Hunting with Dogs: 4 Points to Keep in Mind

Hunting with Dogs: 4 Points to Keep in Mind

Hunting with Dogs: 4 Points to Keep in Mind

When it comes to a decent gun dog, the correct breed and enough training time are essential.

When it comes to outdoor hunting, gun dogs may be quite effective friends.
In certain cases, a competent gun dog can search down prey and flush it out of hiding, collect kills, and even carry out the full hunt procedure for the owner. A long-standing human-animal bond has existed from the beginning of time.



 Dogs were assisting with hunters at least 20,000 years ago, according to archeological data, and by 9000 BCE, we had visual proof of this: cave images portray dogs working with hunters to bring down huge animals such as elk and deer, according to archeological evidence.



Additionally, these images imply that some canine varieties were better adapted to the work than others. In addition to mastiffs and other wolf-like breeds, mastiffs may be seen in hunting art from antiquity, such as that found in ancient Egypt or southern Europe.



Because of the agricultural revolution, hunting has become a more peripheral social activity, and the purpose of dogs has changed through time to include more guarding and companionship than than actual hunting.



Hunters continue to participate in hunting as a pastime today, and many popular breeds retain their innate desire to hunt and track. The training of a competent hunting dog may significantly increase the likelihood of a successful hunt.

Hunting with Dogs 4 Points to Keep in Mind

Tracker Dogs are dogs that are trained to track down people/ Animals.

Tracker dogs are canines that have innate physical characteristics that make them well adapted for tracking and hunting animals (or people). The animal should be a physically fit specimen, since it may be required to continue a chase for many hours.




The Proper Breed

The American Kennel Club now recognizes 161 different dog breeds (AKG). The physical variety within this spectrum of breeds is amazing, with each kind of dog presenting a unique set of physical qualities as well as a distinct temperament (although the latter can be greatly regulated in any dog with proper training).


 In addition to recognized varieties, there is the almost limitless variety of the mongrel population, which includes dogs that may blend the characteristics of many different breeds (sometimes usefully so).



Selective breeding has resulted in the refinement of innate hunting impulses in dogs, as well as the development of physiques that are suited for their breed. Each of these breeds, which are collectively known to as’sporting dogs’ or ‘gun dogs,’ provides a unique set of aptitudes and physical capacity for the modern-day hunter.



 In the same way that selecting a firearm is dependent on the type of hunting you intend to do, selecting a sporting dog entails weighing the advantages and disadvantages of various breeds and selecting one that will work efficiently for you while also serving as a good companion both in the field and at home.



Never forget that you are ultimately responsible for the health and well-being of your hunting dog, and that it must be socialized with humans of all ages (particularly other members of your family) as well as with other dogs before you can use it for hunting. As a basic fact, if you care for your dog, it will care for you.

Hunting with Dogs: 4 Points to Keep in Mind

Recognized Sporting Breeds of the American Kennel Club

 • American water spaniel
 • Boykin spaniel 
• Brittany spaniel 
• Chesapeake Bay retriever 
• Clumber spaniel
 • Cocker spaniel
 • Curly-coated retriever
 • English cocker spaniel
 • English setter 
• English springer spaniel
 • Field spaniel 
• Flat-coated retriever 
• German shorthaired pointer 
• German wirehair
Hunting with Dogs 4 Points to Keep in Mind


Three distinct varieties of hunting dogs are shown in this image, each with its own set of performance qualities. Spaniels are known for flushing birds from the undergrowth, whereas labrador retrievers are simple to teach. By contrast, crossbred hounds (lurchers) employ their incredible speed to chase down fast-moving ground animals.


The fundamental categories of sports dogs, as well as some of the breeds within them, will be discussed here. Before we go any further, it’s important to remember that virtually all dogs have a hunting impulse. 



Naturally, certain dog breeds, such as the toy dog group, are clearly unsuitable to hunting tasks (more likely to become the prey rather than predator). Spend enough time in the field with practically any other dog, and you’ll see characteristics that, with a little training, may be employed for hunting.



Dogs who can point

When they detect game, pointers physically point their body towards it. The body becomes stiff, and the eyes are fixed on the detecting spot. The dog’s posture may be upright or crouching, depending on the breed. It may flatten the back of its neck and push its tail straight out; it may elevate one front paw in anticipation of a charge; and its overall posture can be upright or squatted.


The hunter benefits from pointing dogs since they provide information about where the prey is and how it will act. In practice, after the hunter has determined where the prey is, he may ready to shoot when it emerges from cover.


A hunter may anticipate a bird to bolt for an open piece of sky if the dog points towards the foot of a dense thicket, for example. The fact that pointing breeds are generally excellent retrievers (see below) means they can recover prey after it has been brought down is advantageous.


These are the traditional pointing Dog breeds: 

• Brittany spaniel 
• English pointer 
• English setter 
• Gordon setter 
• Hungarian vizsla 
• Irish setter 
• Weimaraner

Pointers, like any other hunting dog, must be employed in the right situation and with the right prey. They’re best for hunting grouse, pheasant, quail, snipe, and woodcock, which don’t quickly flee when they sense danger.


 Pointers must move in sync with the hunter, neither too near or too far away, and they must be unaffected by the numerous other cues in their environment. They should also react swiftly to directional orders, allowing the hunter to lead them to particular areas of the environment to investigate.





Boots for your dog

Dog boots, despite their odd appearance, might be useful while hunting through thorny or jagged, rocky terrain.

Dogs for Retrieval

The retriever’s traditional job is to recover fallen prey, particularly game birds that fall into water or a long distance from where they were shot. Retrievers are particularly advantageous to hunters since they lessen the likelihood of the prey being lost after it has been shot and save the hunter’s efforts.




