It’s no secret that we are dog people at Garden & Gun. Staffers’ pups are regularly underfoot at the office. The Good Dog columns make us cry (every damn time). And we look forward to our annual dog covers almost as much as our readers do. Peetie, an English cocker spaniel, was our first official cover dog, appearing on the March/April 2008 issue. But it wasn’t until 2011 that man’s best friend became a fixture on December/January covers. Since then, we’ve photographed noble retrievers, proud pointers, and regal setters.
To celebrate our tenth anniversary, we brought together three of our favorite canine cover stars at George Hi Plantation in Garland, North Carolina. Rimi, owned by associate editor Elizabeth Hutchison’s family, is a seven-year-old golden retriever who spends most winter weekends in a duck blind near Rimini, South Carolina. Deke is an eight-year-old British Labrador retriever owned by Mike Stewart of
Mississippi’s Wildrose Kennels, and the current Ducks Unlimited mascot. BB, a six-year-old English setter, belongs to George Hi’s general manager, Dan O’Connor, and regularly works the quail fields around her North Carolina home. They’re our idea of perfect cover models—and they happily work for treats.