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  • #16
    It sounds like a Brittany will fit the bill. Small pointing dog being the criteria that I see. If you had a maximum size there may be other breeds that could work as well. If you are a duck hunter, you may want a darker dog from a breed that also prioritizes waterfowl hunting traits. If you are strictly upland hunting, the white coloration will help you see your dog from farther out. Get a dog from a breeder that hunts, regardless of what breed you end up with. Good luck in your search!

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    • #17
      Living in the midwest I have hunted fezunts(yeah I know "THEY" spelled it wrong) my whole life. I have always hunted German Shorthair Pointers, however I am 100% convinced that any bird dog of any flavor that comes from a good bloodline has as much potential as the next. The guy behind the dog has more to do with it than the dog. The two best do it all dogs that I have hunted with in 40 years were neither one German Shorthair. One is Calhoun's Musterlander and the other my son's Deutsch Drahthaar. They both are 100% finished at either upland game birds or waterfowl. My shorthair Roy isn't far behind these two on upland birds and he is only two. I have never introduced him to duck hunting and that's hardly his fault.

      In a nut shell there are way more bad trainers than trainees when it comes to bird dogs. You only get out of them in accordance to what you put into them and that is across the board on all breeds. Invest the time into any bird dog and you will be proud as heck when it all comes together in the field!

      I hunt Shorthairs because after 40 years I pretty much understand their temperament. I have a new jet black 10 week old German Shorthair that I am training now. Technically she is Deutsch Kurzhaar from Germany by way of Canada. Everything about her is GSP except she is black. I could throw away my TV and never miss it with Roy and Cora around! Both names...Roy and "Crazy" Cora are courtesy of "Quigley Down Under".

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      • #18
        Aside from the obvious points of sourcing a dog from good stock and then putting in the work, all I'm going to say is you can have a solid performing Toyota Camry that is excellent at the performance parameters it was designed to do but it will never match the performance of a well built Ferrari. Sure, any moron can buy a Ferrari but that doesn't mean they can handle it as it was intended to be driven, and some drivers can do things with a Camry that would shock you. Those outliers do not define the average expectation for those vehicles though. Same thing with dog breeds. Yep, the handler has a massive role in developing the dog to perform to the best of its genetic capacity, but the right breeding and the proper breed will still be better suited for certain tasks than the best breeding and a breed not designed for that task almost every time.

        Brits are great dogs, and my limited experience with French Brits has shown me only incredible little dogs with crazy drive and passion to hunt. My offer still stands if you'd like to try to meet up sometime, I'd be happy to show off my 50lbs, non-shedding, pudelpointer goofball Ava. Our chapter of NAVHDA is also hosting a 6 week obedience course in Chugiak on Wednesday evenings starting next week. Anybody who is wanting to learn more about versatile hunting dogs and dog training in general should drop by. There will likely be many breeds in the class including Large Munsterlander, Small Munsterlander, American Brittany, French Brittany, PP, DD, GWP, GSP, WVZ, WPG, and VZ. And if you want to learn more about that alphabet soup group, come on by! Shoot me a message if your interested and I can get you more info.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by johnnycake View Post
          Aside from the obvious points of sourcing a dog from good stock and then putting in the work, all I'm going to say is you can have a solid performing Toyota Camry that is excellent at the performance parameters it was designed to do but it will never match the performance of a well built Ferrari. Sure, any moron can buy a Ferrari but that doesn't mean they can handle it as it was intended to be driven, and some drivers can do things with a Camry that would shock you. Those outliers do not define the average expectation for those vehicles though. Same thing with dog breeds. Yep, the handler has a massive role in developing the dog to perform to the best of its genetic capacity, but the right breeding and the proper breed will still be better suited for certain tasks than the best breeding and a breed not designed for that task almost every time.

