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Thread: I'm thinking of getting a GWP, does anyone have any advice please ?

  1. #1

    I'm thinking of getting a GWP, does anyone have any advice please ?

    Hi, I'm thinking of getting a GWP pup and training it for Deer. Can anyone advise me if this is a good breed of dog to choose ? All the GWP' I've seen to date have been very good with people and have been extremely obedient and steady, am I misled in this assessment of the breed ? I need a book to help me with its initial furry puppy stage and also for its field training. It is very important that the dog can be a pet for my Girlfriend and I and can enjoy living in our house with us. I live in the centre of a city but work as a joiner on a farm so I need to train the dog to be affectionate towards people and be a good pet but also to have its own properly trained hpr instincts intact. Does anyone have any suggestions and also some info on decent books that I might buy to help me learn a little to enable me to make a decision about the breed and its training.

    Kind regards, Olaf

  2. #2
    anything is possible, but I could see it being a challenge in the city. As for the character, dogs are a reflection of their owners... Been around hunter groups where they'd bring their dogs out and seldom saw any specific breed act the same as another of it's breed.. With the exception of Dachshund's... Every one of them seem to show about the same degree of arrogance toward anyone/anything other than their owners.... May even be an option for you... Easy to keep in town, doesn't need near the excercise room, adapts and looks cool in any situation, and always ready to control the situation....
    Click image for larger version. 

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  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by daven View Post
    anything is possible, but I could see it being a challenge in the city. As for the character, dogs are a reflection of their owners... Been around hunter groups where they'd bring their dogs out and seldom saw any specific breed act the same as another of it's breed.. With the exception of Dachshund's... Every one of them seem to show about the same degree of arrogance toward anyone/anything other than their owners.... May even be an option for you... Easy to keep in town, doesn't need near the excercise room, adapts and looks cool in any situation, and always ready to control the situation....
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Daven, danke sehr fuhr deine tolle bild !

    Kind regards, Olaf

  4. #4
    my gwp is a fantastic animal very friendly with other dogs not quite so friendly with cats, excellent with people she knows not aggressive with strangers but barks and can look quite intimidating which is a trait I like. Very slow to mature and I wouldn't say she was easy to train she's a big dog to have in the house and I don't just mean her size. I've got three other dogs and the gwp is more work than the other three put together but if I only could have one dog for some reason I know which one I would choose.

  5. #5
    To start, GWP are a LOT of dog. Make sure you have the time to put into them. They are the sort of dog where if you put nothing in they will be crazy, you can get away with it with a lab or spaniel, but the the steady nice GWPs will have had a lot of time spent with them. It counts in your favour that it will come with you all day, they don't like being left bored for long periods. They don't need running all the time like some suggest but they do need mental stimulation. They are the cleverest of all the dogs I've had (and as a hearing dog puppy socialiser I've had a lot of different breeds)

    There is a difference between the lines within GWP. My first was a Trudvang, brilliant working dog, super drive etc but the main thing I noticed was the Trudvang line seems to have no aggression what so ever. They flat out refuse to fight, the friendliest dog I've ever known and absolutely perfect with people too, maybe too happy and friendly. This was backed up by my acquiring of a Trudvang/Bryantscroft bitch, softer, more biddable and incredibly friendly.

    I've recently bought a Mustwork dog pup, He seems to be a great dog so far (12weeks) maybe not so biddable and has a little fiestiness about him already, sticks up for himself against our 1yr old Sprocker. He is very intelligent but is not quite as keen to please as our previous ones. Once we crack it I'm sure he'll be fine and, determination and independance is great to have in a dog so long as he still obeys.

    Basically this breaks down to what you will commonly read; Danish lines are softer, slightly more sensitive more biddable. German lines are harder, with more agression and independance.

    From what you've written I'd lean towards a Danish lines dog (providing its from a quality breeder).

    Books; Niels Sondegaard Working dogs for deer
    John Jeanneney Tracking Dogs for finding wounded deer
    Guy Wallace Training Dogs for woodland stalking


    I would speak to as many people who breed them as possible and make your mind up on how they use their own dogs before buying one. There is a lot of backyard breeders and some put less care in than others. I waited a year to get a pup from Mustwork, I will also get another from Trudvang. Both of these kennels are beyond obsessive about their dogs. Thats the sort of care I want from a breeder.

