ARTICLES OF INTEREST


20 YEARS OF CLASSIC SETTERS AT GOOD GO ING  
By Jason Gooding


Nineteen eighty eight was a pivotal year for Good Go Ing Kennels.  It was the year Errol Gooding, my father, left his position as a Nursing Home Administrator.  He returned to the dog business full time, a career he originally began in 1966, working for Hall of Fame Retriever Trainer Bill Wunderlick at North Oaks Kennels.  Nineteen eighty eight was also the year Good Go Ing Kennels began raising English Setters.   

It started with our Classic (Ryman) Line.  We were first introduced to these regal bird dogs by a long time friend and customer, Dave Samuel.  Mr. Samuel was an avid grouse hunter in northern Wisconsin and had acquired two Ryman type setters from a kennel out east.  We raised a litter of puppies from these two dogs, Rymanís Ruff Tyler and DeCoverlyís Fancy Lady, that year and had also begun to acquire some additional puppies and young dogs to evaluate for possible brood stock in our new venture.  

The standout from that summer was a young female named Abbie, registered as GOODGOING (GGI) RYMAN ABBIE.  She arrived here from West Virginia at about 3 months of age and in no time was finding and pointing birds like a pro.  She took to the gun easily and was a natural retriever.  It was amazing to see such a young dog work a field, then to find and point game so easily.  Walking up on her points and shooting game over her and watch her return the bird to hand was a true delight.  As Abbie developed, she was a joy to train and hunt over, from Wisconsin to Montana .  My pride intensified as she was also the first pointing dog I finished training on my own.  

GOODGOING RYMAN ABBIE 
(OFA: G)
RYMAN'S BLUE RETURN RYMAN'S BLUE PATCH RYMANíS STEADFAST PRIDE
RYMANíS AUTUMN WHISPER
BELLE ELEGANT RYMANíS BIG MAC
RYMANíS GROUSE HOLLY
RYMAN'S ORANGE HEATHER RYMAN'S BIG MAC RYMANíS DECOVERLY BRIER
RYMANíS WHISPERETTE
RYMAN'S LADY BLUE RYMANíS KING SHOHOLA
RYMANíS DIXIE QUEEN

(Figure 1) A pedigree of GOODGOING RYMAN ABBIE Ė DOB: 6/7/1988

The author with Abbie in 1988

After seeing how well Abbie was developing we were able to acquire some of her littermates and a few younger sisters over the next few years from repeat breedings of their parents, Rymanís Blue Return and Rymanís Orange Heather.  The most notable of these additional dogs were, GGI Ryman Kelly, GGI Ryman Holly, GGI Ryman Judy and GGI Ryman Jane.  Abbie and Judy are still seen throughout todayís GGI pedigrees.   

Abbieís first litter was by GGI Wings ďMikeĒ.  Mike was a shooting dog type setter, with a strong back ground in grouse dog trial lines.  Both of his parents and a brother were Grand National Grouse Champions.  This was to be our third attempt at a cross like this.  The first of these crosses was by Kelly, Abbieís litter sister, to Spring Garden Buck.  The second was by Abbieís younger sister, Holly.  She was bred to Namekagon Zeke.  We acquired Mike from Dr. Paul Hauge of Centuria , WI .  Who also owned Buck and Zeke.  

Each of these breedings produced a nice litter of puppies and we also learned some valuable information for the future.  We learned we could utilize setters with a shooting dog background as an outcross for our Ryman bred setters.  We easily maintained and even enhanced their natural talent for hunting.  The Ryman conformation and hunting style was also evident in the pups.  This was important, because we didnít what to drastically change the look or style of the Ryman setter.  But little did we know the best was yet to come.    

For Abbieís next litter we were searching for an outside sire from Classic type lines.  We decided on Classic Autumn Aspen, located at an English Setter kennel near St. Louis , MO.   From what we learned from his owners, Frank and Fran Thompson of Classic Setters and others about him and his breeding, he sounded like a nice fit.  This mating produced GGI Ryman Abra and GGI Ryman Aspen.   

