Among the American Kennel Club (AKC) breed groups, the Sporting Group is by far the most popular, and these dogs are bred to hunt. But don't be discouraged if you have one of these great sporting dogs but you're not a hunter. You can choose from a variety of field sports, including both organized and individual activities that will put your dog's talents to good use.
Positive Gun Dogs
The majority of gundogs are natural swimmers and love nothing better than doing it for pure pleasure. There is a skill to it, and experience alongside confidence is also required. Some dogs find the paddling action difficult to master at first, causing them to lift out the water at the front end whilst the rear end sinks—lots of splashing but no movement. This is one of those skills where practice does make perfect.
Dogs have assisted humans in hunting for sport since the Middle Ages. Today, many gun dog trainers are still using well-worn, ancient training techniques-traditional methods that often involve force and pain. As with any area of animal training, however, the impressive results of all-positive clicker training are clearing new territory.
The co-authors of Positive Gun Dogs: Clicker Training for Sporting Breeds are the highly qualified Jim Barry, Mary Emmen, and Susan Smith.