          Brits are great dogs, and my limited experience with French Brits has shown me only incredible little dogs with crazy drive and passion to hunt. My offer still stands if you'd like to try to meet up sometime, I'd be happy to show off my 50lbs, non-shedding, pudelpointer goofball Ava. Our chapter of NAVHDA is also hosting a 6 week obedience course in Chugiak on Wednesday evenings starting next week. Anybody who is wanting to learn more about versatile hunting dogs and dog training in general should drop by. There will likely be many breeds in the class including Large Munsterlander, Small Munsterlander, American Brittany, French Brittany, PP, DD, GWP, GSP, WVZ, WPG, and VZ. And if you want to learn more about that alphabet soup group, come on by! Shoot me a message if your interested and I can get you more info.
          And for a million years every breeder of every breed has considered his pups the Ferrari’s of the hunting dog world and will make the same claims as you just have about their breed! I hunted with a $1500 French Brittany yesterday that was nothing more than a boot licker. It was a smart dog with a dumb owner! Hunts that I have been on have accounted for the demise of thousands of different upland birds and I have pretty much seen it all in regards to bird dogs and masters. Dogs are like people, some are just smarter than others. Some breeders line breed too tightly and end up with a litter of pups that has two or three super smart ones and a couple of very dumb ones. They simply cull the dumb ones and destroy them! The AKC doesn’t care! I have seen pedigrees that came back from the AKC that are appalling! Granddad of the sire and father of the dam are the same dog! I would not waste my time on a pup from that litter yet they are AKC approved.

          Your spot on in matching the breed to the specific purpose for that dog! Here in the Midwest we hunt pheasant and quail for the most part. It takes a dog with a fairly good sized head to retrieve a not so dead rooster pheasant without hard mouthing it. The smaller breeds are fine on quail but lag behind when it comes to retrieving pheasants! A large American Brittany has no problem. The smaller ones don’t fair so we’ll!

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          • #20
            Originally posted by elmerkeithclone View Post
            And for a million years every breeder of every breed has considered his pups the Ferrari’s of the hunting dog world and will make the same claims as you just have about their breed!
            Not sure I follow what claims I have made about any specific breed here. All I have said about any breeds are all breeds have their strengths and weaknesses, I'm a sucker for pudelpointers, Brits are great dogs, and that the few French Brits I've seen personally have been incredible dogs. Not sure where I held out that any one breed was a Ferrari, but more so used that analogy to respond to 4merguide's line of comments.

            As for the head size/pheasant retrieval, while I think I understand and want/could agree with your point, I have to say that the French Brits I've seen hunt (which is admittedly a small sample size of only 3) I have watched all three retrieve wounded pheasants or flightless pheasants during a hunt or test with no hard mouthing or difficulty. One of them I watched retrieve a good sized Canada goose like a champ! I have been more impressed with each of the three French Brits I've watched hunt than any of the American Brits I've seen, but I don't claim to know enough to say generally that one is superior to the other. Besides, as I don't have any intention of having any of the Brits myself I don't really care to jump into that particular dog fight! Like I said, I'm a sucker for the pudelpointer, and while I wouldn't call PPs a Ferrari, I would probably assert that they are along the lines of the Mercedes-Benz G63 AMG 6x6 in the hunting dog world. Plenty of comfort for the family while still going anywhere doing anything!

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            • #21
              Originally posted by johnnycake View Post
              Not sure I follow what claims I have made about any specific breed here. All I have said about any breeds are all breeds have their strengths and weaknesses, I'm a sucker for pudelpointers, Brits are great dogs, and that the few French Brits I've seen personally have been incredible dogs. Not sure where I held out that any one breed was a Ferrari, but more so used that analogy to respond to 4merguide's line of comments.

              As for the head size/pheasant retrieval, while I think I understand and want/could agree with your point, I have to say that the French Brits I've seen hunt (which is admittedly a small sample size of only 3) I have watched all three retrieve wounded pheasants or flightless pheasants during a hunt or test with no hard mouthing or difficulty. One of them I watched retrieve a good sized Canada goose like a champ! I have been more impressed with each of the three French Brits I've watched hunt than any of the American Brits I've seen, but I don't claim to know enough to say generally that one is superior to the other. Besides, as I don't have any intention of having any of the Brits myself I don't really care to jump into that particular dog fight! Like I said, I'm a sucker for the pudelpointer, and while I wouldn't call PPs a Ferrari, I would probably assert that they are along the lines of the Mercedes-Benz G63 AMG 6x6 in the hunting dog world. Plenty of comfort for the family while still going anywhere doing anything!
              I would settle for Mercedes-Benz status for any of my dogs. My shorthair just turned two years old. He has Mercedes potential but not quite there yet. He has had another 30 pheasants killed over him already this year and were only getting started. I apologies for being hard on the French Brittany. My sampling has only been 4 of them and three of the 4 owners most likely ruined the dog. The 4th one just need more time in the field. I have never hunted with a Pudelpointer, in fact I don't know of anyone around here that does. However until a couple of years ago no one around here had Drahthaars or Kurzhaars. Now we have one of each. The Drahthaar is fabulous on upland birds and waterfowl. She was the runt of the litter and is 54 lbs full grown but this weekend she killed a 30 pound bore raccoon that decided to fight rather than run. I was astonished that this petite female that the night before was snuggling with me on the couch was now this ravaging beast that was owning this big bore coon. I was going to try and break it up but putting yourself in the middle of that fight isn't for the faint of heart. She dominated the coon from the start so I let it go. It is a requirement for their breed test so she might as well know how. My Kurzhaar is just 13 weeks old so she is still chasing quail around the yard but she has shown that she has some fire. From what I have read about the Pudelpointers they are much the same, very versatile and determined. For that matter I haven't seen many bad bird dogs that come to us via Germany.

