For years, dogs have been considered as man’s best friend. They are loyal, adorable, fun, protective, and playful creatures. They are the most common household pet today. However, during the early years, dogs have been known for something else – their hunting skills. Ancient hunters used dogs to track down and hunt their targets because of the supreme animalistic senses. This is the reason why until today, dogs are not only pets, but are also hunters.
Believe it or not, your pet dog could potentially be a great partner for hunting. It is in their nature to be the great hunters that they are, and it is up to you to bring it out of them. For sure, the use of hunting dogs is not for everyone, but if you are willing to try it out, it is important for you to know everything there is to know about them.
Advantages of Dogs When Hunting
There are many advantages to getting a hunting dog. First, it will surely improve your hunting efficiency. Dogs are gifted with a strong sense of smell and heightened senses. This makes it easier for them to find their targets. Second, you can expand the terrain of which you are hunting on. If ever there are places which are too difficult for you to explore, your hunting dog is perfect for the job. Third, they can be trained to be good pointers and retrievers. This means that you can leave them to go on their own, and they will find you to where the target is. Fourth, hunting dogs can be great companions while out on the field. There is no doubt that they are still man’s best friend even though they have been trained for other purposes.
Types of Hunting Dogs
There are different types of hunting dogs for different uses. It is important for you to know this, so you can find out what type is suitable for you. It is important to note before getting a hunting dog is that it takes a lot of maintenance and training to teach a dog how it’s supposed to behave when hunting. It is really up to you to decide on what your hunting dog needs to learn. There are generally three types of hunting dogs: hounds, gun dogs, and terriers.
There are several types of hounds. Hounds are generally used for chasing after running game. Scent hounds are known for their strong sense of smell and loud barks. They are ideal for hunters who want to release the hunting dog into the wild. Hunters usually follow them over long distances and rough landscapes. Tree hounds are known to put pressure on animals that hide up a tree. Tree hounds usually stay at the base of the tree until the hunter arrives and finds them.
Some popular breeds of hound dogs include: Beagles, Basset Hounds, Foxhounds, Bloodhounds, and Coonhounds. Hound dogs are perfect for game such as squirrels, rabbits, raccoons, bears, mountain lions, foxes, coyotes, deer, and wild boars.
Gun dogs are commonly used for locating camouflaged and hiding game. They catch their game by locating them within shooting distance of the hunter and then retrieving them to the hunter. They are perfect for hunting upland and wetland animals. Unlike hounds, gun dogs stay closer to the hunter. They are able to hunt more species and can be trained to retrieve them for the hunter.
This group is further grouped into three: pointers, flushers, and retrievers. Some gun dogs include the Weimaraner, Pudelpointer, Munsterlander, Golden Retriever, Labrador, Irish Setter, Cocker Spaniel, and Chesapeake Bay Retriever.
Terriers aren’t as common as hounds and gun dogs among hunters today. They have been used to hunt down varmint and track wounded or bloodied game. This works by allowing the terrier to pursue its game below ground. The use of this type of hunting dogs has lost favor throughout the years because of the dangers it poses to the game and the land. It is also illegal in some countries such as the UK. Make sure to check whether or not it is legal for you to use terriers wherever you are hunting.