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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Some of you might know from my other post that my 13 yr old best friend will need to be put down soon due to cancer. My wife and I got him out of the local paper for $50. My first dog but she has had them in her family all her life. In fact at the time the $50 was a cheap alternative to having kids. :laughing: :tounge:
As all of you know it didn't take long to bond and have a new best friend. As stated before $50 and I got a great hunting and family dog. I know I can't wait long to fill the void and figure a new puppy around Christmas is in the cards this year.
Why should I think about spending $500-$1000 for my next puppy????? Are there certain things you get out of a high dollor dog to make it worth the money?? I don't see myself wanting (having the time) to train a field champion. Just want another well trained hunting and family dog.

Any help pro or con would be greatly appreciated!!!
Thanks,
Jeff
Jduck1
 

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If you are buying a new, untrained pup, then you are paying for the pedigree, plain and simple. Now how is that worth it? Well, sounds like you have a heck of a 13 yr old right now. If you just picked it out of the want ads in the paper, then you got lucky. When you pay the big bucks and get a pup from a proven hunting/retrieving pedigree, you can feel relatively safe that you have made a good investment. If you know that the parents of the pup are good hunting dogs, or if you see plenty of FC, AFC, MH, SH next to his ancestors on the pedigree then you can have confidence that your pup has 'what it takes'. Having 'what it takes' is one of those things that is hard to put into words, but you know it when you see it. Puppies from good pedigrees make you a better trainer since they tend to just succeed at everything they do. Basically, when you set out to train a dog yourself, you have to put a price on your time, an hourly rate. If you work cheap and have a rate of $10 an hour, then if you can knock 60 to 80 hours off the training then the dog has paid for itself. I'm sure you value your time more than $10 an hour so the number of hours actually goes WAY down.

Now this isn't to say that you can't just grab any old lab and make a hunter out of it. Labs, as a rule of thumb, are very intelligent dogs and are easily trained. Given enough time you could make just about any lab an acceptable hunter. If you don't want to lay out big bucks on a dog, find one from a hunting background. The AKC titles are what will jack the price up. Find a dog whose parents are BOTH good hunters and you'll find a litter full of dogs that will be good hunters. They'll cost you more than a lab from a puppy mill, or someones backyard.

Another thing you usually get with the big price is a guarantee on health.

For me, I'm gonna find the puppy I want and worry about paying for it later. You've got to fill some big shoes and don't need any frustration doing so.

Good luck!

:thumbsup:
 

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well, for the most part, you get what you pay for, not always though, you can get great dog for free, it's like buyin a new truck, are you going to buy the expensive chevy, or the one that nobody knows about/kinda looks the same/way cheaper, that says chivy, you might end up with a good truck you probably won't though, you do get garantee's, on hips eye's for different lengths of time, when I think about what I'm paying for I think it's pretty much just the miticulous breeding, and genetics, I look at what I'm buying realy closely, and know about the dogs that are being bred, and the breeders, cause there are allot out there that ask way too much for what you get, just cause the price is high doesn't mean it's that great. Just do your homework on wichever dog/breeder your buying from, and ask questions like, how many times have these dogs been bred, how many litters of dogs do they sell a year, ask other breeders what they think of them, are they tested for their hips and eye's and whatnot, do they have garentee's, look at where the dogs live, and spend as much as you wish, If I were you I probably would spend about 700-800, as long as it's a good breeding. Tim
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
SteveInTN,

Thanks! That is why I posted the ?. All points are things I never thought of before. Keep them comming!!!! :yes:

Are there specific sites that can get me headed in the right direction on where to find a good breader or kennel?

I guess the first thing to do is a few searches on how to pick a quality breader/kennel!

Thanks again!

jduck1
 

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Finding a local retriever training club, or one within a few hundred miles, would be the best place to start. Even then, do your own research, just like phillipstd said. Ask a bunch of questions, ask for copies of pedigrees BEFORE you buy, then research those pedigrees. Use the internet, you'll find plenty of info on good pedigrees and specific dogs.

I think you ought to take your time. My current dog was born on 12/25/02 and was ready to rock on 11/16/03.
 

