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1 hour ago, hambone said:

Highlighted a few lines... first two make no sense, that's like me saying my current springer is no good compared to my previous ones (springers). My current cocker (retired) totally changed my view on cockers and is as good (or better) as any springer I have owned. I currently work as a result of an accidental mating two sprockers and where I will agree that you cant predict the temperament of which parent the pup will follow if both parents are working I fail to see the problem. I am sure that many owners of working long dogs are familiar with the term 'hybrid vigour' and I think this applies to all breeds or even species. ?   

The first point was that whilst many claim "a mix will be the best of both" - such as it being very frequently quoted that a sprocker will be like a calmer springer, or a better hunter etc, this isn't the case and it's sheer luck on a dog by dog basis. As the example shown by my friends and his springer vs cocker. 

The second point was a good trainer will often make a good dogs, and make the best of what they have. Not sure what doesn't make sense about that? There's a reason the top trial lads have made up literally hundreds of champions. They haven't lucked out every time. 

 

I was basically saying to the OP, choose the dog for the job you want it to do, and train it well, and he should have a lovely companion :) 

 

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2 hours ago, Lloyd90 said:

The first point was that whilst many claim "a mix will be the best of both" - such as it being very frequently quoted that a sprocker will be like a calmer springer, or a better hunter etc, this isn't the case and it's sheer luck on a dog by dog basis. As the example shown by my friends and his springer vs cocker. 

The second point was a good trainer will often make a good dogs, and make the best of what they have. Not sure what doesn't make sense about that? There's a reason the top trial lads have made up literally hundreds of champions. They haven't lucked out every time. 

 

I was basically saying to the OP, choose the dog for the job you want it to do, and train it well, and he should have a lovely companion  

 

It is not sheer luck fella, two good working spaniels crossed will in all probability produce good working pups (now and again even the best litter, pure bread or not will produce a bonehead or pup with physical problems) . The example of your friend is the bit that I commented on in an earlier post, there are so many variables involved in dog training that to blanket breeds (or cross breeds) is not realistic. Did your friend spend as much time training the dog, did he have empathy with it from the off, did his family/work situation change? These are only three examples of things that can change between dog and owner. My best dogs (in my opinion) were the ones I trained before I had kids for no other reason that I had lots of time free to spend with them, now that my kids are grown up I am finding more time again. Think on this...Would the dogs I have had in the meantime have been better workers if I had been able to spend more time taking them out? don't need to be a rocket scientist to work the answer out. 

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1 hour ago, hambone said:

It is not sheer luck fella, two good working spaniels crossed will in all probability produce good working pups (now and again even the best litter, pure bread or not will produce a bonehead or pup with physical problems) . The example of your friend is the bit that I commented on in an earlier post, there are so many variables involved in dog training that to blanket breeds (or cross breeds) is not realistic. Did your friend spend as much time training the dog, did he have empathy with it from the off, did his family/work situation change? These are only three examples of things that can change between dog and owner. My best dogs (in my opinion) were the ones I trained before I had kids for no other reason that I had lots of time free to spend with them, now that my kids are grown up I am finding more time again. Think on this...Would the dogs I have had in the meantime have been better workers if I had been able to spend more time taking them out? don't need to be a rocket scientist to work the answer out. 

I’m not saying they won’t produce potentially decent workers, but it all depends on your standards and what you want the dog to do. 

I personally think there is an element of luck, many people will tell you about their ‘once in a lifetime dog’... 

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6 minutes ago, Lloyd90 said:

I’m not saying they won’t produce potentially decent workers, but it all depends on your standards and what you want the dog to do. 

I personally think there is an element of luck, many people will tell you about their ‘once in a lifetime dog’... 

My standards must be low then ??. To the OP pick the breed you think most suitable for the work you want the dog to do and take some of the comments on internet forums with a pinch of salt. ?

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5 minutes ago, hambone said:

My standards must be low then ??. To the OP pick the breed you think most suitable for the work you want the dog to do and take some of the comments on internet forums with a pinch of salt. ?

Ah I never said that mate, you might just have fantastic dogs? :) 

do any of them just stand out in your memory as naturally gifted? 

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9 minutes ago, Lloyd90 said:

Ah I never said that mate, you might just have fantastic dogs?  

do any of them just stand out in your memory as naturally gifted? 

not really fella, the bitch is more obsessive and reserved (like her father) the dog is a big lump and more biddable (like his mother) and they require some different handling methods. I am basing my comments on actually owning and training two sprockers after thirty plus years of owning spaniels. Are you ?

