WaterFowl hunting with a dog

Discussion in 'Ohio Waterfowl Hunting' started by LouisvilleDeerHunter, May 17, 2018 at 10:57 AM.

  1. I'm a dog owner, small breeds - so dogs are nothing new to me. my question is for those who hunt with a dog. Do you find it worth the work put in to train the dog and the expense of a good dog breed? I've been kicking around the idea of adding another dog to our house(love Labs) and have always wondered what it would be like to have a retriever added to waterfowl hunting. just looking for some realworld experiences, I know not all things are gonna be perfect, just curious of everyones thoughts on this.
  2. I've hunted waterfowl most of my life. Whether in a layout boat, in a marsh blind or in a field, there's a right way to hunt fowl and then there's the other way...without a dog.

    I grew up as the family's "cripple chaser." Had I any, I would have paid good money for a dog...any dog.

    Your concerns about the time and money involved in owning a sporting dog are almost laughable. Of course all your available time and disposable money will go towards that dog. The only way to beat the time and expense of dog ownership is to invest into a friendship with someone who already owns a great dog.

    On the other hand...

    Then my family became spaniel owners. I've had many hunts with great Labs in both deep and shallow water, but a Lab wasn't in our young family's mobile, military lifestyle. That said, the versatility of a Springer fit perfectly into my method of fowl hunting, and nearly all other small game hunting, in NW Ohio. The time and money I invested into those canine hunting partners reaped unimaginable returns.

    Easy choice for me.
    wing shooter likes this.

  3. I own a lab with very strong bloodlines. She hunts upland birds, ducks, and geese. We mainly hunt rivers and flooded swamp for ducks. I couldn't imagine trying to retrieve a downed duck in some of the flooded swamp we hunt. I think my success rate would be very low. Not to mention being dangerous in winter. Many areas go from shallow to deep in a couple steps. It has a small river running through it and little tributaries that shoot of it. The cover is thick and a downed duck 50yds out is lost without her nose and swimming. Its actually a piece od public and i see guys hunt it without a dog and i know they are getting all there birds.
    The training is a lot but will pay off in the end. Force fetching, marking, being steady on shot , and directional commands takes time. I worked a lot with her, read a lot, and sent her for some training but she is awesome .
    When i got her I let my youngest daughter name her and she chose Princess. It takes a real man to walk through the hunting woods with a dog named Princess. She is the best dog I have ever had and will probaly own. We have hunted so much together I couldn't imagine her not by my side.

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  4. You don't have to go buy an expensive dog at all. Never understood that, no matter what you're going to be spending a load of time training your dog. If money is a concern, check your local shelters and find a pup through them. I'd take a no papers working dog over a registered any day of the week. Not sure if you can have anymore pride than when you take a dog that's been given up on and tossed out and turn em into something your hunting buddies would dream to have.
  5. great responses gentlemen, money isn't a concern at all-I've thought about rescues because that's what my 2 other dogs are. But my fear with rescue dogs is that it could be gun-shy and I'm not sure of a cure so It might be better for a novice dog hunter to buy a older pup whos been pre trained. just want to make sure I get all my facts straight from people who have been there.
  6. Go with known hunting bloodline.If you are wanting a dog to hunt with,get one with the best chance of being a hunter.After you get your hunter,if you have any room left in home and heart,do the rescue.It will make feel you good.
  7. IMG_20180517_190722.jpg he was breed for it but never hunted him. Doesn't matter! Big old turd! Although those bloodlines I believe r extremely nice. Smart listens like a human (better than my wife at times) the nose is nuts! Loyal and just a great friend. I can't imagine if he'd had a good training program at a young age!!!!! Love chocolate labs. Jump and swim like no other.....if it doesn't work house dog fits in for them for sure! Good luck
  8. It's the best investment a waterfowl hunter will ever make, and likely one of the best friends you will ever be lucky enough to share a duck blind with.
    I couldn't imagine duck hunting without my lab.
    tracker 6 likes this.