springer spaniels

Which breed of spaniel should I buy?

Don't overlook the minor breeds, like Clumber, Welsh springer or Brittany spaniels, although their natural hunting, retrieving and training ability probably won't be as strong as a Cocker or Springer

playful puppies

Buying a puppy – what should I know?

What breed? Choosing the right breed of gundog puppy has to be the foremost consideration. You will have to not only decide what breed will suit your shooting requirements, but also your lifestyle. Remember, most gundogs will only work in the shooting field for three or four months of the…

BARF diet for dogs

BARF diet for dogs – the risks and benefits

Bones and raw food for dogs I’ve long been an advocate of feeding dogs as natural a diet as possible, which means raw food and vegetables. I was convinced by an interview 
I did 15 years ago with holistic vet Dr Nick Thompson. I feed a raw chicken wing for…

Dog drinking from puddle

Leptospirosis in dogs – what you need to know

One of the most important reasons to control rats is the danger of leptospirosis. Also called Weil’s disease, leptospirosis is caused by bacteria spread via the urine of infected animals — usually rats. 
It is a zoonotic disease, which means it can be spread to humans, as well as dogs,…

Brushing dogs teeth

Tips on keeping your dog’s teeth free from tartar

Dog tartar removal and prevention Dental disease in dogs is primarily caused by food particles and bacteria building up at the base of the teeth near the gum line, causing the formation of plaque. If this plaque is 
not removed, minerals in the dog’s saliva combine with the plaque to…

male or female dog

Dog or bitch? Which is easiest to train?

Q: I have been looking for 
a yellow Labrador bitch puppy for some time but I always seem to miss out on the bitches and there are only dogs left. This will be my first gundog and I was advised to get a bitch as they are easier to train.…

cocker spaniel puppy

How to teach a spaniel puppy to retrieve

Spaniels have been bred for generations to hunt out game from stick piles, patches of bramble and thick bracken banks, and a well-bred puppy should be pre-programmed to get its nose down. However, if you do too much early hunt training with a young spaniel this can become the most…

polydipsia in dogs

Why is my dog so thirsty? Is she ill?

Excessive thirst (referred to as polydipsia or PD on veterinary case notes) is not in itself a diagnosis, but it may be indicative of disease. There are, of course, some “innocent causes”, such as hot weather, prolonged exercise, change to a dry diet or increased salt in diet. Sometimes, all…

firstgundog

Buying your first gundog – what you need to know

Q: “I’m about to embark on acquiring my first gundog and I would like some advice as to what breed to buy and whether to get a puppy or a part or even fully-trained dog. Also, I’m not sure whether to keep it indoors or outside in a kennel and…

Welsh springer spaniel

Will the Welsh springer spaniel survive?

A chance encounter with a Welsh springer spaniel (WSS) on a shoot earlier this month reminded me what a handsome breed this is and what a shame it is that we do not see more out working. Welsh springer spaniel – a curious breed It is the most numerous of…

Hungarian vizsla

My Hungarian vizsla won’t hold a point. What can I do?

“I have a two-year-old Hungarian vizsla that I have been training for rough shooting and although she hunts really well she will not hold a point and will run in on the birds, which makes it difficult for me to take a safe shot. She is also sometimes reluctant to…

Her Majesty The Queen

Her Majesty The Queen attends Cocker Championship at Sandringham

An £800 pair of dummy launchers proved key in the training of young bitch Abiann Flawless, which landed the ultimate accolade at the 88th Cocker Spaniel Championship, held on the 6,400-acre Sandringham estate on 8 and 9 January 2018 by gracious permission of Her Majesty The Queen. After two days…

dogs good for your health

Are dogs good for your health?

You might have seen a rather pleasing story that appeared 
in the papers last November. According to a study of 3.4million Swedes, dog owners have a lower risk 
of cardiovascular disease than those 
who don’t have a canine companion. 
Even more significant, ownership of 
a hunting breed gave the greatest…

old yellow Labrador

Giving your gundog a comfortable retirement

One of the most frustrating things about good gundogs is that their working lives are so short. A dog is typically three or four years old when it matures into the best you have ever had, but five or six years later you realise that his working life is approaching…

gundog

Can dogs get colds?

Q: My dog has suddenly started sneezing. Can dogs get colds and flu like humans? Over the 
past few days there have been persistent bouts of sneezing, runny nose and she snores when asleep as if her nose is blocked. So can dogs get colds? A: Dogs don’t get colds…