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Hambone to be fair if u go backto some very early posts a couple of folk mentioned sprockers as a wonder breed,  which i thought was a strange thing, so possibly i started it off.

 

As no better or worse than a pure bred, they might just as well have said spaniel.

Not against breeding mongrals but do struggle to see the point quite often, if the bitch is so good why not just put her to a decent dog of the same breed?

In most breeds there is plenty of variation between lines if ur wanting a specific type/look/size. A sprocker won't do anything a springer or cocker

By all accouts running sprockers is all the rage in FT's nowadays anyway, even the queen has 1.

 

So hambone are ur sprocker so much better than any pure cocker or ESS or just u have had more time to train them?

Edited by scotslad
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3 minutes ago, scotslad said:

Hambone to be fair if u go backto some very early posts a couple of folk mentioned sprockers as a wonder breed,  which i thought was a strange thing, so possibly i started it off.

 

As no better or worse than a pure bred, they might just as well have said spaniel.

Not against breeding mongrals but do struggle to see the point quite often, if the bitch is so good why not just put her to a decent dog of the same breed?

In most breeds there is plenty of variation between lines if ur wanting a specific type/look/size. A sprocker won't do anything a springer or cocker

By all accouts running sprockers is all the rage in FT's nowadays anyway, even the queen has 1.

 

So hambone are ur sprocker so much better than any pure cocker or ESS or just u have had more time to train them?

 

Exactly the points I was making thanks, very frequently it’s posted “get a sprocker, they’re the best of both breeds” or similar comments are made. 

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8 minutes ago, scotslad said:

Hambone to be fair if u go backto some very early posts a couple of folk mentioned sprockers as a wonder breed,  which i thought was a strange thing, so possibly i started it off.

 

As no better or worse than a pure bred, they might just as well have said spaniel.

Not against breeding mongrals but do struggle to see the point quite often, if the bitch is so good why not just put her to a decent dog of the same breed?

In most breeds there is plenty of variation between lines if ur wanting a specific type/look/size. A sprocker won't do anything a springer or cocker

By all accouts running sprockers is all the rage in FT's nowadays anyway, even the queen has 1.

scotslad, mine were the result of an accidental mating (still don't know how the randy ****** managed it) and while I would not set out to breed sprockers as some now do I am pointing out that there is no reason to think less of them. I do not understand how some try to sell them at the same price as pure breads when to all intents and purposes they are mongrels

Also do not understand why some would disparage sprockers on the back of no experience with them 

Edited by hambone
has got time to improve
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5 minutes ago, hambone said:

not really fella, the bitch is more obsessive and reserved (like her father) the dog is a big lump and more biddable (like his mother) and they require some different handling methods. I am basing my comments on actually owning and training two sprockers after thirty plus years of owning spaniels. Are you ?

No I personally have only ever trained 2 dogs, a lab and a springer, both for myself to shoot over. 

I only shot over them on my own on local farms in Wales. I was far from happy with the standard I trained them and always thought something could be better. 

Now I live in England and do much more Shooting, experience has shown me that my dogs were much better than I thought they were, and also shown me that the majority of people who bring dogs to shoots haven’t done a whole lot of training... 

I now have another springer, I would still consider myself an amateur and inexperienced, but I’m trying my best and hope to be able to do gundog tests and trials if possible. 

 

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1 minute ago, Lloyd90 said:

No I personally have only ever trained 2 dogs, a lab and a springer, both for myself to shoot over. 

I only shot over them on my own on local farms in Wales. I was far from happy with the standard I trained them and always thought something could be better. 

Now I live in England and do much more Shooting, experience has shown me that my dogs were much better than I thought they were, and also shown me that the majority of people who bring dogs to shoots haven’t done a whole lot of training... 

I now have another springer, I would still consider myself an amateur and inexperienced, but I’m trying my best and hope to be able to do gundog tests and trials if possible. 

 

Wish you all the best with the pup and hope you do well in tests and trials. One thing that the sprockers can not compete with the pure breads though is that if you want to do trials/crufts etc they are not eligible. That may be something to bear in mind if your interest lies in that direction. 

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9 minutes ago, hambone said:

Wish you all the best with the pup and hope you do well in tests and trials. One thing that the sprockers can not compete with the pure breads though is that if you want to do trials/crufts etc they are not eligible. That may be something to bear in mind if your interest lies in that direction. 

