The Hendry Spaniels

Last updated - March 2015

My wife and I are keen supporters of all Field Sports and marched at all of the various Countryside rallies. Our interest and enthusiasm stems from our love of working spaniels and our daughter's passion for all things equine, including hunting. Our dogs are all working dogs during the season but they are a constant joy for an entire twelve months. Their love and loyalty is unconditional (well maybe food has a small part to play!) and they are a never ending source of fascination and amusement. 

Generally speaking I work in the beating line with my cocker spaniel Tag, where Eileen spends some of her days in picking up with her team of cockers, Ruraich, Sgriobag, and the newest member Dris. General we manage to do between 20 and 30 days out in the season. Eileen would love to do more beating but is not as mobile as she might be due to dodgy joints and tends to get stuck on fences, or fall into ditches or on one notable occasion between two fallen trees, ending up a bit like a cast ewe until rescued. (Although her dogs learn to come to her rescue and stand providing an aid to allow her to haul herself up!)

As of May 2014 Tag has taken on an apprentice - Bhreac. For details see below!!

 Ruraich - Harrington Bates


Ruraich was born 03 June 2005. Possibly the cutest puppy ever he has grown into a very handsome dog. His name translates from the Gaelic as to rummage and explore. He had to join Eileen's as a picking up dog a bit sooner than she would have liked after one of her older cockers broke a shoulder. As with everything he does he took to it like an old pro. He is a wonderful happy little dog with a huge desire to please and as a result, despite being used regularly for picking up, he seems to be able to adjust to working in the beating line. (most of the time!) 

For the season 2010-2011 Ruraich had to work extra hard on picking up duty being the only member of a team of 1 due to Eileen losing her old cocker Dubh and sadly his son Pye . As usual Ruraich rose to the challenge. Now has two younger members to assist but he still the "main man". He provides Eileen with a huge amount of enjoyment, working tirelessly whether beating or picking up, and as importantly just being there.

Taghan - Rothievale Endeavour


Taghan was born 23 December 2005 and came all the way from Aberdeen, although one of his litter brothers has managed to get even further currently living in New Zealand!! His name is Gaelic for “pine martin”. Like his mentor Jek he was quite a soft little pup and showed little interest in dummies and bramble bashing although he was always a bit speedier than Jek. Once out working his natural ability came through, hunting with style and enthusiasm and quite happy to indulge in a bit of bramble bashing when required. 

I will always remember one of his early retrieve was whilst I was pigeon shooting in February 2008. I had thought that I had hit one particular pigeon but I had not seen it come down. Later on whilst walking back I allowed Tag and Jek to hunt on through the wood. Imagine my delight when Tag appeared with a pigeon in his mouth. Not sure who was more pleased that he had found it and picked without any input from me, the dog or me! He is also quite useful round the house especially at locating and fetching my mobile phone.

Sgriobag - Codfitz Aubers


Sgriobag, born 2010 - Named after a Gaelic program Sgriobag which translates as "Get Squiggling" in the English! This is due to the fact that he was without doubt one of the wiggliest, waggliest, squirmiest, cocker puppies in the world, and remains so to this day! Does have an interesting method of drinking, forsaking the standard lapping behaviour in favour of immersing his entire muzzle in water bowl and blowing bubbles with his nose!! His name is shortened to Scree more often than not. 

A super little dog with a soft and loving nature, a joy to have around and impossible to watch without smiling. Being a sensitive little soul he needed careful handling and lots of praise and encouragement but has developed into a very useful little all round gundog both beating and picking up.

Dris - Codfitz Sambre


Dris born 2012 - Gaelic for Bramble - is a full brother to Scree. He is smaller and certainly finer built than his older brother. He also has a very different personality to his brother Scree being a lot sharper, That he had the makings of a good little gun dog was evident early on when whilst out on one of his first walks along a farm track he disappeared into the undergrowth and re-appeared carrying a dead partridge in his mouth which he brought to Eileen. (Suspect it had been hit by a car). 

Now a fully fledged member of Eileen's team, having retrieved partridge, pheasant, and woodcock. He also goes out beating and has achieved his KC Good Citizen's Bronze award.

Bhreac - Ashford Sonny Spot

   Bhreac born 7 April 2014 - Gaelic for Speckled. The latest recruit to join the pack. A blue roan, it is amazing how his coat has changed from mainly white with black flecking as a puppy (on the left) to to black with white flecking at 7 months old. (on the right)

He had his first full season 2015-16 out beating with me almost all of the days we were out. Initially he walked at heel whilst Tag worked but latterly he got to work alongside Tag and on occasionally on his own. As was hoped he proved a worthy apprentice to Taghan, rarely putting a paw wrong and hunting heavy cover. He has also had an occasional retrieve finding and retrieving a big cock pheasant on at least a couple of occasions. Never ceased to be amazed how lucky I am with my canine partners.

Please excuse the soppy bit next but the guys deserve it...

In memory to the dogs that have gone before and given us so much pleasure and joy with their devotion, hard work and undeniable sense of fun

Midge - Castle Boy 1994 - 2005


My first spaniel that I ever actual got to work. Could be a bit of a hooligan but a more gentle and sweet natured dog would be hard to find.


Dubh - Lord of Discovery 1997 - 2010

Eileen's first working dog. Taught her everything she knows, with successes in working trials and a super picking up dog!

Jek - Dockholme Dew Drop 1999 - 2010

My "Best Buddy". Nuff said.

Pye - Pyroclastic Cloud 2010 - 2010

Dubh's son. Lived up to his name to the end despite being almost as big an invalid as his owner.

Until we meet again.

"When the Man waked up he said, 'What is Wild Dog doing here?' And the Woman said, 'His name is not Wild Dog any more, but the First Friend, because he will be our friend for always and always and always.'" - Rudyard Kipling - Just so Stories "The rapport between dog and human is at its strongest and most profound when the dog is fulfilling its working instincts under human guidance" - Jackie Drakeford

Links to videos of the dogs on YouTube.....

An Infestation of Cocker Spaniels

Jek and Taghan - two working Cocker Spaniels

Jek and Taghan - Working Cocker Spaniels



Sgriobag - Latest addition to the Hendry Pack

Dubh and Pye - two working Cocker Spaniels

The Gang - our working spaniels - Past and Present

Ruraich and Ghillie - a Cocker Spaniel and an Irish Water Spaniel

High Diving Pye - The Flying Cocker 1    &   The Flying Cocker 2

For anyone reading this who is against Field Sports I will respect your point of view, providing you respect mine and enjoy the pictures of the dogs. For those of you who have not given it much thought, visit a local Gamefair and talk to the people, watch the dogs work and then you can decide. To all if you recognise us or our dogs anywhere, we are often at the various Gamefairs running the dogs in the scurries etc., do come and say hello!!