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#6625756 - 01/10/17 10:26 AM Dog to track deer? Other ideas?
ErnestTBass Offline
Bird Dog

Registered: 08/12/16
Posts: 286
Never done it. What kind of dog do you need? What kind of training does he need?

We had a couple young/new hunters hit deer this year that left small blood spots and we never recovered. I am relatively certain that one was a leg hit, but I think the other was somewhere in the body. Deer hunched up slightly when shot but left just a few very small blood spots.

We waited a long time before doing any looking, looked again the next day, and never found anything beyond a few very small blood spots tracking out about 5 yards. This has happened to me a few times in my 30+ years hunting and always makes me sick. Pondering options in case it happens again...

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#6625778 - 01/10/17 10:45 AM Re: Dog to track deer? Other ideas? [Re: ErnestTBass]
Steven Bates Offline
Woodsman

Registered: 12/16/14
Posts: 162
Loc: Arkansas
I have a bloodhound that's really good but it's like putting a bulldozer on a leash. I would recommend something smaller like a cur. Have a buddy that's had a mountain cur and a blackmouth that were/are both excellent dogs.
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#6625783 - 01/10/17 10:47 AM Re: Dog to track deer? Other ideas? [Re: ErnestTBass]
QuitShootinYoungBucks Offline
THF Trophy Hunter

Registered: 11/01/12
Posts: 8017
Loc: Lubbock, TX
Out of curiosity, what cartridge was used?

I made a good shot on a buck this year, and was careful about watching which way he ran. 85 yards, heart-lung target, rock-steady rest. I never expected to have a problem finding him. However, he went down a sharp hill into some incredibly nasty stuff. The hill was covered with trees, and had a bed of leaves under the canopy. After the first 50-60 feet of blood trail, we came to a three-pronged fork. The blood was now impossible to find in all the leaves but there were disturbances on two of the trails. I took what appeared to be the most likely trail, and my dad took the other. We searched for 20 minutes on each of those two trails, and the trails they fanned into, and didn't find the deer. After talking it over, and finding out that my dad hadn't covered the area from the third trail, I went back and made the small area that the deer would have been in if he had gone that way and died shortly after. Sure enough, I found him wedged between several elms and partly under a cedar. It was an interesting retrieval out of a motley thicket of cedars, elms, and young hackberry trees but I managed to get him out.

After the initial search and 20 minutes on the other trails and not finding a deer I knew was dead, I was ready for a dog.
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#6626120 - 01/10/17 02:08 PM Re: Dog to track deer? Other ideas? [Re: ErnestTBass]
therock Offline
Tracker

Registered: 09/22/11
Posts: 827
Loc: Southwest TX
I have never had a real tracking dog but have had several that sure helped me find deer. I just took them with me when I went to pick up one that I knew where it was and showed them blood and let them go to the deer. Small steps and don't expect much until they figure it out a little.

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#6626135 - 01/10/17 02:20 PM Re: Dog to track deer? Other ideas? [Re: ErnestTBass]
Bmnloader Offline
Bird Dog

Registered: 02/25/14
Posts: 314
Loc: DFW, Cisco
Get a Lacy dog. Mainly used/bred for hogs but excellent nose and tracking ability. I have one but haven't had to use her tracking anything yet but a hog, she walked up to it under a cedar. Looked at me like I was stupid!
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#6626151 - 01/10/17 02:33 PM Re: Dog to track deer? Other ideas? [Re: ErnestTBass]
kmon1 Offline
junior

Registered: 09/27/06
Posts: 22266
Loc: Texas
Have had a few dogs that would trail one that got very little training, one was a lab that when she was about 6 months we drug a boned out deer leg around and let her have it when she found it. After a few times of that she found every deer we put her on for the next 8 years. She would find the deer and come back to my Dad and walk him out to the deer if the deer was dead at least.

My Brit will find them but loose interest as soon as he gets the blood licked off them so I have to keep him on a leash, he is getting better at that though through one age and more practice and training, still cannot get him to bark when he finds one.

