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Hello, this upcoming spring I will be in the position to get a pooch. I grew up with German Short haired pointers. Our last doggo, Rip past away about 20 years ago. GSP's are great dogs for both the field and companionship. Like all working dogs they are high energy, and their only negative is they tend to be high strung. Yet I lived much differently at the time and constantly had time, energy and space for them. I have searched the past 6 months for the right breed to match my lifestyle, yet when I think I find a match (usually I use the AKC site to establish the dog's temperament) I search for more sources and usually find contradicting info on the dog. So I figure I will try a forum. These are the traits I am looking for:

THE 5 NECESSITIES, WHICH I HAVE NOT BEEN ABLE TO MATCH
-1 good 30 minute play/training session, plus periodically being let out back for bathroom breaks per day as enough activity
-can be alone for most of my shift (ranging 9-11 hours), minus a dog walker/sitter coming about mid-way through for a 1/2 hour
-good sense of smell
-able to be off leash in NON-fenced in backyard and other dogs
-medium to easy training level

Normal day-
-20 minutes in NON-fenced in backyard in the a.m. to train or just roam around
-mid-day 30 minutes with dog sitter (walk, time in backyard, play, or just lounging together)
-late day/early evening 30 minutes in backyard (training, play or lounging together)

When possible I like to take the pooch hiking, and in the field (1-2 a month). Although it does not have to be a field dog, I am willing to try a dog who is trainable and has a good sense of smell. If it doesn't work out, I love dogs anyway, yet I would like to try so I don't have to depend on going with family that have upland dogs.

I haven't been able to find the match. For example a Greyhound/Whippet are good for the exercise/together time requirement, yet can't be off leash, are sight hounds and a little stubborn. Or a GSP or Lab are easy to train, can be off leash and have good senses of smell, but can not be left alone for that period of time and need more vigorous exercise on a daily basis.

Thanks
 

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Hi.

All dogs have a good sense of smell, - it's kind of what they're known for, so that's probably why you're struggling to find any matches there. ;)

I'm concerned about the unfenced back yard - will you be out there supervising the dog while s/he's out there? If not, how do you intend to keep the dog on the property?

If you're leaving the dog for up to 11hrs per day, I'd suggest getting the dog walker/sitter for 2 x half hour visits, not just one. In any case, puppies cannot be left alone for that long and need to be taken out every hour or so whilst house training, plus after feeding, sleeping, playing and training as well as constant supervision. An older dog might work.

Why is it so important that the dog is off leash if most of the time it'll be going for walks with the dog walker/pet sitter?

-able to be off leash in NON-fenced in backyard and other dogs
Not quite sure what you mean by the "and other dogs" bit?
 

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Let me rephrase that: dogs that are known to track through smell, not sight (example, grey hounds use their sight to track prey).
Dog will be supervised when off leash.
I will be working from home for and 8 month period, that is why I am waiting until the spring, so I can establish boundaries and be there for the growing dog.
It is important to be good off leash (lower / controllable prey drive, friendly with other dogs, stays around its humans, figure just describing it as good off leash would be easy) because I would like to take the dog out into the field. In addition I prefer not to have the dog on leash only when necessary (walking on the sidewalk / areas where cars are near by, for example). Although domesticated, I have found that it is better for the dog when they are allowed to be as free as they can without endangering them. There will be days when the leash will not be even necessary because of the size of the backyard (3 acres).
If you have any ideas, thank you.
 

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Let me rephrase that: dogs that are known to track through smell, not sight (example, grey hounds use their sight to track prey).
Dog will be supervised when off leash.
I will be working from home for and 8 month period, that is why I am waiting until the spring, so I can establish boundaries and be there for the growing dog.
It is important to be good off leash (lower / controllable prey drive, friendly with other dogs, stays around its humans, figure just describing it as good off leash would be easy) because I would like to take the dog out into the field. In addition I prefer not to have the dog on leash only when necessary (walking on the sidewalk / areas where cars are near by, for example). Although domesticated, I have found that it is better for the dog when they are allowed to be as free as they can without endangering them. There will be days when the leash will not be even necessary because of the size of the backyard (3 acres).
If you have any ideas, thank you.
Ah! So you mean scent hounds! Gotcha!

How many days do you work 11hrs? Does that include commute time, or is it 9-11hrs plus commute time? If so, it's a very long time to be leaving a dog of any breed - even with 2 half hour breaks.

3 acres doesn't seem very much to me. There's a plot of land under development a couple of blocks away from me that I seem to recall is about 8 acres. My chihuahua might be safe from the roads off leash, but my lurcher (whippet X Jack Russel terrier), would cover that ground in no time.

At the moment, I'm really struggling to come up with suggestions. Is there any room for some compromises?
 

