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OLREANS COUNTY â€“ The North East Kingdom has a new leashed dog tracker for hunting. Ashley Buffum received her license August 25 after passing a test and training her dog, Daisy Duke, a two-year-old Treeing Walker (Coon Hound).
Daisy Duke is a rescue dog from the Pope Memorial Animal Shelter in Orleans. Buffum adopted the dog after she determined her other dog needed a companion, and now the two dogs are best friends. Her other dog, Aspen, a German Shorthaired Pointer, is a grouse hunter, and Daisy Duke was tried out in that role. She was successful - including treeing a partridge, but it was discovered she was better at tracking big game.
Buffum, a veterinarian technician and avid hunter, discovered Daisy Dukeâ€™s talent while she was hunting herself and decided to work on training her. It took about four months, but now Daisy Duke is able to track the blood of deer, moose, and bear.
If a hunter wounds an animal and canâ€™t find it, the hunter can call Buffum at any hour and in any weather condition, and she will respond with Daisy Duke to find the animal.
Buffum is licensed to a carry a handgun at all hours, so if the animal is found and dying, Buffum can complete the job.
Buffum says that now hunters donâ€™t just have to give up if they lose the animal they hit.
Buffum is very pleased that she found work for Daisy Duke to do. â€śNow she has a purpose in life, and she is good at it,â€ś Buffum said.
There is no charge for Buffum and Daisy Dukeâ€™s services but donations are accepted. Buffum is willing to travel about 50 miles from her home in Island Pond but will travel further in special circumstances, she said. Her license includes all of Vermont.
To contact Ashley Buffum, call 802-673-3969.