Whether you are a seasoned hunter who has decided to adopt a hunting dog to help aid you in tracking the animals you hunt or you are a novice hunter who wants to adopt a dog who can help during your first hunting venture, you need to adopt the right breed of dog. While you can train any dog to help you hunt, specific dog breeds are known to be great hunters of specific types of game.
When you choose a dog breed with good hunting instincts, the training process will be easier and you can look forward to a great hunting companion for many years to come.
Read on to learn about the best hunting dog breeds to adopt based on the game you hunt.
Best Turkey Hunting Dogs
Because turkeys can be so much more difficult to hunt than other birds, adopting a dog to aid you on your hunts is a great idea. With the help of a hunting dog, that elusive Thanksgiving turkey you have been attempting to hunt for years may finally reach your dinner table.
Many hunting professionals agree that the Appalachian turkey dog is the best turkey hunting companion, while many hunters also choose the Boykin spaniel as their turkey hunting dog of choice.
Appalachian turkey dogs are not recognized as an official dog breed by the American Kennel Club because they are mixed breed dogs; they are part Plott hound, part pointer, and part setter. These dogs have the bird hunting instincts of the setter, the speed of a pointer, and the great game tracking abilities of the Plott hound.
Boykin spaniels have a high prey drive that is important during challenging turkey hunts, keen senses of smell, and the stamina to pursue a turkey for hours on end. However, when trained well, Boykin spaniels also have the patience to lie quietly at your side when needed during turkey hunting.
Best Deer Hunting Dogs
If you hunt deer you likely feel great that you can help control the deer overpopulation in your area while looking forward to enjoying delicious venison meals after every hunt. Many hunting professionals believe that the best dog breed for deer hunting is the American foxhound. However, many hunters also have great success using beagles to help them track deer.
The American foxhound has a great sense of smell and is energetic. Once it picks up the scent of a deer, this dog will not give up until it finds the deer and leads you to it. American foxhound males average about 64 to 75 pounds and are about 22 to 25 inches tall, while females typically weigh a bit less.
If you would like a smaller dog to help you hunt deer, then a beagle is a great option. These small dogs are versatile hunters, easy to train to hunt virtually any type of game, and their keen sense of smell is a great asset when deer hunting.
Best Duck Hunting Dogs
If you hunt ducks, you need a hunting dog that loves the water as much as it loves helping its owner hunt their favorite game. The perfect dog breed to begin joining you on your duck hunting journeys is the Labrador retriever.
These dogs were bred for retrieving ducks and other waterfowl, and even cold water doesn't phase them while hunting due to their double coats. The outer layer of their coats repels water while the under-layer keeps them warm.
Labrador Retrievers are also naturally great swimmers, and it is a little-known fact that they have webbed feet to aid them during their swims. As an added bonus, these dogs are social and get along well with people of all ages.
The Boykin spaniel is another popular duck hunting dog that is not afraid to get into the water to track down waterfowl of all types.Before you adopt your new hunting dog, be sure to check out the dog collars, leashes, and beds available at Over Under Clothing, so you can prepare for the arrival of your new hunting companion.