Are you getting a new pup to become your companion in hunting pheasants?

Well, that is truly an exciting idea! Generally, there is a variety of dog breeds that are built to perform such a task. Depending on what breed you like, you can go for the best, such as the Labrador Retriever, Boykin Spaniel, English Pointer, Brittany Spaniel, or the German Wirehaired Pointer.

The best pheasant dog has the inborn ability to search game birds intelligently. They know how to find bird-holding places in a methodical manner, covering a field in quarters while searching for prey.

What about dogs that bear the natural ability of a hunter but lack the desire to hunt pheasant? You can enhance their desire through lots of exposure to game birds or ringnecks.

However, you should also remember that training and conditioning a dog to hunt upland birds require a fair amount of time and effort on your part. But with a little bit of patience and some knowledge, you can transform a pup into your favourite hunting buddy.

Here is how to train a hunting dog with pheasant as the prey, in particular.

Preparing for the Training

Before you start anything, you should prepare your pup to be ready for pheasant training.

  • Siccaro icon Train him to understand and master basic commands, such as “stop”, “stay”, “sit”, “fetch”, “come”, “heel”, and “whoa”. These are very important commands to stay in control over him during hunting. Also, you should train him not to be shy of the gun. During this step, you should be deliberate and firm for quick results.
  • Siccaro Gather the necessary training supplies. These include a vest, which is preferably bright in colour; treats, which you will need as rewards; leash, as you need to harness your pup at times; pheasant decoys and hunting dog training scents, which are your primary tools in training; and drying robes that are very handy after a wet day of training.

Of course, you should have an ample amount of outdoor space to facilitate the training.

Introducing Your Dog to the Task

With all the training supplies at hand, you can start introducing your dog to the task of hunting pheasant.

  • Siccaro icon Prepare your decoys. Pick one and spray it with a light coat of training scent. Leave it for a few minutes to dry.
  • Siccaro icon Call your pup and give him the decoy. Allowing him to play with it will make him know the scent of a pheasant. To make sure that he will become strongly familiar with it, repeat this step over the course of a few days.
  • Siccaro icon When your pup is thoroughly familiar with the decoy, it is time to start training him outside. In your chosen training space, toss the decoy several feet away from you. See if he tries to find it using his sense of smell.
  • Siccaro icon Repeat the previous step, and this time, use some commands that he already knows, like “seek”, to find and bring the decoy back to you. This will help him associate the commands with his actions when hunting pheasant.

Continue extending the distance for each training session to further his skills. Do not forget to give him treats when he masters the commands.

Physical Training and Health

Your hunting dog is just like an athlete. As such, he needs to be in top shape always.

With that said, it is important to let him have regular exercise. Especially when the hunting season comes near, there are certain fitness and health regimens that you should observe for him.

  • Siccaro icon Let your dog exercise daily. You can take him for a stroll around the neighbourhood or the park. You can also add in some “toss and retrieve” during these walks to keep his hunting skills in check.
  • Siccaro icon Take him to the vet for a check. During this step, you should see to it that his vaccinations are up to date. You can also ask the vet about health-related supplies your dog will need for the hunting season. Moreover, you should remember that certain dog breeds have dietary requirements for hunting, so keep these in check as well.

Useful Tips for Actual Pheasant Hunting with Your Dog

How to train a hunting dog pheasant as the game is more than just teaching your pup to master the commands and letting him practise in the backyard. It should extend to testing his skills through actual hunts in game preserves.

However, you should take note that young hunting dogs could get excited and out of control when hunting. For this reason, you should give him some pre-hunt runs.

Work him out before the hunting season and teach him to stay close to you. This can be done by using a long check cord with a collar that you can control to create tiny tickles or vibrations when he goes too far out. The more composed your dog is the more chances of success your hunts will have.

Make sure that your dog is already exposed to the natural wilderness at an early age. This way, he is already familiar with his quarry and is more effective at hunting it.

Final Thoughts

On the whole, how to train a hunting dog pheasant as prey takes a lot of time and effort on your end. From teaching him to recognise the scent of the quarry to training him to locate the bird and hand it back to you in good shape, the entire process can be very challenging.

But with patience, right knowledge, and love for your dog, you can have the best companion every time you go upland hunting.

Everything that you do for your dog in training him will definitely pay off in the end. Happy hunting!

Siccaro icon
Siccaro icon