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Good GSP recommendations?

ZLBubba

Sergeant
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Minuteman
Jan 15, 2009
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Maryland
Hello all, I know a few of you are upland bird hunters. Do any of you hunt with German Shorthaired Pointers? My grandfather had one years ago and he was a great dog. I’ve enjoyed pheasant and quail hunting and wanted to get back into it, having my own dog this time.

Any recommendations for breeders you or friends have had success with? What’s a good budget for a solid hunting dog, and what are the expectations on cost/timing to get them professionally trained? Many thanks.
 
My last couple are from Becky Jacobs richochet kennels in punta gorda Florida. Her dogs are incredible but she doesn’t have pups very often. She will put you through a background check literally before selling you a pup though. Place in North Georgia walnut hill kennels is where the stud dog (Bennie the Jet) for my current dog is from also has great dogs. There are some big name places in the Midwest like standing stone kennels who train also. They have an amazing reputation but they market well also. Fortunately most shorthair breaders are pretty strict so the breed hasn’t been ruined yet. You could reach out to Becky if you’re in the southeast and mention my name for I’m sure some great advice or other breeders she knows that may have puppies coming if she doesn’t. Pm me for more info and her contact info.
 
Chilling in the reloading room today on a rainy day
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Well you can see when I say chillin it still involves movement with a toy in his mouth! Even a good picture is a bit blurry cause you’ll never catch him still unless pointing! If you take a picture while he’s sleeping his feet will be blurry cause he’s dreaming that he’s running even while snoring lol.
 
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I will also add if you don’t have at least five acres and retired or at least a stay at home job don’t get a gsp! Also in good health, strong cardio with good balance so you don’t break a hip or blow out a knee don’t get a gsp. Oh I’m serious
 
I will also add if you don’t have at least five acres and retired or at least a stay at home job don’t get a gsp! Also in good health, strong cardio with good balance so you don’t break a hip or blow out a knee don’t get a gsp. Oh I’m serious
I think we had that conversation. Pretty sure you advised another Malinois since they’re not as high strung 🤣
 
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I will also add if you don’t have at least five acres and retired or at least a stay at home job don’t get a gsp! Also in good health, strong cardio with good balance so you don’t break a hip or blow out a knee don’t get a gsp. Oh I’m serious
10 mountain acres in the Catoctins, and I finished the Murph in 50 minutes on Memorial Day. Should be fit enough for that beast, and have the room.
 
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If you are wanting an upland game dog and not getting a Springer Spaniel you are doing it wrong.
 
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GSP? the fight with penn where he beat him until penn quit is my advice.

seriously, someone fucked them up bad in the last 40 years. i had a well bred gsp as a kid and it was NOTHING like the ones you see today. somebody seriously fucked up the breed-i think they got too much english pointer blood somehow.

there is a kennel in brainard, mn that has good dogs-still a bit more energetic than i like, but great hunting stock. and they are good people.

the ONLY way i'd get a GSP anymore is if it was from Germany. they have breed wardens that keep the breed what it is supposed to be.
 
oh, and english SETTERS are where it is at. best hunting dog i ever had-you have to do the off season work, of course. but amazing dog. i used to have to bring people with just so we could stay out longer than 30 minutes.
 
can't be any better than the Wagner's who own and operate "Dusty W" ... they are in Palmerton, Pa. have been breeding and training puppies from Field Champion mothers and fathers, for years.... I have my Strasse from them and she is a gem... the hunt instinct was apparent from 10 weeks old... have been on hunting channel programs... can't do better than them
 
I could probably get you hooked up.....I ran a upland hunting lodge for years.
The best are the ones from Germany, the stock isn't watered down like the ones you'll find in the US.
For a untrained pup you'll be looking in the $5k range and for a trained young one of about 8-12 months old you'd better take out a 2nd as they go for $10k +++
You can Google up Smoky River Rendezvous in Winona Kansas and ask for a Jeff Harper, he's probably the single best dog runner and trainer in the country (not kidding a bit). If nothing else he can give you a no bullshit answer unlike what you'll get here (you know "my dog is the fucking best because...well...it's MY dog".

Ugly dogs do pretty well (wirehairs) as do Springers.....but a Lab will run out of juice a few hours into a good hunt.
Granted Labs *can* point and retrieve well but they just don't have stamina.

Yea, we had kennels for 100 dogs and during season they were always full.....and needing room for more.
The most important thing to train your dog for is the "no bird" part so they will stop chasing a bird into the next state.
Some quail will jump up about 2 foot and fly straight away from you and the dog will be right on it's ass, till forever, so be VERY aware of that.

