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September 26, 2013

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The Creation of a Pointing Dog

By Jake Theron

There's a majestic emotion that comes from seeing a classic work of art showing a dog on point.

It goes back to almost 400-years before Christ. Thought to be a breed known as a Molossian, it shows that this dog was fracking fearless, attacking even when about to be cut with a deadly sword.

Anyway, enough with the art. Let's get down to the science.

Your Basic Pointer

Back in ancient times, owners took the no-frills approach. Using a check-cord the trainer would guide the canine, teaching the animal how to find and fetch downed prey. In some cases, like the BC vase staining above, that mutt took it upon itself to become a solo act in taking something out of service. Nowadays, a check-cord can be DIY'd but you're advised to go pro and get this training device from a commercial source. They simply last longer and are easier to see. When you purchase it, make sure you get a good pair of gloves. Rope burns will do a number on your hands.

Once you get beyond the tethering stage, snap-up a tracking collar or one that beeps so you'll be able to find the cur if it gets locked-up in the brush.

To eliminate your hunting buddy from reverting back to the way it was before the check-cord orientation, you're advised to invest in an electronic collar. As a matter of fact, there are some e-collars on the market which perform double-duty - it's an e-collar and a GPS locator all-in-one. It's one hell of a great investment for the serious hunter.

Some misguided folks think that an e-collar is pretty nasty. That's nuts. The current crop of devices are fairly soft on the dog - when you compare them to the savage "old ways" of training. Not too long ago, horses would be employed to intimidate the dog. Even worse, slingshots were used to "correct" the canine's off-kilter performance.

Both the check-cord and the e-collar are must-have items as you train your pal for the hunt. They do different things. One can "reel" the dog toward you as you start its training. The e-collar is for when the pup goes to college, ready to take to the woods with you by its side.

Jake Theron is an avid dog trainer and hunter who loves to give people his wisdom. He tends to spend most of his time nowadays either training his companions or fulfilling his need to spread his knowledge by writing for [http://www.versatiledogsupply.com/dog-tracking-collars.html]tracking collars.

Article Source: The Creation of a Pointing Dog

September 17, 2013

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September 17, 2013

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A Guide To Pheasant Hunting

By Adrian Padeanu

If you are one of those hunters that enjoy upland game, you certainly love pheasant hunting. You probably know that this gaudy cackling bird will hide in the smallest cover he can find, as well as run through the thickest brambles, then bursting from cover in order to take wing. Indeed, hunting pheasants is a real challenge, but courtesy of some tips provided by the following article, you will be able to outwit this clever little bird.

If you plan on hunting during the early season, you should know that pheasants sit tighter, which will allow you (and your hunting dog) to approach its resting area. Taking into consideration that they have not been pressured much at this point, you will be doing most of the shots at a closer range, preferably using a shotgun that has a modified (or improved) choke, along with a #6 shot. Your 20 or 28 gauge gun works best during the early time of the pheasant hunting season.

As you move into the season, it is recommended to use a tighter choked gun. For optimum results, get a 12 gauge gun, shells that have more powder and #4 or #5 shot. In most of the cases, the birds will be flushing wild, and these heavier loads will give you a more knock down power at longer ranges.

For resting, pheasants prefer thick cover, which is one of the reasons why CRP lands have significantly increased their pheasant population in the Midwest. Pheasant are able to escape the predators through the larger tracks of thick grass.

Taking into consideration that cover and heavy grass is where you will find most of the birds, a good pheasant dog is recommended as he will be able to find those birds that hold tight. There will be lots of times when you will be past a hiding rooster, only to have him burst from his cover once you have walked past. You will also need a dog for the moment right after you have taken down a pheasant. You should know that although a bird is injured, it can still run quite fast, and with the help of a dog, you will lose significantly less. As far as choosing the appropriate pheasant hunting dog, pick one that works close and listens to your demands.

Experienced pheasant hunters will tell you that they have better results by walking quietly and slowly, working back and forth across the field. By doing so, you will force the pheasant to move ahead or flush, giving you a good opportunity for a deadly shot.

