Every hunter knows how important it is to have a helper with him, whether the hunt is for fox, birds, rabbits, ducks, or other game. There are a variety of dog breeds that make excellent hunting dogs, however this article will focus on the five best. Not only will they be there to help him find and retrieve the target, good hunting dogs will also provide great company!
Hunting Dog Breed #5: English Springer Spaniel
The English Springer Spaniel breed is a type of gundog and was specifically bred to ‘flush’ or ‘spring’ birds out of hiding in order to give the hunter a wide array of chances to hit a target. Because their mouth grip is so gentle, the English Springer Spaniel is perfect for retrieving game without inflicting any damage with its teeth. These dogs are considered medium sized hunting dogs, weighing in at approximately 40-50 pounds, and are able to withstand a variety of climate and weather conditions.
The English Springer Spaniel breed is an ideal hunting dog due to its strong legs, high level of energy, and lifespan of up to 14 years, allowing them to fulfill a hard day’s work of hunting outdoors. Best known for their ability to learn quickly and their eagerness to please, this breed is a perfect hunting companion.
Hunting Dog Breed #4: Black and Tan Coonhound
The Black and Tan Coonhound is used primarily to hunt for raccoons, relying on scent rather than sight to track them down. The coonhound has also been known to chase opposums up a tree, as well get in the action of deer hunting. This is due to the amount of courage they naturally possess, as well as a natural instinct to exhibit power, agility, and alertness.
The most prominent features of the Black and Tan Coonhound are their extremely long ears, long tails, and loud baying bark. This breed is considered a larger hunting dog, ranging from 65-130 pounds, with a life expentancy of 10-12 years.
Hunting Dog Breed #3: English Setter
The English Setter dog breed was originally bred to hunt game birds, pointing them out to hunters rather than flushing them out like the English Springer Spaniel. They make excellent hunting dogs for a variety of reasons; they have an abundance of energy, are easily trained, are quite intelligent, and respond best to positive reinforcement.
English Setters fall into the medium size category of hunting dogs, ranging from 55-80 pounds and is expected to live between 10-12 years.
Hunting Dog Breed #2: German Shorthaired Pointer
The German Shorthaired Pointer dog breed is most well known for, you guessed it, pointing! Primarily used for pointing game birds, this breed functions equally as well on land or in the water. Falling into the medium category of hunting dog, males can range from 55-75 pounds while females range from 45-65 pounds.
This breed is also quite skilled at tracking small mammals including opossum’s, racoon’s, and ocasionally larger animals like deer, as they have the best smelling ability among all bird dogs.
Hunting Dog Breed #1: Labrador Retriever
The Labrador Retriever dog breed gets its name for being one of the best in retrieving game with inflicting damage. A well-rounded hunting companion to any hunter, this breed is especially known for being water dogs, being easily trained, and ranks #7 on the list of the top 10 smartest dog breeds. Regardless of what animal is in season, the Labrador Retriever becomes easily adapted to a variety of climates.
Weighing in at a medium size 55-75 pounds, this breed stands up to its reputation of being even-tempered, making them a perfect dog for not only hunting, but search and rescue, detection, and therapy work.