Posts Tagged ‘free outdoor gear’

Scott B. called with a question I’ve had a LOT of personal experience with: dog boots. This topic has generated more frustration among more hunters than almost any other (besides over/under vs. side-by-side).

At the top lie chukars, and rough going for barefoot dogs

Whether it’s cactus or lava rock, sand burrs or goatheads, our pooches’ paws sometimes need a little help if we’re going to hunt more than a day or two in a row. If not, the risk of a foot injury immobilizing your hunting companion is just too high. Besides the cost, I’ve found most dog boots fall off and get lost, or wear out in the course of a day of chukar hunting. I’ll offer my own solution in a minute, but if you insist on using boots, here are some suggestions:

Augment whatever attachment scheme the manufacturer provides. Many hunters will duct-tape the top of the boots to their dog’s leg … just be careful not to wrap too tight and impede blood circulation. To avoid the inevitable howls when removing the duct tape, some guys will put a turn or two of Vet Wrap on the dog’s leg first, and wrap the duct tape on that.

In Texas, a lot of professional guides will do the same with short lengths of inner tubes – motorcycle seems about the right diameter. Cheaper, the foot still “breathes,” and you’re not as mad when they fall off in the puckerbrush. tape the “toe” up if you like, many leave it open so grit falls out with each step.

Here in the volcanic Northwest, we’ve gone completely over to duct tape alone. Dozens of boots per roll, and the price is right. Be very CAREFUL about wrapping – loose is better than tight. Tear off a foot or so of tape, and place your dog’s foot in the middle (sticky side up). Slowly and carefully (not too tight), spiral each end in alternating wraps around the foot (a couple layers), then up the leg a few inches. Kinda like a bandage. If your dog is the strong sensitive type, you can put a baby sock on first, so the tape sticks mainly to that.

It’s not pretty, but it works as well as Cordura, leather and rubber, and the price is right. And when Fido comes back with a bare paw, you’re out a few cents and a couple minutes of re-application, not a pile of dollars.

PS: If you know of a really, really, great dog boot, let me know. I’d love to find one that works!

PPS: Starting to get a lot of requests for the Blaze Buddy Bandana – see here for details on this great safety item for your dog and fundraiser for a good cause. And if you haven’t downloaded the newly-updated Ultimate Upland Checklist, do it now and make sure your season is hassle-free!

Safe hunting,


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Can your dog make you a better shooter? I think so, and will tell you how if you’re going to Omaha for this year’s

Now what? We'll cover that at Pheasant Fest.

Pheasant Fest, Jan. 28-30 at the Qwest Center. And once you’ve shot that ringneck and your dog has delivered it to hand, what does he want in the way of praise? Buddy’s showed me that, too.

Thanks to sponsors TruckVault, Happy Jack, Filson, and Native performance dog food, I can share with you: stuff my dog’s taught me, tips from the experts I’ve hunted with on the show, fun, games and a box full of prizes. They’re all part of my Bird Hunting Boot Camp seminars – ten of them – on two different stages at Pheasant Fest. Go here for more details, then come say hello … you never know, you might win a Cabela’s gift certificate or free bag of Native performance dog food.

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You are now officially a citizen. Wear blaze orange, proudly, fellow citizen. See you in the field.

Have you ever raised and trained a young dog? Then, run him with an experienced dog? Anything can happen, right? How would you handle it when a young dog’s training is trumped by instinct?

Duke arrived at Eagle Nest Lodge days earlier, had never hunted with anyone from the lodge. But his genetics were superb. Fortunately, Ty the Irish Red Setter had a full complement of tolerance genes. Watch what happens and maybe you’ll win a limited-edition Wingshooting USA long-sleeve tour t-shirt by answering the trivia question at the end of the video clip! [I’ll pick one winner from all correct answers.]

In your answer email, tell me what you would have done in the same situation … I can use all the help I can get with Manny! Thanks.

[Vote fast! This trivia quiz closes Dec. 24 at midnight.]

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Quick Quiz: There’s only one bird that rivals the one that likely graced your table yesterday … the ringneck pheasant! And you’ll get a full-blown technicolor hunt-in-a-moment with this clip from Double Barrel Ranch near Spokane, Washington. It’s a behind-the-scenes piece from a show we made which you’ll see in its entirety later this year.

But that’s not all. An early Christmas gift awaits one lucky UPLAND NATION citizen who watches the video,  then sends the correct Quick Quiz answer to the email address shown at the end … a $25 Cabela’s gift certificate! Good luck!

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E-collar, check. Dog, check. The rest is up to you. It will be worth your while!

Can you improve the Ultimate Upland Checklist version 2.0? Do you want to win great stuff, including a TriTronics Sport Jr. collar? 

Have you got some cool ideas for stuff you take that we should too? An improvement on gear that should be in everyone’s vest? Go here, and get the details, and get ready to win!

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