You will be more efficient if you take a couple of your hunting buddies along with you. "Blockers" are those hunters that are stationed at the end of the field who will charge after the pheasant breaks from cover. You will need them because these birds are known for being quite fast while they are running. By using "blockers", the birds will hold tighter, which will give both blockers and walkers more chances to shoot.

Article written by Adrian Padeanu. Learn more about [http://www.pheasanthuntinginfo.com/]pheasant hunting by visiting http://www.pheasanthuntinginfo.com - your best choice for pheasant hunting tips and other relevant information about this topic.

Article Source: Guide To Pheasant Hunting

September 15, 2013

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Guide and Tips for Pheasant Hunting

By Adrian Padeanu

If you are one of those hunters that enjoy upland game, you certainly love pheasant hunting. You probably know that this gaudy cackling bird will hide in the smallest cover he can find, as well as run through the thickest brambles, then bursting from cover in order to take wing. Indeed, hunting pheasants is a real challenge, but courtesy of some tips provided by the following article, you will be able to outwit this clever little bird.

If you plan on hunting during the early season, you should know that pheasants sit tighter, which will allow you (and your hunting dog) to approach its resting area. Taking into consideration that they have not been pressured much at this point, you will be doing most of the shots at a closer range, preferably using a shotgun that has a modified (or improved) choke, along with a #6 shot. Your 20 or 28 gauge gun works best during the early time of the pheasant hunting season.

As you move into the season, it is recommended to use a tighter choked gun. For optimum results, get a 12 gauge gun, shells that have more powder and #4 or #5 shot. In most of the cases, the birds will be flushing wild, and these heavier loads will give you a more knock down power at longer ranges.

For resting, pheasants prefer thick cover, which is one of the reasons why CRP lands have significantly increased their pheasant population in the Midwest. Pheasant are able to escape the predators through the larger tracks of thick grass.

Taking into consideration that cover and heavy grass is where you will find most of the birds, a good pheasant dog is recommended as he will be able to find those birds that hold tight. There will be lots of times when you will be past a hiding rooster, only to have him burst from his cover once you have walked past. You will also need a dog for the moment right after you have taken down a pheasant. You should know that although a bird is injured, it can still run quite fast, and with the help of a dog, you will lose significantly less. As far as choosing the appropriate pheasant hunting dog, pick one that works close and listens to your demands.

Experienced pheasant hunters will tell you that they have better results by walking quietly and slowly, working back and forth across the field. By doing so, you will force the pheasant to move ahead or flush, giving you a good opportunity for a deadly shot.

You will be more efficient if you take a couple of your hunting buddies along with you. "Blockers" are those hunters that are stationed at the end of the field who will charge after the pheasant breaks from cover. You will need them because these birds are known for being quite fast while they are running. By using "blockers", the birds will hold tighter, which will give both blockers and walkers more chances to shoot.

Article written by Adrian Padeanu. Learn more about pheasant hunting by visiting http://www.pheasanthuntinginfo.com - your best choice for pheasant hunting tips and other relevant information about this topic.

Article Source:  Guide To Pheasant Hunting

September 15, 2013

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Starting Kids Out in Shotgun and Hunting Sports

By S P Griffin

Starting a youngster out with a shotgun can be a great experience for both of you. If you follow a few guidelines, you can help ensure that you pour a solid foundation. A foundation that will be the basis of a lifetime of hunting and shooting.

I'm not going to try to tell you what age to start kids out hunting or shotgunning. I feel that every kid is unique and only you can decide when your son or daughter is ready. Things like maturity, size, and desire are all things to consider before making the investment. My ten year old wanted to go hunting so bad this year, he was willing to do anything to get a shotgun.

Safety

Gun safety is the most important thing you can teach your kids. Kids see a lot of killing on TV and on the video games they play, yet they just don't realize how dangerous a gun really is. We must instill in them safe practices until it becomes habit. Start with how to carry the shotgun with much focus on where the barrel is pointed at all times. Next move to how to work the safety on the shotgun. The only time the gun is taken off of safety is when the shotgun is mounted and ready to fire. After some practice with handling the shotgun, move on to loading instructions and firing. The key here is to let them know gun safety is no joke, and if they are unsafe, they will lose their privilege to have a gun. Remember, we as experienced hunters, must set the example when it comes to safety.

