PP vs GSP - experiences and differences

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PP vs GSP - experiences and differences

Postby isuhunter » Sun Jan 10, 2021 10:11 am

Good Sunday morning folks...

Our GSP is 9 and we have been actively searching for our next hunting partner. I have had a Pudelpointer in mind and have talked to many breeders, mainly NAPPA but also some outside the group as well. Jack Tracy, Todd Bair, Calvin, Dmog and many others have been great to listen and learn from. Jack challenged me, since I love my GSP and GSP's to get out and hunt with a Versatile GSP. So, through a podcast I was able to locate a local breeder, NAVHDA judge, and willing person to go hunting with his VC, and 4 other prized NA/UT GSP's. This was a great experience and I thoroughly enjoyed it.... BUT now I'm a bit more hesitant to switch from a GSP to a PP.

So... I'm asking you guys/gals - what's the biggest differences you've experienced? We hunt many small draws, fence lines, CRP patches for pheasants in Iowa. Also we like to puddle jump ducks or field hunt ducks and geese in layout blinds.

Some thoughts I'm asking your feed back on due to my lack of experience with the PP?
- Will the PP be as hard charging in the field as the GSP
- In the house, how will they compare?
- Desire to find down birds?
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Re: PP vs GSP - experiences and differences

Postby orhunter » Sun Jan 10, 2021 10:54 am

Why have you limited your search to two breeds? Putting that aside. If those PP guys haven't yet convinced you to get one it seems as though you've already chosen the GSP. "Now I'm a bit more hesitant to switch." Curious as to what made you want to look at something else in the first place? They're all good dogs. Their differences aren't so great it'll make any difference in your hunting success. I'd go with the PP because they are prettier.
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Re: PP vs GSP - experiences and differences

Postby isuhunter » Sun Jan 10, 2021 11:56 am

orhunter wrote:Why have you limited your search to two breeds?


I've always loved the GSP but have always been a fan of a shorter coated bearded dog :)

The PP guys have convinced me from the cooperation but then as I've spoken with a few GSP guys they are making me second guess. (suckered into a sales pitch??)
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Re: PP vs GSP - experiences and differences

Postby orhunter » Sun Jan 10, 2021 12:17 pm

"Shorter coated bearded dogs." The coats on "all" the ugly breeds vary quite a bit including the PP. Probably the most consistent shorter coated dogs are the GWP's. A properly bred WPG has a very nice coat. With any of the various choices we have, it's more about the breeder, not the breed.
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Re: PP vs GSP - experiences and differences

Postby Willie T » Sun Jan 10, 2021 1:27 pm

I own a PP. I have a hunting buddy that has a GSP. I have hunted over both dogs together from the Canadian border to the Mexico border. Both are dang nice dogs that are more alike than different. Here is my comparison of the two dogs. Both dogs are extremely athletic and wired hot. The GSP is a little shorter coupled than the PP and his gait reflects that. The GSP appears to have more brute physical strength while the PP appears to be the more nimble of the two. They both hunt with close to the same pace. Both have held up well to being hunted hard for 14 straight days on multiple occasions. Nose is probably a push. The GSP has tougher feet. The PP is more natural in the water and is a more polished retriever but I think that is a product of training. The PP has a stronger penchant for fur which can be a PIA. On finding and pointing birds I judge them as equals. Both are big running dogs with a lot of point but that may be a product of spending a good bit of time hunting big country and being on a lot of birds. When my hunting buddy is ready for another dog he will most likely get another GSP. I will likely get another PP. both are good with other dogs. The GSP may be the more laid back of the two, however he is also the most sneaky in the house. Honestly I would be proud to own and hunt behind either. I said a lot but didn’t give you much separation. That is how close these two dogs are in ability.
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Re: PP vs GSP - experiences and differences

