Hunting dogs :
Man has used dogs since the beginning of their domestication to hunt animals, and over time their role in hunting has evolved, and skeletal remains and fossil records dating back to the year 4,500 BC indicate the existence of five types of hunting dogs, namely: the mastiff, the wolf-dog, the dogs called Greyhounds, the Pointer dog, and the shepherd dog or shepherd.
Humans later began to crossbreed dogs to obtain new breeds with desirable qualities, such as visual acuity, hardness, and the early Greeks and Romans were famous for their ability to train and breed hunting dogs, so new breeds of them appeared, such as the Hound, terrier, and dachshund, and these dogs, thanks to their small size, had the ability to hunt prey while inside their burrow.
With the invention of weapons, a new group of dogs known as gun dogs appeared, whose function is to bring the prey that the hunter shot from a distant place, and later other breeds appeared that possess distinctive characteristics; such as jack Russell terriers, Labrador dogs, beagles, and others.
Over time, the characteristics for which the hunting dog breeds were bred took root and became part of their nature.
Categories of hunting dogs :
Hunting dogs depending on the purpose of their use can be divided into four main categories.
Tracking dogs :
Tracking dogs are used to track prey, which is two types:
- Olfactory tracking dogs are dogs that rely on their sense of smell to track prey even if it is out of sight, and are characterized by a strong sense of smell.
- Visual tracking dogs are dogs that chase prey based on their sense of sight and are characterized by their super speed.
Pointing dogs and Cleaver dogs :
Pointing dogs and Cleaver dogs are dogs that draw Hunter’s attention to the presence of prey, through the use of body language or sitting at the prey.
Recovery dogs :
Retrieval dogsare dogs that retrieve or bring prey to the Hunter after falling as a result of being shot from a distant place, and are the most widespread type of hunting dog in the wild.
Spaniel dogs :
Cyanel dogs are multitasking dogs, they pursue prey with the aim of getting it out of place, they may catch it and return it to the Hunter, and they are also known for relying on a strong sense of smell compared to other species.
Types of hunting dogs :
There are many of the best types of hunting dogs, the most famous and best of which are the following types:
Labrador retriever dog :
Labrador Retriever dogs are famous for their duck hunting skill, they are adept at swimming and even in cold water, and are also distinguished by their ability to retrieve small-sized games of all kinds.
Golden retriever dog :
the Golden Retriever or golden retriever has a strong medium-sized body and sturdy muscles, short ears and a straight snout, and a shiny golden coat that gives the breed its name, its behavior is characterized by obedience, ease of training, intelligence, and its is also considered an excellent dog used in hunting to retrieve birds.
Beagle dog :
Beagles are considered to be tracking hunting dogs using the sense of smell, therefore they are characterized by a strong sense of smell, and a loud voice, and are specialized in hunting small-sized game, especially rabbits.
American fox hunting dog :
American Foxhounds, from tracking hunting dogs using the sense of smell, is considered to be used for hunting foxes and deer, it is worth noting that this type of hunting is subject to some legal restrictions in some countries.
English springer spaniel :
English springer spaniels are considered to be spaniel dogs that excel at chasing and retrieving birds, especially pheasants, and are characterized by their small size, which helps them get into tight places while hunting.
English Pointer dog :
The English Pointer dog, one of the pointing dogs used to hunt birds, is characterized by Will and determination, in addition to being able to withstand hot weather.
Chesapeake Bay retriever dog :
The Chesapeake Bay retriever is distinguished by its ability to swim in cold water due to the fact that its waterproof coat contains a layer of protective oil, and its wavy coat may be a beautiful chocolate-brown color or yellowish-green.
His eyes are amber-yellow, and this type of dog is characterized by sincerity and responsiveness to training, but it has an independent character and is often unfriendly to strangers.
Plutek kunhound dog :
The plutek kunhound is considered one of the hunting dogs based on smell and is characterized by high energy that enables it to pursue a mountain lion, in addition to speed, audacity, and vitality.
The bright spotted coat of the plotek konhound combines blue and black colors, it has a strong and elegant body, not stocky, and one of its distinctive qualities is a loud, dissonant-tonal barking.
The English beekeeper’s dog :
The English Cleaver dog is one of the pointing dogs distinguished by its ability to hunt birds, especially after being trained to recover, and is characterized by a wide head, a thin neck, and soft feathery hair covering the ears, tail, legs, and abdomen.
His coat is generally speckled in several colors, including orange, yellow, and dark brown, but his eyes are dark brown, he is characterized by a pleasant temperament and his love for noisy games.
Irish Shepherd Dog :
The Irish beekeeper dog is characterized by its agility and agility, and it specializes in hunting birds, through its reliance on the senses of sight and smell, and it also has a strong body capable of defending and attacking.
Bloodhound dog :
The Bloodhound or Bloodhound belongs to the scent-dependent hunting dogs, as it is characterized by a strong sense of smell, a great ability to track prey, and is characterized by its large size, short hair, long ears, and flabby skin around the head and neck.
Weimaraner dog :
The Weimaraner dog is a breed that appeared at the beginning of the XIX century AD, it was used for hunting large game, after which it was trained for hunting and retrieving birds.
Training of hunting dogs :
The following shows the most important tips to follow when training hunting dogs:
- It is necessary to start training small puppies at first on simple basic commands; taking into account that the training period should not exceed 10 minutes, and repeat it only a few times a day.
- Train the dog on social behavior, by spending a lot of time with him, accustoming him to dealing with people and other dogs.
- Start training the puppy long enough before the hunting season, accustom him to hear the sound of gunfire, respond to the call, deal with live birds.
- Limit the first hunting trip of the dog to be trained to the trainer and the dog only, and avoid taking other dogs, until everyone has enough time and reinforcement.
- Expose the dog to many smells, sights, and sounds before starting the hunting process, so that he gets used to it and does not get scared and panic during hunting trips.
- Praise the dog when he executes the command given to him, but if he does not respond, the command must be repeated insistently until he responds, but without cruelty.
- Giving the dog the opportunity to get to know everything related to hunting before actually starting hunting, and it is advisable that the training sessions are varied so that the dog does not get bored.
- Choosing the right time to train the dog, it is not permissible to start a training session if the trainer is tired, and in turn, the trainer should pay attention to the dog’s feelings as well.
Features of hunting dogs :
Hunting dogs are usually characterized by intelligence, perseverance, courage, and high vitality that requires them to be assigned long tasks to exhaust their energy; therefore, it is difficult to keep them as a pet inside the house, and some types of dogs have characteristics that distinguish them from others, as follows:
- Hunting dogs by smell :
They are characterized by a body low to the ground, long ears, large noses sensitive to smell, and loose and moist lips.
- Hunting dogs by sight :
It is characterized by large, sharp-sighted eyes, and long and graceful legs to be able to keep the prey within its field of vision.