The following are some of the most well-known retriever breeds:

• Golden retriever
 • Irish water spaniel
 • Labrador retriever 
• American water spaniel 
• Chesapeake Bay retriever
 • Curl-coated/flat-coated retriever

Retrievers must be robust, active, and water-resistant canines. They must also have calm personalities and be able to sit quietly at their owner’s side for lengthy periods of time before being sent to collect game. The retriever breeds are typically excellent family dogs because of this more settled side of their personality.




Dogs on the Run

The flushing dog’s job is to track down and flush prey from its hiding place.
The flushing dog’s job is to track down and flush prey from its hiding place.
Spaniels are the most common breed employed as flushing dogs because they exhibit the perfect characteristics of the breed: strong activity, a daring attitude toward going through vegetation, a keen nose, and good vision.



The wagging tail of a flushing dog will speed as it approaches its prey, and the motions will become increasingly concentrated on a single location.
Flushing dogs are great for hunting birds in grassland and woods, but they may also be used to catch ground-dwelling animals like rabbits.



It’s also worth noting that there are various dog breeds that can execute all of the retrieving, flushing, and pointing tasks described above, and their training may be adapted appropriately. 






The best hunting, point, and retrieve (HPR) dogs are known as “HPR” dogs (hunt, point, retrieve).




The following HPR  breeds are the most well-known of these:

• Bracco Italiano 
• Brittany
 • German longhaired pointer
 • German shorthaired pointer 
• German wirehaired pointer
 • Hungarian vizsla
 • Hungarian wirehaired vizsla





Hounds are basically pursuit canines that follow prey over great distances using their senses of scent and sight (or a mix of both). Hounds may either capture their prey for the hunter or kill it themselves once they discover it. (It should be noted that in many countries, hunting with dogs, or at least allowing the dog to kill the game, is prohibited, so make sure you only use your hounds within the legal parameters.) Hounds represent a wide range of temperaments and breeds. 


English and American foxhounds, for example, are high-endurance breeds that will locate, flush out, and hunt animals as part of a pack, historically in combination with mounted hunters, across long distances.


 Basset hounds, on the other hand, are systematic (and slower) trackers that use their incredible sense of scent to find rabbits, hares, squirrels, and other small animals. Whippets, greyhounds, and lurchers are short-range pursuit dogs that use their renowned acceleration and speed to pursue fast-moving ground prey on sight.



The following are examples of traditional hunting hounds:

• English/American foxhound 
• Irish wolfhound
 • Rhodesian ridgeback 
• Scottish deerhound 
• Walker hound




The term ‘Earthdogs’ refers to dogs raised to hunt animals in subterranean tunnels. Because of the nature of their employment, these dogs must be petite, with short yet muscular legs and tenacious personalities.


 Again, in many countries, putting dogs underground to hunt is forbidden, and given the risk of the dog being lost or buried, it is typically not recommended for dogs with little experience.


Many terrier breeds, such as the Jack Russell, Scottish, Cairn, and Border terriers, have a scrappy nature that allows them to be effective in hunting pests like rats and small prey like rabbits if they can be trapped.


Terriers are not the most trainable of dog breeds, thus if they are to be employed in hunting situations, they must be kept under strict supervision (for example, make sure they release the prey when instructed). 


Because of their tiny legs, they are limited in the prey they can chase. Despite this, because of their tiny legs, the terrier might be prey. However, when used in moderation, the terrier may be an excellent hunting partner.


Hounds of Fox

Fox hounds are the ultimate chase pack animal, able to track a fox for miles on end without tiring.


Canine Education

Only well taught dogs can be successful hunters. It will lack the discipline you need in the wild and will be more likely to frighten prey away rather than bring it to your cooking pot if you don’t give it enough training. Additionally, on a hunting trip, an untrained dog is more likely to be injured or killed.


Every year, dogs are inadvertently shot in hunting incidents due to the inexperience of both the dog and the hunter.


The importance of gun dog training must be emphasized right away. To begin, keep in mind that you’re working with your dog’s natural hunting instincts rather than pushing it to act strangely. If you routinely take your gun dog out into the field with you, some of the more intelligent gun dog species will nearly teach themselves.


A dog’s behavior may be quite sensitive to its owner’s, so if you psychologically work as a team with your dog, the animal is more likely to get engrossed in the experience and perform what you want. 


Above all, develop a deep relationship with it and make it do what you want. Most importantly, cultivate a tight trusting connection with your animal; the higher the animal’s confidence in you, the better it will cooperate with you when hunting.



Training in Obeyance

The second important factor to remember is that you must maintain control over your dog’s fundamental obedience level. Apply firm guidelines about which behaviors you will tolerate and which you will not from your dog, whether at home or in the outdoors. With your body and your voice, project power over the animal.


 Some gun dogs are really obstinate, and if you don’t manage them, they will do their own thing or even try to dominate you. 


As a result, it’s critical that you set clear limits and standards, and stick to them; the dog will be lot happy in the long term if it understands what’s expected of it. Begin teaching your dog while it is still a puppy, since training a dog gets more harder as it grows older.


Initial gun dog training is similar to that of a domestic dog on the most fundamental level. 


Three fundamental instructions should be taught to the dog:’sit, remain, and heel.’ (However, while teaching pointers, some individuals choose to leave out the first two commands.) 


Holding the dog’s chest up with one hand and pressing its bottom to the floor with the other hand while saying a clear’sit!’ will get the dog to sit. Carry on in this manner until the dog sits on demand without being physically restrained.


 Giving the verbal order, followed by a visual indication – an arm lifted in the air – and a blast on a dog training whistle – can help you develop this command into more specialized gun dog training. The dog will eventually learn to sit independently to each of the three instructions.