Shawn Wayment, a Vet and bird hunter, and Brandon Moss, another widely recognized bird dog man, worked together to, in conjunction with OnX Maps, publish this BLOG post about Pre Hunt conditioning and first aid. With their permission, I have the link above.
If you aren’t already working your dogs, getting them ready for the Fall, you’re probably a little behind. I started roading mine one mile 3-4 times a week, and I’ll move that on up to 2-3 miles, 3 times per week, soon. They deserve to be in top notch shape when you drop that tailgate. Lack of conditioning increases the likelihood of injury, and poor choices on their part.
You, too, should be ready to go! The treadmill, elliptical, hiking, weights, and a little self-control at the buffet now will increase your enjoyment immensely at the start of the season. When I was younger, I figured I could get in shape following the dogs the first few days. Sure, and as the cramps, sore muscles, blisters from the new boots, raw rubs from the new pants slowly healed, I figured the pain was just a part of hunting. I was stupid. Don’t you be stupid. Walk in the new boots. Wear the new gear out running the dogs. Put on the new gloves, train in the rain, go to the skeet range. When I was flying in the Navy, we would always, “Train the way you fight!” That is appropriate for bird hunting, as well.
Make it an awesome opening day! I’ll see you in Montana 1 Sept!