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Hey Guys:

This forum was my idea so I'm going to moderate it. Right up front I'm a long time big game hunter who recently took up duck and bird hunting here in western Colorado, so there is a LOT I don't know about gundogs and why I'm interested.
GB and I are a little concerned about where some discussions can go on this topic so I'd like to point out that laws differ greatly state to state and this is NOT the place to discuss the merits of those laws.Nor is this the place to editorilize your moral veiw point. This IS a place to discuss the merits of breed to a specific use, problems in training,merits of field trails any number of topics.So that stuff being said lets keep it clean and see if this can be a productive forum. Tx
Let me start it off with a question: Is a versatile gun dog, one that can excel at both retrieving waterfowl and hunting upland birds, a myth? If it can really be done what are the breeds that do it all?
 

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Yellow Labradors

My constant companion is a Yellow Labrador. He will retrieve ducks, geese, ptargiman, spruce hens, rabbits and moose! Well maybe not moose, but he informs me of bears and moose when I am prospecting.

He has traveled over 15,000 miles with me, did 350 miles down the Yukon, goes in the boat, truck, canoe and anywhere else I can lift him. Yea he is a little big, 120 pounds and has a bad hip.

He will sit and let kids play on him, never gets upset and is about as mellow as they come. I have had or raised 17 labs, I love em!
 

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Sounds like if he could make biscuts he would be the perfect mate!!!!
There is certainly a lot of Labs out there in the field. They seem to be the water dog of choice, have you ever had the chance to put him on pheasent or quail? Do you have those critters up there?
One guy I work with says if you make a pet or evryday companion of a dog they are not good hunters, I think this is kind of a old fashioned veiw point myself. I want a dog thats part of the family and will do a decent job whatever we go after. Thanks for the input, sounds like you've found a truly versitile friend!!

Harley
 

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No pheasents here!

He does alright finding ptargiman. One day I shot at a spruce hen that was way off. It flew into a tree and I went to flush it again. Only four trees and the bird would not flush! Frustrated I kept looking and finally turned around. Could not flush it because the dog already had it in his mouth!

Another day as we headed home from ptarigam hunting I heard one cluck in a neighbors yard. Loomis took off, I called him back, he left again. I kept going and in a minute the damn dog shows up with a live ptarigman in his mouth proud as heck.

Damn dog can't cook, won't clean, but does not care where we go, when we come home, what we do, how much I drink, how many guns I buy....just a great relationship!

As a pup we would train four days a week retrieving and just play the other two/three. He did his first double retrieve at four months. I don't think haveing him in the house has ruined him at all. Running over him with the jeep did ruin him a bit though and getting hit by a car set him back quite a bit. Bad hip now, really gets sore but I won't put him down until all hope is lost.
 

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My yellow lab will retrieve both ducks and doves, equally well. I had plans for her to blood trail wounded whitetails, but she never really got the hang of it. I do know people who have retrievers that will retrieve and trail.
 

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So far the yellow labs sound like what me and the wife are lookin for!!!Doves are certainly on the menu here in Colorado!
I've read some about Labs that are good pointers. anybody actually seen this with their own eyes?

Harley
 

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:-D I'm really glad you got this forum started.I've been hunting with dogs for over 20 years. I've been a member of NAVHDA for 20 years. I don't claim to be an expert but I've picked up a few things. I'm on my fourth German Wirehaired Pointer and I think they are good versatile dogs. Mine have pointed and retreived any small game from a goose on down to quail.They also retreive fur up to cat size.
NAVHDA is an organization that promotes training and using versatile dogs. Their website is NAVHDA.org .
 

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wirehair

Thanks Freddogs, I'm glad it got on too :)

The German Wirehair is a dog that interests us some. I've contacted a couple of different breeders and gotten some info and photos.Scruffy lookin, but very unique. How have you found their day to day disposition to be? Are they part of your household?Deal with kids, other dogs, travel ect ok?How bout cold water retrieving, we duck hunt on the Colorado river, its never warm and its strong, so a strong swimmer is a must. Thats why the labs or maybe a Chessy are also in the running for us, the pheasant hunting around here is fair and on the eastern side of the Rockies its considered pretty good, so a dog we can get to point would be a real plus. Not many quail out here,but chuckar are on the menu as well as dove. Sounds like I'm asking a lot out of a dog doesn't it?Anyway, I appreciate your participation and input. Tx Harley
 

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:) Wurehairs are strong swimmers but their coat isn't as heavy as a Chessie or a Lab. Mine do fine in jump shooting situations and when they have a dry place to sit between retreives. I don't expect them to break ice and sit exposed for hours.
A dog with a real heavy coat overheats in warm upland hunting and too thin a coat and they get cold retreiving. I think a Wirehair is better in the uplands while nothing compares to a Chessie in the water.
Most all Wirehairs I have seen have been good house dogs but dogs not socialized as puppies can be distrustful of strangers. Mine have always traveled well. They sleep in their crates when we travel.I don't usually go more than 8 hours but the dogs have never had a problem.
 

