Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Huntin dogs’ Category

As in life,

As in life, “timing is everything.”

(What say you? Here, I reprise my thoughts on the topic that wouldn’t die.) Just as important as what you feed is when you feed your hunting partner. There are simple mechanical reasons not to feed your dog the morning of a hunt. An empty G.I. tract doesn’t hold anything that could rattle around in there.

Try this experiment: Take off your sock (representing your dog’s stomach and intestinal track), drop your car keys (ersatz “dog food”) into it. Hold it horizontally, and the dog food will settle in the heel. Then jiggle it, swing it back and forth, whip it around a little like a dog on the hunt would. All that weight will make the sock swing, bounce up and down, possibly even twist. Veterinarians call it gastro volvulus and it is often fatal.

Your dog’s athletic performance is another concern. Purina studies have shown than a dog with food in its gut runs slower, is less agile, and has less stamina than one hunting on an empty stomach.

Another good reason: the gut is not using the body’s finite allotment of energy to digest food when it could be fueling active muscles that are chasing birds.

No guilt trips here, your dog’s metabolism is unlike yours. Sending your dog into the field without breakfast will have no ill effects. Unless he’s got other health problems, he won’t develop “low blood sugar,” because dogs get their version of instant energy from fat.

If you can’t resist giving Gunner something during the hunt, give him a high-fat content snack that won’t fill his belly. You can make your own, or simply offer him some of your salami sandwich (just the meat). There are plenty of commercial versions out there in tubes, droppers and blocks. The key is low volume, high fat to keep the belly as empty as possible.

You can’t go wrong offering water frequently – it keeps a dog cool as well as hydrated. Make life simple on both of you by carrying a bota (wine skin) or the modern equivalent. Teach your dog to drink from it just like you, so there is no need to drag a bowl or sacrifice your hat as a substitute.

Read Full Post »

Noted dog photographer Nancy Anisfield was also there, chronicling our work for Upland Almanac and Versatile Hunting Dog magazines. This is one of her shots.

If you watched Cast & Blast and What the Dogs Taught Me on that other network back in the day, you might remember Duke. He is the shorthair that arrived one night, hunted with us the next day, and impressed me with his stoicism and the way he blossomed in that one single Montana day.

Since then, I’ve been curious about his home, line, and the breeders at Pheasant Bonanza who did such a great job with him.

Starting this Monday, watch his relatives work the fields Duke was trained in, and enjoy the hunt! Details on where to watch, here.

Read Full Post »

Manny's dad, Three Devils Speak Thunder, call name Leon

So, just about ready to head for Nampa, Idaho to pick up Buddy’s protege’ and nephew! My magazine column’s readers chimed in on name suggestions and I wanted to thank all of them – and you – for your ideas. Here is the result:

Kennel name: Three Devils

From the “L-3” litter: Linden’s

Best suggestion favored by my wife: Wingman … “Manny” will be his call name.

I’ll keep you posted!

Read Full Post »

%d bloggers like this: