Originally Posted by Floppy Dog
Actually, Lady has a pedigree longer than my arm and is registered with the AKC. .
Really though this means nothing more than that Lady is purebred. Papers dont make the dog.
thing with show breeding and dog purchasing you have to realize is, it is thought that the only way to have a reputable breeding program is to have CH titled dogs for it. Many retrieving breeds (take poodles for instance) are not shown in any working venues, breeders get their conformation title (as to many people this is the be all and end all of breeding) they then get their "reputable breeder badge" and keep breeding for conformation.
Any dog can be a good gun dog, my man has used his border collie and his brother uses his rough collie for ducks. Sure neither dog would come anywhere near obtaining a working title for this but the duck makes it from the pond or lake to our dinner table every time.
For some dogs its bred into them, for others, its not and some patience and positive training to make the retrieval the funnest game on the planet to your dog can get you the same results.
As for the frigid temperatures you are asking the dog to swim in, its common sense really, Come end of duck season the water is just too cold here and instead of bringing dogs the guys just grab their canoe.