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              • #22
                It's all good. DDs are great dogs for sure, and we have a lot of folks in our NAVHDA chapter that run them. PPs tend to have a little less edge from my research/experience than DDs, which is nice around the family/house but is so slight it doesn't make a big difference to me in the field. But still, I'm not surprised by that raccoon outcome and I would wager my 50lbs female PP would produce a very similar result.

                Dogs are fun, and training them is a huge part of that to me. Can't wait to start up this 6 week obedience course with our AK-Yukon NAVHDA Chapter starting tomorrow.

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                • #23
                  The Drahthaar is a real terror when it comes to stray cats that wander onto the farm. What scares me is that we are getting more and more Bob Cats all the time. They are showing up in farm yards and on trail cameras frequently. I hope that we stay clear of them.....that wouldn't go so well.

                  My Shorthair is the big ole block headed Moesgaard variety. He can run a coyote down, knock it off it's feet and hold it there until we catch up to dispatch. He learned that one on his own. I agree....dogs are fun. My dogs mean everything to me. I even buy chicken hindquarters, boil them and mix them with rice during hunting season.

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                  • #24
                    Originally posted by elmerkeithclone View Post
                    I even buy chicken hindquarters, boil them and mix them with rice during hunting season.
                    Good for you! They need that extra during hunting season.

                    On another note...….boy do I miss hunting pheasants...!!!
                    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

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                    • #25
                      If your DD is anything like the ones I know, I wouldn't worry about the bobcats too much

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by 4merguide View Post
                        Good for you! They need that extra during hunting season.

                        On another note...….boy do I miss hunting pheasants...!!!
                        After bird hunting yesterday I went and talked to a couple of farmers about hunting permission. Then as I was driving down the drive of the last farm house I thought dang, I'm hungry. Those two pieces of toast at 5:30 in the morning happened a long time ago. Knowing that my wife was doing something with her lady friends I swung through Hardees. I ordered two of those Big Chicken Fillet sandwiches. One with all the crap that they normally put on them and one plain. Roy had his gone before we got out the driveway and then was eyeballing mine........

                        I logged 18.6 miles on my FitBit on Saturday, Sunday and Monday....I even took time out to go to church. I bet Roy wishes he had a FitBit! For every 50 feet I walk he makes 2 passes back and forth across in front of 5 guys scattered over 50 yards.

                        We have encountered so many raccoons this year that he is now a multi-purpose dog. For some reason the coons seem more aggressive than normal. If they try to run away then we call the dogs off and let them go. However if they stand to fight then their day isn't going to end well. My son is coming to bow hunt the rut for the next few days so last night after our Hardees snack Roy and I went to the woods to check on a couple of stands to make sure that they were safe and that the critters hadn't chewed through the straps. I was carrying my big Maglight flashlight as we walked along through the brush when Roy opened on a coon sent. A short 30 yards latter he was baying on a tree just like a coon hound. My light showed two sets of eyes in that big Hackberry tree. I said out loud, "Roy, Roy, Roy what am I going to do with you.....we are not hunting pheasant by day and coon by night!" "I'm just too old for that nonsense!"

                        If you ever get to Iowa get ahold of me and we will go kill some birds!

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                        • #27
                          hunting upland birds across the world for 55 years ... alaska since 1994. Outlived my labs, shorthairs, setters, and springer. Have a brittany four last 4 years ( they dropped the spaniel name when the DNA was source back to setters ... not spaniels.) Grace is the best pointing hunter and family dog i have ever had. period. end of story. Bought her from breeder in Wasilla. If Grace represents the breed ( i think so ... but she IS my first Brit) ... she is exactly what you're looking for. My two cent view (8->}

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