All Gundog Group Breeds were developed to help man with his gun, although some breeds are all-purpose dogs, whilst others have duties in the field. Some locate the game, some put it up so that a sportsman can shoot at it, whilst others retrieve it later. In addition, certain breeds are noted for being particularly adept in water.
It is chiefly the pointers and setters which detect game. They work in front of the guns, signifying exactly where it is to be found. On the other hand, the pointers standing rigidly, often in that familiar pose with one foot raised in mid-stride, carrying out their tails in a straight line.
Gundog Group Breeds and Their Purpose
Setters tend to sink down when they have discovered game. Spaniels move the game, either putting birds up in the air or forcing ground game to run. As such, they hunt vigorously in front of the guns, yet never causing the target to move out of range.
For the most part, it is the larger, stronger breeds that retrieve game once it has been killed. These Gundog Group Breeds have excellent scenting powers and can mark fallen game, watching birds fall and fetching them with little help. Also, they can make their way quickly over rough ground and through difficult cover.
Some can perform all functions whilst there also some specialists, such as the Irish Water Spaniel. It was developed especially for use in lakes and creeks, necessitating protection from wet and cold. When it comes to these gundog breeds, their owners are very enthusiastic about them. Gundog’s have benefited from generations of training to obey commands. They also make great companions for their owners.
Watching an Irish Setter at work in the fields with its deep, red coat must be a sight to see, as is the graceful pose of the pointer doing his thing. Coats, their color, length, texture, and the amount of care they require vary substantially. However, all Gundog Group Breeds are what is called soft mouthed.
List of Gundogs
These dogs having amazingly reliable temperaments. None within the group can be considered exceptionally large, and none very small. However, the American Cocker Spaniel and Cocker Spaniel are at the bottom when it comes to overall size.
Though, some Gundog Group Breeds are very noticeably built and work more slowly, while others are agile and capable of good speed. Each dog within the group has a slightly different method of working. Today, many are kept for work as well as for use in the show ring.
A large percentage of the dogs are also kept purely as companions. Of all breeds, in the United Kingdom, the Labrador Retriever is the most popular. It numbers well more than the second most popular breed which is, parenthetically, the German Shepard.