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So... Do you want a scent hound? Sorry, the whole smell thing is a bit confusing to me since I think that the only of that would have a better sense of smell than others would be a hound of some sort, definitely not my gsp lol. She loves watching birds and my walk around the house as entertainment. I wouldn't recommend them because they are typically independent dogs that will follow their nose for hours without so much as glancing up. What do you think of Chihuahuas? I don't really know what to suggest since a lot of it comes with individual dogs and training. What breeds do you like/interested in and why? Also, might I add that the AKC website is not really the best place for information... Especially that dog breed quiz that they have. Also, the AKC site doesn't even have much information on breeds, even if said information is incorrect.
 

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So... Do you want a scent hound? Sorry, the whole smell thing is a bit confusing to me since I think that the only of that would have a better sense of smell than others would be a hound of some sort, definitely not my gsp lol. She loves watching birds and my walk around the house as entertainment. I wouldn't recommend them because they are typically independent dogs that will follow their nose for hours without so much as glancing up. What do you think of Chihuahuas? I don't really know what to suggest since a lot of it comes with individual dogs and training. What breeds do you like/interested in and why? Also, might I add that the AKC website is not really the best place for information... Especially that dog breed quiz that they have. Also, the AKC site doesn't even have much information on breeds, even if said information is incorrect.
I don't think a Chihuahua could go that long without company. They love being with their people. Mine doesn't even like it when I walk my other dog without her.
 

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Hmm... A companion breed would fit the activity level but I kinda forgot that they were bred to be with said people. I would suggest a mastiff (bull or English) but they are known to be stubborn. The only problem with dogs that do well alone is that they often are quite independent, making them harder to train because they aren't trying to please you necessarily. How important is it to you to let your dog walk off of the lead?
 

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Ah! So you mean scent hounds! Gotcha!

How many days do you work 11hrs? Does that include commute time, or is it 9-11hrs plus commute time? If so, it's a very long time to be leaving a dog of any breed - even with 2 half hour breaks.

3 acres doesn't seem very much to me. There's a plot of land under development a couple of blocks away from me that I seem to recall is about 8 acres. My chihuahua might be safe from the roads off leash, but my lurcher (whippet X Jack Russel terrier), would cover that ground in no time.

At the moment, I'm really struggling to come up with suggestions. Is there any room for some compromises?
3 acres dosnt seem much seriously!
Thats a HUGE space
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Hmm... A companion breed would fit the activity level but I kinda forgot that they were bred to be with said people. I would suggest a mastiff (bull or English) but they are known to be stubborn. The only problem with dogs that do well alone is that they often are quite independent, making them harder to train because they aren't trying to please you necessarily. How important is it to you to let your dog walk off of the lead?
Thanks for actually being helpful. Yes I see how I wrote about the dog not being a sight hound was confusing. From what I found hounds tend to be too independent and more importantly are not that good off leash because of their prey drive. Usually other sites are contradicting the breed temperament that the AKC has. Ideally I would go with a gun dog like a Brittany, or GSP, etc. Yet leaving them alone for a few hours would drive them crazy. But the dogs who can tolerate most of a full work day alone are as you say too independent to be highly trainable enough to turn a typically non-flushing dog into a flushing dog. I am definitely trying to fit a square peg and a round hole, and have exhausted all of the well known breeds, and have exhausted a good deal of the lesser known breeds. Just figured I'd give it one last try. Thanks, I'll have to figure out some give somewhere.
 

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Wait are you planning to hunt the dog? I'm sorry but the dog you want doesn't really exist? A low prey drive dog that you want to hunt. A dog that is supposed to want to be near and please itself people but be alone all day. My best advice would to look less at what you want and more at what you can provide the dog and what dog can suit what you can give. It may not be your perfect, ideal dog but it's a dog that you can take care of. How is your feelings on a long line or retractable leash? Those would be easy fixes for the sighthound problem. Like I said for the AKC, look at other sites since it isn't too accurate.
 

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I have a friend who has a Brittany. The three acres you mention would be nothing to her, if she caught a scent she could be miles away in no time.
 

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Thanks for actually being helpful.
I was trying to be helpful. I even went off to research some breeds that I thought might have fitted your lifestyle. Lesson learned. I won't be helping you again.

Haha, some people are just always right. Thanks
I find this both rude and unnecessary because it implies a belief I have that I'm always right. That's not the case.

I'm done.
 

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What am i missing?
How is 3acres seen as not big enough for anyone to own a dog?
If its unfenced and the dog is off lead,,, I think people are saying any fit hunting or scent hound could be off and away in seconds.. Both of mine would find 3 acres no trouble at all if the got scent of something to chase.
 

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@BryanB I think given the amount of exercise you are saying you can give the dog.. (and Im not bashing at least you are realistic and honest) a low activity dog such as an english bulldog might suit best. They are lazy homebodies not given to running off after squirrels and such.
While dogs like spaniels BC aussies etc are great trainable dogs without a job they are monsters who will take your house to bits.
Sight and scent hounds whippets, beagles, greyhounds, etc would be off and running never to be seen again in an unfenced yard and even an invisible fence (illegal here) wont keep them once they are fixed on a scent.

Its really good that you are exploring lots of sources and lots of options before committing.. I cant tell you how many rescues weve had because people buy on impulse and then cant cope with the reality of what the dogs need..

Good luck with your search.
 
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