GGI Ryman Judyís first litter was sired by Pusker T. Nunu.  Pusker was an experienced grouse dog from northern Wisconsin , a natural bird dog that pleased his owner with very little training.  The subsequent litter produced GGI Ryman Ames, GGI Ryman Wine ďBrandyĒ and GGI Ryman Starr.  We had two litters from Aspen and Pusker and both proved successful.  We accomplished our goals of adding a few nice young dogs to our breeding program and having some nice pups to sell to our customers. 

GOODGOING CLASSIC GAIL
 
(OFA: G)

GOODGOING CLASSIC ABBY
 
(OFA: G)

 

GOODGOING RYMAN AMES
 (OFA: G) 
PUSKER T NUNU
 (OFA: G) 
G HANSONíS MIKE               
STONEGATE BRANDYWINE
GOODGOING RYMAN JUDY
 (OFA: G) 
RYMANíS BLUE RETURN
RYMANíS ORANGE HEATHER
GOODGOING RYMAN ABRA
 (OFA: E)
CLASSIC AUTUMN ASPEN
 (OFA: E)
ROLLING ROCK BOOMER
TRANQUILITY THISTLE
GOODGOING RYMAN ABBIE
 (OFA: G)
RYMAN'S BLUE RETURN
RYMAN'S ORANGE HEATHER

(Figure 2) A pedigree of Gail (mother of May) and Abby (mother of Mary).  It shows their connection to the Judy Ė Pusker and Abbie Ė Aspen breedings.  

While we were enjoying these successes, we could also see we were coming to a crossroads with our Classic Setter Line.  Most of our males and females were closely related, leaving our in-house breeding options limited and outside prospects for breeding bleak.  We were fortunate enough to have started with a line of dogs with sound hips that were developing into strong natural bird dogs.  We wanted to keep this going in the right direction.      

We felt we had put together a nice string of setters.  With a desire to at least maintain, if not upgrade the quality of our dogs, continuing on was going to be a challenge.  We brought in several pups to evaluate for possible sires.  Most of these dogs didnít have the qualities we were looking for.  The most notable was a young male named Autumn Grouse George.  He sired a few litters of decent pups, but we still wanted something more.   

In George Rymanís day he would try new crosses from time to time to help maintain and even improve his line of setters.  In more modern times this practice all but stop.  Many breeders wanted to maintain the purity of the Ryman line and in the process almost destroyed it.  With the gene pool becoming more and more limited and health concerns becoming more of an issue, continued line breeding was no longer the responsible thing to do.  Some out crossing was needed.      

GOODGOING BRANNIGAN

In 1993 we acquired a young male from the Smith Setter line, bred by Dick and Nancy Stroup at Needlepoint Kennels.  This litter was the result of frozen semen, the sire died years earlier.  This was one of several such litters the Stroupís had raised.  We named this young male after his father, 4xCH Brannigan, one of the most notable of the 25 plus Smith Setter Champions.  We were originally looking to GOODGOING BRANNIGAN to contribute to our Shooting Dog Setter Line.  Out of necessity and thinking back to our earlier breedings with Mike, Buck and Zeke, we began crossing Brannigan with our classic bred females.  His larger size and OFA Excellent hip rating made him an excellent choice. 

Judy was one of the first bred to Brannigan and had a litter on September 28, 1995.  This breeding was a tremendous follow up for Judy, considering the success of her earlier litter with Pusker.  This first cross with Brannigan produced GGI Classic Bell.  This mating was repeated several times, also producing GGI Classic Jill, GGI Classic Judy (Judy II) and GGI Classic Jane (Jane II).      
                                                                                               

GOODGOING CLASSIC BELL
 (OFA: G)
GOODGOING BRANNIGAN
 (OFA: E) 
4xCH BRANNIGAN 
(OFA: N)
IíM OSCAR
COPPERSMITH
NEEDLEPOINT MAGIE MAE NEEDLEPOINT KING
NEEDLEPOINT FLAIR
GOODGOING RYMAN JUDY
 (OFA: G)
RYMAN'S BLUE RETURN RYMAN'S BLUE PATCH
BELLE ELEGANT
RYMAN'S ORANGE HEATHER RYMAN'S BIG MAC
RYMAN'S LADY BLUE

(Figure 3) A pedigree of GOODGOING CLASSIC BELL .  She was a result of the original Judy Ė Brannigan litter.  This mating was repeated several times and also produced Jill, Judy II and Jane II.  

