Advice needed

I have been looking into getting a dog for some time and would like some advice on the best breed.
I would like to use it for a bit of everything but primarily tracking and for this reason have been looking at the GWP, Would this be a good choice ? from what i have read it ticks all the boxes but would like some oppinions.
Also are they relatively easy to train and sociable with other dogs.

Ben P

Well-Known Member
I have been fortunate to have worked alongside some exceptionally good GWPs' but they are quite a specialised breed.
Unless you are going to have the dog out working 3 or 4 days a week they can get pretty hacked off and frustrated.
Don't get me wrong, with the right training they can be brilliant deer dogs but unless you have the work for one it is a bit like buying a racehorse and only going out for a hack on a sunday.

Wire haired Vizslas' are very capable and are a little more laid back and would maybe be worth considering?

Regardless of what breed you go for it will certainly be the case that you will only get out what you put in.

It would be well worth your while putting "Working with Dogs for Deer by Nials Sondergaard" on your Christmas list if you don't already have it.

I got my copy from the BDS website shop.

All the best



Well-Known Member
Although I do not own one I must concur with Ben P, I have become increasingly fond of the Wire haired Vizslas', a much laid back dog. I was lucky enough to be with a man the other week that has two that he works on both deer and game.

He is breeding from the bitch very soon. If you are interested PM with a number and I can pass it onto him.



Well-Known Member
most dogs are capable of tracking, it's the training that helps bring out the best in your dog
GWP's do need a lot of exercise ,but do make a good dog for deer work
labs are quite a good allrounder easy to train and handle, also quite steady from the start
enjoy your selection process but don't rush in
Thanks for all the advice, I do have the book "working with dogs for deer"
and find it a great help.
It's just that im at the point of having to make the decision of what breed and dont want to get it wrong :???:
Still im not in a rush. What breeds do others on this site use ?


Flecher is this your first dog as that would mean you were looking for an easy dog to train and while the GWP is an excellent dog they have a very determined attitude and can brake there own if you have not got the same . There are smaller dogs border terriers patter dales etc that all fit the bill and if trained properly will do a very good job.wish it was me i love training a new dog
It will be my first dog so that is why im so hesitant im just trying to gather as much info from people that have done this already before i take the plunge.
I would hate to make the wrong decision,I do like the look of the GWP but realise i couldnt give it sufficient work so im looking else where.
What suggestion would give for a first dog ? I do like the HWV



Distinguished Member
Do not buy a GWP as a first dog. I have one and while they are excellant at finding deer, they can be very difficult to train being headstrong and even aloof.
As previously stated they also require to be worked almost daily. They are a hard dog designed purely for work. Previously I have always had labs and would suggest these as an ideal first dog, far easier going.


Well-Known Member
+1 for the Lab. I must admit that the GWP is a tempting dog but others have pointed out the down side. Teckles have a natural tracking ability but they will not walk well to heal and it means keeping them on a lead or leaving them in the vehicle till you need them. Its great having a canine stalking companion
As others have said most dogs can be trained to track

Ben P

Well-Known Member
When I lived in New Zealand I had a Lab 1/4 pointer cross which was a cracker.(sorry need to wait on my scanner working for proof)
Biddable but hungry to learn and relatively straight forward to train and able to cope with a domestic and working lifestyle.
Why is it that generally in this country we are reluctant to breed crosses of this type.(sprockers, springadors excluded)
Perhaps the recent issues with the kennel club might get people to focus on dog's working ability instead of it's breeding line.
God knows we have all seen a useless bag of crap at a game shoot that some "well bred" toff has paid the earth for because of it's breeding heritage!
Does anyone have experience of a GWP Lab 50-50 cross. Would that not potentially produce something more accessable to those who require a less demanding but able stalking dog?

Sorry to any who are offended by my dig at one's breeding.......socially unacceptable what what!!!

Hip hip hooray


I've always wanted a GWP as a stalking dog too, but the reality is that my work takes me away on an all too frequent basis. I know three stalkers who've got them and whilst they love their respective dogs they have all advised me against getting one - they are great dogs but you need to work them, or expect healthy insurance claims!

Instead I use one of my two labs or my cocker when I'm stalking. They are not 'trained' other than letting them hunt the trail from where the beast was shot to where it ends up (that's why I'm going on the deer dog day!) but as Jagare says it's great to have a stalking companion. I got a huge kick this season from my lab sitting within 15 yards of a roe doe for 10 minutes while she investigated us. Similarly with my cocker when she hunted the line of a buck I shot. I've not had to use them tracking - and hopefully won't have to until after February next year ;) - but they are great to have around nonetheless.


P.S. Ben P, isn't a GWP crossed with a labrador really just a GSP??

Ben P

Well-Known Member
I think you have just offended a number of GSP owners Willie.

If you were to put a LabXGWP and GSP together you would probably see a number of different characteristics.

1st Gen LabX GWP has to what I have been lead to believe previously produced basically a black GWP with a bit more patience and biddability.

If anyone has a good lab bitch we could put theory into practice.

All the best



Well-Known Member
i hav an excellent lab bitch :)
but no way will i cross breed from her,
unless you can trace any history back many generations how will you know if what you are crossing will not produce the wrong genetic deffects , not sure i would want to go through years of selective breeding to try and create a new breed of dog when there are so many out there that are not being used for the job they were bred for in the first place
or am i looking in the wrong direction here :lol:

Ben P

Well-Known Member
Blimey Stone

You must be a shareholder in the Kennel Club with scaremongering like that! ;)

Why is it though that we now seem to work round the breeds that are established instead of maybe developing new ones??

Yes I am playing devils advocate a bit here but it is interesting that on the whole people are unwilling to take that step.

On the other hand if per say your lab bitch was a little timid you would maybe be quite keen to put her to a strong lab dog in a mating.

Why not adapt that principle and hope to take on some of the traits from another breed?

On the other hand I did once hear of a collie that was an incredible deer dog but that did not inspire me to rush out and get a colliexlab!

All the best



Well-Known Member
this may hav a lot to do with it
i hav seen the footage on you tube, but nothing compares to first hand knowledge

once you encounter something like this, it certainly changes your whole outlook on breeding dogs, who knew about this disease years ago in the uk
not many, that i am sure of ,

carefull breeding plans would of prevented this from spreading but the silver dollar rules all , i'm afraid :(
i do know that some sort of chart is being built up to try and eliminate this disease from spreading further and lines of labrador CNM free are on the increase once more
i suppose we could look at the BVM and the working dashound (teckle) as new breeds of dog adapted and bred for such a purpose :)
but that is another mine field :lol: :lol:

we are totaly off topic now ,sorry fletcher

hope you are not taking to much notice or it could be years before you decide :lol: :lol: