Sunnynook Large Munsterlanders

The K2 Litter

Joe & Sheila Schmutz, R.R. 2 Box 123, Saskatoon, SK Canada S7K 3J5

last updated 30 November 2021 by Sheila & Joe Schmutz

The Sunnynook K2 litter is planned for early 2022. The prospective parents are Sunnynook's Zenaida "Zeni" and Aiko von Sundorph. This would be Zeni's fourth litter (Sunnynook's D2, E2, F2 [Progeny Performance Award]). It would be Aiko's second litter. He received a Progeny Performance Award for his first litter: Prairie Fire's A Litter.

We are looking for hunter-owners who will do justice to the diligent and performance-based breeding that went into these two dogs and their ancestries on two continents.

Sunnynook's Zenaida "Zeni", the Proposed Dam

Sunnynook’s Zenaida “Zeni” (Whelped Feb 2013), like all our dogs at Sunnynook Kennel, is 2/3 kennel- and 1/3 house dog. By nature, Zeni can be driven, over the top, yet this also means she is no slouch when things get tough hunting. In her outdoor run, for example, she sometimes barks or paces late in the day when she decides it is time for indoors or supper. Yet in the house or vehicle, she calmly rests for hours on end.

As a young dog in the field, Zeni was prone to losing control of her desire and needed firm handling on those occasions. Now, with the training Zeni had for field testing and hunting, and with her hunting experience, she is a joy to hunt with. The young Zeni might have been prone to take out a planted bird that was close and visible to her. Now, we call her the shrub/tree pointer. She can be so cautious not to accidentally "bump" a bird that she points and holds at the slightest whiff of even old scent.

Zeni loves people but needs time to ‘warm up’ to strangers. With other dogs, she is insecure and prefers they just leave her alone. She’d rather hunt than socialise.

Zeni has proven her hunting abilities at all three levels of VHDF-Canada field testing. This testing tradition borrows extensively from the Austrian/Czech Republic/German breed management system having test subjects mimic actual hunting, on land and water, before and after the shot.

In the sharp-tailed grouse retrieve pictured, for example, she was a perfect member of our hunting team. She knew what to do and did it throughout the point, holding through the flush, the shot, marking the fall accurately in dense shrubs, and retrieving without delay. The only verbal prompting she needed was to sit on delivery. Zeni's eyes are closed being so close to the wing of the bird. The grouse was retrieved gently as usual without a mark on its body.

Another hunting photo shows Zeni on a distant point – she moves with purpose in the field and ranges out widely in open country. Here, her point is backed by her hunting buddy Otus vom Ahler Esch; a diligent and cooperative response that she also readily displays in return.

Now approaching 9 years old, Zeni is still healthy, free of hip-dysplasia, and hunts with endurance. Based on DNA testing, she is not a carrier of brown colour nor of Black Hair Follicular Dysplasia.

Zeni passed a conformation test and thereby conforms to the international breed standard, established by the parent club in Germany. Zeni is an above average sized female standing 62 cm at the withers, 67 cm long, and weighs 63 lbs. Her overall conformation ranking is Excellent in body and Very Good in coat.

Zeni's xrays were rated Excellent and elbows Normal. She obtained a score of Very Good in HAE (68) and Very Good in AHAE (159) a 186 (Very Good) in PE in the Versatile Hunting Dog Federation testing system. Detailed scores below.

Hunting Aptitude Evaluation (HAE) Scores

Name Search Pointing Tracking Water Nose Desire Cooperation Total
Zenaida 9 9 10 10 10 10 10 68
Aiko 8 10 3 10 8 9 10 56

Advanced Hunting Aptitude Evaluation (AHAE) Scores

Name Search Pointing Duck Search Nose Desire Cooperation Steadiness Retrieve Shot Bird Marked Water Retrieve Blind Water Entry Game Drag Obedience Total
Zenaida 9 9 10 10 10 7 7 9 9 9 9 6 159
Aiko 8 10 5 9 9 8 8 7 3 5 7 6 134

