My favorite is the mountain feist. I got one as a rescue and he has been the best hinting partner there is. He’s fun to squirrel hunt with but he’s also dang good at finding sheds to. Great family dog on top of everything.
Have loved Brittanies and Labs. But have come to enjoy spending time with my Drahthaar the most. Smart, tough, big on/off switch, sense of humor, and great around strangers. Got a new one at home now getting trained up to run with my 3 year old male. Lot of great dogs in the world though and enjoying this thread a lot.
I love my Vizsla. I fell in love with the look and color when searching for my first dog. She's been a great upland dog despite my minimal training experience. ND can be a little cold for her but she's done well. Great house dogs as long as you exercise them LOL.
Growing up we had a black lab and a GSP. Great bird dogs and family dogs. I now have a Patterdale Terrier. She is a ground squirrel killing machine. Great family dog and very good with other people. I plan to take her with me this deer season. Very hyper (8 months old) at the moment but also very smart, and listens well. Not your typical hunting dog but so far she has been good with everywhere I have taken her, quail hunting she is a very good retriever.
Growing up we always had labs and they are great all around dogs. That said, I've always enjoyed being around spaniels and ended up getting a Boykin Spaniel nearly 8 years ago. I've had some good dogs over the years but he's been my favorite. Awesome trail companion, great with the kids, and he does really well with upland and waterfowl despite me being a poor trainer. Geese are a bit big for him but it's fun to watch him try. He does really well in the heat and pretty good in the cold, though I have to watch him in extreme cold temps. The biggest downside to a spaniel is the inevitable burrs they collect in their ears. I can think of a few other breeds that do worse in that category, but I can think of a lot of breeds that do better. Boykins are a friendly, social breed and they like to please. Despite my poor training he was much easier to train for basic commands than the labs I've had in the past.
As someone commented above about skunks, I think he's finally learning they are bad news. He's been sprayed twice while out on the trail, though not a direct hit either time. The last time we came across one he stood back 20 feet and barked instead of running after it so I'm hopeful he's learned his lesson on those.
Had a Chessie years ago. Fantastic duck/goose dog - would break skim ice to get birds. Mine also had a great nose that served him ell in finding doves in uncut corn fields. But that energy and drive came with a price. Unfortunately it manifested itself in aggression toward anyone I didn't properly introduce him to.
Am seriously considering a Boykin for the next dog.