Have you always wanted a hunting dog who can accompany you on your adventures? Do you have a new puppy that you are just dying to start training to be your companion in the field? Well we have some tips to make the process go smoothly. Hunting dogs need to be trained in specific ways for a variety of different skills, so it is important that you keep that in mind. Of course, you’ll need to care for your new furry friend the way you would any puppy. But there are some additional thing you need to take into account if you plan on having your pup as a hunting dog. Here are our training tips for your new hunting puppy.
One key aspect of training a hunting dog is to get them used to the sounds made when you’re in the field. For dogs that will be hunting birds, introduce them to the sound of the gun specifically when your dog is around and observing the birds. Be sure to introduce your pups to birds in advance of the introducing the gun. We want the puppy to engaged and aroused by the birds when we begin the introduction of the gun. Whether you want to use a blank pistol and just clap your hands, start getting them used to this loud sound early on. Start the sound of the gun at a distance far enough that the pup will not be intimidated by the sound usually 50 to 75 yards is sufficient.” You can then work your way up to the sound of the shot gun.
You’ll want to make a timeline and schedule for your first hunt with your new puppy. You can definitely be optimistic, but don’t be too overly confident or ambitious. You want them to be very prepared for the first hunt so it will be a good experience. It should be short, around 30 minutes, so that they can ease into the hunting experience. For a bird dog, head to a game farm. For retrievers, head to a calm, well-scouted pond. You’ll want to bring a friend along to shoot while you keep an eye on and train your dog. Just be sure they’re engaged and once they appear tired and done, you end the hunt.
You also want to be sure you’re feeding your dog high quality food. A good rule of thumb is to feed your puppy three times a day and then switch to twice a day when you start to see their adult teeth grow in. You’ll want to find a puppy specific formula that is easily digestible, as well as high in protein. While it is important to give your dog the nutrition they need, you want do not want to overfeed them. Overweight dogs can suffer from even more health issues later on. Follow the instructions and actually measure out what they need. Avoid giving them human food or too many treats.
Follow these tips are you should have a well trained hunting pup in no time!