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Dog Willing – Craig Koshyk the Dog Historian of a Generation

Dog Willing – Craig Koshyk the Dog Historian of a Generation

The history of hunting dogs is preserved in the iconic Pointing Dog volumes thanks to the lifelong dedication of dog historian and author Craig Koshyk.

Engaging in conversation with Craig is a bit like indulging in the world’s most fascinating choose-your-own-adventure story. The plot possibilities are endless. Do you want to ask about that European village he just mentioned? Turn to page 34. Ask him to repeat that odd dog breed name that went over your head by turning to page 77. Otherwise, flip the page to see what happens next.

Craig formed his bottomless well of stories and anecdotes over a lifetime of choosing adventure and experience over staying comfortable at home. “When Lisa and I first got together, we promised each other that we would fill our lives and minds with experiences rather than filling our apartment with stuff,” Craig said. Over 36 years later, they have held true to this promise. They have traveled around the world together, often under the guise of researching and photographing hunting dog breeds in their native lands. Along the way, those travels led to genuine connections with fellow dog lovers in every corner of the world.

This film is Presented by Eukanuba Sporting Dog

Although Craig is now known as one of the world’s leading experts on pointing dogs and their history, he didn’t initially set out to achieve such lofty ambitions. Rather, he just wanted to know a little bit more about his own dog.

Ten years later, Pointing Dogs Volume One: The Continentals was born. For many people, myself included, this book served as a window into a world of pointing dogs we hadn’t even imagined. Sure, everyone has heard of a German Shorthaired Pointer, but what about a Stabyhund or a Pachón Navarro? My own interest in my dog breed of choice was born within the pages of this book, thanks to Craig’s insatiable curiosity and his pact with Lisa to pursue experience over material goods.

There’s a certain amount of confidence needed to title your ten-years-in-the making tome “Volume One,” but there was never any question in Craig’s mind that Volume Two would eventually follow. It was disingenuous to only write about the continental European dogs without covering the British and Irish breeds—Pointers
and the various setters—whose genes have been used to create and improve countless other breeds throughout history. Pointing Dogs Volume Two: The British and Irish Breeds crosses the English Channel to discover the real stories of the Pointer, English Setter, Gordon Setter, Irish Red and White Setter, and the Irish Setter from people who have dedicated their lives to them. Craig then followed those breeds around the world to understand how they hunted, tested, and competed in countries outside of their homelands. Once again, ten years after starting the journey, he put the last words on paper for what is bound to be another cornerstone of canine literature and knowledge.

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