Equipment

Also critical to success is the gauge of shotgun you buy your child. Specifically, how much recoil they can handle. Let's face it, a kid is not going to want to do something if it hurts every time they do it. So buying a ten year old a cheap 12 gauge is probably a mistake.  I bought my 13 year old a youth model 20 gauge, and my 10 year old a youth model .410. Both of my sons are average height and weight and I have had no complaints from either one about recoil. My oldest is a couple of years away from moving up to a 12 gauge in my estimation, and then I'll hand down his 20 ga. and the .410 to my now 6 year old. The idea here is to build confidence with a shotgun they can handle that won't make them flinch every time they pull the trigger.

Practice

Next is practice, practice, practice. Unless you have acreage, you'll need a place for them to shoot. I recommend starting them out shooting skeet. The controlled environment allows you to help them every step of the way their first round. Try to plan their first shoot for a time when the range isn't too busy to help relieve some of their anxiety. Keep all of your instructions and pointers positive, making every effort to keep their confidence level high. I always reflect on how bad I was when I first started, to let my boys know that it's okay to miss and  that's why we practice.

I encourage the two of them to only compete with themselves, trying to better their own scores each time, for now. Later we can get into the sport of competing against everyone. Fundamentals is what your are after here. Properly mounting the shotgun, following through the shot and seeing the target. Of course, on the very first round, you'll be dealing with every aspect from handling the gun, to loading and unloading, and shooting. Not to mention, all of their nerves that come along with the first shoot.

After I took my ten-year-old out for his first round, in which he only hit a few, he told me that was one of the funniest things he had ever done. I made a big deal of the targets he hit and it inspired him to do better. Now just a few rounds later he consistently hits 10-13 clays with his single shot .410. Not too shabby.

Confidence is the key to any shotgunner, but especially with kids. If your kids are like mine and they have to be good at everything, keeping their dobber up is sometimes tough starting out. Concentrate on the good things they do, and reinforce, positively, the areas they need improvement in.

The average age of hunters in the US is 49 years old. We need all the young hunters we can get, so  they can pass the traditions on for generations to come.

Hello, my name is S P Griffin and I've recently started a blog about dove hunting, hunting dogs, and shotguns. It's kind of ironic that the name is Dove, Dogs, and Shotguns isn't it? At http://www.dovehunting101.com/ you can find everything from how to articles on hunting, shooting, dog training, to hunting supplies and accessories. Check it out and feel free to leave your comments about the site.

Article Source: Tips on Starting Kids Out Shotgunning

September 12, 2013

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Make Your Own Hunting Dog Box With Owens Series Dog Boxes

By Jake Theron

If you've got a gnawer on your hands, taking the pup from one place-to-another in the car is not only a journey; it's a meal for the mutt. Two problems with a plastic pet container in this situation are you might experience a prison break-out. The other is that your pet's digestive tract may get messed-up, causing you to take a detour to the vet.

Heavy Metal

We don't think that piping-in some of the dulcet tones of Ozzy Osbourne into the cage is going to help. By heavy metal we mean something like the nearly indestructible Owens Series Dog Boxes.

Plan to spend about 1/2 of an hour putting it together, but you don't need a degree in advanced engineering to assemble the Owens Hunter Series Dog Box. It looks like someone who had a fairly good grasp of the English culture wrote it. You'll need a tool, not the entire shed. A screwdriver will fix you right up to connect A-to-B, etc.

You have one big decision to make when you're bringing all the pieces together for this model: How do you want the door to open? Mind you, this weighty canine box is perfect for a truck or an SUV. For those with a Yaris or a Chevy Volt, you'll probably want to consider The K-9 Transport Series box. Let's detail the two:

The Largest Pro Series

Fresh from their website, take a look at these stats:

• Overall Dimensions: 46"W x 45"D x 33"T
• Dog Compartment Dimensions: 23"W x 44"D x 23"T
• Storage Dimensions: 41" X 36" X 5".
• This box features rugged diamond tread aluminum construction, dual tall lined dog compartments with three striker holes per side, vented lockable slam latch doors with storm covers. Removable vent covers for striker holes are stored in convenient built-in external pocket. This is the perfect box for bear and cat hunting.

