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Thread: Looking for setter for my first hunting dog

  1. #21
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Northern Michigan
    Posts
    869

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    Horseback usually is in reference to dogs that are used in field trials where the handlers are on horseback, this usually is a reflection of dogs that run/range big.

    Off season work will vary depending on where you are at, I'm always playing fetch with mine when I'm out cutting wood for shoveling snow. I also have pigeons and will let them out to fly and will work the dogs on them if they are on the ground. Will also plant pigeons for winter work. Once snow is gone I will get my Britt out and work in the woods on grouse and woodcock till training season is shut down in mid April. Also work with a whoa barrel and general commands just to reinforce.

    This off season I'm gonna try to train my lab to sit when she sees my Brittany on point, will see how that goes. It will all vary, biggest thing is keep working with your pup and get as much bird contact as possible.
    River - 3 yr old English Setter
    http://gundogcentral.com/view_pedigr...&generations=5
    Bella - 5 yr old Brittany
    http://gundogcentral.com/view_pedigr...&generations=5
    Ellie - 6 yr old Yellow Lab
    Jazi - 12/30/2005 -- 10/13/2017
    Kaci - 3/23/01 - -10/8/15

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    South Central, KS
    Posts
    585

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cody View Post
    Thank you all for your help. I really like this forum. I trained dogs In the military so I understand what you all mean. And I won't go cheap if it's the right pup! I've been researching a lot and that helps me as much as talking to all of you. I'm new to pheasant hunting and I really love it and I'm trying to look for people to go with so I can see more dogs work. But from what I've been reading is that English or a gorden setter is a good hunting dog. that's why I'm asking all of you what would be a good starting dog! I also want to know about the different ranges and different filter strips. I no it depends on the person, I just need to get ideas from people cause it helps me decide. Thank you all again.

    I've been an English Setter owner for a # of years myself. The two I've had so far trace most of their bloodlines back to Troy (PrairieDrifter) 's kennel. I've been very happy with the both of them.

    On the dog I have now I bred to a stud that had more run/range than my first dog. My first dog could run but she would not sprint by any means -- she was more geared to jog all day if you will. All I had to do was give her a mid - day break and we were good to go the rest of the day.

    I'm not sure what others define as hunting out to far, however for the terrain I like to hunt I dont want my dog under foot. It's a little annoying not being able to have them work close in the tall grass and see them, however quite frankly with as crappy as bird populations have been and probably will be into the future with all the habitat loss I think you're better off having a dog with range. Just my .02 My idea of range is 100-600 or more yards in the wide open.


    If you get one that ranges I'd suggest a Garmin Alpha - or the Garmin Track only model - I just started using it and it helps my hunts become a little more efficient - i always know where my dog is and when she goes on point I dont have to spend a while looking for her.


    With anything I think the best thing would be to see the parents work and maybe any of their offspring if you can get access to them.


    As for gun breaking - any dog thats afraid of gunfire the owner/trainer caused. Thats not something thats going to be bred into the dog.


    On that subject if you've trained military dogs, I have no idea if how you gunbreak them other than what was portrayed in this documentary http://www.amazon.com/Always-Faithfu...=military+dogs


    Please do not use that method. (Take the dog to the firing range and let them get used to it) You will most certainly have a gun shy dog especially if you buy one that is "soft" which I think some Setters can have a tendency to be.

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Posts
    47

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    Thank you to everyone. I'm going to take my time to make sure I will get the perfect pup. That's what I'm going to look for is a wide range dog. I liked everything you said about it and I think that will work out good for me. Do you find better deals online for the gps collars or in stores? when you get a pup what age do people start taking them hunting? I have pigeons to help train the pup with. Good luck on getting your lab to sit when your brit points, that would be awesome!

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    South Central, KS
    Posts
    585

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cody View Post
    Thank you to everyone. I'm going to take my time to make sure I will get the perfect pup. That's what I'm going to look for is a wide range dog. I liked everything you said about it and I think that will work out good for me. Do you find better deals online for the gps collars or in stores? when you get a pup what age do people start taking them hunting? I have pigeons to help train the pup with. Good luck on getting your lab to sit when your brit points, that would be awesome!

    I just bought mine 2 weeks ago (Garmin Alpha 100 TT15 combo) - bought it at www.collarclinic.com - they offered me $50 trade in credit for my old 2 dog DT systems beeper/train unit and Garmin was also offering a $50 rebate (I bought on the last day for it)

    So will be into it for $715 when I factor in shipping my old unit back. Pretty steep, but so far I like the capability to see where my dog is.

    I think the Track only unit is a hundred or $200 cheaper, however if you bought a separate training collar you'd be back up to what the Alpha cost. I really dont think theres a cheaper way to get one unless someone is running a promotion or you get one used. I checked amazon, and many other places. Collar Clinic offered the best deal for me with the ability to get credit trading in my old unit. Doubt I would have been able to get much if anything for it selling it myself as it was from 2003 or 2004 but still worked fine.

    Guessing Garmin runs a tight ship and makes sure no one sells below what they want MSRP to be. I figure if I sell a shotgun I'm not using it will make up the rest of the price difference.

