A sporting dog is characterized by those who have historically been used by hunters to locate, flush, or retrieve game from land or water. These dogs have exceptional water and woods instincts and are alert, active, and highly intelligent. Some of today's most popular breeds have ascended from this group.
Originally known as a hunting dog from Canada, today the lab is one of the most popular dog breeds. These guys are the fun-loving, social, teddy bear and boast outstanding friendly personalities. These dogs are perfect for family companions and generally pretty low maintenance.
Originally from Scotland where they were used to hunt ducks and other waterfowl, the Golden is another very family friendly dog like the lab. These guys may have a little longer hair and might shed a little more, but very similar disposition and great around families.
Originally from (you guessed it) Germany, the GSP is a very agile hunting dog. Their temperament makes them perfect for both work and play. These guys can spend the day sniffing through the forest or spending time with the family. Unlike the previous 2, the GSP does require more activity to stay stimulated and happy.
Remember Duck Hunt? Yup that's the English Spring Spaniel. These guys are extremely agile and obedient and used for flushing and retrieving game. They are very friendly and affectionate dogs, but similar to the German Shorthaired Pointer, they do require more of a job and more activity to keep them occupied.
A Hungarian breed used for pointing and retrieving (usually fowl and/or upland game), the Vizsla is another dog that requires more of a "job". If you keep these guys active and happy they are often called "velcro dogs" as they're highly affectionate and form close bonds with their owners.
These guys were originally used for hunting large game like boar, bear, and deer. They are extremely active like the rest of the dogs, but also very strong. These dogs make great companions for the active owner. Like some of the other dogs, the Weimaraner stays close to his owner and needs plenty of mental and physical stimulation to keep them happy and healthy.