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When I was fourteen I got MY first dog. We had always had huntin dogs but this was to be the one that I would train and take care of for always. Dad read the ad in the papers for free half lab/half pointer pups and took me to pick one out. He's always had them had a good look at them and helped me pick one that he felt "had it." I worked with her every day that summer and did the best a 14 yr old can do (with advice from Dad) to train her. She's very intelligent and very eager to please. I'm always confident that she'll find the birds if they are there.
I'm sure I got lucky, but my "free" dog has been very rewarding for me. I have a buddy whose grandfather pays very high dollar for his dogs and sends them off to be trained when he gets them...I was intimidated the first time I went out with him.......needless to say my half breed dog found every covey we flushed and every single we marked..and while his were getting tired and being rotated every 30 minutes mine ran the entire time..good thing too or we would have gotten nothing. Like I said..I probably got lucky, but I'm quite unimpressed with by people who buy a pedigree when all I did was earn mine dogs respect and trust and put in the necessary time with her.
 

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gadkhntr-- they are not saying that you WONT get a good hunting dog out of a cheap or free dog. My chessie came from the pound, there are exceptions. Why not buy a dog that puts the odds in your favor and has health warranties? That is why you pay money. It is peace of mind KNOWING you will get a good trainable hunting dog, plain and simple. Knowing the health of the dog and that his hip wont go out when hes 5. That he won't have eye problems when he is 8. You pay money to know that you will have a life long companion who is in good health and has the best brains you can find............

Again, my chessie came from the pound, hes a great dog. Someone got rid of him because they couldn't handle a stubburn old chessie. He was 1 year old and so eager to please. My chessie handles much better than my lab, but shes still young...

Dogs are awesome, do your research and put the odds in your favor, you put way too much money into other things with the dog to not get the best. Think about it, the food, toys, hunting supplies, they are thousands of dollars. $500 or $1000 up front is change compared to what you will spend through out that dogs life...

JMO

Mike
 

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GADKHNTR

Either you were very fortunate to happen to get that dog, or you are a dedicated trainer. Sounds like the dog came from a pair of hunters, or at least one. That would explain why the instincts are so strong in her. However, day in and day out, a person that trains their own dog stands a better chance with a proven commodity. One way to think of it is like this:

Average Dog + Average Trainer = Average Hunting Dog
Average Dog + Below Average Trainer = Below Average Dog
Below Average Dog + Above Average Trainer = Average Dog

You can draw out the other variations. So doing whatever you can to "up" either part of that equation is generally a good thing to do. There are always plenty of exceptions and determining "average" for either of the two is very subjective. But for someone wanting to "play it safe" there are things that can be done. It isn't science, but it is a very good rule of thumb.

Just my opinion...
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
SteveInTN I can see what yo mean. Jayk was bought out of the local paper for $50. I got a great deal beacause the people that had him were not planning on a litter of puppies. At the ranch were I picked him up from the family had both dogs and Jayk's father had a little unathoriezed congical vist. Both dogs were hunters.
I never really thought about that until you just pointed it out.
 

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Unfortunatly,alot of what we're seeing now days is FAR to many breeders (boy,do I use that term loosely) are doing nothing more than trying to turn a quick buck.Thus, the more pups their bitch spits out = more $$$. This activity really gets under my skin and does nothing but detract from the breed. Most reputable breeders strive to improve the breed,not quanity over quality. Ergo, alot of breeders(in the true sense of the word) hope to break even but more often than not lose $$ with every litter. Bob Wehle of the pointer world(the Elhew bloodline) was a classic example of this. He did not really make his living as a breeder in spite of producing a stellar bloodline.

I think this is much more common with the lab as opposed to the chessie(Would I be right ,Tim?). That trend really needs to change as a really great gundog breed has suffered.

Whheeew! Ok, I feel better. Anyway,when your paying those big bucks your really paying for the time and research ,training the breeder has put in to truly produce a quality dog and lessen the buyers gambling chance.
 

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Good post Aaron...

That is right, and it is another reason to look for puppies from a reputable breeder of HUNTING labs.
 

