View Full Version : Anybody use Great Danes for pig hunting

May 23, 2012, 12:41 PM
I dont live in an area with a pig issue so I have never had the opportunity. Originally Great Danes (Deutsche Dogge) were bred for this purpose. I did see one of the pig bomb programs that had a texas couple using one. I have a Dane and a Lab but they are both pets at this point as I havent had time to get out waterfowling in a few years.
I would love to hear about real life experience with a a Dane crashing a boar.

May 23, 2012, 01:10 PM
I think there are a ton of vids on yt with aussies doing it to

May 23, 2012, 01:11 PM
Only them sorry fools in texas on that hog huntin' un-reality show...

To find danes of unwatered down AKC approved blood, would require some searching europe I reckon... The dane was a great dog to send ashore in large numbers before the marauding men came ashore to take over coastal areas...

If you want a large hog dog, the Dogo Argentina fits that bill...


May 23, 2012, 01:15 PM
Lemme add... I only keep up with american hog doggin'...

I do know a few aussies and kiwis and they do not hunt our style... for the most part. We use currs to find and bay and a catch dog sent to the bay to catch... Most down there do not use a lead in catch dog so all on the ground must take part in getting the hog stopped for the human hunter...


May 23, 2012, 01:17 PM
If you look at that texas couple again... They have to light up the pig with a spotlight for their dane and it still loses more on camera than it finds...:D

No one I know considers that dane to be anything more than a true blue CULL and would not even be passed on to another...


May 23, 2012, 02:57 PM
hogdog. They are after all one of the oldest breeds and were bred specifically for hunting European boar. My guess is the breed was just culled for show and temperament because so few people hunted boar in the US until fairly recently. Aren't Curr's coon hounds?
I have only hunted with upland bird dogs, Labs for waterfowl and once with a single beagle for rabbit. We don't have boar in NJ that I have heard. I never knew anyone who went for coon, but there are a few with all these swamps.

May 23, 2012, 03:02 PM
I have a house and spend a fair amount of time near Charlotte. I have never meant anyone but I know they have the pig problem there also. Is there such a thing as a hog guide? I dont want to just watch the dogs grab one I want to be able to shoot them.

May 23, 2012, 03:21 PM
No currs are not a pure breed of any hound... The term is from the websters definition...
A curr is "any lessor dog" or in this case a "mixed breed"... The dogs we call a curr got that term from the old timers who cross bred various hounds and other breeds to build a specific dog for their needs...
Black mouth curr
Yellow black mouth curr
Mountain curr
Florida curr
all are known as hog dogs...o hog hunter I respect would ever put that dog back in the dog box for another hunt... It is just to risky to the other dogs on the ground or the human hunters...

We have bred silent on track into most hog hunting breeds (currs) this took 150 years of selective breeding and strict culling practices to develop what we use today.

I don't know of many danes that would stay caught after being cut down...

But I know my bulldogs will bleed out before letting go in their last breaths. This is a requirement of mine and those who taught me what I know.


May 23, 2012, 03:24 PM
I do not allow firearms even in my truck when hog doggin' unless it is a .22 for snakes only!!!

Some guys guide both shooting over their dogs and pig stickin' hunts.

My dogs are not trained or in the habit of expecting gun fire so they may jump in front of a bullet or leave the county at the report...

On a hunt in the style I use, you can tie it up or stick it after you or I "tip" it...

May 23, 2012, 04:28 PM
Conformation dog shows have just about ruined many of the older breeds of hunting dogs. The Great Dane is one of them.

Instead of being bred for their hunting abilities the dogs have been bred more for looks - and for that matter looks that were deemed as being perfection for the breed by a bunch of people who themselves are not hunters and have no idea what a good hunter needs. This has resulted in dogs that are not what they would have looked like a hundred or two hundred years ago and of course dogs that are not capable of performing like the would have a century or two ago. The result is a great hunting dog that has been turned into a large obstacle to be maneuvered around in your home.

Take the labrador retriever for example... in the 80's the AKC began importing judges from Great Britain to guest judge their conformity dog shows and a lot of these judges judged labradors. British labs by then were no longer bred for sporting purposes but rather for a certain look. As a result they graded dogs that didn't have large blocky heads, broad chests and heavy set bodies with heavier legs and feet very poorly. This trend spread on to American judges since all things "Euro" were considered trendy and desirable.

Well at that point in time the "American" lab breeds were slender dogs with slenderer longer heads and smaller ears. They were excellent hunting and working dogs and were great at doing what they were bred to do - hunt and retrieve. What happened is that many breeders, in order to score high in conformity events, started changing breeding stock and bred these "British" or "English" breed labs. More and more the English/British breed labs are being bred and less the American or field breed labs - so much so that now the lab is embodied as a blocky headed, broad chested and stocky dog (English breed).

