Those dogs retrieve from the water too?

Yes they do! This breed seems to enjoy the water, I have yet to see one that refuses to go in the water. Thats the thing some people just don't understand about a versatile breed. Its their job to go out there search and point, track and retrieve on water or land of furred and feathered game. That is why there is such an importance of the field testing and breed showings. The VDD is dedicated to keeping the breed this way. We test to know the strengths and weaknesses of our dog and to hopefully pass the testing and be on our way to breeding and maybe judging or just training of many a dog to come. I'm noticing a bit more popularity of the breed, in fact i saw an advertisement on the Sportsmans Warehouse in store bulletin board just the other day. Drahthaars for sale. I just hope the breed stays regulated it would be a shame to have it any other way.Thanks for the pics Zac!


Finally a pic of Grizz vom Wasatch with owner Zac(bottom). What an adorable young pup. It is amazing to watch the process with these dogs. The minute you watch a pup only 7 or so months old who has never been on a drag before(where dead game is dragged and placed for the dog to track and find.),to bolding up week by week and stretching its search pattern, familiarizing itself with water, socializing and literally chasing an older pup(top), jumping up on tailgates and still comes running in with purpose when called. To watching an older dog Otto and owner Chet show what a trained marked retrieve, return and hold until commanded to drop is all about,its hard to fight the addiction. It just shows that exposure to all these elements is the key to training. Keep up the good work!

Beginning Training

Once I had gotten Hessian it was time to began the task of training. Not only was I going to have to work on the basic obedience of an every day house dog, I was going to teach this dog how to hunt and become what i want as a hunting dog. Little did i know that my job was going to be a little harder than most. You see this was my First experience ever training a dog let alone a hunting dog, not just that but most people who have hunting dogs do not have a house dog. The hunting dog is mostly kenneled up alot, not alot of freedom yet allowed to be a puppy. The reason for this is training. If the dog is kenneled it makes training a bit more productive cause the only time the dog gets to play is when it is training,therefore making training fun to the dog. My significant other Carrie wasn't gonna have that though! She loves her dogs and there was no way it was gonna get locked up all the time, she want a house companion too. I agree i wanted him around all the time and everywhere, even on the bed,which only adds to my dilemma.
 What happens is a dog that is allowed on furniture and on the bed,couch etc. along with having free roam of house and yard comes to want to challenge your every move. It wants to get up when you don't want it to or when company is over or what ever. It has been challenging but mostly we've worked it all out. We let him be unless company is over than we control where he hangs out. No furniture only floor for you dog! Also with having free roam of the house you open yourself up for lots of trouble! Not just so much the potty training thing but just the fact that everything looks like a toy to a young pup. Socks, shoes,underwear. towels and rags etc. We had our share of him eating things and still have to stop him from taking off with something. He's still just a pup and i imagine we will work out of that stage eventually.
  Potty training was not so bad, that was probably the easiest thing to train. We had a pet door in the back door and just watched him close and when he started sniffing around nose to the ground we would swoop him up, rush him outside, let him do his thing and praise him for it. I think we really only had about 3 accidents in he house and not one since. The pet door helped alot as soon as he figured out he could go out on his own that was that.
  I had him socialize with other pups at a young age about 12 weeks.And at 15 weeks we were enrolled in puppy preschool which helped us both alot. He was able to socialize with other pups and i was able to learn the basics of obedience training which we later moved up to a Basic Obedience class and now want to start an Advanced or Competition Obedience class. As for the beginning trainer i would definitely recommend classes.
   Once i started training for the hunting that got interesting. I screwed up alot and still do i'm sure. I tried to get him to point by using planted Bob White Quail, which was a bad move. Pups that have not learned what pointing is will just run in when they smell the bird. That is what happened to me alot. He ran in and busted so many birds caught every one of em,thats enough to take the point right out of a dog, which is exactly what happened and i have to resort to bird launchers until i can teach him steadiness, but that will wait till after our first test.
  On the tracking section of things I screwed up there too by letting him chase too many rabbits and shooting too many rabbits for him. This produced a dog that wanted to only run around after rabbits. I had to fix this too by checkcording him alot to stop him from chasing and having to use his nose to find rabbits.
 I still have thing to work on but this why i am still learning, reading, watching, taking notes and writing in a journal and starting this blog so eventually i can write a guide for the first timer like me.

Felllow Addicts

PICTURE 1: Otto and his owner Chet

2: Addicts without a cause Yet.
Biz and Cody w/Hessian

Grizz his 
owner Zac not
shown yet

Test preperation

Preparing for Hessians first test coming up in April, we will be going to Malta,Idaho for his VJP which is Verbands-Jugend Prufung or Association Youngster Test. It is the first of three tests needed to pass in order to breed. It is given to pups who were born the year before, most dogs are 1 year and younger at these tests. Judged will be Gunfire sensitivity, Field search, Tracking, Nose, Pointing and Cooperation. Basically the dog must show desire and will to search, track a rabbit,point game,listen and cooperate with handler, with good use of nose while not showing any signs of fear with gunshots.In preparation for this test we have spent alot of time in different fields and areas,looking for rabbits and wild game birds. in rabbit areas when a rabbit is seen the dog is put on the track where the rabbit last was seen and told to "Find" in which dog uses its nose continuing to track and eventually find rabbit. On game birds he has stopped chasing so much and began creeping in on and eventually pointing the bird, now using his nose to search and point game, We have worked on cooperation by teaching the dog to watch me and change direction of search with me to point game for me. So all in all getting pretty excited for this experience.


This is Goshen von der Salzmarsch. I changed his name to Hessian (pronounced Heshen). He is a Deutsch Drahthaar, a german hunting breed. Versatile meaning he will hunt anything! Upland game,furred game,waterfowl,also bloodtracking and retrieving.I purchased him through a breeder von der Salzmarsch who is registered with the VDD, a german breeding organization based here in the U.S. This club does alot of testing and showing of the dogs to keep the breed standard. If you do not test the dog it can not be bred within the club.
 I was looking for a hunting dog and when i found out about this breed and what it can do i was all over it. Little did i know how much work it would be but worth every bit. I really had not planned on testing but after watching one my mind quickly changed. The testing system has helped me already with a kinda time line, without the tests and nothing to look forward to but hunting season i find myself wondering if i would put forth as much effort in training if it was just a hunting dog. It has helped me progress as a handler and trainer. Now keep in mind this was my first ever time training or owning a hunting dog let alone dog. I had a mutt when i was younger but never really trained it anything just fed it, played with it, and it stayed in the backyard. So this was a whole new world. As time went on with alot of help from Members of the VDD and internet sites and books we have come long way. Now a good searcher, loves tracking rabbits,pointing birds, chasing and all around hunting we are preparing for his first test this spring. The VJP.