Many people are born with certain talents, if not all, you may argue. Some are master of colors, some can sing perfect pitch, some are natural runners, etc. Just like humans, different dogs species have their own unique talents, though they all make great companion, some are great hunting mates, who can travel you deep into the forests and fetch prey in no time.
Nowadays, hunting is more sport than necessity — but dogs are still one of the best tools any hunter can have at their disposal. So in this article, we will introduce you the 10 best dog breeds for hunting, if you are a man who like to live in the wild west, a hunting dog will make your life much easier.
It’s right there in the name. Most retriever breeds make wonderful water dogs, and the Labrador might just be the “ultimate” waterfowl dog.
With bundles of energy, a cold-weather coat meant for long days outdoors and on big ranches, and the willingness to go to any lengths to retrieve your kill, the Labrador retriever is best for duck hunting, but can help you out with any type of small game. Just make sure your hungry lab doesn’t eat the bird for him or herself.
As you might imagine from their name, American foxhounds were bred specifically for the purpose of hunting. Their heritage, paired with a long history of loyalty and capability makes them excellent candidates for all sorts of hunting, tracking, and more — though they certainly excel when it comes to, you guessed it, hunting foxes.
While, to some, they might look like beagles, American foxhounds tend to be a bit taller and leaner, lending credence to their reputation for being athletic, hard-working canines.
Brittany dog breed, which originated in France sometime in the 1800’s, is a cross from different Spaniels and English Setters. Brittanies were bred for pointing and retrieving. They are a quick and curious breed and they do need a lot of exercise on a daily basis, as they can get quite destructive when they do not get enough of it.
Aside from being simply cute, adorable and friendly family dogs, Brittany breed is different from other pointers because is closer to the ground, and will be able to outmaneuver most other pointers by deftly running through bushes and trees. Brittany is considered an all-around great hunting breed.
A close relative of (or rather a mixture of) an American Water Spaniels, Pointers and Retrievers, Boykin Spaniel is a breed that has originated in South Carolina back in the beginning of 20th century. These rare best hunting dogs are especially loved by serious hunters and have gathered some decent (but not highest) rankings on the hunting dogs charts across multiple dog hunting online resources.
Boykin Spaniel is very energetic dog breed that loves to work hard. They are often used in hunts for mainly pheasants, grouses or quail (upland). Occasionally, hunters will also take Boykins with them for hunting ducks and geese, although this is not their specialty.
The perennial family dog, beagles have a tendency to be playful, curious, and cute. But it’s important to remember they were also bred originally for the purposes of hunting game like foxes, rabbits, and even birds and small deer. A bit stouter than their American foxhound counterparts, they share a lot of the same qualities — including their colors, their tenacity, and their loyal and obedient demeanor.
It’s also worth noting that, when it comes to hound dogs, these are the most popular in America and have been for years — which means it shouldn’t be too difficult to find one that’s up for adoption. They can also be quite intelligent, leading to moderately easy training under the right tutelage.
Again, the name tells all, bloodhound dog breed is exactly what it sounds: they are ruthless hunters who are prepared to face whatever prey they are after. Few dogs on this list are quite as astute as the bloodhound when it comes to tracking the scent of their quarry, and that’s also why they are so commonly used by law enforcement agencies to help find missing persons.
If you need something sought out, the bloodhound is the dog for you. It doesn’t hurt either that, when not tasked with a search, they’re remarkably docile and easy-going — making for a great companion both on and off the game trail.
Hungarian dog Vizsla is a known and skilled hunter of fowl and upland game. These dogs were bred to work at pointing, falconry and trailing, and they are quite good at it, with hunters using Vizslas today as one of the best hunting dogs for turkeys, pheasants, grouse, woodcock and quail.
As natural hunters, Vizslas are known to have strong noses and are one of the most easily trained dogs. Their fearlessness also adds a few solid points to hunting. Vizslas are gentle and very affectionate yet sensitive dogs. They originated from Hungary sometime in the middle ages, and have been great hunters since them. This dog breed has a tendency to be stubborn and excitable, and they make great companions for truly active pet owners.
This unique an interest looking breed originated in Germany in early 19th century, and have specialized in hunting large game, trailing and pointing. This dog was royalty’s first choice for hunting boars, bears, deer and other game of that type and size. They love running and hunting and do not like being penned up, which is where their true attitude comes into play.
This is an all-purpose gun dog breed, and all their origins point to them being one of the best hunting dogs that ever existed. Weimaraners have a very strong instinctive prey drive, and there are very few animals whom they can tolerate for a long period of time. Weimaraner can also be too much for small children as they can be rambunctious due to their nature.
Perhaps the most elusive animal in North America, mountain lions, can live just about any place where there are enough deer to feed them. They prowl, almost invisibly, close to homes, towns, and near hunters, hikers, bikers, and campers. To track this big cat, you need a hound with a good nose and stamina. When cornered, the hound needs to have the tenacity to stand toe-to-toe with a powerful enemy capable of killing with ease.
The bluetick coonhound, can pick up an old trail – key when cutting cougar tracks – and follow it with just enough speed and more than enough staying power to corner a cat in a tree or on a cliff’s edge. The bluetick’s ball and chop keeps the cat moving, or bayed when the time comes.