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PikeBayCommanche

Best Grouse Dog???

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PikeBayCommanche

Buddy might be in the market for a pointer and I am really a lab guy. He thinks he wants an English Pointer, since I already have a great flusher and duck dog.

I told him to get one from Numark Kennnels. I like the looks of those Elhew lines.

Any suggestions??

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gspman

Numark is in Missouri so I'm guessing that they don't specialize in grouse dogs. If he wants a grouse dog I'd concentrate on pointer breeders in MN, WI, and MI. There are plenty of breeders of quality English Pointers in the above 3 states that focus on grouse dogs. Do some searching on the internet and you'll come up with several. Also get a copy of Gun Dog magazine and Pointing Dog Journal magazine. There will be adds for grouse dog breeders in them. Then call them and start picking their brains.

Good luck.

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PikeBayCommanche

Couldn't you just have one of the ones that specialize in Grouse train a dog from Numark???

Is their going to be that much of difference in the ability?

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kentuck_ike

I would guess that it is not an ability issue, but more of a natural range issue. Most cover in Missouri is more open and so a dog that covers a lot of ground is desirable. In the grouse woods you would want something with a smaller range. From what I have seen trying to get a dog to range different then what is bred in them can be a hard life long battle.

Just my thoughts, Ike

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PikeBayCommanche

I see. So what are some of the minnesota breeders any of you would recommend???

Looking for the best combo of Temperment and Desire. Will be an inside dog.

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gorrilla

I have a GSP male who is an excellent house dog, great pheasant and waterfowler and have had great hunts for sharpies, prairie chicken, and quail. BUT he(probably me) sucks for grouse. I'm constantly calling him in, since he tries to get on the trail and go. When I'm in cover I can't keep track of him. If your going primarily for grouse, I'd say range is key...

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setterguy

Well, I'm glad this hasn't turned into a big ol' ford vs. chevy thing, well done gentlemen.

I am primarilay a grouse hunter, and when the time came to choose a dog, there was only one choice. I had the unique and beneficial situation of knowing and seeing first hand in the grouse woods how certian dogs performed and handled. I was able to walk up to them, pet them, look in their eyes and decide which dog would suit me best. I realize that most don't have those opportunities and have to turn to resources like this to get questions answered. My advice to your friend would be to see some dogs in action, whether that be on tape or in person and usually people are able to choose the triats pretty quickly once they see the difference in dogs. One great resource would be to attend a grouse trial, see what he thinks about those dogs, what he likes and dislikes google mn grouse dog association. Talk to as many people as possible and try to gather as much information as possible and hope that you end up with a good one. One thing I've learned over the years is you simply can't train a dog to hunt grouse, they either have it or they don't and there usually isn't very much in between either. Good luck, and feel free to email me with any specific questions about clubs, contacts, or anything else. Good luck with the search.

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gspman

I would also second going to see a coverdog trial. I did that a few years ago and had a great time and got to see some nice dogs. There will be at least a couple trials in MN this spring. You'll get a chance to talk to folks who breed dogs for grouse. The lunch food is good too smile.gif. I'm certain there will be Elhew bred dogs there just like at Numark although they'll likely be out of different Elhew lines than what Numark has.

The coverdogs will run plenty big for the woods. Many will be at the edge of "bell range". My guess is that many hunters would be uncomfortable about that and would rather have their pooch stay a little closer.

Also the way a dog handles grouse is "theoretically" supposed to be different. An honest to goodness grouse dog is very cautious and will stop and point at the first hint of grouse scent. It's pointing an area where the grouse may be rather than exactly where it is. For some dogs this is bred into them. I think most grouse dog breeders breed for this trait if possible. For other dogs it is a learned thing. This is why I suggested looking for grouse dog breeders in MN, WI, MI. I think your odds of getting a good grouse dog are better if you go to people who specialize in producing that kind of dog. By no means am I disparaging Numark but I'm guessing their dogs are more bred for open country quail and pheasant hunting instead of grouse hunting. Could a Numark dog be a great grouser? Absolutely. I just thing you'd tip the odds more in your favor by going to a grouse dog breeder. And there are lots of grouse dog breeders with Elhew bloodlines.

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PikeBayCommanche

Thanks Guys for all of your input. Our cabin on Pike Bay is in the Chippewa National Forest........so we can hunt grouse out our back door. Darn things are a bugger to hit when you can't get close enough.

I doubt that I will have time to go to coverdog trial. I am having hard enough time finding time to get my Lab Titled which I hope will happen this season.

If anyone wants to shout me an email with personal breeder suggestions so I can narrow it down, then research from there. smile.gif

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brittman

Nothing beats up my dogs more than a day or two in the grouse woods. Jumping and dodging deadfalls, branches, thorns, etc... Prairie grass doesn't even come close.

Next 4 years should be looking better.

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gman2002

pike you have mail

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settersit

After many years of "lurking" on this forum, I've decided to join in specificly because of this thread. I've hunted behind a english setter for 8 years. While a Lab can't be beat for waterfowl or pheasant hunting in cattails or row crop, you need a pointing dog to cover the ground for grouse hunting. This type of dog will broaden your footprint in the coverts, the key to success is to cover as much real estate as possible. You dont't need a dog to flush birds that you would flush by yourself. Once you get used to and read your pointing dog, you'll realize how many birds are out there.

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gspman

Welcome aboard settersit!

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PikeBayCommanche

Settersit,

I appreaciate you finally joining to chime in on this subject. I completely agree with you on what you said. It takes a certain type of dog to stop before they get to close to grouse because they are so skitish. Now that I learn more about grouse hunting, I love it, and realize that there are several key componets to be successful. Being a good shot (still working on that one), being paitient, and having a dog that can slow up and almost stop at the first wiff of grouse. Even if he is not right on top the bird, if he goes much closer those darn grouse will flush giving me a terrible shot at it as it hits the tops of aspens.

I hope that you will continue to chime in opinions here on the Dogs forum. I am sure after lurking for a while you have seen alot of the great and knowledgable posters we have on here. wink.gif

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setterguy

Welcome settersit, obviously you have wonderful taste in dogs. Maybe now we'll stand a chance in the annual pointer vs. flusher softball game. grin.gif

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CAJ

I hunted with two guys from Alabama that used English pointers for Grouse. They realy do cover a lot of ground and have a very good nose for them. He has two litters of pups that should be ready to go pretty soon. If I were going to get another dog, I think I would go for a pointer. A little easier for an old fat man to keep up with. CAJ

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IRISHSOBNO4

i cannot believe it, no one has mentioned the dog known as the grouse dog, the (GORDON SETTER).

i have never hunted with one, i have pointing labs which do fine for me.

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jbdragon17

Setterguy...If we are talking about a pointer vs. flusher grouse softball game...I think the pointers have the lead wink.gif

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PikeBayCommanche

I don't know you pointers have the finesse but us lab guys bring the power!! grin.gif

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Try Too Fish

Just an fyi

There is an article titled "The perfect grouse dog" in the current Gundog Magazine

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puddleduck

Try pineshadows. Good dogs. They are east of Brainerd in grouse country and been around a long time. Mark and Sophie are good people and attend nearly every Ruffed Grouse banquet up here.

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gspman

Pineshadows raises springers. This guy is looking for a pointer.

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jbdragon17

Power doesnt do much for grouse hunting grin.gif

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