View Full Version : What to look for in a dog

January 23, 2006, 10:21 AM
My dog is about to be put down, so I am thinking of buying a retriever. What should I look for in a dog that will be used to hunt? I've never had a retriever, nor have I ever trained one. My experience with dogs extends mostly in training police dogs and working mainly with sheperds and sheperd type dogs. Any suggestions about breeds would also be appreciated.


January 23, 2006, 10:35 AM
I'm sorry about your companion, I love dogs and don't want to think about having to put them down. My grandfather had black labs for duck hunting, he trained them with balloons so they wouldn't bite too hard on the duck. He told me the best hunting dogs have a lot of "game". My 2 pitbulls and english mastiff have a lot of game and they know it too!:D

January 23, 2006, 10:38 AM
We just got an English Mastiff. 5 mos old and 90+ LBS already!

I've been told that Mastiffs were bred to be bear hunting dogs but have been unable to confirm this in any lit I have read about them. What say ye? Ever heard this?

January 23, 2006, 10:54 AM
What should I look for in a dog that will be used to hunt?

The genetics of a Brittany Spaniel... ;)

They aren't classed as Retrievers... :)

But, From upland game to water dog...

they out-class the Retriever class... :D :D :D

Also, as yet, they aren't inbred.

Shepherds of any kind do not, good hunting dogs, make .

Try basic obedience training FIRST...
If it doesn't prove VERY responsive there...

"That dog don't hunt"

January 23, 2006, 11:14 AM
edward-I haven't heard of Eng. mastiffs being bear hunters!:D but that doesn't mean they couldn't be. Mine is 2 yrs. and 230 lbs, funny thing Kodiak thinks he weighs 20 lbs!

January 23, 2006, 11:28 AM
I'd recomend a labrador retriever. They are great dogs. If you really want to get picky people think the black lab is the best hunting dog, while a yellow is next and a chocolate lab is a house dog...I personally don't think this is true, i've seen plenty of good chocolate labs be good hunting dogs. We had a big male yellow lab and he was great for upland game or waterfowl hunting. When you pick out a pup make sure it's not the runt. We got the dominant pup and he turned out to be a bear to control even with a shock collar but when he was focused nothing got away from him. If you have experience w/ shepards you shouldn't have too much of a problem w/ a dominant dog. A small female is always nice to hutn with too, they are easy to control and will hunt forever. Also make sure that your dog doesn't have hip displasyia either I've heard some bad stories of people buying expensive dogs w/ great blood lines and then half the pups have problems (the owner of the litter sometimes will have the dogs tested before you purchase them for preemptive symptoms) Another nice thing about the labs is that they are good people dogs, very well tempered if you have it around kids who will wrestle with it and pull on the tail. Good luck choosing a dog it's always fun to have a new one in the house.

January 23, 2006, 09:23 PM
I shouldn't have to bore you with the paticulars of finding a dang good breeder....no matter what breed you choose..the retrievers have a bad rap with hips and eyes so make sure the breeder backs their dogs. Labs...I have owned and trialed lots of them....great dogs.....watch out as some our really getting high strung from the trialers wanting go getters. Very loyal...and maybe a little on the soft side. Golden Retrievers.....nice also....lots of hair to deal with and are real lovers.....most are real soft!!! Chesapeake Bay dogs can be a handful.....but the one I own now has been a absolute joy....one of the best I ever owned....now he is 14 and almost done:barf: ....they are known to be stubborn and a little on the aggresive side towards strangers....although mine never has been(I have had lots of experience training so I never tolerated that BS)..probably not as good of an upland dog as a lab but gets the lab in tough icy conditions.....NOTE ....you said you had experience so as you know with all dogs these are generalizations as they can vary alot even in the same breedings but this should help you a little bit

January 23, 2006, 10:52 PM
labs I am on 4 trained ans sold 3 this one I have now is here to stay they have very moldable minds and are great compainons my fav color is yellow or cholacate I have had black and they are very high strung but great dogs after that you can buy instructional viedos at sporting goods stores and they will teach every thing you need to know the way I pick are the ones that follow me and that are one of the biggest I have had a runt and he turned out to be one of my better dogs when you get ready for a dog my friend breeds them and makes some great pups e-mail me at [email protected] and we will get toghter ad when he has another litter you could look at them and mabey take one home:D :D :D