One of the main reasons that I didn’t look at getting a sprocker. Otherwise I would have considered one for my dog when looking. 

PS I hope you didn’t think I was saying ‘they aren’t as good’ as a ‘pure breed’ etc. I’m well aware years ago they used to be springers and cockers in the same litter. 

I was just trying to say don’t fall for the trap some people say of mixing the two will auto give you the best of both... 

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18 minutes ago, scotslad said:

Hambone to be fair if u go backto some very early posts a couple of folk mentioned sprockers as a wonder breed,  which i thought was a strange thing, so possibly i started it off.

 

As no better or worse than a pure bred, they might just as well have said spaniel.

Not against breeding mongrals but do struggle to see the point quite often, if the bitch is so good why not just put her to a decent dog of the same breed?

In most breeds there is plenty of variation between lines if ur wanting a specific type/look/size. A sprocker won't do anything a springer or cocker

By all accouts running sprockers is all the rage in FT's nowadays anyway, even the queen has 1.

 

So hambone are ur sprocker so much better than any pure cocker or ESS or just u have had more time to train them?

Missed your edit the first time.. No difference, The bitch is small and is what I would expect from a cocker (uncannily similar to her father) while the dog is big and like his springer mother. I have not said that they are better than pure bread but don't think they are worse for it. Spent a lot of time with them for first year or so but then had a spell of working away. Picking up again on the early training has been no better or worse that I expected and no more difficult than it would be with a cocker or ESS.

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1 minute ago, Lloyd90 said:

One of the main reasons that I didn’t look at getting a sprocker. Otherwise I would have considered one for my dog when looking. 

PS I hope you didn’t think I was saying ‘they aren’t as good’ as a ‘pure breed’ etc. I’m well aware years ago they used to be springers and cockers in the same litter. 

I was just trying to say don’t fall for the trap some people say of mixing the two will auto give you the best of both... 

Mixing the two could arguably give you the worst of both ? my point was that there is no reason why two good working spaniels (clumber/welsh even?) should not produce a good litter of pups. A mate of mine has a very good chessie and I have been nagging him to put it over a good lab bitch because I want a pup, he's having none of it though ??

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14 minutes ago, hambone said:

Wish you all the best with the pup and hope you do well in tests and trials. One thing that the sprockers can not compete with the pure breads though is that if you want to do trials/crufts etc they are not eligible. That may be something to bear in mind if your interest lies in that direction. 

Not entirely true and quite topical at the moment in the world of cocker FT's, if u believe some many are running sprockers with dodgy paperwork?

I just thought it was strange to reccommend 1 over a pure bred spaniel, and to be fair u sort of back that up urself by saying u'd never intentionally breed 1 or think they should be the same money.

 

I think some folk (and not meaning urself hambone) think if u cross an poor/average dog with another poor/average dog of an entirely different breed they will somehow end up with wonder pups,

Seen plenty of decent mongerals over the years (moreso springerdors, which are back in fashion again locally, u could probably argee that sprockers aren't really proper mongrals anyway), got a not bad 1 myself the now a freebie allegedly a pure lab but i seriously doubt it more like a 1/2 genX gwp, does the job thou but poorer and harder to work than a lab, and to be fair not much better than a gwp either,

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13 minutes ago, scotslad said:

Not entirely true and quite topical at the moment in the world of cocker FT's, if u believe some many are running sprockers with dodgy paperwork?

I just thought it was strange to reccommend 1 over a pure bred spaniel, and to be fair u sort of back that up urself by saying u'd never intentionally breed 1 or think they should be the same money.

 

I think some folk (and not meaning urself hambone) think if u cross an poor/average dog with another poor/average dog of an entirely different breed they will somehow end up with wonder pups,

Seen plenty of decent mongerals over the years (moreso springerdors, which are back in fashion again locally, u could probably argee that sprockers aren't really proper mongrals anyway), got a not bad 1 myself the now a freebie allegedly a pure lab but i seriously doubt it more like a 1/2 genX gwp, does the job thou but poorer and harder to work than a lab, and to be fair not much better than a gwp either,

I never recommended a sprocker over a pure bred but was merely pointing out that there was no need to dismiss them. While this thread has been running I have been on the phone with a mate and talked about this. Got to be honest I am amazed that he has told me that sprockers are being sold for almost as much as a pure bred springer, shocking as they are still technically a mongrel!

Thank for the spelling lesson BTW thought bread did not look right ?