Postby isuhunter » Sun Jan 10, 2021 2:34 pm

Willie T wrote:I own a PP. I have a hunting buddy that has a GSP. I have hunted over both dogs together from the Canadian border to the Mexico border. Both are dang nice dogs that are more alike than different. Here is my comparison of the two dogs. Both dogs are extremely athletic and wired hot. The GSP is a little shorter coupled than the PP and his gait reflects that. The GSP appears to have more brute physical strength while the PP appears to be the more nimble of the two. They both hunt with close to the same pace. Both have held up well to being hunted hard for 14 straight days on multiple occasions. Nose is probably a push. The GSP has tougher feet. The PP is more natural in the water and is a more polished retriever but I think that is a product of training. The PP has a stronger penchant for fur which can be a PIA. On finding and pointing birds I judge them as equals. Both are big running dogs with a lot of point but that may be a product of spending a good bit of time hunting big country and being on a lot of birds. When my hunting buddy is ready for another dog he will most likely get another GSP. I will likely get another PP. both are good with other dogs. The GSP may be the more laid back of the two, however he is also the most sneaky in the house. Honestly I would be proud to own and hunt behind either. I said a lot but didn’t give you much separation. That is how close these two dogs are in ability.
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Willie - Thank you for your thoughts and experiences! I am encouraged to hear bout the same pace of hunting is achievable in your experience. In my mind I would expect a bit more strength in the GSP but I'm sure some of that is driven by the breeding/genetics. One of my major concerns was/is that is a PP more of a "trotter than a sprinter". Also the retrieving drive in the PP is something that has attracted me to the breed.
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Re: PP vs GSP - experiences and differences

Postby orhunter » Sun Jan 10, 2021 3:00 pm

Trotter vs sprinter. I don't think either one has a more effective search than the other because search doesn't have a whole lot to do with range. Use of nose is the most important search mechanism.
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Re: PP vs GSP - experiences and differences

Postby Dmog » Mon Jan 11, 2021 9:34 am

Kinda sounds like your torturing yourself. They are more similar than different from breeders with your goals in mind. It comes down to coat. My PP is a sprinter and very similar to the Viszla's and GSP of a versatile breeding I have hunted with here in KS. I must add some context however as I am comparing these dogs to my Griff. My Griff looks like his is trotting and going slow, however when a gps is on him tracking speed, his is not that much slower than the PP, just looks like it. He runs smarter also. PP will cut herself up. All of which are fun to watch work.

The PP you are risking getting a longer coat than you want. You may not know the coat until 1-2 years down the road. However, if you get the coat right, it will be superior to the GSP for Upland and waterfowl hunting in my opinion for your described hunting desires. I do not think you would be happy with a wooly coat. You will not have to put up with the tiny sticky hairs of the short hair with the PP.
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Re: PP vs GSP - experiences and differences

Postby reader4 » Mon Jan 11, 2021 9:51 am

Maybe it's too generic, but I think it depends entirely on the pedigree. I think that's reflected in your experience already in the different lines of GSP.

We looked very closely at PP for many of the reasons you cited, but really weren't happy with any of the breeders/lines in our area when we were looking. Some too aloof, some too stubborn, one aggressive. That's not necessarily a reflection on the breed -- just the availability of dogs at the time we wanted to get one. We weren't willing to travel farther just for the breed nor to wait longer for a specific pedigree. I know some really whiny GSPs I wouldn't want to share a house with.

I think all of the issues raised here are a great starter set of questions for the breeder and evaluation of progeny -- retrieving drive, pace, search range, loud on game. The difference in coat might be relevant for the areas and conditions you hunt. It was for us as we hunt through winter and in icy water, but I know GSPs that are perfectly happy in those conditions too...
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Re: PP vs GSP - experiences and differences

Postby Highlander » Mon Jan 11, 2021 10:28 am

The GSP is the most widespread bird dog in the US and in the world too.
The shear number of this breeds is astonishing and speaks a lot about the breed.
For this reason you will find a huge variation within GSP, but a NAVHDA bred GSP will have more in common with NAVHDA bred PP than with AKC or other filed lines.
So yes, as others said here you will find more similarities within these two breeds than differences as long as the both of the comes from similar breeding/testing system.

