Not All Dogs Are Hunters: 15 Worst Dogs for Hunting

Hunting is a sport that many people love to do, but not all dogs are cut out for it. While some pooches may have the natural instinct to hunt, there are some that and just the worst dogs for hunting.

So if you’re considering taking your pup out on the next hunting excursion, make sure you know which ones don’t belong in the field.

We have compiled a list of the non-hunting dogs, from their lack of natural instinct to their inability to stay focused. So without further ado, let’s jump into it!

What is a hunting dog?

Hunting dogs are special breeds of canines that have been specifically bred for the purpose of helping humans as they engage in hunting activities.

They are primarily used to locate, flush out and even retrieve game or prey during a hunt. In addition to being excellent tracking dogs, these animals also make great companions due to their eagerness to please their owners.

What is prey drive behavior in dogs?

Prey-drive behavior in dogs is an instinctive behavior that they are born with and which can be seen especially during playtime.

It’s a natural urge to chase, stalk, pounce, grab and shake small objects – just like wild animals would do when chasing their prey.

This kind of playful behavior demonstrates a dog’s strong innate hunting instincts and provides them with much-needed mental stimulation. Dogs that have a less prey drive are not made for hunting.

Worst dogs for hunting

Although some breeds of dogs may be better suited for hunting than others, there are certain low-prey drive dog types that should never be taken along on a hunt.

Toy breeds, for example, lack the stamina and determination needed when it comes to tackling terrain and searching for long periods of time. Here are a few dog breeds that are not suited for hunting.

1. Irish Setter:

This breed is an excellent companion dog and a great family pet, but they don’t make the best hunting dogs. Irish Setters are high-energy, sociable and very friendly; traits that can be distracting when used for hunting.

2. Papillon:

Although Papillons are very loyal and smart, they lack the necessary size and energy that make for a good hunting dog. This breed is also easily distracted, making it difficult to keep them focused when out in the field.

3. Chow Chow:

As one of the oldest domesticated breeds, Chow Chows have been used as guard dogs and house pets for centuries. Unfortunately, their stubbornness makes them a less-than-ideal choice for hunting—they’re simply not as obedient as other breeds.

4. Shih Tzu:

These dogs might be great family pets, but they’re definitely not equipped for a successful hunt. Their tiny size and lack of speed or endurance make them poor candidates for hunting any type of game.

5. Bichon Frise:

These cute little dogs may have a lot of energy, but unfortunately, it doesn’t bode well for their hunting capabilities. They are too small and timid to track large prey.

6. Bulldog:

These muscular dogs may look intimidating, but they aren’t great hunters due to their short stature and lack of agility. Plus, they can get easily distracted by anything that catches their eye!

7. Maltese:

Despite having a lot of energy, these tiny dogs aren’t suited for hunting due to their small size and lack of skill in tracking prey. Plus, they can get easily distracted by other animals or people!

8. Boxer:

Boxers have impressive strength and stamina, but they aren’t very good hunters. This breed is notoriously stubborn and easily distracted—not ideal traits for hunting!

9. French Bulldog:

This breed is simply too small and low energy to make a good hunting dog. French Bulldogs need plenty of attention, making it difficult to keep them on track while out in the field.

10. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel:

While these tiny pooches are popular with owners who want a lapdog, they aren’t great hunting dogs. Their small size and low energy level means that they can’t keep up with larger game animals.

11. Old English Sheepdog:

This large and fluffy breed may look intimidating, but they’re not equipped for hunting. Their size and energy level are simply not enough to keep up with bigger game animals.

12. Pomeranian:

This tiny breed may be fierce-looking, but they’re not suitable for a hunting companion. They’re too small and low energy to make an effective hunter. They’re also easily distracted, which can be a dangerous trait in the field.

13. Golden Retriever:

Despite their popularity, Golden Retrievers aren’t suitable for hunting—they just don’t have the stamina or agility required to track down large game animals.

14. Havanese:

These cute little dogs are too small and low energy to make good hunters. They’re also easily distracted, making it difficult to keep them focused on the task at hand.

15. Great Pyrenees:

Despite their large size, these dogs are actually quite lazy and lack the energy or stamina necessary for hunting.

Plus, they’re also known for being very stubborn – not ideal traits for a successful hunting expedition.


Overall, it’s important to consider all of these factors when selecting a breed to use as a hunting dog.

While some may not be suitable due to physical limitations, others could be more suited but lack the drive and determination needed for an effective hunt.

Ultimately, careful consideration should be given before deciding which breed will make the best hunting companion!

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