I am looking for a new hunting dog. Our old pointer passed away in February. I am seeing a few ads for GPS/Lab puppies. Does anyone know what kind of hunters they would be? I prefer a pointing dog for hunting. Any advice would be appreciated.
I'm in the middle of training my first hunting dog so take my opinion for what it's worth.
If I were buying a mixed breed for hunting (which I'm not opposed to), I'd buy a mix with parents with common functions. For example a German Shorthair mixed with an English Pointer (both pointing dogs, both pretty much do the same thing). The problem with a mixed GSP and lab is the dog may perform differently than you want. You prefer a pointer, but Labs generally flush and GSPs point. Which will the pups do? Who knows?
Others probably have wiser, more informed insights, but I figured I'd at least get your thread going. :smile:
AF CYN has some good points I think. Unless the breeder has done that exact pairing of dam and sire and the pups were all strong performers, I really wouldn't look at that at all. The reason breeds have been developed is to improve the rate of consistency for certain traits.
Could you get a great dog from a gsp/lab breeding? Sure. But I'd wager you're far more likely to end up with a high energy family pet that is sort of ok at hunting if you put enough work into it.
If you prefer a pointing dog, get a pointing breed from a reputable breeder. Why set yourself up for disappointment especially since you'll be emotionally invested once it comes home.
If you're wanting a versatile hunting dog (upland, waterfowl, and tracking) there after many excellent breeds and breeders to choose from.
I’ve owned a lot of dogs over the years from labs to a few pointing breeds. My best pure bird dog was an Irish setter. For Waterfowl and some upland bird hunting I like labs. But I think one of the best all around hunting dogs I’ve ever owned was a lab/ vizla mix. I currently have a lab and he’s a good dog but I miss a dog that points. That combination may work? But it’s always a gamble, but I think it can be that way with some purebreds!
20 + years ago I had a Wirehair Pointer/Lab cross. One of the best dogs I've ever had when it came to Upland. I don't hunt upland anymore, so I'm not into the pointers.
I've lost pointers in the cattails because I trained them to hold a point. Frustrating when your hoofing through the crap to find your dog.
I picked up a Lab three weeks ago (now 11 weeks old) and I had pick of the litter. I wouldn't buy a dog for hunting if I couldn't have first pick. within five days I had him potty trained, kennel trained. He loves to retrieve and cant keep him out of the water. Knows sit, heal, back, and I'm working on hand direction retrieves now. Has a great nose and digs into the grass with his nose and finds the bumper. I'm not looking forward to the 5-7 month old stage when they think they are the boss.
I don't care what breed a guy gets. ALL breeds can be difficult at times. I've seen top money spent on a pup from "well breed" lines and it not to be worth a dang. That is why I like being first pick. I can eliminate that possibility with "puppy tests" before picking the pup. If it turns out to be a pain and not work out, then I blame myself mostly. I picked the wrong pup.
I truly feel that most folks don't spend the time needed with a pup. My new guy is at my side (mostly under my feet) in the morning beginning at 4:00 am. I come home, and he's with me until I go to bed. His kennel is at the foot of the bed. We are family in my opinion, and will be companions until one of us is gone.
Now that I've rambled on, get a breed you like. Just spend the time needed to help your new companion meet his/her full potential.
My brother got a GSP/Lab cross. The dog is a decent dog, but it's an idiot.
I blame part on him, and part on the dog.
The dog looks just like a lab, but it points and has the endless energy of a GSP. So looks can be deceiving when you expect lab.
My dad has a pudelpointer/lab cross because my friend's pudelpointer got involved with the neighbor lab. That's a good dog. Not nearly the energy from the GSP. It swims, retrieves, and points. It's not a big dog at all. I don't think this dog is as good of bird dog as the viszlas we had growing up, but she's a good dog. A little bull headed and can hunt for itself instead of the boss. But a good dog and good family dog.
I got a chocolate pointing lab about a year ago last year. He's starting to point a bit, can't stop retrieving stuff, has a good nose, is a horrible swimmer (and after lots of practice) isn't much better, but is a great family dog.
My season of life is I need a great family dog and a pretty good hunting dog as the dog will be family more than hunting. We only hunt 4 months a year and train and play as a family the rest. So, I'll take a great family dog.
Bottom line, get what works for you. If you like the temperment of the dogs, it could be good. If you're looking for a purebred, it may not be what you want.
My experience with my brother's dog is it has GSP energy without the GSP grace and agility. Bull in a china closet type thing. Ok hunting dog, but that could be he doesn't spend enough time with it running the stupid out of it.
I hunted with my English Pointer for 16 great years!! Outstanding K9 when I was younger and faster!! I now hunt with my Yellow pointing Lab!! She is also outstanding but a lot more versatile (upland, waterfowl, dove etc)!! Great family dog also!!
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