Top 10 breeds of a hunting dog

Have you heard of hounds and terriers, retrievers, and gun dogs to help hunt by scent, sight, and sound through woods and water? The truth is that humans have many best friends nowadays, like the horse and the sheep along with the dog. With the rise of industry and technology, popularity and partnerships may have diluted. Yet, the hunting sport inspires strong passions, though vegetarians may disagree about its ethics. 

While considering the history of hundreds and thousands of years, hunting is related to monarchy and aristocracy who practiced those challenging skills with their much-accomplished hunting dogs. Most of them were mighty, built fearsome animals like bloodhounds with powerful jaws and scent and sight skills through tiny dachshunds for the miniature game. Deer and monkey hunting would all be possible with the unafraid allies who enjoyed the chase as much as the hunters did. Raccoons and coyotes, foxes, and boars would require mighty hounds for the pursuit.

Weapons like guns and compound bows call for research, besides training in target practice and some do’s and don’ts to promote successful hunts. Geography would matter like the mountains, deep forest, open grasslands, or watery worlds and arrangements made likewise with appropriate hunting dog partners. 

Labrador Retriever

The St. John’s water dog in England was the ancestor of this great breed. Later, the gundogs were imported from Newfoundland to Europe, known as Labrador Retrievers with expertise in waterfowling. In the late 19th century, the species had been established with cross-breeding.

The most trendy gun dogs in the UK and the USA may weigh 65 pounds and come in brown, yellow, and black, living for 10 to 12 years and standing 55 cm tall. They are kind and trusting, responsive and outgoing, even-tempered. The most awesome hunting dogs are willing learners and great at adapting to situations! 

Their vast popularity as the most excellent hunting dog, being brilliant animals is also because of extreme obedience in the family setting. Though immensely strong, the mouth can hold birds gently without damaging them. Besides retrieving what has been shot from the bush, they make excellent trackers too. Labrador Retrievers assist the blind and the autistic as a therapy dogs in many countries besides helping detection work in law enforcement agencies. 

German Shorthaired Pointer

They train very well and are loving, bold, and boisterous. Germany bred them in the 19th century for hunting and a medium-sized, powerful dog with powerful legs. They have lived for 13 years and are 56 cm tall. 

These amazing bird dogs are fantastic both on land and in the water. Clever and pleasing, participating in every human activity with a protective attitude, they help track raccoons, deer, and a few other animals. A sleek body structure enables them to move through land and water with agility. The scent very well, and you know what a hunting advantage would be. These pointers do not chase out the animal but freeze and show the location to the hunter. Clever indeed!

If you spent money on one of these super active dogs, you would be happy with the 60-pound dog of white or brown shades, but don’t keep them chained up all day long. They need many exercises and the active outdoors that they were initially bred for pet.

Coonhounds

Sensitive creatures may trace their history to the eleventh century in England. Initially intended for treeing raccoons, they depend on smell and make wonderful family pets. 

Coonhounds exist in six varieties, about 25 inches in height and living to be 12 years. They may weigh about 60 pounds, be excellent family dogs when cared for well, and mighty hunters too. Coonhounds come in 6 varieties and probably originated as a cross between a bloodhound and a foxhound, considering their tracking skills. They locate raccoons and opossums and deer, mountain lions, and bears.

They usually tree the animal, wait on the ground below, and bark or howl for the hunters to arrive. These dogs swim very well with large webbed feet. A flexible, short coat ensures that they are at home in all climates.

American Foxhound

European settlers in America brought hounds, and they were later crossed with English, Irish and French hounds to develop a foxhound. George Washington belonged to those early breeders. Nowadays, we can identify four kinds. Field trial hounds have speed and are competitive. Slow trailing hounds help to hunt foxes on the ground. Drag hounds are raced, and pack hounds work in groups of maybe 20. 

American Foxhounds detect foxes through smell. They are kind and loyal, intelligent and gentle-tempered. Males are taller and heavier at 60 cm and 32 kg, and they are found in white, cream, and red. They live to be 11 years.

Though bred to hunt down foxes, these great hunting dogs will also tackle deer with immense running skills. Yet they are not so particular and will enthusiastically chase whatever animal they are commanded to.

