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Trained Cold Weather Pointer
Unread 11-26-2020, 08:40 PM   #1
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Default Trained Cold Weather Pointer

I'd like to get a pointer to hunt with me in Alaska for grouse. I would appreciate your thoughts as to breed and kennel. I believe a tall, strong dog would be best to power through knee deep snow. I'm considering a pointing lab but was wondering if anyone has hunted with Munsterlanders or English Setters in the cold?
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Unread 11-26-2020, 09:19 PM   #2
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I can only offer this comment back when we had great bird numbers and everyone had a bird dog and ran the barrens ,our big local setters were king ...i heard many a story of guys bringing in pointers ,and GSP's but they couldn't handle the cold wind and rain or at least the lines they chose from weren't up to it ,a good friend of mine brought in a GSP who he found cowering behind a big rock to get out of the weather on a particularly bad day … I do know from personal experience that Drhathaar's can take it in stride and ask for more
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Unread 11-27-2020, 07:05 AM   #3
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Chris, were those setters English? I'll look up Drhathaars. Labs can take it up here, even though they don't have long hair, it's dense in the winter, that's why I'm considering one. As I mentioned, I'm leaning towards spending the money on a trained adult dog. Calmness when not hunting is a trait I'm looking for.
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Unread 11-27-2020, 08:07 AM   #4
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Yes they were English the lines I imagine came straight from there ,the guys here crossed them up English ,Gordon, Irish if it was a bird dog you bred it there were some incredible raw talent dogs that came from this …but to find those lines now is next to impossible ,they were big running ,large dogs 75 -80 lbs. for a male was common ...in recent time folks with money brought dogs in smaller setters from the US and elsewhere ,you can rest assured if I ever find those lines again ill be adding a pup.

I'm no expert but for my money the Drhathaar would be my choice ,you wont get one in Canada anymore I don't think …tail docking laws swept the country shut down the breeders and we had some real good kennels here
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Unread 11-27-2020, 09:37 AM   #5
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North Missouri is obviously not Alaska, but our Gordons have all relished hunting in very cold weather, the colder the better for them. The cold has not seemed to diminish their ability to scent birds, either, as is sometimes the case for dogs in conditions with cold, dry air. Depending on the breeding, they can develop thick, heavy coats in winter. You'll need to clip the hair on their feet and apply some sort of treatment that keeps the snow from forming ice balls (or boot them) as with any breed with longer hair. I recommend Musher's Secret.

When it's minus 5 and you're just completed a two hour hunt and your dog is still joyfully rolling in the snow to cool off, you know they like and can handle it.
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Unread 11-27-2020, 11:31 AM   #6
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Everyone in my family had Drahthaars, or as they are called over here, GWP, German Wirehaired Pointer. Ive heard lots of people say they are the rough coated version of the GSP, Short haired pointer, but My dad was well known NAVHDA trial judge and trainer and would disagree.
Hilltop Farm was, back in the day, the best known breeder of GWPs, and Betty Stroh had a very keen sense of what breeding made the best working dog. Her best stud dog was Hilltops Beau. Almost every dog my dad, sisters, and I had were out her kennel. My dog, Ringer, was absolutely incredible on grouse and would hold a three legged point till the rooster went to bed. He also had a way of looking at me when I missed, as if to say 'Really?"
My dad's best dog, Cyclone, could leap from a canoe without making the thing tip over, swim 150-200 yards and bring back a goose in cold Chesapeake water.
It's their coat that makes the biggest difference, but they are almost always beefier than a GSP.
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Unread 11-27-2020, 11:38 AM   #7
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Good read on the GWP

https://projectupland.com/hunting-do...red-pointer-2/
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Unread 11-27-2020, 09:29 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Garry L Gordon View Post
North Missouri is obviously not Alaska, but our Gordons have all relished hunting in very cold weather, the colder the better for them. The cold has not seemed to diminish their ability to scent birds, either, as is sometimes the case for dogs in conditions with cold, dry air. Depending on the breeding, they can develop thick, heavy coats in winter. You'll need to clip the hair on their feet and apply some sort of treatment that keeps the snow from forming ice balls (or boot them) as with any breed with longer hair. I recommend Musher's Secret.

When it's minus 5 and you're just completed a two hour hunt and your dog is still joyfully rolling in the snow to cool off, you know they like and can handle it.
That's good to hear! I hunt alone and the described attributes of Gordon Setters sound good to me. Do you know of anyone who sells young adult trained dogs? I am sort of planning on flying outside to meet my dog and bring them home if compatibility and performence in the field is there. I'm willing to accept the expense.
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Unread 11-27-2020, 09:34 PM   #9
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That was interesting! The Germans seem to be doing this better by holding the dogs to performance standards. Projectupland has some nice descriptions about breed attributes and I spent some time last night reading them.
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Unread 11-27-2020, 10:14 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jefferyconnor View Post
That's good to hear! I hunt alone and the described attributes of Gordon Setters sound good to me. Do you know of anyone who sells young adult trained dogs? I am sort of planning on flying outside to meet my dog and bring them home if compatibility and performence in the field is there. I'm willing to accept the expense.
Jeffery, I don't know of any breeders that routinely sell trained Gordons, but a google search might reveal one. You'd probably be more likely to find a young, started Gordon; but, again, I don't know of specific breeders you might check for this either. Sorry. But, hey, don't you have a really long grouse season in Alaska, and probably good access to wild birds? Why not get a pup and train it yourself? Gordons are real one person dogs, and the bond you create training your own pays great dividends in many ways.
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"'I promise you,' he said, 'on my word of honor, I won't die on the opening of the bird season.'" -- Robert Ruark (from The Old Man and the Boy)
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