Aesthetically I am not into beard dogs, but I was briefly considering a PP just because its history fascinates me and all the good stuff I hear about the breed.
In early 2020 when I finally decided to get a pup, I started look into PP breeders but only in the German club. The website hadn't been updated for a year or two and there wasn't much info coming in google or Facebook search, so I gave up. If I ever get beared dog it will most likely be a PP.
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Re: PP vs GSP - experiences and differences

Postby orhunter » Mon Jan 11, 2021 10:55 am

Several key terms used by Dmog and Reader. Smarter, 1-2 years down the road, aloof, stubborn.

I like dogs that are just as happy meeting a complete stranger as they are me. That is not the PP from my experience and a major reason I'd never consider one. Stubborn is another issue. I've heard the same thing said about DD's but have not been around enough of them to have an opinion. When we evaluate the temperament of any dog we need to evaluate the owner as well. Some just don't bring out the best in their dogs. It's a nurturing thing. This is why I advocate so strongly for the Wirehairs and Griffs. They're so easy to spoil... especially the Wirehairs.
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Re: PP vs GSP - experiences and differences

Postby ForTheBirds84 » Mon Jan 11, 2021 11:26 am

I have a Pudelpointer who will be turning 2 in March. I also have owned 2 GSP's in the past. I realize this is a limited set of dogs but I will offer what I can from what I have observed.
Desire: My PP has the most desire I've seen from the dogs I have owned. One of the GSP's I had was similar but just a touch less.
Cooperation: Again I would give the advantage to the PP. But only slightly.
Physical Endurance: In the heat, this one goes to the GSPs. But in cool weather it would be even.
Water: 100% PP
Pointing: The GSP's had a bit more natural ability to hold point.
Retrieve: The PP has shown great pride in retrieving. His whole body language shows it. The GSP's were ok
Household: The PP really has a really well balanced temperament. He likes everyone, is dog friendly does well with kids, and is not anxious or overly needy. The GSP's I had were really friendly but needy. They used their cuddliness to take advantage of people. lol and mostly through my own error had major separation anxiety issues.

Overall, if you look into the breeding both will most likely offer you a great hunting dog and companion. Which ever you end up with give'em a good scratch under the chin and shoot as many birds as you can with them!
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Re: PP vs GSP - experiences and differences

Postby Dmog » Mon Jan 11, 2021 12:56 pm

orhunter wrote:Several key terms used by Dmog and Reader. Smarter, 1-2 years down the road, aloof, stubborn.

I like dogs that are just as happy meeting a complete stranger as they are me. That is not the PP from my experience and a major reason I'd never consider one. Stubborn is another issue. I've heard the same thing said about DD's but have not been around enough of them to have an opinion. When we evaluate the temperament of any dog we need to evaluate the owner as well. Some just don't bring out the best in their dogs. It's a nurturing thing. This is why I advocate so strongly for the Wirehairs and Griffs. They're so easy to spoil... especially the Wirehairs.


Ok Orhunter, the smarter was in context comparing to a 8 year old Griff vs a 2 year old PP...not PP vs GSP. The PP is definitely smarter than the GSP's I've been around! :)
My PP is more friendly and affectionate than any of the GSP's I have been around and she meets every stranger with a nudge to be petted. Aloof does not fit at all. She is a lover but my Griff well, he wins your heart and soul. So I can understand your opinion.
My PP is stubborn but she is cooperative. Once you break the stubborn barrier, obedience is very high. So your statement about evaluating the owner/handler is spot on.
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Re: PP vs GSP - experiences and differences

Postby isuhunter » Mon Jan 11, 2021 12:59 pm

Dmog wrote:Kinda sounds like your torturing yourself. .


I tend to do that with my researching!
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Re: PP vs GSP - experiences and differences

Postby orhunter » Mon Jan 11, 2021 1:27 pm

Dmog: I haven't been around (up close and personal) very many GSP's, as popular as they are. Like many of us, we gravitate toward an ugly dog rich society. The few I have met are as personable/friendly as most other dogs in the limited time I've spent with them. Probably owner related. Given the proper time, we can build most any kind of dog we want. Nothing is automatic. it's up to us.
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