Be aware that if someone is biased towards some breed or another they don't know shit or have little experience.
You'll never get anywhere until you understand that the dog is just another tool for hunting with, you have to have no emotional attachment for everything to work right.
Once you start luvin on the dog the dog will NOT behave as a good hunting dog and YOU will be afraid to use it as it should be used.
Remember the phrase.
"Working Dog"
 
I have been raising and training shorthairs for 20yrs. I love the breed for upland birds, but also know people that use them as tracking and water fowl dogs. We have a litter on the ground now in western Kentucky if interested.
 

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I would highly recommend linking up with a local NAVHDA (North American Versatile Hunting Dog Association) chapter. There are often training days and a Natural Ability test for younger dogs which can put you on a nice training path with your dog. The chapters are also good resources for purchasing training birds. All of the comments in this thread have positive recommendations as well.
 
100% agree with the above statement but make sure its a Field Breed Springer from a Field Trial background.
I've never hunted with my Springer, often think about it but never gotten around to it.
She came from two hunting parents so the hunt/flushing instinct is well ingrained, I rememeber the first time she smelt a pheasant, despite never having seen one before and with no training was going mental sniffing, gunting and snorting all over the place.

My inlaws has a GSP which also came from hunting parents but has never been hunted with.
She wanders around thier property all day pointing at things and chasing down rabbits.
The two dogs often with try hunting rabbits together, they both have similar staminar it would seem but the GSP can run a lot faster and runs down rabbits frequently (my Springer is admittedly quite small so has tiny little legs in comparision).

I've become 100% a Springer Spaniel guy having owned one and meet many, just such a good nature and an amazing family dog.
Other than having to teach a few manners the dog damn near trained itself.
Although I've not done any field trial or hunting work/training the dog pretty much knows how to do it all instictively, being able to retrive in the direction I point and responding to voice commands without having to do any training at all.

I'm not in the USA so can't comment on any breeders but it'd seem if you get a dog from a good background with parents who hunted, then your on to a good start.
 
Every GSP I've ever met (and I've met a lot lately - they have a strong fan base) has been absolutely fucking nuts. And not very intelligent.

Bless the hearts of those that can handle a GSP.
 
My favorite breed...both the short and wire haired.

Do stay away from the white ones. Those have (generally) been bred with the English Pointer. Not a fan of the English Pointer.
 
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I have hunted with many GSP's and Drahthaars (wire hair). I think the Draht's are better dogs all around. They have high energy but aren't even close to GSP's. I feel they are more obedient as well. Both are great bird hunting dogs.

You might get lucky and find a mellow GSP that is still a hunting machine, but it's rare. My good buddy had two mellow one's. But his Draht was amazing. Hunting with all 3 in rotation made for fun hunting trips. He lost his female Draht sadly last year, one female GSP in a divorce and the male GSP two years before his Draht. She was an amazing dog all around. He tried a springer and she went away after the first hunt. He's been trying to find another good Draht but it's been difficult out west. The bloodline his dog came from is gone. Others that had pups decided not to breed them later.
 
GSP are great dogs,,, if,,,,,, you have enough time and room for them to be exercised or hunted with at 3-4 times a week. We've had 3 of them now, but we also live in the middle of dry land wheat country so there is plenty of space and room to blow off steam. IMHO if you don't have a similar situation and or time to get them aired out you won't appreciate how cool of dogs they are. I have a couple places we've gotten dogs from in the PNW if you needs some recco in. that region Id be glad to help.
 
Every GSP I've ever met (and I've met a lot lately - they have a strong fan base) has been absolutely fucking nuts. And not very intelligent.

Bless the hearts of those that can handle a GSP.
My gsp is smarter than most humans. Lots of training though but smart enough to soak it all in!
 
most the GSP's i've seen in the last 30 years have pointer blood in them-the disposition is entirely different than it was 40 years ago. white or no.

You'll never get anywhere until you understand that the dog is just another tool for hunting with, you have to have no emotional attachment for everything to work right.
Once you start luvin on the dog the dog will NOT behave as a good hunting dog and YOU will be afraid to use it as it should be used.
Remember the phrase.
"Working Dog"

on that, i disagree. i have seen guys that use punishment on hunting dogs as the motivating factor. i always used love and praise for my dogs with excellent results. yes, there were corrections along the way. vocal, e-collar (to address the chasing a flushed bird off to the horizon and other such issues), a hat swat, but mostly vocal.

i hunted and trained a partner. and it was for enjoyment. if i dont enjoy what i am doing, i wont do it. and i want to enjoy training, being with, and hunting with my dog. any game bagged is just a side effect.

some people have different views/goals and methods. but i would put that setter up against any dog i ever have seen. it would take one helluva dog to perform better than he did. and he was a house/family/hunting dog.

