GSP as pet

Discussion in 'The Duck Hunters Forum' started by seiowa, Dec 5, 2019.

  1. seiowa

    seiowa Elite Refuge Member

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    Since this is more a pet question I’m posting here as opposed to the gun dog forum, also wanting to get more views and opinions.

    thinking of adding a second dog in a year or so. Currently got the Chessie and thinking of a GSP. Not many pheasants around here and the dog would be a pet first. Could duck hunt with us if it wasn’t too cold I suppose. May take it on a couple hunts a year, one of those probably being a preserve just to get it on birds. I really don’t plan on it becoming a good pheasant dog as there aren’t many around and I don’t really target them. (I’ve ditch swatted more in the last five years than I’ve shot in a live hunting scenario)

    I really like the breed and even when it comes to “pet” dogs I prefer sporting type ones due to their health, biddability/obedience, temperament and athleticism.

    the dog would definitely get it’s exercise as I would run it with my chessie, even during the season when I’m not hunting I have a pretty easy job in running him (access to ground and time) so adding another to the mix wouldn’t be a huge logistical feat.

    all in all looking for an active, athletic and obedient pet that under ideal circumstances might point a half dozen birds a year or less or be a half azz retriever in warm weather.

    GSP owners who keep the dog in the house,
    Let’s hear what you got. Bonus points for those with kids or other dogs in the house.
     
  2. spaightlabs

    spaightlabs Elite Refuge Member

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    One of my hunting buddies has 2 GSPs in the house with 2 kids under 5 and they do great. Both dogs hunt a lot of upland and are hard chargers in the field but are excellent huge and family dogs .

    2 thumbs up.
     
  3. seiowa

    seiowa Elite Refuge Member

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    I have a small sample size but I know one that is so mellow he is a shop dog at a small business and sleeps most the time indoors (great off switch and is a great hunter in the field).

    but I know another one that is an absolute fireball at age SIX so I’m looking to see which is more the norm.
     
  4. duckloads&lattes

    duckloads&lattes New Member

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    I rarely comment, but I can speak to this one! I have two GSP's, one is coming up on eleven, the other is two. Both are males, registered, and awesome pups.

    They are both indoor dogs, and neither hunt. We have a good sized home - about 2500sqft, and that's plenty of room. We never feel like they are crowding us. We don't have children, but we do have two cats and friends who are constantly over that do have kids. They are very affectionate and even tempered, never had any aggression issues at all. They are well behaved, easily trained, and incredibly smart.

    That said, they require copious amounts of exercise. My wife is a runner and averages around 4 miles daily, sometimes a little more - I've never seen either of the dogs tired after her runs, even my older boy at 11 still gets after it. They could easily keep going for several more miles. They walk great on a leash if you teach them young, and won't pull you around. Off leash, they will stay within about 15' of us and just run in circles around us. They will occasionally break or chase after rabbits/etc, but will halt and heel on command if they do.

    As pets, they are great - but please make sure that you get them out to exercise or walk daily. If you don't do this, a GSP will absolutely drive you bonkers. They typically won't tear things up around the house or anything like that... but they will whine and follow you around and cry and act nervous all day if they don't get it.

    We have had no health issues with either, aside from a porcupine incident we have never even taken them to the vet for anything other than annual checkups. I will say this though - plan to get their dental work done while you're at the vet. Both of mine have a tendency to just swallow their food rather than chewing.. I suppose because of their soft mouths, and they need to get their teeth cleaned annually or they get some nasty breath. Dental chews help with this considerably.

    I love my GSP's, and would gladly recommend them as pets. If you decide to hunt with them, make sure to start them early. One of ours is gun shy, the other I started in the fields young and does great as a retriever and flushing birds up.
     
    Duck_Hunter_TX and seiowa like this.
  5. TheDuckSlayer

    TheDuckSlayer Elite Refuge Member

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    Just get a golden retriever. He’ll be a better duck getter and will pull way more trim at the dog park.
     
  6. tcc

    tcc Elite Refuge Member

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    And shed that long fur everywhere! We've got a 10yr old golden; can't ask for a better family pet.

    I like the GSP's too though, have thought about getting one.
     
  7. Yoda

    Yoda New Member

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    I had one that lived to be 15. Awesome dog, but strong-willed for sure. Mine was an amazing upland dog, but pretty well useless as just a retriever. It just seemed that if he didn’t point it, he didn’t have interest in retrieving it. Probably mostly due to my shortcomings as a trainer, but I ended up getting a lab for ducks a few years into the shorthair experiment. As others have said, they’re incredibly energetic, but is sounds like you’re prepared for that. Mine was a great house dog as long as you gave him adequate exercise. Good luck with whatever you decide, my experience with one was overall awesome, but I never could make him a dual-threat for upland and ducks.
     
    seiowa likes this.
  8. thatguy2

    thatguy2 Elite Refuge Member

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    My last gsp would point the quail you shot, but he would never bring it to you. He also hated things with fur. He destroyed the neighbor's declawed siamese cat in their driveway while they watched a week after we moved in. He also hated skunks.

    They need tons of exercise, but they are great dogs.
     
    seiowa likes this.
  9. seiowa

    seiowa Elite Refuge Member

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    Thanks for the info. Do yours happen to be from hunting lines? I see you mention they are registered. Nice to see the two males getting along. I know with some breeds that can be a crapshoot.
     
  10. seiowa

    seiowa Elite Refuge Member

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    Already got me a duck dog. Plus the kinda gals I like love a good dog fight so I get just what I’m lookin for at the dog park.
     

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