Chesapeake Bay Retriever

This large dog belongs to the gun dog and retriever breed and is also known as Chessie. They may be dark or light brown, sedge or dead grass, weighing about 32 kg and 58 cm tall.  

A confident, powerful hunting dog like a military tank that can tolerate the bitter cold of Chesapeake Bay, these retrievers are also tender towards the family. Though not so famous like the Labrador or Golden Retrievers, the Chesapeake Bay Retriever shares the characteristics of retrievers. Good-natured and athletic, duck hunting made them well known due to their love for the water.

Duck hunting in that particular bay has no parallel with this retriever around! Endurance-wise, they never tire, even with boundless energy at the end of the day. They love water and possess great intelligence, besides being loyal and devoted to the family.

English Springer Spaniel

Originating in England and similar to the Welsh Springer Spaniel, they descended from the Norfolk spaniels in the mid-19th century. Birds springing into the air are the origin of the term springer.

You find them in black, white, orange, and lemon, too, a gun dog that lives about 13 years. Belonging to the Spaniel family, they flush and retrieve the game. They are cheerful and alert, intelligent and loving creatures. Weighing about 20 kg, they stand at about 50 cm.

Gundogs refer to the small game hunted by shotguns rather than the more powerful weapons. These spaniels are agile and clever at flushing and retrieving shot birds from the bush. They are friendly and very attentive, good learners too. English Springer Spaniels are of medium size with wavy ears. Super hunters typically weigh about 40 pounds, and a muscular build enables long hunts in challenging weather.

Beagle 

English hunters in the 16th century took these dogs along to hunt small game like rabbits and pheasants. Their origin is probably the Harrier crossed with other hounds. 

The Beagle is another of those beloved favorites, gentle and friendly, intelligent and determined. Brown, orange, red, and lemon mixed with white are the usual coat patterns. Weighing about 10 kg, they stand 38 cm tall. 

Looked upon many as the ultimate hunting dog, the native British beagles love to hunt as much as anybody else in the group! They are intelligent and playful. Vast energy ensures that extended hunts would not be in vain. Perseverance to match makes it an outstanding hunting dog. Though not suitable for chasing big games with short legs, the Beagle would be just ideal for hunting small game like rabbits.

Bloodhound 

Originating in France and Belgium, England and Scotland, bloodhounds have tracked humans since the medieval times that they were bred to do. Able to pick up fading scents many days old, they are significant assets in emergency search and rescue missions. These scent hounds are found in red, black, and tan, and these scent hounds help hunt deer and wild boar. 

They are gentle and loving but stubborn creatures that live 11 years and stand over 60 cm tall. With a dignified appearance, they are famous for their endurance.

Bloodhounds! An apt name indeed because these hounds possess powerful tracking instincts with great noses. No track can be faint enough and would be followed up instantly. Finding missing persons and tracking criminals are among their achievements.

Weimaraner

This large dog belongs to the early 19th century of German ancestry in Weimar. They helped Royalty in hunting bears, boar, and deer. They live for 11 years, weigh about 35 kg, and stand 60 cm tall. Gray and silver are the usual colors of the coat. 

The German court of Weimar is the origin of the name where it was bred in search of big game in addition to waterfowl and other birds. North America gave it the status of a gun dog.

Bird hunting is most familiar with greater visibility in the air and easy targets, too, compared to animals in bushes. The Weimaraner will be the best bet if you wish to get quail and pheasant besides other medium-sized birds. They look excellent indeed, though awkward with their long legs.

English Setter

Originating in Wales, England, they are gentle and energetic and belong to the Irish Red and White Setters and Black and Tan Gordon Setters. The standard colors are Orange and Lemon, Liver, Blue Belton, and Chestnut. They live around 11 years.

A valuable bird dog, the Irish Setter is a close cousin and shares many characteristics. Excellent stamina and a powerful sense of smell are exceptional traits. Turkey hunting during the fall could not have a better partner than this superb hunting dog.

Being sociable, they cannot be left alone all day long without people or other pets. The result may be terrible destruction. They need sufficient exercise and can be stubborn. 

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