Looking for a little help on a dog decision

Pagosa

Active member
Joined
Nov 13, 2011
Messages
887
Location
Montana
Concerning hound breeds have you read much about the UKC Leopard Hounds? Amazing hounds and great family dogs, and they can be trained to retrieve. I don’t bird hunt with my mine, but he loves to retrieve. They don’t require a heavy hand like normal hound breeds and have good track to tree abilities. The one male I have is very open-mounted on tracks, but is not a real strong tree dog, until I walk to the tree. He is more hot-medium nosed, but has a good treeing average. He has never false treed. They do have varying in temperaments, and are one person/family type of dog. They do have issues like any dog/hound. Good luck with your search, and don’t believe everything a dog trader says.
 

VikingsGuy

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 2, 2017
Messages
2,283
Location
Twin Cities
Before you give up on labs, you may want to check into english/british-style labs. They are a very calm but hard hunting dog - great in the field and great in the house - the brits bread the "stupid" and hyper out of them and I find them the perfect mix of home and field. But of course beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
 

onpoint

Active member
Joined
Feb 12, 2011
Messages
2,027
Location
Gallatin Valley, MT
Before I was a Grif guy, I was a Lab guy. An American, Montanan, intelligent, yellow lab guy. British Labs? Come on............
My wife with Emmett - 1993-2007 - in the Bangtails.
EYJONAS, your wife not being a Lab fan may indicate deeper problems:D
SCAN0029.jpg
 

VikingsGuy

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 2, 2017
Messages
2,283
Location
Twin Cities
My wife hated dogs and labs most of all. After the kids and I finally convinced her to give it a go, she saw the error of her ways and is all in on our Lab. So much so she wants a second and has already picked out a name.


PS - ironically our British lab has been perfect except for her teeth - how cliched.
 

EYJONAS!

Active member
Joined
Mar 17, 2017
Messages
707
Before I was a Grif guy, I was a Lab guy. An American, Montanan, intelligent, yellow lab guy. British Labs? Come on............
My wife with Emmett - 1993-2007 - in the Bangtails.
EYJONAS, your wife not being a Lab fan may indicate deeper problems:D
View attachment 89246
Never thought about it that way.... I can always count on you for "onpoint" advice, I guess we'll just have to see how it plays out. I might just end up with the pooch when it's all said and done and live in a van down by the river. But, hey Ill be one happy dog owner! She can keep the house and the kids;)
 

TheDudeAbides

Active member
Joined
Sep 26, 2015
Messages
490
Location
Rio Verde, Wyoming
So, let me start off by saying my wife has won the decision to purchase our next pooch. That was the trade-off I took over not having anymore kids. I may have lost the battle but in my mind I won the war. I do a lot of lion hunting and have been kicking around the hound idea for a few years now and in my situation I can have hounds where I live so that isn't gonna work. I do a ton of waterfowl hunting also mostly rivers, some big water action some. I'm not a huge upland guy. So here's what I'm looking at, or I should say she's looking at.

My first choice is a lab after a blue tick but that isn't going to work. She isn't a big lab fan love the blue ticks though! However, she's dead set on these wirehaired pointing griffons from Hun Hill Kennels. They look like great dogs from a great upland breeder. I have had some conversations with the guy there and he seems very knowledgeable and cares a lot about his breed and dogs. He was very open to say he's had folks purchase his dogs and use them for waterfowl and have great success. My problem is the wirehaired "pointing" part. These dogs to me are bred for fast action, gotta run, cover country, pointing dogs. Not sit there and wait for a batch of greenheads. I have been reading forums on the breed and haven't seen much negative on the dogs and really none at all actually. Just curious if anyone here has much experience with these griffons or something similar in breed for waterfowl? Any feedback is appreciated.

Thanks
It depends on what climates that you will be hunting.

