Dogs have always been used for hunting and retrieving. Some breeds are better suited for these tasks, but most also are very good house dogs. You can train your dog to be an excellent hunting dog and it will still be a great family pet.
A hunting dog is a large canine that retrieves game with little to no command. In general the term refers to any large canine designed for hunting, tracking, or scenting. The most common types of hunting dogs are beagles, German shepherds, golden retrievers, spaniels and foxhounds. Retrievers are considered to be the most popular of the hunting dogs and have been used by hunters for centuries.
Some people own hunting dogs as pets instead of hunting dogs, while others use them as sporting dogs. Many times the family will own more than one hunting dog; in this case a pet and a sport dog are usually seen together. Other times a hunting and a pet dog are owned by one family, and the dog is bred for one purpose only, such as the Golden Retriever for hunting, the Poodle for herding, or the Beagle for herding smaller animals.
Gun dogs used to hunt small animals like squirrels, chipmunks, rabbits and smaller birds. Retrievers are commonly used as gun dogs, although their specialty is to retrieve game that has been shot. The hunting parties depend on the breed of the animal being hunted, so the choice of dog depends solely on the purpose of the hunt. For example, if the hunting party is hunting for pheasant, then the dog must be able to track, trail, and attack the prey easily. In the case of the wild boar, it should have a strong bite so that it can rend its prey and bring it down quickly.
Different Breeds Hunt Differently
Most hunters depend on the breed that they want to use in their hunt. They all have one thing in common: being highly intelligent. Barking is an important component of the dog’s character and any retriever will easily get annoyed when he smells a raccoon or a squirrel in the garden. Therefore, a hunting spaniel would not only bark at the birds, but also at the other animals in the vicinity. Although they are very protective of their owners, these dogs will not hesitate to attack intruders and if they are sent on a silent mission, they make the most noise.