The problem here is that typically (there are of course exceptions) the English breed labs are not as good of hunters as the American/Field breed labs. They aren't as fast, agile or as determined a hunter as the Field breeds. They tire more quickly and tend to not have as good of noses. Personally I also find them to be more difficult to train for more advanced concepts... in otherwords I think they're not as smart as the Field breed labs.

Personally I won't own an English breed lab myself and try to steer others away from it.

Now back to Great Danes - this has obviously happened to them at some point in time however in a worse way. I doubt you'd be able to find a good hunting Dane without an exhaustive search and great expense.

May 23, 2012, 04:37 PM
Pain tolerance... I know nothing of the pain tolerance of modern Danes...

I do know I can lay my currs or bulldogs on the tailgate and shave the wounds (7 inch gash through skin and muscle to exposed gut is easily possible) and suture the muscle and staple the skin and they usually don't even bother lifting their head... No pain killer of any type is ever used...

I have had some currs who did require a soothing hand petting them to keep them calm thru the procedure however... Junior has become quite the efficient emergency vet tech in the field.


May 23, 2012, 07:10 PM
Dog hunting and gun hunting hogs are usually separate as far as I know. Occasionally there's even some disdain between the types of hog hunters, not with me though. I admire dog hunting hoggers for their skill with the dogs, I can't keep any of my rovers to chase a biscuit. I ain't got the gonads to go hog doggin either lol.

May 23, 2012, 07:13 PM
Double R, It takes dogs with big nads... the hunter just have to be nuts is all... You may fit right in...:eek::D

On a hunt with me and junior, we make sure to do all possible to keep a newbie/guest safe and happy...


May 25, 2012, 04:27 PM
Hansam as a labowner outside of the US/UK thing I see it a bit different, afaik there has always been two hunting lines, the one you describe the american field line, but the brits have also have one that is abit fuller then the american but still not huge like many family/show bred lines

the uk version is always calmer imo, the american version seems very ADD:)

mine is a dual purpose, the breeder has got both hunting champs and show winners

and Brent, I have caught glimpses of the different hog huntin shows, it seems very common to just hogtie, I guess would be the correct term, the hogs:) and not kill them on the spot why is that? doesn't this turn all the meat bad them stressing so much? being bit by dogs must already be doing that to right?

May 25, 2012, 04:30 PM
Brent ever seen a Jagdterrier in action?

too small? probably the most vicious breed I have ever come across (that or a russian imported laika). can't say that I have met real pitbulls but maybe vicious isn't the right word for a proper working pitbull?

Do you (or other hunters) ever use spitz type breeds for your baying? seems like the bayers in the tv shows are hound based if you get what I mean

May 25, 2012, 04:54 PM
Not personally but do a know guy who has some for hog doggin'... These little terrorist dogs are awesome I guess... They rarely get cut down as well... I feel their small size lets them take a shot and get tossed rather than taking the full brunt of impact or tusk...

As for spitz, I don't know any americans with them but the downunder guys often use them in breeding programs I see.


May 25, 2012, 07:33 PM
it seems very common to just hogtie, I guess would be the correct term, the hogs and not kill them on the spot why is that? doesn't this turn all the meat bad them stressing so much?

The hogs that are capture get neutered and thrown in a pen to fatten a bit.

May 25, 2012, 07:47 PM
The meat has most potential for "gamey" taste if killed immediately at a dog catch due to adrenaline (all) and testosterone (boars) released to increase energy and aggression to win the race or fight.

If all we do is keep them penned for a few days with feed and water and go out to shoot it as it rests, this mitigates the negative affects...

If castrated, we (most like me) use penicillin so won't kill until fully healed and long off the anti-biotics at soonest... a barr hog (barrow) will really fatten up given enuff time and food...

Most of us don't have space or money to feed 'em out very often... Boars are often barred and turned loose so they fatten up for free in hopes of gettin' the dogs back on him in a year or so...


May 27, 2012, 01:05 PM
the uk version is always calmer imo, the american version seems very ADD

Seems here in America (along with East Germany as well), IMO, we have done our best to ruin most breeds. The lab, shepherds, rottweilers, dobermans, danes etc. in European countries like West Germany and Czechoslovakia keep their bloodlines more pure and breed their dogs for what they were intended for.
IFAIK, West German breeders are not allowed to breed their dogs with dogs from East Germany or the U.S.

Here in the U.S., the only thing many show breeders care about is the confirmation standards set by orgs. such as the AKC. Dog doesn't need a brain, just as long as he/she's pretty. A truely sickening trend.:mad:

May 27, 2012, 03:32 PM
It really wasn't anything negative just a jib, they are just so high energy. they hunt and take training very well. My own dual purpose is quite high energy to but not as much as her slimmer "cousins"


May 27, 2012, 06:56 PM
It really wasn't anything negative just a jib, they are just so high energy. they hunt and take training very well....


