Which pointing breed is the calmest?

Pointer and setter breed specific questions. Kennel information requests, etc.

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Which pointing breed is the calmest?

Postby krmarshall » Sat Aug 04, 2007 12:11 am

I'm looking for my first pointing dog. I've always had labs, and love them but I find myself hunting chukar more often and really would like the experience of hunting behind a pointer. My only problem is my wife is not a huge dog person. She likes the lab because it barely moves. We agreed that if I purchased a pointer, I would need it to be very calm....as far as the breeds go. I was thinking about either a PP or a Braque du Bourbonnais. I my research, these breed seem to be the calmest. Not interested in a Spinone or the WPG, don't like the longer coats. Any advice?
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Postby chicago0517 » Sat Aug 04, 2007 5:35 am

Welcome aboard.

You're going about it the wrong way.

Narrow down the breeds and then start talking to breeders about their dog's temperment and in-house disposition. To assume one breed is more calm than another is asking for trouble. Breeds and breeders are so specialized right now that it's impossible to make such gross generalizations.

If you don't want a long haired dog why a PP? I don't know how bad they shed, but they have long-ish hair - and an inconsistent coat by large.

Maybe a Brit. Even a French Brit. They're on the smaller side and less likely to upset your wife. Your largest pool of prospects will come from either the Pointer or GSP camps.

May want to stronly consider a started/finished or adopted dog. You'll miss the puppy phase that way. Might may your wife happy.
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Postby GONEHUNTIN' » Sat Aug 04, 2007 6:59 am

Don't overlook a Draht. Mine spends the day at work with me curled up at my feet under the desk, except to greet and approve of new customer's. I trained Lab's professionally for years had GSP'S, setters, you name it. For myself personally, I'll never own another dog but a Draht the rest of my life. That's a very biased statement, but for me, they're the perfect answer. Calm, great retrievers, good pointers, incredible intelligent and easily trained, tremendous family dogs, short coats. Check them out.
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Postby dualgwp » Sat Aug 04, 2007 8:50 am

A dead one!
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Postby FrankGWP » Sat Aug 04, 2007 9:00 am

I had similar concerns when getting my first versatile hunting dog. Speaking generally, I do not beleive that the PP is considered calm and, you might want to avoid dogs breed for field trials.

The Braque du Bourbonnais (BDB) and the Spinoni (longer hair) are considered to be the calmest versatile hunting dogs, but perharps not best suited for chukar hunting based on their larger frames and their generally slower and closer working styles.

Perhaps a bigger problem with the BDB is the fact that there just are not very many out there. As such, if you are a serious hunter it may be more difficult to find one that is up to your standards.

PPs, GWP/DDs and WPG generally do not shed. So if you are concerned with having hair all over the house, a WPG is not a bad option. Plus, there are many WPG that are bred with tighter, 'hunting-style' coats. They are not necessarily all fuzz-balls.

I agree with chicago0517, pick a breed with the physical and aesthetic characteristics that you like, and then find a breeder who focuses on producing dogs with a calm temperment. This is a far better way to ensure that you end up with a dog with the type of temperment your looking for.

At only 1 1/2 years old my GWP is very calm and well mannered in the house. The GWP is not necessarily considered to be a calm dog. Frank's disposition was not an accident. I spent time talking to breeders and speaking with individuals who took home dogs from earlier breedings. For instance, Frank's sire has produced multiple litters with the same two bitches. The breeder told me that one bitch produced calmer dogs, the other produced dogs which were more "bouncy." I spoke with one gentleman who brought home one dog from both bitches, he indicated that there was a large difference. I also spoke with a number of people who brought home dogs from the same breeding which produced Frank. They tended to confirm the breeder's opinion. In other words, even though I was not bringing home a member of a breed classically considered "calm," I looked around, found what I wanted and had a good idea of what I was getting before I put down a deposit.

Note: No matter what you end up with expect to be responsible for getting your dog enough exercise. Any well breed hunting dog is made to find birds on long days in varied terain. They have lots of energy which needs to be expressed in a positive manner, especially when the dog is young. If you do not find and outlet for this energy - no matter the dog - it will be expressed in a negative manner.
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Postby orhunter » Sat Aug 04, 2007 12:07 pm

KR:

I'm also with Chicago and Frank. Good advice.

A lot of the better "hunting" Griff lines have good tight coats like a GWP. If you go back into the archives covering last fall and winter you'll find lots of hunting photos I posted and you'll be able to see what a hunting bred Griff looks like. The photo section here at V-dogs also has several good examples. The "hunting" bred Griffs are much calmer as pups if my last one is any kind of indicator.

I've been around KJ's wirehairs in the field and in the house and I gotta say they are very easy to live with. Maybe better than my Griffs around the house. Only takes a hour or two to spoil them.
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Postby DrahtsundBraats » Sat Aug 04, 2007 1:18 pm

There are calm dogs with "giddy-yup" in almost every breed. Choose a breed then find a breeder that breeds dogs with the "switch"-dogs that are calm, quiet and patient in the crate/truck and "switch" it on when you put them to work. Find a breeder for whom this is a priority and you should have little problem.

I just listened to a dog "yowl" in the truck for 2 hours at a trianing day-I won't feed such a dog no matter how good it is.
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Postby slistoe » Sat Aug 04, 2007 1:39 pm

Did the dog "yowl" because it was impossible to teach it to be quiet or was it that the owner didn't care and never bothered trying to make it be quiet - or maybe the owner just didn't know how to teach a dog.

