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  1. #11
    User
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Pretoria
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    882

    Default Re: Hunting Dog advice

    Quote Originally Posted by Methos View Post
    Hi All

    I went pheasant hunting on Sunday with a old guy with a GSP. This was the first time I saw a pointing dog in action and it was very impressive. She managed to find and flush 2 pheasants in about an hour. The first one I forgot to take of the safety catch of teh shotgun and when I had it off it was too late to shoot but with the second one I were ready and mananged to drop my first hen pheasant. The dog then found it as well as it fell into heavy bush. Was quite a lekker fat one as well. I skinned it and it is now in the freezer waiting for some more mates to join before I make a nice dinner.

    So that decided it for me - I'm getting a hunting dog. Since I were small I wanted a labrador. I love their looks and the few that I met were lovely dogs.
    Great decision, wingshooting with your own gundog brings a whole new dimension.

    Just be very honest with yourself about your available time, as pup training requirements are lots of short training sessions, rather than a couple of long ones. And please resist the urge to take it hunting before the training is complete,it is a mistake most make and they end up paying for it for the dog's whole life.

    So now my questions.

    1.) Will a Lab be able to find and point or flush a bird like the GSP did?
    Very few point, I had a yellow one and I have hunted with a farmer that had a chocolate one that did as well, they do however flush regularly, but obviously not with the same workrate as the Spaniels. Reading your introduction though, I have to wonder about the suitability of a flushing dog. If I shot in areas where I was likely to only see two to five flushes a day, I would endeavour to maximise my chances with a pointing dog, which may be why the old guy ran a GSP.

    2.) I obviously don't want to use it for pig hunting but chances are very good that we'll cross pigs when hunting. Is that OK? I don't want to invest time into training a dog and then losing it to a pig.
    If you are talking of letting it join the chasing and baying pack, I agree, I would never put my dog in that type of peril.
    I have however shot bushpig over my 1st Lab and GSP, the Lab flushed and ran back in my general direction, with bushpig in hot pursuit, after I shot it, he went back and brought another one, this was purely luck, no training for it, he just used his nose to locate them, and when he realised that he had bitten off more than he went looking for help. The GSP pointed it, where it slept in a bush. I have also used the GSP to quickly track and locate wounded game, including warthog and bushpig, I put it onthe trail and make it sit when about 25 to 30 metres from me, when I catch up, I let it go again. Over the years, while wingshooting, my GSP's have pointed many warthog and a lot of other game animals as well, the most in a weekend was 5 different points.

    3.) How do I train the dog to hunt?
    If you get one from a good bloodline, you won't have to do all that much, as the hunting instinct will be strong, you'll just have to train it to hunt for you. The Man Magnum ran a very good series of articles, try and get a hold of them, they are all the help you'll need. Always a good idea to join the local gundog club as well, for some hands on tips.

    4.) I would prefer a female - for having pups. Dogs here in France are super expensive. Labradors start at around €900. So I would like to sell a few pups if I can.
    A word of warning, remember that twice a year for 10 to 14 days a bitch is out of action, and knowing Murphy, it will coincide with your hunting trip. And breeding sounds a lot easier and more lucrative than it is.

    5.) We already have a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel - obviously not for hunting although she loves feathers. She isn't trained or anything. How will that impact the Lab?
    You'll do the training in isolation and only introduce the Spaniel later on as a distraction to see how well your dog is advancing.

    6.) How does the Labs handle kids. I have a 2 and 7 year old.

    Regards
    If a lab does not get on with your kids, then you don't have to look at the dog to try and figure out where the problem is.





    Sent from my SM-P605 using Tapatalk

  2. #12

    Default Re: Hunting Dog advice

    Quote Originally Posted by bruce.patience View Post
    I have a Springer Spaniel and a Lab that I hunt with.

    The as far as I am aware the lab will never point it’s not in their nature or breeding. I have hunted with a friend who only has a lab and he does flush a little but really a little.

    My Springer has a really high work rate when we hunt and she does all the flushing and the lab does most of the fetching. They are unbelievable at marking birds.

    With children you can’t beat a lab. What I would say is make sure you spend a lot of time in the first two years training discipline. They must walk at heel and must know sit (train this with a whistle in case the dog gets a bit far from you) train the children to do exactly what you do with the dog. They love to please and making them sit and fetch is “service”


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    I also have a Labrador and a Springer Spaniel. I have had much the same experience. My Labrador will
    retrieve anything on land or water. To hear the crack of a rifle or shotgun is the reason he exists. Fast, strong and bold
    with the legendary soft temperament.
    My Springer is also a bold little fellow who likes to box above his weight. When you see him crashing through the bush you
    realise how determined he is to hunt. Although he retrieves well he prefers to hunt.

  3. #13
    User
    Join Date
    Dec 2016
    Location
    South of France
    Age
    39
    Posts
    169

    Default Re: Hunting Dog advice

    Johan and Luker

    Thanks a lot for your responses. Helps a lot. I'm busy looking for a Lab at the moment. I went 2 weeks ago with a friend who has a Brittany Spaniel. She pointed perfectly but had NO interest in retrieving at all. I'm going to get a Lab and hopefully some pointing rubs off on her but if she just flushes birds in a radius of 20M that is also OK.

    Regards

  4. #14

    Default Re: Hunting Dog advice

    Quote Originally Posted by Methos View Post
    Johan and Luker

    Thanks a lot for your responses. Helps a lot. I'm busy looking for a Lab at the moment. I went 2 weeks ago with a friend who has a Brittany Spaniel. She pointed perfectly but had NO interest in retrieving at all. I'm going to get a Lab and hopefully some pointing rubs off on her but if she just flushes birds in a radius of 20M that is also OK.

    Regards
    You will enjoy every moment with a Labrador. The attached image is of my Labrador with the first bird he retrieved for me.
    The look on his face says it all:

    032.jpg

  5. #15
    User
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    Johannesburg, South Africa
    Age
    48
    Posts
    352

    Default Re: Hunting Dog advice

    Quote Originally Posted by Luker View Post
    You will enjoy every moment with a Labrador. The attached image is of my Labrador with the first bird he retrieved for me.
    The look on his face says it all:

    032.jpg
    Awesome just what he is meant to do.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro

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