I’m very lucky to have access to Salisbury Plain Training Area in which to train the dogs. There are thousands of acres of prime training area, teeming with wildlife, unspoiled by man – apart from the odd tank or two!
Anyway, we were up on the training area the other day having booked out through Range Control and I was hunting Poppy up through some scrubby land with my dummy launcher at the ready to ensure her steadiness to shot. Just as I was about to fire, a salvo of 155mm artillery shells landed in the impact area some 6km away with a huge bang and clouds of smoke. The ground shook and the customary “crump” was impressive. I have seen and heard (and caused!) such explosions many times, but Poppy had never heard anything like it. Her bottom hit the floor in a way I had never seen before! I think she was thinking “blimey, that’s one hell of a dummy launcher you’ve got there, Dad. I’m not going to move a muscle!”.
If only I could call on the Royal Artillery to help me out again with training the sit to (big) shot?