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A UNITED KINGDOM NATIONAL GUNDOG ORGANISATION
 

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Gundog work explained

 WHAT DO GUNDOGS ACTUALLY DO?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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A gundog's job is to help provide food.  Gundogs do this in three ways.

  • Retrieving

  • Hunting

  • Pointing

Putting food on the table: These natural behaviours are all directed towards providing food for the table.  Game such as pheasant, duck, and woodcock,  is an excellent source of low fat, organic, nutritious, food. As are other popular types of wild meat (such as rabbit and pigeon)  Gundogs are an essential part of providing this ethically supportable food source.  It is a happy coincidence that working and training these dogs is great fun.

Retrieving: The purpose of retrieving is for the dog to bring shot game back to his owner.  Fallen game is often difficult to find and collect. Dogs are an essential part of this process. Retrieving instincts tend to be strongest in our retriever breeds such as the Labrador, Golden Retriever, and Flatcoated Retriever

Hunting: Before game can be shot,  it needs to be 'flushed'  from cover.  Pheasants and rabbits may 'tuck in' tightly under branches and undergrowth. It takes a keen hunting dog to find them.  Some hunting dogs flush the game that they find as soon as they find it.  The hunter must be ready with his gun.  These dogs are our lively spaniel breeds including the popular Springer and Cocker spaniels.  Spaniels must hunt close to their handler so that what they flush is within range of the gun.   Spaniels are dual purpose dogs as they are also expected to retrieve shot game.

The remaining 'hunting' breeds also have a 'pointing' instinct.

Pointing: The pointing dogs take up a characteristic position 'on point' when the scent game close at hand and freeze in this position for a while.   This gives the hunter chance to get close so pointing dogs can hunt a much wider 'beat' and still help to put food on the table.   The pointing dogs are divided in to the majestic true pointers & setters, such as Irish Setter,  and the multi-purpose HPRs (hunt, point, retrievers) such as the Weimaraner and the German Shorthaired Pointer. HPRs are truly versatile hunting dogs which both point and retrieve game as well as hunting.

All gundogs need training and discipline because their natural instincts need harnessing before they are capable of teamwork.  

 

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