Feeding before the hunt

Post Reply
User avatar
Nmhuntr
Rank: Junior Hunter
Posts: 83
Joined: Thu Feb 09, 2017 8:42 pm
Location: New Mexico

Feeding before the hunt

Post by Nmhuntr » Sat Oct 03, 2020 6:43 pm

If you were to be hunting your dog tomorrow how and when do you feed?

Do you feed a little heavy the night before?

Do you feed normal the night before and light the morning of the hunt?

Do you carry an energy pick up for the dog and if so what do you use?

Just trying to get an idea of what others do.

I feen normal the night before and very light to nothing the morning of and I am not sure that is the best option.

Thanks

averageguy
Rank: 5X Champion
Posts: 973
Joined: Mon Dec 04, 2017 8:07 am

Re: Feeding before the hunt

Post by averageguy » Sat Oct 03, 2020 6:58 pm

I feed normal the night before and nothing in the morning, nothing through the day.

User avatar
bonasa
Rank: Champion
Posts: 306
Joined: Thu Feb 02, 2012 9:01 pm
Location: New England

Re: Feeding before the hunt

Post by bonasa » Sat Oct 03, 2020 7:19 pm

Always fed once a day in the evening, never had a problem, and i don't see any reason to change.

birddogger2
Rank: 2X Champion
Posts: 491
Joined: Wed Apr 19, 2017 6:15 am
Location: Lower slower Delaware

Re: Feeding before the hunt

Post by birddogger2 » Sat Oct 03, 2020 7:23 pm

If the dog is going hunting on one day with rest the following day, I do nothing, as my dogs are all on self feeders. I will offer water before and during the hunt. I do not give supplements during the hunt or during breaks...just water.

If the dog is away from home, whether at a trial or on an extended hunt, I feed a normal ration at night and nothing in the morning except water.

If the dog was going to be hunted several days in a row, I would add canned wet dogfood after the first day's hunt(or maybe sardines) and every day afterwards to entice them to eat, even though they may be whooped and I will wet down their kibble with warm water to a mush so that the hard kibble racing through their system does not irritate their bowel and cause bloody stools.

I do think the warm water helps them to extract the nutrients a bit better also and if it is really cold outside, will also help warm them from the inside, so they can rest more easily.

I don't do multiple day hunts anymore, but if did, I would seriously consider giving the dog a maltodextrin laced water ration within a half hour after the end of the hunt, to help rebuild the dog's glycogen level. There is hard evidence that it works to replenish the dog's glycogen levels and therefore, its endurance.

If the dog has been conditioned properly, it can switch from burning sugar for energy to burning fat and the ability to do that, is far more important to the dog's endurance than any feeding strategy, IMO.

RayG
Last edited by birddogger2 on Sat Oct 03, 2020 7:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
deseeker
Rank: 5X Champion
Posts: 1007
Joined: Tue Dec 14, 2010 1:38 pm
Location: Blair, Nebraska

Re: Feeding before the hunt

Post by deseeker » Sat Oct 03, 2020 7:31 pm

I feed after the hunt only -- I worry about the possibility of twisted stomach on morning feedings, so I don't fed in the mornings on days they will hunt.
If dog is tired and not eating, try mixing warm water into food. still not eating, I put a little chicken broth in with the food (use the unsalted chicken broth you get at the grocery store.) If I think the dog needs a mid day pick-me-up I might give them a teaspoon of Karo Pancake surup (the clear stuff).

IDHunter
Rank: Junior Hunter
Posts: 52
Joined: Sun Apr 12, 2020 9:40 pm
Location: Idaho

Re: Feeding before the hunt

Post by IDHunter » Sat Oct 03, 2020 10:59 pm

For you guys who limit or skip feeding on the morning of a hunt, do you do this with all ages? Or do you wait until a dog is more physically mature before you do this? Would you skip the morning feeding for a dog that is sub one year?

User avatar
Nmhuntr
Rank: Junior Hunter
Posts: 83
Joined: Thu Feb 09, 2017 8:42 pm
Location: New Mexico

Re: Feeding before the hunt

Post by Nmhuntr » Sun Oct 04, 2020 6:24 am

IDHunter wrote:
Sat Oct 03, 2020 10:59 pm
For you guys who limit or skip feeding on the morning of a hunt, do you do this with all ages? Or do you wait until a dog is more physically mature before you do this? Would you skip the morning feeding for a dog that is sub one year?
On my dog (now3) I don’t feed her and never have before she hunts in the morning or even goes for a run. About an hour after we are done is when I feed her. Now if I get up and it will be 2-3 hours before I get to where she will hunt I will feed her but a reduced amount. I have for this since I brought her home as a pup.

birddogger2
Rank: 2X Champion
Posts: 491
Joined: Wed Apr 19, 2017 6:15 am
Location: Lower slower Delaware

Re: Feeding before the hunt

Post by birddogger2 » Sun Oct 04, 2020 8:31 am

IDHunter wrote:
Sat Oct 03, 2020 10:59 pm
For you guys who limit or skip feeding on the morning of a hunt, do you do this with all ages? Or do you wait until a dog is more physically mature before you do this? Would you skip the morning feeding for a dog that is sub one year?
I have had a few dogs over the years that were ready for prime time before one year of age, like 10 or 11 months of age, especially when I was just hunting, since the dogs only needed to be staunch for me. As a hunter, I had no real need for steady to wing and shot, so I didn't train for it. As long as they waited for me to get there and flush the bird, it was all good.

Back when they were not on self feeders I fed in the evening and nothing in the morning. The youngsters were already in decent shape as far as conditioning, so a couple or three hour hunt in cool November weather was well within their ability. Of course I would keep an eye on them and if they started to fade, they would get watered and put away.

Never had an issue.

RayG

PS - Just remembered one episode with a Gunsmoke bred gyp that was about 11 months old. This was before the days of GPS. She was pretty bold and ranged wide. I bought a nice leather roading harness and hung a 5# length of welding cable off each side of the harness before I cut her loose down in Colliers Mills WMA in mid September. It wasn't hot, but it wasn't cool either. Shirtsleeve weather. There are only two, widely separated places for water on that WMA and we were pretty far(a mile or so) from each. Anyway, she bailed out on me and came back about three hours later...minus the brand new roading harness. She must have gotten hung up somewhere and pulled out of it. Fifty bucks down the drain. That was a lot of money back then...but...she came back.
She was thirsty, but fine.

User avatar
Dakotazeb
Rank: 3X Champion
Posts: 577
Joined: Sat Dec 06, 2014 1:10 pm
Location: South Dakota / Arizona

Re: Feeding before the hunt

Post by Dakotazeb » Sun Oct 04, 2020 3:34 pm

I'm with the others on this thread and feed once a day around supper time. I was told by trainers and field trialers long ago that feeding once a day, later in the day, gives the dog a chance to digest their food before running in the morning. They claimed a dog runs harder and cooler with an empty stomach. However, with my current dog there are conditions that I do feed a little in the early morning and add a little Karo syrup on the food. Two years ago I had a situation happen twice with my female Brittany. Both times it was cold with snow on the ground. I run a vest on her but snow packs in the vest, melts from body heat and makes the dog wet. So she was burning a lot of energy to stay warm in addition to being a fast, hard running dog. Between the energy she lost running and trying to stay warm she became Hypoglycemic and just shut down. Thus, I give her a little food in the AM and maybe a half a sandwich of peanut butter and honey mid day. If you ever have this happen to your dog you can give them some honey or Karo syrup to bring them out of it. But don't hunt them anymore that day. Get them warm and fed as Hypoglycemia can be dangerous for the dog.

Post Reply