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Gun Dog 2012 Holiday Gift Guide

Gun Dog 2012 Holiday Gift Guide

If you're having trouble trying to fill the stocking of the hunter in your family, take a second to check out our Christmas list. We've got everything a dog lover/bird shooter could want this season, and we're sure it will put some holiday cheer on the face of any avid Gun Dog reader. If your hunter is in line for a shotgun, take a look at the latest and greatest from Benelli, Beretta and Stoeger. Just got a new gun dog? Consider training the pooch with an e-collar from DT Systems or SportDOG. And if your shooter is a connoisseur of fine liquor, Bird Dog Blackberry Whiskey is the ticket.

Beretta A400 Xplor Light

This Beretta A400 12-gauge shotgun weighs about six pounds and combines Beretta's Blink operating system with a nickel/chromium/molybdenum Steelium barrel and Beretta's new Micro-Core recoil pad in a light-recoiling, gas-operated upland shotgun. A new gas piston coupled with a rotating bolt head and slick feeding system provides perfect cycling with 2 3„4- and 3-inch shells. The stock and fore-end are of select Grade II oil-finished checkered walnut, and the polymer trigger guard contributes to this gun's light weight. The A400 Light is also available with Beretta's Kick-Off recoil-killing system.

Price: [imo-slideshow gallery=17],500

Dokken DeadFowl Trainer

The DeadFowl Trainer has helped dogs everywhere become better hunters and retrievers and, in the process, given them great exercise between seasons. All popular gamebirds, ranging from Canada honkers to ringneck rooster pheasants, have a firm foam body that looks and feels real. A hard plastic head encourages any dog to pick up the dummy by the body, which leads to correct fetching habits on live birds.

Price: $30 to $50

D.T. Systems H20 1800 Plus Series

Though D.T. Systems offers a multitude of models in its product line, the H2O PLUS 1800 series is popular with a wide range of gun dog owners because of its basic, do-it-all design and the many options that can be added to customize this tool. All H2O 1800 PLUS units have a one-mile range, 16 levels of nick and constant stimulation, and a waterproof collar-receiver and transmitter. More stimulation levels are available with the higher numbers. The transmitter has a new no-slip/soft-grip rubber coating and floats. The 1830 PLUS also includes special Jump and Rise stimulation options, and the 1850 PLUS comes with a beeper/locator as well. The 1850 is expandable to a two-dog system.

Price: $240 to $350

Garmin Astro 320/DC 40

Your hunt just got a lot more simplified. The Garmin Astro 320 and DC 40 system is a powerful GPS collar and transmitter that tracks up to 10 dogs at a time, at a distance of up to nine miles away. View in map form exactly where your dog is at all times and whether he's pointing, resting or running. Activity logs, covey counters and improved mapping support make for an all-around useful hunting tool.

Price: $650

SportDOG C9

Vitamins aren't just for humans anymore. SportDOG's new Canine Athlete line introduces its C9 Performance Vitamins, a blend of essentials that help keep a dog in peak condition by supporting recovery time. Heart health, tissues and muscle structure will all be reinforced with these chewable wafers that dogs eagerly gobble up. Hearing, sense of smell and vision are also aided with this all-natural formula.

Price: $25

SportDOG TEK 1.0

This new system provides one of the major innovations in e-collar technology by combining the traditional e-collar with GPS. With the TEK 1.0, a hunter can control any dog plus track his location on the screen of a handheld transmitter. This combination can reach up to seven miles and be used on 12 dogs at once. The TEK 1.0 is available in two formats based on a single transceiver. The model TEK 1.0L system has tracking only, and the model TEK 1.0LT includes GPS plus an e-collar for stimulation up to 99 levels, as well as vibration and tone.

With either format, the TEK transceiver has a crystal-clear, backlit display and includes an integrated electronic compass. Batteries are rechargeable and last over 20 hours during continuous use. Everything is waterproof.

Price: $540 to $750

Stoeger Uplander Supreme

With a gold trigger, sleek shape and beautiful wood, the Uplander Supreme 20-gauge side-by-side shotgun looks like a classic upland gun, but it has updates that modern hunters appreciate: an automatic safety, a tough steel receiver and multiple choke options. It could become the default gun you reach for in the field.

Price: $399 to $679

Tri-Tronics Sport Upland G3

Much more compact than most advanced e-collar systems, the Tri-Tronics Sport Upland G3 manages to contain a multitude of features: 10 levels of momentary stimulation, 10 levels of continuous stimulation, half- mile range, eight-second safety cutoff, multi-dog selection and remote Tracer Light operation. As a plus, the new included beeper weighs only three ounces and has eight possible sound combinations.

Price: $369

Bird Dog Blackberry Whiskey

Blended with white oak barrel-aged Kentucky bourbon whiskey and blackberry flavors, Bird Dog goes down smooth. Perfect straight up, on the rocks or coupled with your favorite cocktail, the bottle and cork stopper are reminiscent of the old days. Bird Dog was nationally recognized in 2010, taking home a gold medal at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition.

Price: $18

Benelli Legacy

The Benelli Legacy 12, 20 and 28-gauge shotguns are built for hunters who can appreciate distinctive style and a dependable shotgun. Each gun is built around the Inertia Driven system and has all the refinements and detail that shooters have come to expect from this company. This stock is cut from hand-selected AA-grade walnut to compliment the classic game scene etchings in the lower receiver, and polished blued upper receiver.

Price: [imo-slideshow gallery=17],759 to gallery=17,369

Cabela's Dangerous Hunts 2013

If you think buck fever is bad, just imagine what happens to your heart — and your shooting — when an elephant is bearing down. Now you can find out during an exciting round of Cabela's Dangerous Hunts. OK, maybe a video game isn't the same as facing down Africa's Big 5, but with dual heartbeat monitors and a motion-sensing infrared camera, the new Top Shot Fearmaster controller does add another dimension to this popular game series. Even the animals are smarter, with artificial intelligence software that learns as you play to put you in ever-advancing challenges as you make your way through the game.

Price: $60

Marie Fritz Perry Custom Portrait

Hunting for the perfect gift? This holiday season, give your dog lovers something they'll truly appreciate: a custom canine pastel portrait by artist Marie Fritz Perry. Choose a gift certificate for a framed custom portrait of that special canine companion, or a gift certificate for the framed custom hunting scene your hunter has always dreamed of. Marie works from your photographs to design a special canine painting just for you!

Price: Portrait, $495; Hunting scene, [imo-slideshow gallery=17],295

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