Hunting Dogs – Male vs Female
What I would start out by saying is this, what it really comes down to is a matter of personal choice, on whether you prefer a male hunting dog over a female, but in my days of hunting with both, I will take a female any day.
Not too sure what goes on some days with the males, but what I have seen is that they just don’t seem to stay focused. Some hunters that I have talked to agree. This is what I have gathered up. First of all under my observation is that the males had a tendency, to be off in their own world, have a mind of their own. They also just don’t seem to have the heart that a female working dog has. Think that really is all it comes down to Heart.
I am not putting down male hunting dogs just giving the edge to the females.When we were hunting for all species, whether it be deer, coon, birds, rabbits, the females I hunted with outperformed, their male counterparts, they got down to business, far quicker. I have had some good males, but the ones that go down in my best dogs category, are the girls. Especially, when it comes to teamwork. I had many a male dog and wanted them to excel, but it seemed that the infighting, took place all too often. Yes, they were not fixed for breeding purposes, and I guess in defence of males, the dominance was really what it came down to, who could be the top dog. In the world of the females, they ignored other male and females, and started sooner, and stayed running, far longer.
Now here are a couple of pointers, that I will give you, when choosing that top dog , male or female, first of all, watch for the leader, the most aggressive or the bully. 1) Leadership is established early on in the pack. 2) Watch which dog holds its tail the highest, and keeps it that way, the dog with the tail down in between their legs, is the one to stay away from. Finally feel their nose, if it is warm and dry or wet. Most top dogs will have their noses, in between, in that department, and will be over sniffing when they are pups. The final thing that I watch for depending on what you are hunting for, and I have done this, is take what you are hunting the scent that is and see their reaction. A coon tail. a bird wing, a rabbit foot. The one with the most interest is the one I go with.
Not too sure why but, females, in my world always came to the forefront. Now here is what I will say and please, don’t give up on a pup, when you are training , there is a right way and a wrong way to train them. Up until the age of, in some cases two or three, I make it fun for the dog, and never scold them , encourage them. Get excited for them. So many good dogs have been thrown under the bus. I have come along and have taken many a good dog, from someone that said they are no good.
Remember, when you were a kid growing up, you were playful and wanted to enjoy and explore the world. Dogs are no different, and if you push too hard , you can ruin one early on male or female, I might add. Let them mature and don’t discourage them when they act silly.Just part of the process. Also if you get an older dog with bad habits, use patience, observe what they are doing wrong, and correct it ..you can teach an old dog new tricks.
As in human nature, love, patience and above all understanding is the key…to whether you have a better male hunting companion over a female…just saying..Good luck!
Another tail from the Squirrell’s Nest at Big Bear Outfitters – Nova Scotia from Brian “Bear” Squirrell.