I am sure you would never own a dog that "yowls" because you don't want to and you teach them early on that you will not tolerate such behavior.
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Postby Ryan » Sat Aug 04, 2007 2:05 pm

You may want to second guess the longish hair. I have both in my house and find my setter's hair is much easier to clean up because it rests ontop of carpet and furniture whil emy GSP hair is short and works its way in making it hard to vaccum up.

IMO they are all calm you just need to train them that in the house they are calm and lay down. Outside they let loose. All will need a lot of exersize and I agree that you need to stay away from Field Trial dogs. Look into a Deutsch Drahthaar or Deutsch Kurzhaar.

We used to have 2 brittanys and alot of our friends have brittanys. They are alot of energy even for a Gun Dog. I dont have experience with English Pointers. I would look at a PudelPointer, Deutsch Darhaar, Deutsch Kurzhaar, or if you decide to go with hair a Musterlander (small or Large) or a Deutsch Langhaar. I am a big fan of the German dogs and testing because the dogs must go through a trsting regiem before being allowed to be bred so you can track score a lot easier than the loose system AKC and CKC has.
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Postby DrahtsundBraats » Sat Aug 04, 2007 2:50 pm

Did the dog "yowl" because it was impossible to teach it to be quiet or was it that the owner didn't care and never bothered trying to make it be quiet - or maybe the owner just didn't know how to teach a dog.

I am sure you would never own a dog that "yowls" because you don't want to and you teach them early on that you will not tolerate such behavior.


I appreciate the "lesson"-and, yes, I learned about "behaviour modification" about the time you were starting to shave :wink: Not all dogs have to be trained to be quiet-many are naturally calm and quiet when not working. Those are the dogs I want-the dog that can be pressured to be quiet is a second choice.

The dog I am describing is one that can only be controlled with a bark collar and even then it has learned how much noise it can make before it triggers the collar.

There seems to be some folks on this list that honestly think that all problems are due to insufficient training-its not true. There are badly wired dogs.
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Postby slistoe » Sat Aug 04, 2007 2:57 pm

All I am saying is that just because you heard it yowl for 2 hours does not mean it is a badly wired dog.

Certainly you may know the dog better, but from your first statement there is no way to know that.

And about the shaving, I hope you aren't bitter about not being able to train dogs anymore being so crippled with old age and senile.
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Postby GONEHUNTIN' » Sat Aug 04, 2007 4:50 pm

FrankGWP wrote:PPs, GWP/DDs and WPG generally do not shed. So if you are concerned with having hair all over the house, a WPG is not a bad option. Plus, there are many WPG that are bred with tighter, 'hunting-style' coats. They are not necessarily all fuzz-balls.


You must not have hard surface floors. Our house looks like an electric razor has been cleaned daily on the floors from the Draht. My wife says " I should have known better than to ever believe a man when he said "a draht doesn't shed". They're not as bad as a setter but trust me, they do shed.
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Postby Cora's Shadow » Sat Aug 04, 2007 6:02 pm

From what I've seen firsthand, the Deutsch Langhaar (German Longhair Pointer) is the calmest versatile breed on the planet (except maybe a Spin or Bracco). If DLs aren't calm, they aren't bred. They have always been known as the calmest of the German breeds and were purposely bred that way.

Of course they have long hair, but they only really blow their coats twice a year. Shedding is moderate the rest of the year. I can tell you that there is no way that my longhair sheds more than a lab :-)

I also really like DDs. Most of the DDs that I have been around have been relatively calm dogs. I agree with Ryan in that the German testing/breeding system is often the way to go. Knowing that every dog for the past 100 years has had to pass the same 2 hunting tests ensures that the highest number of pups bred have the stable temperament to perform to a hunter's expectations.

On a totally different note, I do know of someone that has a litter of Braque Francais on the ground. These French Pointers look fairly similar to GSPs (very short coats) but they are supposed to be calmer and hunt closer. I have not had the opportunity to see either of the parents hunt, but having met them on a leash, they did seem a little more laid back.

On yet another note, I have not met a hyper BB so that could be a good route to go as well. If you can ever take a drive to Nebraska to visit Rufnit Kennels, it would be well worth your time.

Good luck and happy hunting!
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Which Pointing Dog is the calmest

Postby Setterman » Sat Aug 04, 2007 6:02 pm

I have found that you need a breeder that breeds for both Temperment & Hunting ability. All dogs will go thru a puppy stage but by 18 months they normally chill out. Ask the breeder if he has a dog in the house, If not how do they know the real temperment. I know breeders that rotate dogs in the house, or have a favorite in the house but all in the kennel raises a red flag. From personal expierence the Belton type Setter also known as Ryman/Hemlock Setters are a good choice. If you look at a Pedigree and it has Field Trial in it. It is going to be a higher strung dog.
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Postby yawallac » Sat Aug 04, 2007 9:36 pm

There isn't a dog of any breed that isn't calm by 18 mos. in competent hands. There isn't a pup of any breed that is calm in anyone's hands! :D

I agree with the majority. Pick a breed, then a breeder. BTW, well bred GSPs are almost fool proof for new gun dog owners and there are a ton of well bred GSPs to choose from.

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