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I could probably get you hooked up.....I ran a upland hunting lodge for years.
The best are the ones from Germany, the stock isn't watered down like the ones you'll find in the US.
For a untrained pup you'll be looking in the $5k range and for a trained young one of about 8-12 months old you'd better take out a 2nd as they go for $10k +++
You can Google up Smoky River Rendezvous in Winona Kansas and ask for a Jeff Harper, he's probably the single best dog runner and trainer in the country (not kidding a bit). If nothing else he can give you a no bullshit answer unlike what you'll get here (you know "my dog is the fucking best because...well...it's MY dog".

Ugly dogs do pretty well (wirehairs) as do Springers.....but a Lab will run out of juice a few hours into a good hunt.
Granted Labs *can* point and retrieve well but they just don't have stamina.

Yea, we had kennels for 100 dogs and during season they were always full.....and needing room for more.
The most important thing to train your dog for is the "no bird" part so they will stop chasing a bird into the next state.
Some quail will jump up about 2 foot and fly straight away from you and the dog will be right on it's ass, till forever, so be VERY aware of that.

Be aware that if someone is biased towards some breed or another they don't know shit or have little experience.
You'll never get anywhere until you understand that the dog is just another tool for hunting with, you have to have no emotional attachment for everything to work right.
Once you start luvin on the dog the dog will NOT behave as a good hunting dog and YOU will be afraid to use it as it should be used.
Remember the phrase.
"Working Dog"
You had me until you got to dog is tool, no emotional attachment. This is terrible thinking and just not true. A dog that is kenneled and only brought out for training and the hunt is hunting for itself, and only teams up with the hunter by threat or the most basic pack instincts. A dog that is made to be part of the pack/family is more biddable, have better recall, and tend to be more steady.
 
on that, i disagree. i have seen guys that use punishment on hunting dogs as the motivating factor. i always used love and praise for my dogs with excellent results. yes, there were corrections along the way. vocal, e-collar (to address the chasing a flushed bird off to the horizon and other such issues), a hat swat, but mostly vocal.

i hunted and trained a partner. and it was for enjoyment. if i dont enjoy what i am doing, i wont do it. and i want to enjoy training, being with, and hunting with my dog. any game bagged is just a side effect.

Growing up in New Zealand I was always under the assumption that working dogs and pets were totally different creatures.
One sat on your sofa, slept on your bed etc, and the other type was either working of locked outside in a cage.

It wasn't until I met my English (now wife) and her family and saw a completely different way of treating dogs, as their family dog was very much part of the family but also was a working gun dog. I then went to England on holiday and had my mind blown.

I went to a game fair where they had dog trial competitions and watching the dogs there, the owners very much treated the dogs as a family memember not as a slave, and boy could those dogs perfrom. I also remember going into the pub (well many pubs) and seeing all the gun dogs inside with their owners, they were all exceptionally well behaved.

The icing on the cake was staying with one of my (now wifes) relatives who was a game keeper and had 9 Springer Spaniels, who all were undoubtedly working dogs. Well they all came inside on a night time and sat and watched TV with him and his wife.
I'm not sure I'd recommend having 9 high energy Springer Spaniels indoors (especially not in a tiny house) but the love and care they got from him obviously didn't impact on their ability to work.
 
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Unfortunately the bloodline is done, great instinct for the hunt. My brother and I got them locally from a breeder in Iowa.
 
My Hunting buddy trains dogs full time on his property. When I first met him, I was looking into getting my first upland dog. I asked him about a gsp, so he walked me through the kennel and showed me some of his customers dogs. Every one of them was bouncing off the walls. The english pointers and brittanys were calm and happy to see a guest. He didn't talk badly about the them at the time, except to say that they're very high energy. I ended up with a Brittany which went through his class. With my newb status, that was the right call for me.

He continues to train customer gsp’s, but he’d never own one. “Bred hot” is the word he uses. He thinks they've been irresponsibly bred over a long period of time.

I had read about english pointers being that way, and never really considered one. His are amazing though, and totally buck their wider reputation. If I could get one through his program, id snap it up in a heartbeat.

Im actually surprised to see some here with the same sentiment on the gsp. I thought it was an unspoken thing.
 
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german bred is the answer. the dogs are what they are supposed to be to their core.

it's the same shit with rottweilers. people here have NOT stayed true to the breed and instead try to turn them into what THEY think it should be-thereby fucking it up beyond all recognition.
 
Here's mine watching over his domain. He's not a fan of "trespassers" (deer). All bark and no bite though.

He's 8 years old now and like others have said, extreme energy. He came from a breeder in the central NY area. The parents were NAVHDA champions. The energy hasn't been a problem for me though because I trained him early to not run off and he's never had to be tied up. He can blow off steam whenever he wants but most of the time he's a calm loyal companion. Super smart too. The two biggest problems with him is strong separation anxiety and he will run too hard and long causing lameness in his legs.

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