View Full Version : Great Dane's Hunting Capabilities?

July 15, 2012, 11:13 AM
I have had two very, very large dogs for a good 3 years now. They are both fawn colored Great Danes. My quuestion to you is, would it be possible to teach them to pheasent hunt? They have seen my father's Weimariener hunt them many times, but haven't seemed to catch on. Any ideas, or is this impossible?

July 15, 2012, 02:51 PM
I met a local Dog trainer (retired) who claims he used to hunt a German Shepherd and a Rottweiler for upland. He claimed he could teach any dog anything, the trick was getting the dog to understand what you wanted him to do.

July 15, 2012, 03:08 PM
Great Danes are sight hounds not scent hounds. That would make training them to be bird dogs more difficult.

It's probably possible and there's no reason not to try. Several years ago I saw an article about a place that trained any dog to be sheep dogs. They took any kind of dog and turned it into a shepherd, from lap dogs on up.

Kiwi Hunter
July 16, 2012, 02:04 AM
I have a Russian Wolfhound which is demon on birds - its 90% what the dog is interested in and careful training on the actual process you want the animal to follow

July 16, 2012, 08:29 AM
I work with bird dogs (duck dogs and upland flushing retrievers) on a daily basis. Typically these dogs are Chesapeake Retreivers, Labradors, Golden Retrievers and Springer Spaniels. There are a few other breeds that I've worked with successfully but I can say I've never trained a Great Dane for bird hunting.

While a Great Dane still has a better sense of smell than a human they're more of a sight hound/sight hunter. Add that to the fact that most Great Danes in America have been watered down so much with breeding for looks and "gentle" temperaments that they won't hunt anymore anyway.

If you've got Great Danes, congratulations, you've got yourself a pair of nice house dogs. If you want a bird dog go get yourself a dog that was bred for it.

July 16, 2012, 09:00 AM
samsix I gre up with a GS/lab mix that bayed moose, bear and was one helluva tracker and retriever. small deer he took care of himself if he got the chance (already shot not like we sicked him on deer)

there are probably exceptions in any breed but it would take tons of training

simple flushing probably any dog can learn but pointing that is a distinct thing