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Thread: Problems with first Hunt on Frozen Rice Fields

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raymond Little View Post
    Guts and desire are great but it falls on us as owners to use our gray matter when conditions are hazardous, right?
    The I would stay home if I were you. I hunt North Dakota hunting in ice is a given. I used to have bear hounds for years. I didn't leave them in the truck because the bear was too mean, too big, or what ever excuse to leave them in the truck, they were first and foremost hunting dogs, I hunted them. My labs are no different, they are hunting dogs trained and bred to hunt in all conditions. I haven't lost a lab yet hunting. The safest place for your lab is on the sofa if front of the TV. Mine are bred, trained, and hunted in all conditions, no excuses.
    Last edited by Backwater; 12-03-2013 at 12:52 AM.

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  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raymond Little View Post
    Doubt you'll get many to admit to it on this site.
    It is no different than asking how long you can run blinds before your dog goes down from heat exhaustion. First trained dog eh?
    It seems the quit people and do another day are all from the south. Here in the Dakotas we don't have the option to wait until it's 60 degrees and sunny with no wind to hunt. Cold comes fast here. The point the OP was making was he noticed no injuries at the time and the dog did what it was bred to do. What's the issue here? He didn't send to dog into traffic to make a retrieve he hunted the dog and the dog peformed well under tough conditions. Then to imply it's his first dog who are you to judge?

    The comparison of running blinds until the dog goes down of heat exhaustion is a red herring. What the heck does that have to do with this post. the dog showed no breakdown and did his job. it was AFTER the hunt the injury became apparent. In your case of heat exhaustion the dog clearly would be panting and displaying symptoms along the way.

    "This ain't Burger King, you don't get it your way"


    Backwater's Ole' Crow Medicine Show SH "Raven" BLF 7/26/11 (NFC FC AFC Hunter's Run Boo Boo x AFC Beat The Rush)
    Backwater's Gun Powder 'N' Lead "Trigger" BLF 6/30/12 ( FC AFC CJ's Mister T x FC Queen Winhelmina of the Netherlands)
    Backwater's Biker Trash "Scooter" BLM 9/6/2013 (FC AFC Nick of Time Lone Ranger x Good Ideas Windy Retreezer QAA)

  3. #13
    Senior Member Mac Lassiter's Avatar
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    Yes I have seen the swollen bruised legs on a couple of dogs from running in the same condtions as you described except in Missouri rice fields, although I never heard the owners say anything about blood in there urine ? A week of letting the dogs take it easy was the remedy, and they were right back hunting within a week or two.

    On a side note sounds like you have a dog with alot of desire ! I hunted my 11 month old pup this past weekend in the frozen rice fields of Missouri, She suffered a broke leg at 3 months old, So I kept a special eye on her and made sure she didnt over do it, or get in trouble ! But the duck action proved to keep things slow enough for us I didnt worry about the over doing it ! HAHAHA! We broke out our hole using 4 wheelers, so I was more concerned with cuts from ice chunks than anything, but it sure was funny watching her reaction with her first experience with ice ! She found out quick that stuff is slick HAHAHA.

    Good luck with your pup, he should heal up fine and be ready to go back out soon !

    It's your dog and you know him best ! If I had listened to ever pieace of advice I got from this forum, my pup would still be on crate rest, and still not training ! If your concerned keep in touch with your vet, but like I did, you know your dog, and only you know when he's ready to return to activity, just remember he will be ready to go before he actually is, so use your best judgment ! He's like any other athelete, he will get bumps and bruises, he just has to be made to let himself heal.
    Last edited by Mac Lassiter; 12-03-2013 at 10:42 PM.
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  4. #14
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    I was also in Stuttgart opening day weekend and we had no ice...I must have been in southern Stuttgart lol. It was a little cold but the rice fields we hunted were open, the wind was at 15 mph and above freezing after the sun got up. Temps were 25 in the am.

  5. #15
    Senior Member justin300mag's Avatar
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    Hunting on ice and breaking ice is a way of life for hunting dogs over here, you just have to be smart about it. 0 degrees out right now and it will get colder. I have seen some swelling and a few cuts and bruises on my dogs but I have never seen blood in the urine.

  6. #16
    Senior Member John Robinson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Backwater View Post
    It seems the quit people and do another day are all from the south. Here in the Dakotas we don't have the option to wait until it's 60 degrees and sunny with no wind to hunt. Cold comes fast here. The point the OP was making was he noticed no injuries at the time and the dog did what it was bred to do. What's the issue here? He didn't send to dog into traffic to make a retrieve he hunted the dog and the dog peformed well under tough conditions. Then to imply it's his first dog who are you to judge?

