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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-24-2017, 05:08 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by ArchersMom View Post
I'd like to see a more involved thread about this topic. We hunt with Teal and run test, so far just JH level but we're moving into Senior in the spring. I hear a lot from people who do tests that hunting with a dog "ruins" them. We often hunt the Columbia River and it can be quite dangerous. The dog usually isn't even sent for a wounded bird because of the risk that they'll get out of sight.
I am not the only hunter on here and I really would like to hear what others have to say. I am offering an opinion(s).

Many say that dogs learn the difference between hunting and testing. IMO, the problem really occurs when you use your dog for quartering for upland birds. Then when you run a trial or test, your dog puts his nose to the ground and hunts for the bird prematurely by quartering rather than running to the AOF and establishing a hunt.

As for hunting the river, I wouldn't put my dog at risk. I would do one of the following:

1) Walk down the river bank with my gun, dispatch the cripple, then send the dog.
2) Bird gets dispatched as soon as it hits the water. Then send the dog.
3) Get in your boat, let the current carry you downstream, dispatch the bird, send the dog. Don't forget, you can't shoot from a boat under power.

Don't forget, the velocity of the river decreases along the bank. A bird at the bank is less of a problem.

I don't like to send a dog after a swimming cripple. I have seen what can happen. The bird swims, dives, pops up elsewhere. The bird will swim completely submerged except for its bill sticking out of the water to breathe. The dog can chase it and never get it. Meanwhile the dog gets tired. Ever see a dog start to go under when tired? Get ready to swim.
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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-24-2017, 05:30 PM
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I don't have much experience with Upland hunting a trained dog. I haven't been able to hit at all this season, but DH goes out at least once a week. We will send a dog on a cripple if we're on a lake, but not the river. DH goes out to a duck blind on the river, not on the shore. What gets dangerous is when the tide changes. You can see a 5+ foot change in water level from morning to afternoon. In the last 2 seasons, 2 different hunting friends of ours have had to rescued by the coast guard. He takes out a kayak to chase birds when he can't send the dog out. It's good honor practice for Teal because she often doesn't get to retrieve a bird that falls. I'll have to ask DH about how she handles wind and other factors when casted. I know it's translated well so far in training.



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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-24-2017, 05:45 PM Thread Starter
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Tidal waters can be a problem. The kayak is not a bad idea at all. Nice to use a net in getting the bird in that case.
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-24-2017, 05:50 PM
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Originally Posted by gdgli View Post
Tidal waters can be a problem. The kayak is not a bad idea at all. Nice to use a net in getting the bird in that case.
I might have to suggest that. I think they're just dispatching them from afar and then sweeping them out by hand currently.



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