For some reinforcement and "training" I will trag a oiece if liver or make a blood trail for him to follow with a little meat of liver at the end as a treat. He has never failed to find his prize.
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#6626173 - 01/10/17 02:44 PM Re: Dog to track deer? Other ideas? [Re: ErnestTBass]
redchevy Offline
THF Celebrity

Registered: 10/25/04
Posts: 26311
Loc: Texas
They are all equipped to do the job. I trained my beagle using her regular food and later on some blood I kept from deer we killed.

You need to work them. I used mine twice the first year and she did great. Let her sit a few years without working now and not sure if she would/would do it again or not. A professionally trained pup would probably retain more.
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#6626197 - 01/10/17 03:00 PM Re: Dog to track deer? Other ideas? [Re: ErnestTBass]
sallysue Offline
Veteran Tracker

Registered: 02/21/06
Posts: 2798
Loc: Belton Tx
This breed does it all read up about them Deutscher Wachtelhund

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#6626206 - 01/10/17 03:06 PM Re: Dog to track deer? Other ideas? [Re: ErnestTBass]
fouzman Offline
Pro Tracker

Registered: 08/09/10
Posts: 1584
Loc: Houston, TX
My black lab is a former grand national field trial champ. She's done lots of bird hunting and has been around the deer camp and skinning rack a bunch. A couple weeks ago I shot a doe in the armpit that was quartering away. She jumped the feed pen and went about 30 yards into deep brush. When the wife and dog came to pick me up, I walked down to where she jumped the feed pen to find the blood and recover her. My lab was on my heels as always. When I got to where the deer jumped out, my dog went past me and took off on the trail of the deer. I got to her about a minute later and there was my deer, and my lab! Never trained her to do that but she's smart as heck and has great instincts. The last evening of our trip I killed a giant bobcat. My dog would not get within' 20 feet of that cat! I told you she was smart roflmao

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#6626298 - 01/10/17 04:11 PM Re: Dog to track deer? Other ideas? [Re: redchevy]
ErnestTBass Offline
Bird Dog

Registered: 08/12/16
Posts: 286
Originally Posted By: redchevy
They are all equipped to do the job. I trained my beagle using her regular food and later on some blood I kept from deer we killed.


This is what I'm wondering. My hunch is that just about any ol' dog will do it if you give them some incentive. What if I just rolled my wife's boston terrier out there after letting him smell some blood and snack on some venison?

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#6626328 - 01/10/17 04:31 PM Re: Dog to track deer? Other ideas? [Re: ErnestTBass]
artrios60 Offline
Pro Tracker

Registered: 09/11/11
Posts: 1823
Loc: Coleman Co.
It takes a special person that can spend the time required to properly train these dogs.
We had just that kind of professional when we needed to recover a deer. For a long time we were skeptical about having a dog/s on the high fence property that could disrupt our population. But had a guest that shot a real nice animal for her first buck and found it important enough to recover. Called on Troup Bishop out of Brownwood and after his excellent results in less than an hour and not a sound out of his girl convinced us the value of knowing a great tracker in your area is worth its weight in gold.
Yes, you can find a dog that has natural ability but you still have to spend the time to perfect those skills so your not chasing skunks.
My advise Get to know your local tracker
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#6627033 - 01/11/17 01:24 AM Re: Dog to track deer? Other ideas? [Re: ErnestTBass]
kmon1 Offline
junior

Registered: 09/27/06
Posts: 22266
Loc: Texas
With my dog, the only time I use the command find it is for trailing be it an actual blood trail or a practice trail I have put out for him. Have drug a boned out shoulder with leg attached almost half mile for him to find, less than 30 minute after waiting a couple hours put him on the trail he had his treat. Coldest trail I have had him on was a buck that was trailed over 3/4 mile that had been jumped several times 16 hours after they lost the blood trail I put him on the trail and he found it about 250 yards further out. Thought not bad for a dog I had only had on 2 short trails and 3 times finding trails I put out for him. Like I said above he is not great but have over an 80% recovery rate and those not recovered all but one were seen at a later date either in person or on camera.

The dog I have is food/treat driven so a trail with something for him at the end of it is a big prize to him. On the deer recovered he gets some liver


Edited by kmon1 (01/11/17 01:26 AM)
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