The K-9 Transport Series

This container should fit snugly in any medium-sized car as you'll see when looking at the breakdown:

• Overall Dimensions: 23"W x 45"D x 26"H
• Dog Compartment Dimensions: 23"W x 42.5"D x 24"H
• Storage Dimensions: No storage capabilities.
• The 55002 large single compartment K-9 Transport box is an excellent choice for Labs and larger breed dogs. It features a convenient take down construction for UPS shipping and easy off season storage. Comes complete with lined dog compartment for easy cleaning, oversized bar style front door and adjustable rear air vent for maximum air flow. Lockable aluminum T-Handle and rugged aluminum storm door cover are included. Assembly is required.

For whatever size vehicle you have, these boxes are built to handle either small pets or large gun dogs. One final note: When assembled, they look more like the Waldorf-Astoria of portable kennels, not like the Dew Drop Inn.

Jake Theron is an avid dog trainer and hunter who loves to give people his wisdom. He tends to spend most of his time nowadays either training his companions or fulfilling his need to spread his knowledge by writing for [http://www.versatiledogsupply.com]Hunting Dog Supply.

Article Source: Owens Series Dog Boxes

September 12, 2013

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Shotgun Shooting Tips From the Pros

By Loretta Lynn

Shooters, they're hiding in the blinds, obscured by the trees and quietly standing tall in open fields. From 80 yards overhead, it drops almost in front of you. Briefly you catch sight of an orange disc before squeezing the trigger. Skeet and trap shooting are emerging from the woods to novices from all walks of life, thus creating part-time shooters. Another addiction is born. The challenge and fun of following a clay target, only five inches in diameter, has brought corporate executives out of the boardroom and into the fields. Even golf addicts swap their 7-iron for a long barrel, Beretta automatic rifle.

"Pull!" commanded Sandy Mize. A few seconds later a clay pigeon crosses from right to left about 40 yards out. She follows its' path with her finger then it drops to the berm. "Pull." This time with her Beretta tucked neatly into her shoulder and her cheekbone on the stock, her eyes follow the same path her muzzle inches left and she squeezes the trigger. She nicks the backside of the flying disc.

"Keep your eye on the target and by the time your eye reaches the sight, the target is there. Then pull the trigger," Bill McGuire, National Shooting Champion, advises Mize.

McGuire comes out to "The Willows" in Tunica, Mississippi about every six months offering expert tips and techniques to novices as well as experienced shooters.

According to Mike Mize, Hunting Guide and NSCA Level III Instructor, "The key to good shotgun shooting is allowing the sub-conscious mind to calculate lead and gun speed. After you choose your stance and gun hold method is to let the conscious mind do the one thing. This is to focus as hard and clearly as possible on the target. This allows your eyes to feed your sub-conscious brain the speed, distance and angle of the target."

Baseball is a great example of how this works. If you're at bat and the pitcher throws you a pitch you do not have time to calculate consciously that the ball is going 87 mph and will arrive at the plate in approximately .50 seconds slightly high and tight. All you can do is focus on the ball and trust your instincts. Also you do not look at the bat, it is there in your sub-conscious or as a blur but the ball is what you see clearly.

"In shotgun shooting the barrel of the gun is your bat. Some people say they don't see the barrel at all. I think we all see it in our sub-conscious or as a blur. But the most important thing is that you see the target clearly," said Mize.

After you shoot a while you are sure to hear the familiar words "you stopped your gun swing". The natural reaction is to push the gun at the last second to avoid the stopping of the gun and to create follow through. That is absolutely the wrong thing to do. Stopping the gun swing is almost always due to trying to see the lead. That is trying to consciously see the distance between your gun barrel and the target. To do this you have to switch your focus from the target to the barrel. You have taken your eye off the moving object, the target, and switched your focus to a stationary object, the barrel. This will stop or slow down the swing of the shotgun. An example of this is if I tell you to point (with your finger) at a bus driving down the road, as long as you look at the bus your finger will keep moving. When I tell you to now look at your finger, it will stop. You are looking at a stationary object. "Focus on the target".

