Skip to main content

The 3 Most Underrated Waterfowl Hunting Breeds of Dogs and Why They Are Underrated

By Alan2 Davison
Thursday, May 25th 2023

When the topic of waterfowl hunting dogs comes up, the spotlight often falls on certain breeds, notably Labrador Retrievers or Chesapeake Bay Retrievers. However, there are several other breeds that demonstrate a keen knack for this type of hunting, yet often fly under the radar. Here we explore three of the most underrated waterfowl hunting breeds of dogs and delve into why they are underrated.

1. American Water Spaniel

The American Water Spaniel is a breed well adapted to both land and water tasks. With their water-resistant double coat and compact body, these dogs are constructed for endurance and agility in water. They possess a strong prey drive and are adept at retrieving waterfowl.

So why is this breed underrated? Often, the American Water Spaniel is overlooked due to its size. As a smaller breed, some hunters prefer the larger, more "traditional" retrievers. Additionally, they are a rare breed with limited breeders, making them less visible in the hunting community. Despite these factors, their versatility, combined with their agility and intelligence, make them excellent waterfowl hunting dogs.

2. Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever

As the name suggests, the Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever was bred specifically for waterfowl hunting. These dogs employ their playful demeanor to "toll" or lure waterfowl within range. Their high energy levels and sharp intellect make them ideal hunting companions.

The Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever is often underrated due to its unusual hunting technique. The tolling strategy is unique and not as well known as traditional waterfowl retrieval. Additionally, their playful and energetic nature can sometimes be mistaken for a lack of focus or discipline. However, these dogs are hard workers and highly efficient hunters when trained properly.

3. Standard Poodle

Standard Poodles are often overlooked due to their elegant appearance and reputation as show dogs. Yet, they were originally bred as water retrievers. These dogs are intelligent, versatile, and highly trainable. Their waterproof coats and natural swimming abilities make them superb waterfowl hunters.

The Standard Poodle's undervaluation in the hunting community is largely due to stereotypes and misconceptions. Many people see poodles as pampered pets rather than working dogs, overlooking their history as effective hunters. However, with the right training, a Standard Poodle can be an exceptional addition to any hunting expedition.

In conclusion, while certain breeds may dominate the conversation when it comes to waterfowl hunting, it's worth considering these underrated options. The American Water Spaniel, Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever, and Standard Poodle each bring unique attributes to the field and may be the perfect fit for your next hunting adventure.

Copyright 2019 - 2024 Dogs Unlimited LLC