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I am looking for a dog that will fit my needs-

~I am extremely athletic, I feel like I LIVE outside I am outside so much. Whether i'm playing baseball to football, i'm outside 24/7 besides school and sleep. The dog MUST be sporty and nature-y, no exceptions. I will bring him/her with me everywhere, because I live in an extremely dog-friendly small town.
~I enjoy hunting small game with air soft/BB guns so the dog should be able to help me out with that. (Also, just staying out with me as I shoot without being bothered by the slight 'popping' sound)
~I also enjoy fishing and that involves lots of water, so the dog should be able to swim and enjoy water/swimming/treading water.
~I would prefer a big dog, as I have a Bichon Frise "lap dog" now. My sister is begging me to take care of her, so i'm giving my Bichon to her as I take on a new dog that will better suit my needs. I still love her with all my heart, I will still play with her a bit - but my sister will do all the rest, I am looking for one that is better for me, ya'know?

Thanks so much, God Bless!
Happy Holidays!

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P.S. The dog should get along with other animals too. I can and will obviously train him/her, but he shouldn't be a dog that immediately attacks/eats other animals/pets.

I would prefer a low shedding dog, as would my family - currently we have a Bichon Frise, who barely ever sheds. She is supposed to be hypoallergenic after all! It's great, no mess with fur or anything. A little shed is okay, but nothing like a golden retriever for example.

P.S.S. I was raised with dogs, so I have my whole life of experience, and can take care of a dog. I don't need a simple low-maintenance one, although that would be ok, I do have experience if needed.
 

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Any of the breeds in this group catch your eye? Many of them love water and were bred as hunting or retrieving dogs, so they should be fine with you while you hunt and fish. There are a lot of active dogs in this group that could keep up with you outside, no problem.

The labrador would be my first suggestion (friendly, active, loves water), but labs may shed more than you'd like.
 

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Consider a Pit Bull or Pitty mix. Pitties go, go, go and aim to please their people. My Pitty mix and I ran a half marathon together. A few cautions:
- be certain the dog is not reactive or aggressive towards other dogs; a fostered rescue that lives with other dogs is a better idea than a shelter dog
- they don't have a lot of fur, so sunscreen in summertime and a coat in wintertime is important
- be sure any dog you adopt has a thorough exam to ensure good hips and knees; a dog with HD or LP won't be much of an athlete
 

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If shedding is a big issue, maybe a Standard Poodle would be best. The personality you describe is very Retriever-ish, but Labs and Goldens shed like crazy. Standard Poodles were bred as retrievers, and are pretty outdoorsy. That ones I've met just seemed like curly Labs (but maybe a bit less doofy). And, as long as you get your dog a non-foofy haircut, they can look properly "masculine", if that's a concern.
 

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Any dog can be a water dog. Just gotta train with them. Some are better at it though, as thier morphology limits some.

It sounds like the shedding issue is the real deal breaker, but consider other aspects as well.
Sporting dogs running around with you in the woods and water, are Magnets for Burrs, Mud, sticktites, Mud, foul odors, Mud, sand, and Mud. Did I mention Mud?

A good lab is easy to hose off and clean up after a romp along a river bank in the spring mud. Poodles are giant Q-tips. Goldens andother long coated dogs are inbetween.
Shedding is easier to deal with than a dog that has been scrubbed 3 times and still smells like a stagnant marsh.;)
The reason for double coated short haired dogs dominating the sporting breeds in actual field use, is apparent to anyone with a pond and a Golden retriever LOL!!
It's something you are gonna have to decide yourself.

As for bieng gunshot shy, all dogs and all people will naturally have a negative reaction to the report of a firearm untill they are conditioned to it.
It is something that has to be dealt with in early socialization and training, and maintained. The earlier the pup learns the loud noise is nothing to be fearfull of, the better, but older pups can be conditioned as well.

It really sounds like you're looking for a good country boys companion dog.

IMO? Labs win for what you describe. Just get a good Vaccum and make it a habit to brush the pooch several times weekly...and adjust to the stray fur.

Good luck to you!
 

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Standard poodle (clipped close, not poofy), lab if you can deal with the shedding, any of the coonhounds (which are easily found in shelters and rescues in the south)
 

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There are some water breeds I know that don't shed, but unfortunately most do. The sporting group is a fun group of dogs that are mainly affable towards everyone and incredibly active. Most are easily trainable with a side of being goofy.


Flat coated retrievers are some of my favorite in the group, but they have a high instance of cancer. They are sweet, high energy, goof balls who are high on life. Everyone I know who has them (which aren't many, because they are rare) just loves them.

Chesapeake Bay Retrievers may look a whole lot like labs, but they have more of a working dog mentality and aren't as friendly with strangers and can be reactive with other dogs. Chessies are my favorite out of the sporting group, but they are definitely not a dog for everyone.
 

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German Wirehaired Pointer?

I would second the retrievers. But most of them shed a ton, you may have to look for a wirehaired dog or curly haired (for example curly coated retriever) if you want to minimize shedding.
 

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Look into Portuguese Water Dogs and, if you have the money, some of the rarer European Water Dogs, like Spanish Water Dogs and Lagotto Romagnolos.

While the small terriers aren't large, they are very hardy and thrive with an active, outdoor lifestyle. They also are low-shedding -- you may want to look into Border Terriers, Cairn Terriers, Wire Fox Terriers, Lakeland/Irish Terriers, etc.

Labs are wonderful dogs, and would fit your lifestyle, but they SHED. And it's not the small, easily-sweepable clumps, it's the needle hair that sticks to everything and is hard to sweep off wood floors, and it's CONSTANT. Whoever decided that "labs only shed twice a year" was confused. http://www.woodhavenlabs.com/grooming.html
 

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1. A Lab is a big Bichon.... just accept the shedding.
2. My Lab x GSD only sheds from June - Oct.

Everything else is socialization and training....
 

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Sorry to butt in again-

1) Labradoodles rarely come from reputable sources. The people that breed those dogs ONLY breed for money, and trust me when I tell you that you'd rather have a purebred dog that comes from someone who breeds simply because they really love that breed.

Anyone trying to make a buck by breeding mixes will likely not health test, and that's only going to cause problems for you as a potential owner.

If you want a mix, you can go to the shelter and find a wonderful companion.

2) Labs are not big Bichons. Bichons are not retrievers; they are small, adorable companion dogs. They may be similar in the sense that both breeds are known for having joie de vivre, but that's about where the similarity ends. Labs are incredibly high energy sporting dogs that love mouthing anything and everything and live for pleasing their people.
 

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1) Labradoodles rarely come from reputable sources. The people that breed those dogs ONLY breed for money, and trust me when I tell you that you'd rather have a purebred dog that comes from someone who breeds simply because they really love that breed.

Anyone trying to make a buck by breeding mixes will likely not health test, and that's only going to cause problems for you as a potential owner.

If you want a mix, you can go to the shelter and find a wonderful companion.
I COMPLETELY agree with this. Also, I'd suggest a Standard Poodle.
 

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If you can get past the shedding, lab. If not, standard poodle/Irish water spaniel/Portuguese water dog/American water spaniel. Either water, you will have to clean off your dog after taking them hunting, with all that mud they will be romping through.
 

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Giant schnauzer! My girl is a water hound, would love to live in the country and so devoted -- at my side 24/7! Doesnt shed a bit and has a nice heavy all weather coat( I do clip her for convenience sake as she gets hot indoors)....Just a thought...
 
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