Young Caleigh is just 8 months old. Her name is Gaelic for 'kitchen party' ... a Cape Breton musical celebration where families and friends gather in their kitchens to dance, sing and play their instruments.
Caleigh is a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever or Toller. This is one of the most unusual breeds of gundog in how the dog works. The hunter stays hidden in a blind and sends the dog out to romp and play near the water, usually by tossing a ball or stick to be retrieved. Just like the fox, the dog's activity and white markings pique the curiosity of waterfowl, who swim over to investigate. The act of enticing or luring game to approach is known as "tolling". When the birds are close, the hunter calls the dog back to the blind, then rises, putting the birds to flight, allowing him a shot. The Toller then retrieves any downed birds.
There were no birds to fetch for Caleigh today. She was patiently resting under a picnic table while her human worked on his laptop.