|Barked: Thu Aug 9, '12 9:33am PST |
|I've hunted behind a few, they get the job done but their energy doesn't appeal to me at all.
I adore near bonkers intensity in a dogs work mode, which they have plenty of (or should, certainly plenty more than a Boxer does), but I prefer goofballs off the clock. They don't look to extract joy out of life like some other bird dog breeds do. I like a dog that'll take a discarded plastic bottle on the ground and turn it into Christmas morning. Such enthusiasm would be beneath a Toller. The point of such goofiness would go right over top of their heads, you could almost hear them roll their eyes. In other words down time means - blah. Not that blah is bad by any means, they just lack luster to me and wouldn't be worth trying to expel that intense energy just to get to the "blah" other side of their make up. For some though it's considered a fantastic temperament. Another version of a Chessie without the chip on the shoulder and snark.
As someone else mentioned already the gene pool is astonishingly small. I do not buy that geographically, lines are all that different from one another. I think it's no different than the plight of any other bird dog breed in existence....if the individual is never exposed to what makes it great it'll never have the chance to revel in it.
Not that it wouldn't, or doesn't want to, it's just never been gifted the time or effort to show it's true greatness. Or it's been gifted but in all the wrong ways and it's ended up souring them on the prospect. You can turn off up to and including straight ruin any great bird dog in 5 minutes flat. This breed is no exception, and I'd say is more at risk because they aren't as forgiving and tend to be shy as it is. Chessie meets Cocker in that regard?
Most people today get a bird dog breed and treat it like a shih-tzu, of course in that environment it's going to do it's best to adapt and make the best of it's life regardless of the deficit. That doesn't mean birdiness is not or shouldn't be in them, it's merely human influence restricting or inhibiting inherent instinct is all.
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