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MNHuntress

What do you look for in a pointing puppy?

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I lost my German Wirehair in Feb. to bone cancer which was horrible. My new Wirehair is two weeks old and I have pick out of the females. In both of my old pointing dogs I had to take what the breeder gave me, they match your personality and desires up to the pup. Don't know if this is good or bad.

Anyway here is my chance, this dog will be run in Navhda or AKC trials or both(which I've run before), pheasant, duck, and goose hunted and most of all be my all around buddy.

So here's everybody's chance to chime in and help me out with tips also what has your experience been if a breeder matched you up with a pup.

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I try to find the best breeding I can afford that will fit my wants and needs. I'm looking at the sire & dam and maybe the grandparents. If they do it the way I like then their pups may also. The last pup I got I just reached in and grabbed the one I wanted. Didn't do any "puppy tests" or anything. Short of that if you want a bold pup for field trials put 'em all down and watch 'em. The ones that go exploring the most might be better for trials. If you want a less independent dog the ones that stick by you might be a better choice.

Notice I used "may" and "might" a few times in my response. It's all a bit of a gamble and there are no absolutes when dealing with genetics. The best you can do is try to stack the odds in your favor. You could do all your best homework and still end up with a pig.

You could/should ask the current breeder to match what you want too.

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Well put. I'd also add whatever observations/puppy tests you do, make sure you do it several times over the the next few weeks. Puppy's can have bad days, or mornings, or evenings, and they do develop at different rates. A pup looking great one week, may get passed up one or two weeks later. Only one/two visits I don't think can give you a very accurate assesment. Other than gender, color and markings. That is why I beleive in the letting the breeder match the pup to you, they see the pups everyday, several times a day.

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As for looking at the pups you should introduce them to live birds like a pigeon or something at 60days, forget the wing on a string, give them a live bird. You should see them point and have some prey drive in them by then.

if your interested in AKC and NAVHDA buy a pup by from a breeder that encourages his future owners to participate in these (Hunt Tests), I wouldn't call them trials.

My pup I bought 2 yrs ago there were 9 dogs in the litter, 6 were all tested in the Navhda natural ability test and produced a NAVHDA Breeder's Award litter as all 6 pups tested with an average of 110.5 out of 112 for scores.

Each of these dogs also completed their AKC junior hunt tests titles before they turned 2 yrs old. Many did going 4 for 4 in each brace they ran in.

I am not saying that the NA test or a Junior Hunt test is the best way to determine a dogs ability, but they are both pretty easy to pass, and if you find previous dogs from a breeder that were bred and didnt score well in either of those tests, it isnt a dog worth buying in my opinion.

You can take it too an even higher level and look at the Utility test dogs from Navhda, and the Senior and Master tests for AKC.

I also have to agree on the good and bad days that dogs have, thats why I wouldnt use a test score to be the decision breaker unless it was tested over and over with repeated bad results. Sometimes a test score isnt about the dogs ability because weather and other factors can play a big part. I have also seen dogs pass but score poorly because of the handler.

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Quote:
if your interested in AKC and NAVHDA buy a pup by from a breeder that encourages his future owners to participate in these (Hunt Tests), I wouldn't call them trials.

Just an fyi, AKC has field trials as well as hunt tests. Both are fun. If I had the time and money I'd be a hardcore field trialer.

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Just an fyi, AKC has field trials as well as hunt tests. Both are fun. If I had the time and money I'd be a hardcore field trialer.

Until you were a full time field trialer!

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Okay my bad for calling NAVHDA or AKC field trials, yes they are hunt tests. However, I would not call NAVHDA an easy test to pass, they are 3/4 easy and 1/4 hard. I have studied NAVHDA natural ability hunt test scores for the last 3 years running and there is only 1 breed that will consistently and I mean consistently pass the track which is the hardest part. That breed is a Drahthaar, plain and simple. Don't believe me, check it out and start your tally. Unfortunately, I can't afford a good one at $ 1500. I had a cow at $1000 for a GWP when you're unemployed.

However, I appreciate everyone's tips, because I only get one chance at this and the breeder is 5 hours away from the cities, so I can't go over there every week and check on the pups. Also the breeder knows that I will be running hunt tests, so they will be monitoring things for me because it only helps them out.

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your right the tracking is the hardest part. Everything else you can really have a good control over. But the track there are so many factors. The weather, the bird, did the bird hop from the feather pile, did it run where a previous track was done etc etc.

Ive learned that in the track its best to practice several times but you cant over do it either. Also for an NA pass the dog doesn't always have to find the bird, it just has to show its nose can track.

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