Cold and Icy Rivers / Lakes -

* It is hard to beat a Chessy. Big bodied retrievers that are impervious to the cold and will retrieve all day and ask for more. Good family dogs that smile exposing their teeth when happy. The Breed is a bit stubborn, which is a word that means that you actually have to work with the dog. Chessies are good family dog and guard dogs. Would be an excellent choice if hunting cold water more often than not. Chessies are shedders, so expect hair in the house.

Warm weather to cool weather, with a vest for cold weather.

* Labs - There is a reason this dog is so popular among duck hunters. The dog is a lot easier to command that a chessy and will give slightly below retrieval performance. It just isn't as big or powerful as the chessy. The breed has a more friendly personality than a chessy. The only issue with labs and being a duck dog is getting bad stock. They are a lot of breeders that have dogs that are not great at hunting and were bred to be more of family pets. Labs are massive shedders, so expect hair in the house.

* Wirehaired Pointing Griffon - The Walking man's hunting dog. Can be trained to be a blind dog, but untrained will probably retrieve the decoys during the hunt. Smart with a personality similar to a lab without the shedding. This is a versatile dog that can be trained to do almost anything. I would put it below the lab on the retriever output, just because the hair tends to catch burrs on the face and between the toes. Really similar as far as retrieving skill set. WPG do not shed a lot and you can avoid a lot of hair in the house by a weekly combing in the backyard.

* Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever - A smaller retriever that is not well known. It would be a good boat or blind dog. A little more spunky personality than a lab and the dog always seems to be happy. Due to smaller size it is probably not the best suited for rivers or oceans with strong currents. This dog is also a shedder.

* German Wirehaired Pointer - Freak Athlete. Hunting Machine. Hunts everything. The most serious clown personality of dog that you could own. Has to be taught to hang in the blind and will roam and hunt. Similar burr issues and shedding to the Griff. Not an ideal dog for super cold weather due to the coat not being as thick as the griff. If you are looking for a duck dog only, then I would pass on a wirehair (I own one).

* Pudel Pointer - Not a poodle and pointer cross, but an actual breed. Similar in a lot of ways to the GWP, but with a less strong personality.

* Boykin Spaniel - Pint size retriever with a big dog personality. Will make the retrieves of the bigger dogs, but due to the stature it is more difficult. This dog is a lot easier to have around the house due to the size. The dog is a moderate shedder.

After this you have an assortment of spaniels, other retrievers, etc that can get the job done.

The most important thing to do is to train your dog and give it proper mental stimulation and exercise. Too many retrievers end the way of the basset hound with too much weight in the middle section. Get a dog from good hunting stock and you'll be on your way.
 

EYJONAS!

Active member
Joined
Mar 17, 2017
Messages
707
Good looking pooch Nameless, thanks for the detailed feedback Mr. Dude.
 

GAdrahthaar

New member
Joined
Jul 18, 2017
Messages
23
OP, Griffons are wonderful waterfowl dogs but you should consider finding a breeder that specializes in waterfowling rather than upland. Even if you go back to buy from the breeder you have already found, it will give you some perspective on how the breed can hunt and what traits within the breed you might want to look for. Any breed has as much variance within the breed as dogs would breed to breed.

Also, you will find that german lineage dogs are, on average, much better trackers than labs. I don't know if a WPG could ever cold track cats like a hound but you can absolutely teach one to track anything reasonably fresh. You might be able to make one into something resembling a lion dog.
 

GAdrahthaar

New member
Joined
Jul 18, 2017
Messages
23
TheDudeAbides offered a pretty good breed summary for you with the exception that Boykins are cats, not dogs.
 

Northwoods Labs

Active member
Joined
Aug 28, 2015
Messages
568
Location
Danbury, Wisconsin
I am on a wait list for a WPG, heard nothing but great things about them. For a family and waterfowl dog though you really cannot beat a good ole lab. Lots of recommendations for yellow, but I would go with a black :D

Sayner in Burnett County Forest (2).jpg
 
Top