"Once someone comes out and tries it, they're hooked," says Mize. "Guys who play golf think nothing of dropping their clubs and picking up a rifle and the next thing you know they're a part-time shooter."

"Pull, don't aim. Follow the bird with your eye and allow the shotgun to move with you," advises Mike Brooks, instructor and coach with Andy Dolton Shooting Range and Outdoor Education Center. Brooks spent 17 years with the Greene County Sheriff's Department.

Brooks has been with the Missouri Department of Conservation and the Andy Dalton Shooting Range and Outdoor Education Center for seven years and is the Outdoor Education Supervisor. He teaches and coaches students of all ages and levels of experience. "Here we train the conservation specialist, act as a support role for agents and offer certification programs for instructors and the NRA and ATA." Brooks is one of 14 certified instructors in the world who can train other instructors in addition to the public.

"There are three fundamentals I teach in basic shooting. One is position of the hands on the gun. Two, your eye should be focused on the target. And three, acquire proper lead time."

"In addition to stance, you need to know which is your dominant eye and ensure the gun is suited for them," said Brooks. "There's nothing more satisfying than watching someone who has never held a gun before, break a clay target."

When students go out to the range, an instructor will be will them to observe the stance, shot stream (as they are shooting), and proper gun control, then offer tips to each person. As a coach, they will be able to tell you why something is happening.

It is important to focus on one fundamental at a time, such as stance and proper positioning of the weapon. "You want to put 60 percent of your weight on your front leg and keep your knee slightly bent. Keep your feet no more than shoulder-width apart and most importantly don't rock from foot to foot when moving the rifle or shotgun. You also want to only move from the waist up, turning to follow the bird," advises Brooks.

Oftentimes when someone has a bad habit, it only takes practice to correct this habit and form new, better ones. For example, women (and some men) tend to want to lean back at the waist when shooting. This is wrong. Again, keep 60 percent of your weight on the left foot, the lead foot, if you are right handed, or visa-versa.

Brooks advises to follow through after you pull the trigger. Don't stop moving your gun, follow-through after the shot. You will be able to see the target shatter (providing you hit it) with peripheral vision.

Brooks observed a 75-year old man who had been hunting his entire life and assumed he was right-eye dominant. He came by the shooting range and when Brooks watched him, he noticed something only a trained instructor or coach would notice. Although the man was right-handed, he was left-eye dominant. By demonstrating with a simple eye test, Brooks was able to ascertain a dilemma the man had and didn't even know this was affecting his hunting skills.

"We interrupt the vision and force the weaker eye to take over, align the shotgun and it's instantaneous," explained Brooks.

Seventeen percent of women are cross-dominant. This is more common in women than in men. This means a woman can be right-handed and yet is left-eye dominant.

Most guns are built with the average man in mind: for men between 5'8 and 6'. This creates a problem for women where the stock is too long, or too short and the comb of the stock is too low for women. Brooks recalls one manufacturer that makes model with a taller stock for women, Browning.

For lead-time, this will depend on the angle at which you are facing the chutes. Think of the lower numbers on a clock, if you are standing at say the eight o'clock (8) position and the bird comes from the chute behind you, you only want a one-finger lead. This means you want the barrel of the gun to be one width of your finger in front of the clay bird. You also want to shoot as the bird is going up, not coming down.

If you are standing in the six o'clock position and the bird shoots out from your left, you will want a two-finger lead before you pull the trigger.

Again, it's worth mentioning that you want to have faith and think of the gun as an extension of your arm. Keep your eye on the target. When it (the target) reaches to where your arm and gun are extended, then you will pull the trigger and continue follow-through with the barrel. And you will have success!

When skeet shooting you will want to shoot the first target coming from the left first as it is rising, then you will have a few seconds only in which to slightly move the barrel and fire at the second clay bird. In this sport, it's all in the timing.

And practice, practice, practice.

Written by Loretta Lynn, publisher, author, photographer and feature writer; http://www.fit-4-sports.net and http://www.newtraveladventures.com

Article Source:  Shooting Tips From Pros