Pointer man looking at Spaniels

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Pointer man looking at Spaniels

Postby thunderchicken » Mon Apr 14, 2003 10:29 pm

I've never hunted behind a spaniel of any type. I am not clear on their training or anything else. Hell I don't even know if they have dry mouths or slobber alot. But here is my problem, and I think a spaniel maybe the solution. I've always had pointing breeds, I just love to see a dog point birds. But I recently reinjured my back and after surgery and all that I am alot slower than I used to be. I don't like to hurry when I hunt, I definitely can't run, $#*! I can't even walk fast so unless a dog is within 30 yds of me when he goes on point I won't make it to the dog before the bird flushes. The ruffed grouse around here hold for about ten seconds if you are lucky. They are hunted alot and don't take much pressure. I am wondering if I should switch to a flusher, but remember I don't move fast. I've heard of people having to run to keep up with their springers when they get birdy. Do spaniels stay closer, move slower, and work for the gun? Or are they like pointers depends on the breed and the breeding? Any advice is needed, thanks in advance.
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Postby slistoe » Mon Apr 14, 2003 11:53 pm

From what I have seen it depends on the breed and the breeding. I have hunted behind FC Springers that were a pure adrenalin rush from the time the whistle blew and Labs that had to be told to go to every bent over cattail rush in the slough. I have also hunted over Labs that were almost as good as the Springers and Springers that wouldn't have known a bird was there unless it bit them.
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Postby wirehair » Tue Apr 15, 2003 7:13 am

Sounds to me like you need a close working pointer. My Griffon would probably be perfect for you .

I think your kind of grouse hunting will be tough for you independent of the kind of dog you have on the ground. When the birds are that jumpy you just can't get in range.
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Postby thunderchicken » Tue Apr 15, 2003 10:18 am

The problem I'm having is finding a breeder that specializes in close working breeding. Most field trial and as a result their dogs are hotter than I can hunt behind. I had a GWP that was wonderful, although most others I hunted with made fun of him. He was slow and thorough, found a lot of birds and retrieved naturally. I didn't even train this dog just hunted him, he did everything he did naturally. His first point he held until I flushed, and shot. Then he didn't move, didn't go for the retrieve or anything, I was very perplexed until I took another step and another bird flushed, I shot that one too. He then proceeded to retrieve both birds to hand! An amazing dog really, but alas his life was to short. I've never found another dog that hunted like he did, and I sorely need a close dog. By the way early in the season there are enough young birds that hold better, but as the season progresses you better have your dog close.
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Postby Hank » Tue Apr 15, 2003 6:42 pm

TC,

I know just the breed for you- if you can get one-Clumber Spaniel. They are stocky low to ground spaniels that have great nose but go about their time working cover. You wouldn't have any trouble hunting behind one and they'll stay within 30 yards of you. They've mosly been bred for show in this country but many of the breeders are now giving litter picks to hunters because they want see the breed re-establish it's hunitng reputation. I had considered one myself about 10 years ago but job instability put me off track and it was hard to find an available litter from proven hunting stock. However, I did talk to a breeder in RI that told me they are good hunters but slow and pretty much content to be couch potato when in the house. Sounds like something you may want to check out.
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Postby Bill Lane » Tue Apr 15, 2003 6:43 pm

Also due to my health, I finally settled on the French Brittany. The American Brittanies that I had watched and seen hunting wider and ranging faster than I wanted. Like you I can't move quite as fast I used to. Hopefully my new pup will be as close working as people have said. Good luck
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Postby slistoe » Tue Apr 15, 2003 9:08 pm

Hopefully your new Fr. Brittany won't hunt like a good Brittany from France, or you may find that he is not as "slow" as you wanted.
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Postby slistoe » Tue Apr 15, 2003 9:10 pm

I have seen two Clumbers work in the field. they definitely were slow (thorough?). Unfortunately neither of them seemed to know what a bird was either. Would be nice if someone was to start working them in the field. A small cocker might be nice as well - I have seen some very birdy dogs in this breed.
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Postby Hank » Wed Apr 16, 2003 5:51 am

Perhaps the Clumbers you saw weren't from good hunting lines or not trained properly. As I said, the breeder I spoke with said they were making an effort to re-establish the breed as a hunting dog. Since that is what they were originally developed for, then I would guess the potential is still there for somebody who is willing to do the homework. I notice there are several Clumber breeders listed with this site. That would be a good place to start to see how far they may have come in the last 10 years. You never know until you ask.
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Postby Chuck » Wed Apr 16, 2003 8:41 am

TC,

I grew up hunting over pointers and brittanys - and I love to see a nice stylish point. Generally speaking I feel that spaniels don't range as far as most of the pointing breeds. A few years ago I started looking for a small flushing breed. After looking any many breeds I decided to get a Boykin. I have really enjoyed hunting over him. His personality always seems to add a little something to every hunt. As far as range goes - in low cover he'll range out as far as I let him but in the thick stuff he tends to stay pretty close - I've reinforced that in training. Take a close look as the spaniels - I don't think you'll be disappointed. Below are a couple of good sites for info

www.boykinspaniel.com
www.spanieljournal.com

good luck,
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Postby Brown Dog » Wed Apr 16, 2003 10:29 am

TC,

If you still want a pointing dog, take a look at a Spinoni. From what I’ve seen, they appear to work pretty slow and close. I don’t claim to be an expert on the breed by any means, but I have seen several in the field, and I can’t remember seeing one actually “run”. Their gate seems to be more like a trot. Just a thought! Maybe some Spinoni owner out there could provide more information.
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Postby thunderchicken » Wed Apr 16, 2003 8:05 pm

I've actually thought about a Spinoni. Not to many around though. Never seen any except on TV one day. Even most of the breeder advertisements are for breeders overseas.
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Postby Brown Dog » Thu Apr 17, 2003 12:01 am

TC,

Check out the website for Trollbo Kennels: http://www.spinone.net/Trollbo/. They produced the only NAVHDA Versatile Champion Spinoni that I know of. They would be a good place to start if you’re interested in a Spinoni that will hunt.
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Postby gusto » Thu Apr 17, 2003 10:30 am

I owned a springer spaniel before i got interested in pointing breeds and i can honestly say there just as good at finding birds than any pointing dog I've seen. That being said, I've never seen or owned a dog more hyper than this springer. As for range, usually around 15-25 yards with a real tight zig zag pattern. I think it would be an excellent choice for you thunderchicken. Once your use to reading their body language you will be ready for the shot everytime. If your still interested in pointing dogs i would recommend looking at griffons.
Truth be told, if i never would of moved out west where range is a factor, i probably would of stayed with springers.
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Postby Hink » Thu Apr 17, 2003 10:38 am

TC,

I have a friend thats trying to place a 3 year old male Spinone. The dog has been FF and does stay close by when in the field. If you are interested you can reach me at 815-624-4704, ask for Chris.

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