared and indeed looking forward to moving from being a
manager of people and place to standing in front of a fire forging iron full time. I moved out of the house I had
been living in for 30 years in February, into a 280 square foot cabin. Rain and I wintered as well as could be
expected. Spring time came and we plowed for a garden and got the spring planting in. Then the floods came.
Once every hundred years or twice a month.
But we are now getting ourselves back on track. We hunted doves in September. Rain made over 50 retrieves on opening
day -- never lost a bird even in waist high soybeans. She got gold stars and lots of dove head rewards.
Hunted pheasants in South Dakota in October/November. It took a day, but she figured that out as well. If anything,
she got too excited several times and forgot to keep her nose down. Still, she did well. Silver stars -- one or two
Over the Christmas Holiday, I went to Seattle. Left Rain with friends in Ripley, TN. On New Years Day, while on a
walk with my friends and their Lab, Rain found and ate mushrooms. $1200 and two days in the vet's ER later, I brought her
home. She nearly died and I was concerned there might be brain damage as well.... so we hunted ducks January 10 as I felt
she was up to it. Best score I can give her is a C-, and only because towards the end she started remembering what her job is.
I suppose of the dozen opportunities, she got about six right. The last four for sure, so I am hopeful she had just forgotten
bits and pieces. We are working on a refresher course now and doing well. Might get out for ducks in the next few days and
see if lessons have sunk in.
Rain keeps me company, traveling in the shotgun seat most of the time. Not sure what I would do without her.
Wally and Rain hunting for Pheasant
South Dakota, November 2008
News about Rain, 2007
May 29, 2007
So far today, Rain has retrieved the newspaper, stolen a pair of leather
gloves, carried a wad of paper towels around and found (and eaten) part
of an apple, part of a bag of corn chips, a pack of catsup and I am not
sure what else. Tired after all of that and is now taking a nap under
We did go for a truck ride and swim in the fountain.... all before 8.
Rain is settling down and doing well. She really like hanging out with
the boys in the shop.
Rain has become much better mannered and managable after graguading
from Alice's dog school. That and a little age helped as well. Rain
still eats everything and anything. Yesterday she found where someone
had emptied the contents of a fish cooker...about 6 gallons of oil mixed
in leaves, dead grass and twigs. Her head and shoulders look to have
had more than a little dab of Brilcream. Not sure what is in her
stomach, but I am sure to find out soon enough.
We had a fairly big event here this past week end and Alice was here
(with husband and children). Rain stayed with her and their children for
the biggest part of the week end and had a great time. Between Alice
being here and all the choicest morsels which fell her way from a
hundred people, Rain was in Dog Heaven. I did put her inside for a good
part of Sunday and on half rations, not that she was interested in them
News about Rain, 2006
I am just back in town after driving 1100 miles since Saterday evening.
Rain and I went up to Glasgow, MO to visit Japh and Alice.
Alice is my friend who bird dogged getting Rain for me. Rain is staying with her
for a while, going to duck dog school.
The trip back to my Arkansas homestead without Rain was lonely. Several
times I reached over to the passanger seat to scratch her without
thinking. .....and not having her underfoot in the morning is a little
sad. Gonna be a long month or so.
Rain is hunting, but not well. She is very 'birdy' and really wants to
hunt, but is still very much the puppy on retrieves. She has an
excellent nose and can find downed birds well (after settling down some
first), but the retrieves seem to be a show off time and play toy.
Hopefully Alice will help her with that. Still, she has the right idea,
is not gun shy.
Rain is very popular with all hands at the Museum. Too much so, as
sometimes she seems to have begging down to a science. She also
loves gloves. If any (and there are alot of them here) are down where
she can find them, they are gone. About a third get chewed up, but the
others she will bring back.
I will let you know how she does at dog school.
August 5, 2006
So Rain has brothers now. Do hope they are not afflicted with the
'eat everything' and grazing the grass to dirt syndroms that Rain has.
Other then that and a teenage kind of mischief which we are addressing,
she is doing very well. I will hunt her next month but only when there
aren't any real dogs around as she is still full of puppy and will
forget her manners as soon as she sees another dog.
January 18, 2006
Rain made her first retrieve about two weeks ago of doves. Not much
perttier then seeing your dog come running back wih a mouth full of
feathers.. Needed some help, but she sure has the right idea. A very
birdy dog, but still so young there is not much holding her back so I
have to use a check cord all the time. Sorta hard to shoot when you
have a 60 lb dog yanking your arm.
She is doing better and now returns about 92% of the time when
called.....immediately. Rest of the time it's still optional. And still
digs grass up by the mouthful. Am trying to break her of that before
our grounds guy does it wih a shovel.
Rain has gotten even more curley....and leggy. Sure hope she doesn't make the 80 plus pounds the
vet sez she will.
Tudoring is in her immediate future. Next week most likely. Meanwhile,
we are going fishing this coming week end in north Arkansas, which means
she can swim all she wants in something other then our fountain.
News about Rain, 2005
November 21, 2005
Rain looks more chessie every day. She is completely curly across her
back and sides. Same hard nose adttitude as well. In addition, she
has developed a serious drug problem I think. Grass and coke seem to be
her favorite chew up items. Huge bare spots all over the museum
grounds, and every time she heads into the blacksmith shop she eats
lumps of coke that have fallen under the forges.....
Come, sit, stay are down solid about 85% of the time. The rest she
seems to think they are suggestions.
And riding in the truck is now being looked forward to.
Dummy work is still fun time, although she still has a bad habit of
running past me wide on the right side and circling around to the left
before dropping the dummy. We are getting close to being able to
possibly do actual field work on doves in December, but that will depend
on getting comesitstay down very close to solid every time without
Rain loves all the musuem visitors and is learning proper southern
manners. Unbounded joy is being restrained...as well as licking little
children half to death.
Rain does have a pet cat she tries to carry around by the scruff of the
neck. They are good buddies and eat the same potted plant.
October 7, 2005
Rain continues to plough the lawn. Her increased size translates into
bigger areas of kneaded turf. She is now spending about a third or her
time in the air and "off" is only partly understood. Getting closer,
but still no cigar.
We have fetching down pretty well, at least untill a leaf blows across
the yard or somebody new appears. Going into her kennel has become
second nature, 'stay' means only while dad watches.
Going to work ( ie sitting or laying by my desk) has not been too
successful yet, as the shredded copy of our annual audit attests.
Field work is fun and she is staying reasonably close. Hope to start
gun work next month and possibily try doves in late December.
August 2, 2005
Her nose goes down and the four furry paws crank into motion and everything in
her path gets eaten. Rocks, twigs, bark, fritos, bugs, cat crap,
grapes, dead crawdads from the night heron nests. Nothing gets past
her. I might start renting her out for yard cleaning or detailing
under kitchen cabinets.
Still cute and still fighting juniper trees or bushes. Found out about
cayenne pepper plants this morning. And starting to play fetch with
some degree of success........unless something grabs her attention.