    Do loads of research and wait for the right one!

  6. #6
    + one with Dickyboy
    I wish I was half the hunter my dog thinks I am

  7. #7
    +1 with dicky boy and ruby tuesday

    Not the easiest dogs to train for a first timer and a massive ammmount off variation between lines and even between individuals in the same litter, while that is always the case, seems to be more extreme with HPR breeds.
    They are the type of dog u can't take ur eye of for a minute, i could be letting my dogs mooch about while my labs and spaniel will never go any distance my gwp is completly different and the speed they cover the ground is just unbelievable.

    I must have a dog of similar lines to dickyboy, fairly heavily trudvang with a touch of bryanscroft in it, it is the most gifted yet frustrating dog i've ever tried to train, has really tested me to the limit (and has almost been sold/given away a few times now) but on verge of having a really good dog, but he is twice or thrice the work i would expect to put into a normal gundog
    Chris from trudvang was running his newly made up FTCH gwp in the HPR championship the other week there and came 2nd, his dogs also work deer too as well as game

    Like db said above with the danish and german lines, the danish tend to be more birdy type dogs used for shooting similar to here while still being able to track, the german dd lines tend to be more tracking orientated work, and bit more aggresion often bigger and hairier than the danish lines. Quite often stalkers tend to favour the bigger hairier type

    I will also second wot db said about really doing ur research, phone a few of the major breeders, they are all very helpful and usually pretty honest, and waiting for the right pup

    After saying that about waiting, there are some pups for sale the now (althou they may already be taken), i have seen cadex's bitch work on game quite a few times and it is a very steady bitch and a cracking temperment, and it's more of a deer dog than a game dog, i also know the sire pretty well and have seen him working loads he is a cracking dog, very few dogs could touch him at the FT's a few years ago, a great temperment too

  8. #8
    My gwp is completly different and the speed they cover the ground is just unbelievable. (From countryboys post above) mine is exactly the same I can't switch off for a second


    I've got a gwp from byranscroft/ castlegarnstone lines. He is my first dog. He isn't used from tracking per say , he will however track blood and trails I have laid.
    Alf isn't a dog for indoors, he is big and bouncy even now and actually prefers his kennel, if he was left alone inside he would chew anything in sight as he can't be doing nothing.
    The hardest thing I found is controlling his hunting drive, all he wants to do is hunt and it could be anything when he was younger. I would training in a open field and he could find a mouse in the grass to break his concentration. He is two and a half now and is just starting to get now I want him. He is used for bird work mainly. He isn't a big dog in wire hair standards at 28 kgs . He is fine with other dogs and basically ignores them and very soft around people but as above he will stand his ground and bark especially in the dark with strangers but comes away when told and is quiet.

  9. #9
    Countrryboy - If you think a heavily Trudvang is tough you should try a heavily german to test your resolve...He's only 11weeks and is way too smart for our own good. It took a week of intense training just to get him to realise I was good for him, and now two more to get him to consider doing what I want him too! i can see Mustwork lines could make amazing dogs, but I'm preparing myself for a very tough 18months! I found my Trudvang had a desire to please a bit more like a Lab but this one stops and weighs up his options before acting....I'm getting fitter everyday I own him!

  10. #10
    olaf I'm not far from you and have a reasonably similar set up, I started with one gwp bitch who lives inside and I use her with most of the shooting I do whether deer, foxing or beating / game shooting. She is of Bryantscroft lines and a super house dog work wise she loves it and will do as much as she can get but is happy during the week with 45 minutes walk in the morning then sleeping. She is very different to the german dogs who are huge and as mentioned need to just work. I have also got a 5 month old pup from her from a cross with a mustwork dog and she is looking like she will be a cracker, very intelligent and pretty eager to please though I'm under no illusions I'm about to hit a hard stage.
    In your situation I wouldn't worry about looking for the purest working GWP more the slightly less high performance version that will live as you want yet still have plenty of ability for the working you want them to do. After that it is the effort you put into them, the more socialisation and training you do the better, the HPR traits should just come naturally.

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