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Hmm i reread that and see how y'all might have thought I was putting down paying a lot of money for dogs. Not my intention. Just saying that I have had a good experience and I think it is POSSIBLE to get a very good dog without breaking the bank. And that I feel that dedication to training is very important...all the bloodlines in the world won't help a dog whose master doesn't spend the necessary time with it; I've seen it.
 

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Your right ,however,look at the very last line of my post. It reads ....and lessens the buyers gambling chance.
And again your right,the greatest bloodlines in the world don't amount to a hill of beans if the owner/trainer doesn't do their part.
 

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Gad,
You raised another sticking point with me ;owners who send their dogs into the backyard,then gripe about how they can't get their dog to do anything. Well,no s%^&. Why would he? As far as the dog is concerned ,your a stranger. Yes,my dogs are kennel kept;but,we also spend ALOT of time interacting . That's how you motivate a lab, grab his loyalty and devotion.

Labs aren't pointers,and vice versa. They have got to form a bond.
 

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Aaron, that's right, in a way you could say the more rare the breed the better the chances of finding ones that are correct to that breed, and yes I love chessy's but labs are good dogs too and I have had many, and still take them hunting once in a while, but there is just too many people tryin to make money off that breed, but also in another mindset you could think of the lab breed as much more advanced in it's breeding stage than breeds that haven't been bred alot, if the breeding was done carefully and fully thought through by an intellegent person. my expectations of breeding is to get a dog that is as easy as possible to train, birdy, great memory, physicaly sound and strong, and lots of drive without being a spaz, and depending on the breed all the other stuff that goes with that particular breed. :salude:

there's a local trainer that's got like at least 100 dogs from people that he keeps in kennels, takes them out once a week, and the people pick them up when they want to go hunting, those are mostly rich bas from seattle, I don't know how they can do it, it's not realy their dog. pretty pathetic.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
They can do that because they have no bond with the dog. That is "thier bad" as they are missing one of the key points to what makes a good day of hunting great. Those people have thier 1.5 kids, go out to shoot thier 3.5 birds per hunt average, sit in thier 1.5 million $ duck club and then talk about how great the hunting was back at the office on Monday (Sorry if I offened anyone as I know not all well off people are this way).
I know we are all just in different stages. This is becoming clearer now since I took my wife, 8 and 10 year old kids out last year on a JR duck hunt. That was the first hunt I went out on that I did not shot or even bring a gun. Watching my wife and kids expeience something new and fun made it the most memorable hunt I have been on so far. A hunt I never lifted a barrel on was one of the best days of my life in the field. :yes: I taught the kids over the years to play with Jayk and had then make him sit and stay all the time when playing fetch. They relized that day why Dad had those funny rules with the family dog. Unless you involve the whole family you may as well not have a dog or do like some of the guys discribed above call hunting with a dog.
Off my soap box!!!
jduck1
 

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Dag gum!

My season hasn't started yet, it's my time to stand on the soap box! Y'all need to get to bed or get your gear organized for the morning. There are a bunch of mean old ducks out there right now digesting their food from the day in preparation of crapping on your blind in the morning. Defend your turf!

:mrgreen:
 

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A dog to me , is a part of my family,and I have found that the ones that are a part of the family are a better dog ,,not just a better hunting dog but a better dog all around. If some one spends some money on the dog I bet that person will take better care of it. When I was selling pups I would sell them for 550 and up, for the fact that I knew that if some one had bought one they would take good care of it ,BUT I have sold some pups for as little as 100 ,and the times that I did that it was to a kid or to some one that I knew. I guss that I have said that the cheepest thing is the cost of the dog. After that you have training,food,vet bills, things for the dog and all the things that come with having a dog. If you are going to buy a dog it should be like buying a house or a car,you would not buy a car if it was not the color that you want or if it was not the make that you want so why would a dog be any different. If it's not what you want don't buy it. Don't buy one just because you have looked at five litters and you just want to get it over with. Take your time and if you have to look for a year or longer to find the one that you want then take the time and look you will find the more you look the more you will learn about the breed. Just rember, you will have the dog for the rest of his life. Make it a good one.

Tom

VOTE FOR BUSH :thumbsup:
 
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