As we began to see these new Classic pups develop we were very excited.  We achieved our goal of raising the bar and finding a much needed outcross.  The success of the Brannigan cross was also duplicated with Judyís sisters and their daughters from earlier litters.  With this cross we were able to maintain the traditional Ryman look and slower hunting style for which these dogs are famous.  Branniganís contribution was an enhanced bird dog.  We were able to improve their trainability, intensity on point and produce a bird dog that consistently develops into hunting at a young age.  Today our Classic Setters have a strong background of our original Ryman breeding and one or two crosses to Brannigan.  The Brannigan cross, along with improving our line, opened up many new breeding options for us.  

For many years we have been helping John and Sandy Hudson prepare several of their Highmoor Setters for AKC Hunt Tests.  After seeing a few of these dogs develop through training we thought they may be a nice cross for our Classic Setters.  Their setters are bred from a Ryman type background and in more recent years we have utilized a couple of the Highmoor sires with great success.  First, GGI Classic Bell was crossed with Laird of Highmoor, UD, MH ďJamieĒ.  This litter produced GGI Classic Blue.  Blue is proving to be a very solid sire.  More recently, GGI Classic Ann Produced a nice litter with Chieftain of Highmoor, CDX, JH ďLaddieĒ, resulting is GGI Classic Lucy.  Lucy is a stylish and driven hunter with a sweet personality.  Look for her in the future.      

As I have been working with several young dogs this fall from our spring 2008 litters I began to think back on the earlier days, the dogs, the people and the developments that brought us to this point.  The first of these young dogs from this fall was a white & orange female named Maggie.  She resembled Abbie, her great great grandmother, in so many ways, from 20 years earlier.  As I began training her I was impressed with her natural talent and consistency at pointing game.  Different birds in different types of cover, she would point and hold.  In addition to her natural hunting ability, her desire and determination were impressive for her young age of 5 months.   

Soon following Maggie into training were her brother and sister, Hank and Macy, also by GGI Classic Blue and GGI Classic May.  Then came their cousins, Archie and Doc, by Chieftain of Highmoor and GGI Classic Mary.  It has been exciting to watch these young setters develop.  It is pleasing to see that after several generations of breeding how much they resemble the great dogs from the past.  Yet there are definite improvements that standout and the consistency of these traits from puppy to puppy and litter to litter, often amazes even me.       

 

MAGGIE, HANK & MACY GOODGOING CLASSIC BLUE
 (OFA: G)
LAIRD OF HIGHMOOR 
(OFA: G)
RUMS MY BO 
(OFA: F)
RUMS PEARL BUTTON 
(OFA: G)
GOODGOING CLASSIC BELL
 (OFA: G)
GOODGOING BRANNIGAN
 (OFA: E)
GOODGOING RYMAN JUDY 
(OFA: G)
GOODGOING CLASSIC MAY
 (OFA: E)
GOODGOING BRANNIGAN
 (OFA: E)
4xCH BRANNIGAN 
(OFA: N)
NEEDLEPOINT MAGGIE MAE
GOODGOING CLASSIC GAIL
 (OFA: G)
GOODGOING RYMAN AMES  
(OFA: G)
GOODGOING RYMAN ABRA 
(OFA: E)

(Figure 4) A pedigree of the March 2008 litter which produced Maggie, Hank and Macy.

The author with Maggie in 2008

As I write this and reflect on the past I realize Iím only able to mention a portion of the fine dogs that have contributed to this successful line of setters.  Again, as we enjoy our successes and feel confident in our current dogs and breeding options, we must be looking to the future.  While preserving the traits and history of these fine dogs, we must also be looking for ways to improve the breed and willing to try new crosses.  We must always be on the lookout for another Brannigan.  If we donít take these risks we will never see the rewards.