Now that the fall hunting season is ending, I thought I would make some suggestions for the off season. Remember, our dogs are bred and born with hunting instincts that are ever present. They just do not turn them “on and off” like a light switch. The following are some activities for you to consider:
1. This is a good time for a trip to the vet for a thorough checkup. I schedule my dog’s annual health exams this time of year just for that reason.
2. Continue with a good exercise program. Long walks and frequent runs will keep your dog and you in shape.
3. Take them on preserve hunts. Upland hunting preserves are usually open through the month of March.
4. Join a sporting dog club. Many have access to training bird sources. Frequent bird contact keeps your dog’s senses sharp. Also, you can develop new friendships and learn of more good hunting areas.
5. Spring field trials and hunt tests are an excellent way to not only keep your dog in shape, they keep those hunting instincts alive as well. They are great way to improve your dog’s performance in the field.
6. Keep up with those yard training drills. Frequent repetition is a key factor in training.
7. Now is the time to work on those problem areas that crept in during the season. Frequent training keeps both you and your dog sharp.
We hope you have an excellent spring and summer! Stop by again next month for another training tip.