OK, what dog breed meets all these criteria for both hunter and pet?
Thinking of in a few years getting a companion/pet that will also actually do something USEFUL, unlike my current dogs. What breed, if any, can do all this, assuming I research the North American continent for the appropriate bloodline:
1. Short haired (this is a must after having had a few spitz breeds)
2. Protective instinct, but with good discretion as to what is a danger and what is not. A breed that barks at strangers and has an instinct to protect the homestead, such as my akita does, but no incessant barkers, like terriers and such. Some breeds have this instinct to guard/protect; some don't; and in some breeds it just depends on the particular dog. But I want a breed that is known for having a protective instinct and good bite. (So far the Belgian Shepherd meets my criteria, but we're not done yet).
3. Medium to large, so that it has an intimidation value in protecting the homestead.
4. Now, for hunting criteria. First, one that is capable of easily learning to work and point upland birds. i.e. a point instinct.
5. One that is capable of easily learning to Retrieve BOTH upland birds and ducks; i.e. a retrieve instinct coupled with a lack of water aversion.
I know this is like asking what gun to hunt everything on earth; master of none; jack of all trades. And it goes without saying that I want a dog of (a) good temperament, (b) good health, etc., but this is more a product of good breeders and breeding lines than the breed itself, so that will be taken care of by my research.
I know that certain smart breeds such as lab retreivers are capable of both water retrieving and pointing, in certain breed lines, and they have the short hair I'm wanting, but retreivers are ordinarily not-so-much on the protective instinct thing. Sure they can be trained to do Shutzhund well, and ALL dogs have some measure of protective instinct but it's not nearly as strong in most hunting breeds as it is in the likes of the GSD, akita, rottweiler, dobermann, Bouvier de Flandre, etc. So is there a dog that can do it all? What breeds should I consider? For home/pet dogs, I like the short-haired breeds of Dobermann, Belgain shepherds, and Rhodesian Ridgebacks. My Belgain Malinois has a strong retrieve drive, but will any of these also point? (assuming the appropriate bloodline). Will any of them point and retrieve? Anyway, it's probaly asking too much to ask one dog to do the job of at least 3. I'm sure I'll probably need at least 2 dogs to do the 3 jobs, but thought I'd ask whether anyone knows of a breed where I can have it all. From a hunting dog perspective, the sticking points are short hair and very strong protective instinct, 2 things that many fine hunters don't have.
Last edited by FirstFreedom; February 1, 2005 at 05:08 PM.