    The comparison of running blinds until the dog goes down of heat exhaustion is a red herring. What the heck does that have to do with this post. the dog showed no breakdown and did his job. it was AFTER the hunt the injury became apparent. In your case of heat exhaustion the dog clearly would be panting and displaying symptoms along the way.
    It sounds like were all saying the same thing, 1) the really good dogs are so driven to get the bird they will literally kill themselves to do it, so it's up to us as the responsible adult to recognize that fine line where the risk/reward equation swings too far toward risk. Believe me, a dog like that isn't going to balk at anything. 2) I can't condemn the OP for continuing to hunt that day, he didn't notice an injury and the dog kept going without showing signs of discomfort, the question is would the OP knowing what he knows now repeat that hunt? I wouldn't and I hunt ice all the time.

    Up here in Montana the greatest danger in hunting ice, is a dog way out on thin ice breaking through and not being able to pull himself out. Many times the distraught hunter can't stand watching his dog slowly get tired and drown, so he crawls out on the ice to recue his dog, breaks through in the process and ends up dying alongside his dog.

    John

  7. #17
    Senior Member RookieTrainer's Avatar
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    I can't speak to the ice specifically because I haven't hunted in it. But as John very succinctly put it, the fact that they have that kind of drive means that they sometimes won't stop when they are getting themselves into a dangerous situation. That's when you have to take over and be the brains of the outfit. And you have to be the judge of exactly when that is.

    I have had it drummed into my head that one of the first things you do in a hunting situation is make sure you can crank/operate the means of conveyance at your disposal. That way, if/when you need to go get your dog you are not depending on anyone else to do so.

    Quote Originally Posted by John Robinson View Post
    It sounds like were all saying the same thing, 1) the really good dogs are so driven to get the bird they will literally kill themselves to do it, so it's up to us as the responsible adult to recognize that fine line where the risk/reward equation swings too far toward risk. Believe me, a dog like that isn't going to balk at anything. 2) I can't condemn the OP for continuing to hunt that day, he didn't notice an injury and the dog kept going without showing signs of discomfort, the question is would the OP knowing what he knows now repeat that hunt? I wouldn't and I hunt ice all the time.

    Up here in Montana the greatest danger in hunting ice, is a dog way out on thin ice breaking through and not being able to pull himself out. Many times the distraught hunter can't stand watching his dog slowly get tired and drown, so he crawls out on the ice to recue his dog, breaks through in the process and ends up dying alongside his dog.

    John
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  8. #18
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    It seems the quit people and do another day are all from the south. Here in the Dakotas we don't have the option to wait until it's 60 degrees and sunny with no wind to hunt. Cold comes fast here. The point the OP was making was he noticed no injuries at the time and the dog did what it was bred to do. What's the issue here? He didn't send to dog into traffic to make a retrieve he hunted the dog and the dog peformed well under tough conditions. Then to imply it's his first dog who are you to judge?

    The comparison of running blinds until the dog goes down of heat exhaustion is a red herring. What the heck does that have to do with this post. the dog showed no breakdown and did his job. it was AFTER the hunt the injury became apparent. In your case of heat exhaustion the dog clearly would be panting and displaying symptoms along the way.
    I'm sure you did not mean the first line to be offensive however, it is. I understand it freezes in North Dakota and that you have to hunt the frozen water but there is a huge difference in that and hunting a frozen rice field that the dog has be break ice on every stride. It is a constant abuse on their legs and chest that can be very difficult on dogs. As far as the attitude of southern people, especially southern hunters, there is no quit or wait until the perfect day. The south typically kills more ducks than any other area in the US and people from your area make a pretty penny from us coonasses and rednecks traveling up to your area to book hunts. As far as the weather that the OP is referencing, I was hunting roughly 2 hours south of him and we had similar issues with the dog we hunted(I elected not to hunt my personal dog). The reference to running a dog down in the summer is spot on for the fact that if most people that are hunting rice field ice take time to look at the dogs legs, you can see that most are swollen before the hunt finishes just like a tongue hanging out in September. I hunt my dog in almost all conditions from Louisiana heat of September dove and teal unil January duck and goose hunting (I understand its cooler where you live) with that being said there are days that I know my dog will go until he will go down and it is up to me to not let that happen.

  9. #19
    Senior Member Rick Hall's Avatar
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    I grew up hunting Northern ice and now hunt Southern rice, and, for the most part, it's apples and oranges. Ricefield ice is generally thin, sharp and shallow - and can tear up a dog's legs up PDQ. Ricefield ice also makes it much less likely that birds will escape a man without a dog than ricefield water, so it usually just makes sense to leave Pup at home and fetch your own when it's a factor.
    Last edited by Rick Hall; 12-04-2013 at 06:23 PM.
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  10. #20
    Senior Member Marissa E.'s Avatar
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    I think if you HAD to use a dog... Id get a couple. Or Tell your buddies to get some... this way you don't have to ask one dog to cut through and pick up all the birds himself... you could rotate and maybe with enough rest between dogs they wont get so beat up and you could spare them?

    In PA we don't have that issue. Our issue is dogs falling through through the ice and getting stuck. I watched a guy tie a rope to his dogs vest, when the dog fell through he just pulled him in and tried from the other side. I dont know if Id do that, but the dog was fine with it and he seemed to enjoy being pulled across the pond by a rope.

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