    I dont think the unit is as simple as it needs to be and has too many features and screens to go into, but the positives outweigh that negative by many times. Seeing how my buddies worked (he bought one a year or two ago) sold me.

  5. #25
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Manhattan, KS
    Posts
    2,900

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    Cody,


    If you are going to be hunting pheasants much, you really don't want a wide ranging / big running setter for you first setter. When they are on point 400 yards away its hard to get there before the pheasant runs off.

    I would think you would do best with a med/close ranging setter for your first dog. Something that is 100 - 150 yards to start.

    I don't want to see you struggle on pheasants due to learning the ropes.
    Steve

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Cunningham, Kansas
    Posts
    2,304

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    Quote Originally Posted by SetterNut View Post
    Cody,


    If you are going to be hunting pheasants much, you really don't want a wide ranging / big running setter for you first setter. When they are on point 400 yards away its hard to get there before the pheasant runs off.

    I would think you would do best with a med/close ranging setter for your first dog. Something that is 100 - 150 yards to start.

    I don't want to see you struggle on pheasants due to learning the ropes.
    X2
    Trust the dog!

    Troy Smith

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Posts
    47

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    Thank you for keeping my best interest. I'm just really excited to get a new pup but I need to slow down and be realistic about it because I really want to get into pheasant hunting and I don't want to get discouraged. What is the best way to find out if the dog is a wide range or close range dog

  8. #28
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Cunningham, Kansas
    Posts
    2,304

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    I guess you need to research a lot of long standing breeders and ask what kind of dog that they produce. Don't tell them up front what you're looking for because some will tell you that is what they have whether that is the case or not. Realize that most setters are quite adaptive. However, a hard-wired genetically predisposed running dog is going to make your pheasant hunting extremely difficult and unsatisfying. You want a dog that does it naturally and that you rarely have to handle. The secret to bringing pheasants home is SILENCE! If you're whistling and yelling, those birds are in charge and heading to quieter realms.
    Trust the dog!

    Troy Smith

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
    Location
    Mid Missouri
    Posts
    794

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    Quote Originally Posted by KsHusker View Post
    I've been an English Setter owner for a # of years myself. The two I've had so far trace most of their bloodlines back to Troy (PrairieDrifter) 's kennel. I've been very happy with the both of them.

    On the dog I have now I bred to a stud that had more run/range than my first dog. My first dog could run but she would not sprint by any means -- she was more geared to jog all day if you will. All I had to do was give her a mid - day break and we were good to go the rest of the day.

    I'm not sure what others define as hunting out to far, however for the terrain I like to hunt I dont want my dog under foot. It's a little annoying not being able to have them work close in the tall grass and see them, however quite frankly with as crappy as bird populations have been and probably will be into the future with all the habitat loss I think you're better off having a dog with range. Just my .02 My idea of range is 100-600 or more yards in the wide open.


    If you get one that ranges I'd suggest a Garmin Alpha - or the Garmin Track only model - I just started using it and it helps my hunts become a little more efficient - i always know where my dog is and when she goes on point I dont have to spend a while looking for her.


    With anything I think the best thing would be to see the parents work and maybe any of their offspring if you can get access to them.


    As for gun breaking - any dog thats afraid of gunfire the owner/trainer caused. Thats not something thats going to be bred into the dog.


    On that subject if you've trained military dogs, I have no idea if how you gunbreak them other than what was portrayed in this documentary http://www.amazon.com/Always-Faithfu...=military+dogs


    Please do not use that method. (Take the dog to the firing range and let them get used to it) You will most certainly have a gun shy dog especially if you buy one that is "soft" which I think some Setters can have a tendency to be.
    Setternut and Drifter have all good things to say. I am young as I imagine you are too and having a long ranging setter is great for upland hunting. With the bird numbers being as they are you want a dog to go find birds that you are not going to stumble over yourself. Pheasants do spook up early but most of the time they are gonna do that anyway. Even if you dont have a dog. I could send my old setter 400 yards down a draw if I didnt feel like walking it and if he went on point he would hold till I got there. I had a close working vizsla and a long ranging setter and it was my favorite combo. I did put a bumper collar on the setter sometimes. I never had to shock him just hit the vibration button and he would turn and come back to me. That way I could keep him close if we got into alot of pheasants. This dog would also track and pin pheasants. It took him about 5 years to figure out the difference between the pheasants and quail but it was all field experience. He was a better hunter than me, so when he did something I just let it happen and I learned alot by watching him. He also spoiled me. This is the first year I havent had him. The two vizslas do great but I am really missing my long range setter. The collar I have was a dogtra one with no gps. I think walking around a bend and seeing him on point was worth the suspense. Also, I have broke many dogs away from being gunshy. There is an easy way and not so easy way. It is much easier to break them from it as a pup. It only takes about a week of re-enforcement.

  10. #30
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Manhattan, KS
    Posts
    2,900

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    If you only have one dog and its your first, I think most people just starting out hunting the pointing dog on pheasants, would have more success with a closer working dog.

    Then the 2nd dog can be more wide ranging if you want.

    Quail will be there on a 540 yard point, pheasants not as often.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LFWHMgYA2lY
    Steve

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