Gun dog owners are, almost without exception, fiercely loyal to their chosen breeds. Last year the guys at Pheasants Forever tapped into that loyalty to raise money for conservation with a contest to find the most popular gundogs.

Dubbed “Bird Dogs For Habitat,” the campaign raised $48,000 that went directly into conservation programs. My beloved chessies didn’t win last year (that honor went to the vizsla, which raised $5,877) but I (and everyone else) will get a chance at redemption because the Bird Dogs For Habitat campaign is back.

From the Pheasant Forever website:

What’s your favorite bird dog breed? Pheasants Forever’s second annual “Bird Dogs for Habitat” campaign challenges upland hunters to cast a vote and make a donation on behalf of their favorite dog. All tax-deductible donations support Pheasants Forever’s wildlife habitat conservation mission – and the places where bird dogs love to hunt.

_Through online credit card payments, Pheasants Forever will accept contributions placed in support of 45 different breeds of bird dogs. Each $1 donated is equal to one vote for that bird dog breed. In other words, a $100 donation is equal to 100 votes for a particular bird dog breed. U.S. Bank and its Pheasants Forever Visa Card program have started the donations off with a $5,000 contribution, which will be evenly distributed among all breeds.

Last year’s first-ever Bird Dogs for Habitat campaign raised more than $48,000, which all directly supported Pheasants Forever’s wildlife habitat efforts. That first campaign included just 25 breeds for people to vote and donate on behalf. That number has expanded to 45 breeds to represent virtually all sporting dog owners. Last year’s winning breed was the Vizsla, which accrued $5,877 in contributions. As an added incentive to this year’s campaign, all Pheasants Forever Dog Life Memberships sold at $500 each during December will also count toward that breed’s vote total.

To donate, click on your favorite bird dog breed below and make a donation in the amount you so desire. Visit the site after you make your donation to see your tax-deductible contribution added to your breed.

“It’s been said, one of the best conservation tools is a well-trained bird dog, which we hope this contest proves,” said David Bue, Pheasants Forever’s Vice President of Development, an avid pheasant hunter and a proud Vizsla owner, “No matter what breed you own, or what dollar amount you can give, the Bird Dogs for Habitat campaign is a fun way to support our four-legged friends and the habitat they love to roam with us in search of pheasants and quail.”_

What’s cool is that not only can you see pics of all 45 gundog breeds (there’s even a category for mixed-breed dogs) but you can see a real-time tally of how each breed is doing. It’s a fun way to show your breed loyalty while giving a little that will do a lot for a good cause. I honestly thought labs would take it last year, but the vizslas pulled it out. Which dog do you think will make it this year?