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Feb 12

Basic Tips For Raising a Good Hunting Dog

During its first year, a puppy is exposed to life in a multitude of ways. It can be exciting and fun, but somewhat intimidating at the same time, which is why you have to be careful in your way of guidance, exposure and monitoring. Your aspiration should be to develop positive habits and aid it in coming to terms with its predatory instincts, while also developing its self-confidence. At the same time, you must avoid the development of bad habits in the pup. You must also mix in the essentials of obedience. Obviously, all this means you will have to balance out different aspects of training, but, in my experience, it has always been a rewarding endeavor to train a hunting pup.

In today’s post, I’ll share with you some essential tips for raising hunting dogs from the time when they are little pups:

  • Crates: Be it for home use or for travelling, a crate plays a vital role in the training and safety of a young dog. Crate training of the dog begins as soon as you bring the dog home. Once it has settled into the crate and enjoys it, take it to the car and go on short trips initially.

Visit an area where the puppy can be let out so that it can have a bit of fun. If the only early trips your pup takes are the ones where it goes to the veterinarian for a vaccine shot, it won’t be all that keen on loading up when it is time to take it out for training.

  • Dogs and people: Introducing your dog to its peers early on is a sensible thing to do. Let it play with family members as well as your other dogs initially, but try to provide it with more exposure if it is manageable. Taking the dog to the park or an elementary obedience class will contribute to it growing into a well-adjusted, solid animal.
  • Heavy cover and open fields: A young dog might get scared in the great outdoors. It isn’t that hard to forget this fact, but you must realize that the dog will eventually be hunting in the same great outdoors. It is for this reason that you must make an effort to familiarize it early on with such settings as heavy cover and open fields, so it can learn to explore and chase after game birds. This type of familiarization is fun for the pup and fosters confidence and predatory drive, besides building its strength, body and endurance.
  • Guns and gunfire: Gunsmiths often have to test fire their creations and modifications to ensure that they are working properly – and I dabbled my hand quite a bit in this field as a hobby before picking out a gunsmithing school to take an elementary course! What my hobbyist gunsmithing taught me was that dogs, even young pups, aren’t inherently shy of guns, contrary to what some may believe. Sure, some soft natured dogs can become gun-shy, but if you train your pup carefully, it will most likely come to accept gunfire as something natural. This is good, since hunting dogs will frequently be exposed to gunfire in the fields, and must learn to associate it with the promise of downed game.