Edited by hambone
typo
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Bloody hell my english teachers will be spinning in there graves (if their deid anyway), things aren't good when i'm givimg spelling lessons ?

I'm usually a terrible speller

 

The dog breeding job is absolutley bonkers at the minute, plenty of these random  pet mongrals with stupid nasmes making more than well bred spaniels or health tested labs

Anythig with a 'poo' in it

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2 minutes ago, scotslad said:

 

 

The dog breeding job is absolutley bonkers at the minute, plenty of these random  pet mongrals with stupid nasmes making more than well bred spaniels or health tested labs

Anythig with a 'poo' in it

And adding to the dog stealing problems

no registration and non traceable breeding from dogs and bitches that need no papers 

just fuel for indiscriminate breeders and puppy farms 

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23 hours ago, Lloyd90 said:

I’m not saying they won’t produce potentially decent workers, but it all depends on your standards and what you want the dog to do. 

I personally think there is an element of luck, many people will tell you about their ‘once in a lifetime dog’... 

I think I have had some good luck with dogs my whole life but a friend in Texas used to say you make your own luck most of the time. 

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40 minutes ago, Walker570 said:

I think I have had some good luck with dogs my whole life but a friend in Texas used to say you make your own luck most of the time. 

Some of the most successful people, in various fields, will always say:

”the harder I work, the luckier people people tell me I am” ... 

as mentioned earlier, the people who put the work into the dog, not just the time, but also the effort and thought into understanding their dog, will very often make up decent workers. 

To go from a dog that’s very good to a champion takes a good handler, good breeding and luck on a few levels I think :) 

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 I thought about a Springer but went for a Cocker for my first working dog i'd be training myself, everyone said I was mad and they were hard work so fancied the task. Hes 14 months old, came 3rd in his second ever BASC scurry 2 weeks ago and doing pretty well considering i'm a novice too. Same with all dogs though - A dog is only as good as its trainer.. and its so true. If your dog runs in, doesn't do things as it 'should' its only doing what is been taught by you. If my Cocker goes 'wrong' its my fault for not training him correctly and you get out of it what you put into them.

Cockers can be head strong but hes so willing and very clever and once they're on your side, they'll do anything for you. Hes full of drive when out working, but calm in the house. My friends springers will hunt a empty car park for him, where as my cocker would look at me like. are you stupid? A trainer I met at a show said a Cocker is a Springer with a brain but really (opens can of worms) all spaniels are from similar lines way back when a spaniel was a spaniel. 

We have a lab as well, shes just pet lines but a excellent worker too but I do love my spaniels energy. Our labs calm and collected, my spaniels fast and furious. I've trained him for picking up, he can quarter but wanted a spaniel to pick up along side our lab as shes not great in cover. 

If you want something chilled yet willing in the field, a lab.. if you want something full of beans and a challenge, a spaniel! 

Edited by Pigeonshooter22
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LEE456 everyone with a gun dog will give you different opinions which is what you asked  ? My advice for you if you have a breed which you have your heart set on then go for that breed means then you will never second guess yourself mate

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2 hours ago, daveboy said:

I wouldn't have a Labrador. Have you seen how many of their owners end up blind ?

I thought I was something else making them blind? Least that’s what I was told....

 

Not every dog can be a great dog in anyone’s hands, often it’s said ‘I’m the limitation for the dog’ whilst it isn’t untrue, don’t believe with enough input and training it’s impossible to end up with a poor quality gun dog for the field.

Equally, I can give Will Clulee, Lee Cooper or any other spaniel man 100 spaniels and they won’t give me 100 champions, genetics are just probability, not certainty.

So therefore the early advice was the best so far; ‘assume at best an average dog in a an average novice’s hands and consider the worst case scenario’ you’ll be living with it for 10+ years...

It’s a bell curve, some novices will get lucky and train once in a lifetime quality, some experts will still churn out rubbish across all major breeds. The safe bet is go down the middle and go for a lab. At best, you’ll end up with a once in a lifetime dog, at worst you’ll end up with a dog significantly easier to live and shoot with than the worst in cockers or springers. 

It sounds you’re mainly pigeon shooting, I’ve got a cocker who’s niche is pigeon shooting from a hide, I do not expect to ever have another quite so adept at it, most are hunting machines. I’ve had labs do this more or less out of the box, it can be done with other breeds, sure, but any sensible gun dog trainer would recommend to you a Labrador based on your requirements, and probability of an average or above dog being produced. 

 

Best of luck! 

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