PE Scores

Name Water Search Search Behind Duck Field Search Pointing Backing Nose Desire Cooperation Blind Water Retrieve Steadiness Retrieve Shot Bird Drag Obedience Total
Zenaida 8 9 10 10 9 10 8 9 3 10 8 10 9 186
Aiko 7 11 10 9 1 10 9 6 10 4 4 8 5 157

Aiko von Sundorph, proposed sire of the Sunnynook K2 Litter

Aiko von Sundorph, was whelped in February 2017 in Germany and lives in Saskatoon with Les & Patty Piecowye. He’s currently the only dog in the household and happily hunts for virtually the entire household of hunters. Aiko stands out for being quiet and a perfect companion in the house and vehicle. He does not bark.

Les also joins his hunting friends and then Aiko hunts alongside English Pointers, Golden Retrievers and other breeds. He hunts well with other dogs when, naturally, competition for birds and excessive milling around the vehicle is avoided, in the presence of other males.

Aiko excels at handling birds well. In hunting, Aiko is allowed to choose his own hunting range. He applies his nose well and points birds cautiously and cooperatively.

Like Zeni, Aiko has also been tested at all three VHDF levels. Aiko’s scores show variable performance, low one time and high another. Aiko, it seems, has little enthusiasm for training and testing situations, but takes his hunting very seriously. For example, as a young dog he watched other dogs track pheasants in testing and decided he would hunt out the pheasant with a high nose instead of using the track. Yet, in at least one memorable case, Aiko picked up the scent of a winged Hungarian partridge, tracked it for 300 m, and delivered it to Les. In Aiko's second VHDF Performance Evaluation, he tracked a winged duck 50 m across a milfoil choked pond and into dense cattails, where he captured the duck and delivered it to hand.

With the benefit of age-adjusted bird exposure for three levels of field testing and a few years of hunting, Aiko has become a special dog, one we are pleased to introduce into our Sunnynook line. Les describes Aiko as: "an exceptional bird finder holding birds well including on wide casts. He backs other dogs on point; retrieves reliably on land and from water – the bigger the goose the better. Aiko has not lost a bird during the last two seasons. Aiko respects another dog’s prior retrieve, is not aggressive to other dogs male or female, and insists on visiting with other dogs in the dog park. "

Like Zeni and all Large Munsterlander raised by breeder members of the Large Munsterlander Association of Canada, Aiko also conforms to the international standard. Aiko stands 67 cm at withers, 69 cm long and weighs 75 lbs.

Aiko was radiographed at 18 months and his hips were rated Good-Excellent, and elbows normal. He obtained a score of 56 in HAE in the Versatile Hunting Dog Federation testing system, but did not pass because of his tracking score. He received a 134 (Good) in AHAE and 144 (Good) in PE, detailed scores above. Aiko also passed (6, Good) the 4 hour blood tracking test of VHDF-Canada in Fall 2021. His conformation evaluation results were Body: Very Good, Coat: Very Good. He has been DNA tested by HealthGene and does not carry brown coat color or Black Hair Follicular Dysplasia.

Zeni and Aiko as a Pair

Zeni and Aiko are largely unrelated without any common ancestors over three generations. Aiko therefore brings new blood into our Sunnynook line.

With its primary emphasis on proven working and health characteristics, the international breed standard stipulates that LMs must be black and white. Zeni is described as "ticked" for the flecks of black and roan patches scattered in the otherwise white portion of the coat. Aiko is "plated" with little or no black flecks or roan, only big, black plates. Given that Zeni carries plated, we expect the same colour spread among their offspring, some ticked and some plated.

Both dogs are proven performers in the field, in health and in conformation, as are nearly all of their ancestors on their pedigrees. As Zeni is a natural retriever, she might compensate for Aiko’s small blemish in that regard. Conversely Aiko's quiet nature could balance Zeni's tendency to bark in the kennel.

The pedigree of the proposed K2 Litter is shown below.

Explanation of abbreviations in the pedigree above

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