Keeping your dog healthy during the season

cyclonenation10

Active member
I hunt my lab every weekday from sunrise to noon.
Since I am retired, I avoid weekend hunts.
A cool-down before putting the dog up for the day in the truck kennel
helps prevent lactic acid from pooling in the muscles so typically I heel the
dog for the long walk back to the truck.
Likewise we warm up by a fast walk heeling walking in first thing the morning.
Proper warm-up and cool-down is preached among some field trialers with good scientific evidence.

The other thing that helps is high fat content in the diet.
I feed the highest fat kibble on the market (25% fat, 38% protein).
2 cups per day for a 65 pound lab during hot weather.
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The third thing I do is take water from home and not let the dog drink from
stagnant water sources.

We both ease into upland hunting after our Alaska waterfowl season ends and
migrate down to MT.
Starting with huns. First three mornings 2 hours, next three mornings 2.5 hours, gradually increasing time/distance.
Have you had issues with your dog getting sick from stagnant water?

I've never run into the issue, and I don't think I could ever completely avoid my dogs drinking from stagnant water. Often times we are hunting in marshes where they are literally running through several inches of water. How do you keep them from bending over and taking a drink?
 

Wind River

Active member
You can't always stop a thirsty dog, keep them hydrated. Maybe offer water more frequently. Avoid obvious water source problems. Be safe
 

cyclonenation10

Active member
You can't always stop a thirsty dog, keep them hydrated. Maybe offer water more frequently. Avoid obvious water source problems. Be safe
Yes, this has been my general philosophy. The good news is that generally by the time pheasant hunting rolls around in Iowa, we've had a handful of freezing nights and cooler weather, so I'm not quite so worried about things like blue green algae or other heat-loving bacteria.
 

AKSkeeter

Member
Have you had issues with your dog getting sick from stagnant water?

I've never run into the issue, and I don't think I could ever completely avoid my dogs drinking from stagnant water. Often times we are hunting in marshes where they are literally running through several inches of water. How do you keep them from bending over and taking a drink?
With labs it is easy to keep them from drinking water by commanding NO and giving them fresh water.
I had a friend here in Montana who had all 4 of his retrievers suffer from Clostridium from drinking stagnant water.
Severe diarrhea can be the result, thus a negative feedback loop in terms of hydration.
I do let me lab drink from running water that is clear...
 
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