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They have a good reputation - we’ve had two Drakeshead sired labs, both by Drakeshead Vodka. They were very ‘hot’ but it may have been just those particular dogs and that’s the way I like them anyway 😊

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Is this like when people tell you their Bedlington is Gutchcommon or Rillington lines when both breeders have been dead for years, the pup she's looking at is from the Drakeshead kennels. I don't know much about gundogs so I advised her to find a good working dog breeder. Her husband fancies doing some field trials with it.

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38 minutes ago, jamesleee123 said:

Is this like when people tell you their Bedlington is Gutchcommon or Rillington lines when both breeders have been dead for years, the pup she's looking at is from the Drakeshead kennels. I don't know much about gundogs so I advised her to find a good working dog breeder. Her husband fancies doing some field trials with it.

do your research...........there are some lines that are totally unsuitable for trailing

my labs lines were Lafiette Tolley...........very fast and hard hunting dogs totally unsuitable for trailing.............speak to trialers.....some of them hold training days to earn extra money...so go along and talk to them.........some dog lines have very very different traits ...so be careful

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14 hours ago, ditchman said:

i would imajine nearly every lab has Drakeshead blood in it somewhere,..........

Whilst I've no plans to trail through the 1153 dogs with Drakeshead in their name that are registered on mykc to prove it, I'd suspect that the majority of them are 'of Drakeshead' or similar, ie they didn't actually breed them. I don't think that they've been prolific breeders of litters, certainly not in recent years & the majority of the dogs that they've won / championed have been bred by others. Standing dogs at stud to a steady stream of customers is probably an easier way to make a living.

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As I'm a bit sad I've sort of gone through the 1153, I think about 800 were bred by them but mostly 70's 80's, definitely not so many recently.  I did notice that the 'of Drakeshead' FTCH outnumbered the Drakeshead home bred ones 20 - 17 from what I could find. They've certainly been prolific.

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3 hours ago, PERCE said:

As I'm a bit sad I've sort of gone through the 1153, I think about 800 were bred by them but mostly 70's 80's, definitely not so many recently.  I did notice that the 'of Drakeshead' FTCH outnumbered the Drakeshead home bred ones 20 - 17 from what I could find. They've certainly been prolific.


 

That’s because (as with absolutely any sports or athletic programme ever invented) it’s a numbers game, and the more candidates you get through your hands the more chance you get of finding a truly special specimen. 
 

Any big kennel will run and win with dogs they buy in. There’s not many who are doing it with their own bred dogs I don’t think. They will of course run their own bred dogs but many (even the real top boys) are still having dogs in from other kennels.  
 

What they do then is breed a litter out of those same dogs who’s pups then have their prefix anyway. 
 

The bloke I bought my first ever dog off, still breeds and competes with labradors, judges trials and won a few last year.
 

I spoke with him recently and he informed me Drakeshead Drew of Llangynidr sired two excellent pups that he has at the moment and he thinks it’s probably one of the best labs sires about at the moment. 

 

There is no doubt that Drakeshead labs produce some quality stuff and must be one of the most famous Labrador kennels out there. 

17 hours ago, ditchman said:

do your research...........there are some lines that are totally unsuitable for trailing

my labs lines were Lafiette Tolley...........very fast and hard hunting dogs totally unsuitable for trailing.............


Dogs that are fast and very hard hunting ... that’s usually what triallers are looking for ... 

 

Normally people criticise trial bred labs, saying they have become too small and fast, and people want the big stocky types like back in the day supposedly. 

 

Which of those qualities made them unsuitable for trials? 🤔🤷‍♂️

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18 hours ago, jamesleee123 said:

Is this like when people tell you their Bedlington is Gutchcommon or Rillington lines when both breeders have been dead for years, the pup she's looking at is from the Drakeshead kennels. I don't know much about gundogs so I advised her to find a good working dog breeder. Her husband fancies doing some field trials with it.


If he wants to do trials with a retriever tell him he will have to spend hundreds joining every club in the country just to try and get a run. That’s before the other expenses of travel, lodgings, getting the dog up to standard and shot over in the right conditions.  
 

It’s hard enough to get a run in a spaniel trial. In novice trials many many people go out on very basic things because the dogs only half trained, and some people view it as “just a day out” or “just having a go”. I have personally seen people enter and run dogs in trials that they know without doubt is not finishing and isn’t ever going to win, I’m not sure why they do it, I think they are just hoping it will go right on the day. One bloke who comes training down with us, all of his dogs always run in, over and over in training, yet he keeps entering trials, and no doubt they always go out ... for running in!! 
 

Now consider how much easier it is to train a Labrador to a basic standard than a spaniel, and how many people apply for runs in novice trials. 

 

I think for a  retriever trial you could be running 16 or 24 dogs in total, and for those runs I have heard of clubs having 200+ entries. 

 

 

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10 hours ago, PERCE said:

Whilst I've no plans to trail through the 1153 dogs with Drakeshead in their name that are registered on mykc to prove it, I'd suspect that the majority of them are 'of Drakeshead' or similar, ie they didn't actually breed them. I don't think that they've been prolific breeders of litters, certainly not in recent years & the majority of the dogs that they've won / championed have been bred by others. Standing dogs at stud to a steady stream of customers is probably an easier way to make a living.

Has a Drakeshead dog ever won the Championships, Perce? As in directly sired by or out of a Drakeshead bitch or bred by themselves?

Edited by bigbird
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33 minutes ago, bigbird said:

Has a Drakeshead dog ever won the Championships, Perce? As in directly sired by or out of a Drakeshead bitch or bred by themselves?

Dave Latham won with Drakeshead Deana Pedigree: FTCH Drakeshead Deana (k9data.com) no actual Drakeshead bred dogs in her recent pedigree.

RS Hill won with Drakeshead Wisp Pedigree: FTCh Drakeshead Wisp (k9data.com) early days for Drakeshead

They've won 5 Championships themselves, with 3 different dogs, all bred by others.

All Trial dogs go back to the usual suspects as the gene pool isn't very big.

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On 28/04/2021 at 07:42, bigbird said:

They have a good reputation - we’ve had two Drakeshead sired labs, both by Drakeshead Vodka. They were very ‘hot’ but it may have been just those particular dogs and that’s the way I like them anyway 😊

+1 very good dogs 

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1 hour ago, PERCE said:

Dave Latham won with Drakeshead Deana Pedigree: FTCH Drakeshead Deana (k9data.com) no actual Drakeshead bred dogs in her recent pedigree.

RS Hill won with Drakeshead Wisp Pedigree: FTCh Drakeshead Wisp (k9data.com) early days for Drakeshead

They've won 5 Championships themselves, with 3 different dogs, all bred by others.

All Trial dogs go back to the usual suspects as the gene pool isn't very big.

Thanks, interesting stats!

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I don't know anything about the lines for Labradors, I just remember having a video when I trained my first spaniel over 35 + years ago and it was John and Sandra Halstead (drakeshead) training labs, probably one of the first videos at the time.  I don't have it now, think I loaned to to someone and it was never returned.  

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I have one and like Bigbird says, he is hot, too hot to win a championship but won't let me down when I need him at the end of a busy day; he lives to work and can take him on any shoot and get invited back

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