BOYKIN SPANIEL!!! To me and for my needs a boykin is the ideal dog. First off, do not let their size fool you. They can and will retrieve anything you down, including a goose. Are they the best dog for goose hunting, no, but they can and will. They do make excellent non slip waterfowl retrievers. Hunting from blinds or boats, they do not take up as much room as many of the larger breeds. You can pick dog duck and all up with one hand and put them in the boat. Being a spaniel, they are natural flushing dogs and quartering comes natural to them.
Being that you like to dove hunt and live in Texas, this is another strong suit for the dog. They are touted to be the best dog for southern dove hunting. I know many a hunter that have boykins and labs together and they will tell you that a boykin will by far outlast the other breeds when it comes to dealing with the heat.
Their temperment is absolutely wonderful, great with kids, and very easy to train. Do not go out and hire a pro trainer, it will be a waste of money. These dogs are just to eager to please making them a pleasure to train. Although, they are still a dog and they do have their moments in training just as any other breed does.
If you like to run the hunt tests, also not a problem. We are starting to have more and more boykins entering this event and just last year the first Boykin ever passed the Grand. My 10 month old pup just got her started title and we are working on her HR now.
For more information on Boykins, www.boykinspaniel.org
. They can help you find a breeder near you. Be prepared, this is still considered a rare breed. You will not find pups on every street corner so be prepared for at least a 6 month wait. It will be worth it though.
If you want, there is also regional boykin retriever clubs. Covering the southern states is the Mid South Boykins Spaniel Retriever Club.
In June, we are having the first of six events that will culminate in Feb with awards going to the top dog in points for each class. The event on June 18 will be in Auburn Alabama. At every one of our events, we always have people come wanting to see these wonderful little brown dogs in action.