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german short hairs

Hey Folks, First time on, nice place. Pop raised english pointers. A freind of his had short hairs. I currently have a 8month short hair. He's kind of rare, he's soild liver. The gentleman I got him from said they are nick named BROWNIES I don't know. When dove season rolled around this year he was 4 months old. No use leaveing him at the house, he went also. I took him on 3rd day of season. The field had been shot for two days. It was just me and Jeager. After I downed one, we both went to it. It was like OK boss got ya. Buy the end of the day it was 3 birds in my vest and 9 on top of the bronco. The ones on the bronco where ant and magget riden. He had found every down bird in the area from day one. I was so proud and nobody around to brag to. I've been told they nothing exel. but all things good. Work has kept me from the woods and fields so far, but mid Jan. coming. :lol: X's-10's REDFRED
 

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:grin: Welcome Redfred, your dog sound real nice. Liver shorthairs are fairly common up here in the upper midwest. He sounds like a good dog. I hope we can all help each other to have good dogs. Then this forum will really br successfull.
 

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Welcome to the forum Redfred. He sounds like a natural,I don't think I've ever seen a solid liver shorthair. Keep us up to date on his progress. Harley
 

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Hey Freddog, One of my sub-contractors would just about give eye teeth for a soild liver pup. My nieghbors Grandson came in for the Christmas break from North Carolina. His hunting/fishing Buddy has been looking for a soild liver for some years now. Would you happen to know of any for sale? :shock:
 

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Hey freddogs, That would be nice. If a email address or snail mail address would be fine also.
 

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Hey freddogs, That would be nice. If a email address or snail mail address would be fine also.
 

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English Springer Spanials all the way

:-D Greetings from Alberta:

11 years ago I got the last pup out of a litter of English Springer Spanials. She was a bit small for her breed but full of life and energy.

She was two months old when I got her and I started immediately training her for upland bird hunting. She took to the training like a dog to water. In no time at all, I had her hunting and flushing pigeons and, retrieving the ones I could manage to shoot.

I was so pleased with her performance, I went back to the breader and got another Springer Spanial; same mother and father as my first pup.

The second dog trained up as well as the first and in no time I was hunting grouse and pheasant with a brace of English Springer Spanials. Damn was I proud.

A good friend of mine lives to hunt goose and suggested we try the dogs out for goose hunting. We shot from ground blinds. The dogs worked out beautifully. The wounded geese that ran were pounced on from behind and brought back to the blind.

The dogs retrieved anything that landed in the water or on the ground. On one hunt I was walking through a wooded area when some low flying geese flew overhead. I shot one which came down somewhere in the woods; **** I didn't know where it landed. I told Charlie, Go Find! I figured what the ****, lets see if she can bring it back. Within five minutes, tail wagging and mouth full of goose neck and body bouncing behind. She brings in the shot Canada Goose. (Yes I know, stupid shot; I should have never taken the shot. I won't do it again).

My two dogs and I have been hunting together for 11 years now and every spring, when the geese return from the South, old Charlie and Kelsey look skyward with great anticipation of the next goose hunt.

If you want pictures or video footage, e-mail me.

If yu want a versatile gun dog that is a great family member, buy and English Springer Spanial, the hunting variety, not the show dog.

Kindest regards,
:D
 

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Versatile hunting dog

:) The West Siberian Laika is the most versatile hunting breed. Here is why it is so. Dirst, every puppy starts treeing naturally by age of 5-10 months. It will tree squirrels, raccoons, groundhogs, grouse and some other small game, which is available. When mature, they go well after wild boar and moose. Besides the treeing and baying, Laika is easy to teach retrieving ducks. All these will be performed by one dog. Of course, labradors are unbeatable when it come to work in water, but Laika has a strong health and will take swimming in water at subfreezing temperature.
 
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