Dogs are man’s best friend, but in addition to being a best friend, they are also supporting us in a number of ways. As dogs have multiple instincts, some specialize in guarding, while others specialize in hunting. Some dogs are considered great for breeding, whereas some are only suitable for playing with kids (family dogs).
So, it is better to say that dogs are always helping humans through their diverse instincts. Dogs, whether for companionship or safety, are always our bravest companions. In fact, some studies reveal that dogs can be very helpful for people experiencing stress and anxiety.
Moreover, we can see that some specialized breeds are very helpful for this role when it comes to hunting. Some dogs have a built-in survival instinct, like guard dogs, who have a hunting instinct. This article will provide you with a quick rundown of the top 7 hunting dog breeds that can be your bravest companions:
1. American Foxhound
In the early 1700s, Maryland and Virginia were the states where the American foxhound arrived. They are about 70 pounds in weight, and the males are between 22 and 25 inches tall, while females are between 21 and 24 inches tall.
American foxhounds need extra care and attention because, without their regular activity, they may become destructive and unhappy. Adopting them as a family pet can be challenging because they become stubborn sometimes, but they can also be trained to be good pets with a little effort.
They are the ideal choice for scent work and in-field animal hunting due to their intense hunting drive. However, experts advise against acquiring this breed for inexperienced owners due to their occasional stubbornness.
2. Labrador Retriever
The Labrador retriever is a highly loving and flexible canine breed. As they were so well adapted to cold water, fishing dogs imported from Newfoundland were used to develop them in Great Britain. Labrador retrievers are often used as service dogs.
A fun fact about Labrador retrievers is when a service Labrador put his unconscious owner in the recovery position, wrapped him in a blanket, put his phone in his mouth, and ran for help in 2002, the dog was awarded a bravery medal.
Labradors can be used for a variety of hunting tasks and have a diverse hunting approach. They are excellent at both unplanned and waterfowl hunting. They have a 12-year lifespan on average and weigh between 70 and 80 pounds. Their height ranges from 22 to 25 inches, similar to XL Pitbull, Bully, and American Foxhounds.
3. English Springer Spaniel
Like American Foxhounds, springer spaniels are active, clever dogs who can become depressed if they are left alone for a long time. As a great sniffer, this breed is usually hired to smell luggage at airports and other locations. They are outstanding gun dogs and their main task in the field is to flush out spring birds.
In addition to being hunting dogs, they are also good family companions and get along with kids easily due to their lively nature. They usually weigh 40-50 pounds and are 18-20 inches tall. Moreover, their life span is also somewhere between 12 to 14 years.
4. Boykin Spaniel
Boykin Spaniel is another hunting dog breed originating from the Sporting Group (American Kennel Club) USA. A fun fact about this breed is that South Carolina recognizes the Boykin Spaniel as its official state dog.
They are lightweight, with an average of 35 pounds and are 16 inches tall. They are highly energetic, which is why they require a good amount of exercise daily. They are a successful hunter in the field due to their low weight, small size, and athletic physique.
On the other hand, Boykin spaniel is an affectionate breed of dog and they love to socialize. They can be a great companion and a wonderful addition to your family as well.
5. Wirehaired Pointing Griffon
In the late 1800s. Eduard began raising dogs in order to supply a hunting group with a canine companion and useful “gun dog.” Ultimately, he gave rise to the first breed of wirehaired pointing griffon, also known as a Korthals griffon, which proliferated over North America and Europe.
When hunting in the wild, wire-haired-looking griffons are known for their calm demeanor and keen attention to detail. They shine at workouts designed to flex their joints and muscles and like competing in field activities.
The average male weighs approximately 50.6 pounds, which is a little bit different from the average female weight of 45 pounds. They are 19 to 25 inches tall and have a 10 to 12-year lifespan.
An important thing to remember is that Wirehaired pointing griffons are not welcoming to strangers, which means they don’t easily get along with new people. However, they are good to go with kids and as a family companion.
6. Golden Retriever
In 1868, Lord Tweedmouth bred the golden retriever in Scotland by mating a water spaniel with another retriever breed. Golden retrievers were owned by former US Presidents Ronald Reagan and Gerald Ford, an interesting fact about this breed.
While the golden retriever is an easy dog to train, early socialization and training lessons are recommended to ensure that this amazing Scottish gun dog reaches its full potential. They usually weigh 65–75 pounds, stand 23–24 inches tall, and have a 10- to 12-year lifespan.
They are great gun dogs but require a lot of exercise because they can become bored and aggressive if left inactive. This breed’s soft mouth makes them excellent retrievers because they don’t harm their prey, which is a plus. They can readily retrieve birds from the water and are efficient waterfowl hunters.
7. German Shorthaired Pointer
German shorthaired pointers, often known as GSPs, like to fit anywhere they can, whether it’s a favorite shelf or your newest delivery box. This behavior is similar to that of cats.
The “pointy” attitude of German shorthaired pointers, which seems to be directed towards their latest prey, toy, or object of interest, is the source of their name. Given their ancestry, GSPs have a natural aptitude for hunting. They have already shown their ability to hunt a variety of animals, such as deer and rabbits.
They are usually 20-26 inches tall and weigh around 40-75 pounds. Their life span typically ranges from 12 to 14 years. They are highly energetic, lively, and obedient canines. Moreover, they are family-friendly and easily get along with kids. However, like some other dogs, they are also not welcoming towards strangers and only focus on their owners.
Dogs are wonderful companions for humans and serve us in a lot of ways. However, hunting dogs are thought to be the most violent, yet surprisingly, they are also the nicest. In fact, every dog can be friendly if it receives professional training from an early age and has good human and canine socialization.
Furthermore, we must remember that every dog is unique and has an individual story to tell. Therefore, no single rule fits all situations. Each must be understood individually, and their natural instincts must also be respected. If we make sure of it, we will have a phenomenal friendship experience that will endure forever.