I believe what we've done to many breeds IS a very negative/sad thing. The 'high energy' you refer to, I like to refer to as 'flighty'. IMO, this 'high energy' or 'flighty' does make it harder to train them compared to the more subdued acting European breed counterparts. Seems being more calm, the more pure bloodline dogs stay focused better.

Not saying it's impossible to get a good dog here, just that you have to be more careful about choosing a bloodline. Course, getting a good shepherd here is getting harder and harder. It's laughable what we here in the U.S. consider a good sized shepherd compared to W. Germany and Czech.
Same with Rotts. and Dobes.

May 27, 2012, 08:46 PM
When I buy puppies I actually look for the higher energy ones. Typically the best hunters are the ones you would consider ADD. All the puppies I've bought, trained and sold were very hyperactive as puppies and still retain a very high energy level as adults.

However these puppies, once trained, do calm down somewhat inside the house. My dogs do not run all over the place in the house - in fact they tend to loaf about the house similar to English breed fashion. The difference is when they're in the field. Their higher energy levels allow them to train more intensely and learn more quickly. That same high level of energy allows them to work and hunt for longer periods, be faster, more agile and a more dedicated hunter. They are also more willing to push through the nastiest of brush and thorns to seek out that fallen bird... because they are more energetic and more headstrong.

I also find that this quality in labs also makes them easier to train. A lower energy and calmer lab (ie. English breed) tends to learn more slowly and is less tolerant to adverse conditions when training. As such they tend not to be as strong a hunter and are not as intent on finding and retrieving the game.

Now about being ADD - none of the dogs I've trained could come close to being ADD despite having much much more energy than your typical English breed lab. They would make an English breed lab seem slothly and lazy yet they listen intently, are completely obedient (I can call any one of them off a bird even if its right next to them and direct them somewhere else so long as they are in sight and hearing range and even if they're not within sight I can stop them in their tracks with a single command if they can hear me). Everyone who has met dogs I've trained comments on how amazingly calm, relaxed and obedient they are and then are even more amazed that these dogs can hunt for 12 hours, running 10, 20, 30 sometimes more a day in search of pheasants, ducks etc. and still have energy to want to hunt more.

I don't consider the American field breed of labs to be ADD or flighty. Their energy levels are exactly what I want in a hunting/sporting dog. You just have to be able to train it and mold it to suit your needs. My dogs don't jump up on people, don't lick, don't go on furniture, sit and wait to be allowed to eat and never leave my yard unless commanded to do so. Inside they prefer to sit and slumber either next to someone's feet or inside their crates. Doesn't sound ADD to me, does it sound that way to you?

Really its all about being able to train the dog properly and maintain that training. A lot of do it at home trainers don't know how to properly train a dog. Heck a lot of professional dog trainers (you know the ones toting all those diplomas/certificates from internet dog training schools etc.) don't know how to properly train a dog.

The 'high energy' you refer to, I like to refer to as 'flighty'. IMO, this 'high energy' or 'flighty' does make them harder to train them compared to the more subdued acting European breed counterpart. Seems the more pure bloodline dogs stay focused better.

Its only flighty because the owner/trainer has allowed the energetic levels of the dog to turn into flightiness. As I said before its because most dog owners do not know how to train dogs properly. My dogs are VERY high energy but definitely not flighty. Also about pure bloodlines - in labs if bloodlines were pure they'd all be high energy and be of slenderer proportions... that's how they were originally. Also let's not talk about just the US ruining dogs. You should look at how the English hound looked in Great Britain 100 years ago compared to how it looks now... and whether or not it could still hunt like it did a century ago. Conformation in dogs is what destroys dogs - all over the world - not just in America. In fact the Americans got the idea from the Brits first...

I will give you that in America you can't really find a GOOD GSD, Rott, Doberman, Malinois etc. Most of these breeds have been completely ruined by conformation breeding. You WILL have to buy European for that and even then you have to get them from a breeder that breeds for utility and NOT for conformation. That's the tricky part. A lot of breeders will say they breed for both. Frankly I have found that to be a load of BS from experience - at least in sporting dogs. With labs I won't buy a lab from Europe. It's an American field breed or not at all for me. A lab that will typically win championships and titles in conformation will only be a mediocre hunter at best. None of my labs that I've trained and/or trained and sold will win conformation shows but most of them are already Master Hunters and many of them are already Field Champions or Amateur Field Champions. There's a couple well on their way to becoming Master National Champions... of which there are currently only a little over 100 dogs in the entire nation that can claim that title.