Bird Dogs & Training  |  12/06/2019

Traveling with Bird Dogs & Birds

By Marissa Jensen

It never fails, with every trip I’m running frantically through the house throwing random piles of gear into a bag. A self-proclaimed last-minute packer, it has always worked for me… most of the time. 

There’s been the occasional trip where the dog food was left behind. On one such trip I happened to be traveling with a hunting companion, so we shared our dog’s food. However, this led to a dog with a very unhappy digestive system that made the trip a mess, literally. 

With some thoughtful planning and a little bit of time spent prior to hitting the road, you can avoid catastrophes on your next trip and spend more time worrying about what field to hit next.

Develop a check list of what to pack:

Ruff Land Kennels – One of the most important things to consider when traveling with your dog is their kennel. Not only does this serve as a home away from home, but it also protects them on the road. The Ruff Land Kennel one-piece roto molded design was developed to provide maximum strength and includes flexible walls, top and floor that absorb energy instead of your dog in the event of an accident.

Current Vaccinations and Medical History – These are often required when you cross state lines and are important to have in case a medical emergency arises. Along with this, research ahead of time where you will be hunting and find the contact information and location of the closest vet. This will help in situations where time is limited, and you want to be prepared. 

First Aid Kit – An item for your canine companion that should accompany you on every hunt. This kit could save your companions life when you are out in the field and have limited time, while also preventing injuries from occurring in the first place.

Dog boots and tape – Upland terrain can provide a variety of challenges for a bird dogs paw pad. Good boots and tape to help them stay on will keep your dog in the field longer and inevitably more comfortable. 

Electronic Dog Collar – First, double check the collar is charged. A dead collar is as good as no collar. Spend time prior to the trip conditioning your dog with the specific collar you plan to take afield. Looking for a great collar to try? Check out the Garmin Pro 550 Plus System.

Leash - Great for pit-stops and to carry in your vest for emergencies. Additionally, a leash can provide life-saving solutions if your companion finds their way into a trap.

Dog Food and Water - Pack the same high-quality dog food you’ve been feeding prior to your trip. Brands that are high in protein, such as Purina ProPlan Sport work to keep your bird dog going strong in the field. Also available through Purina is FortiFlora; a probiotic that aids in regulating normal healthy gut bacteria to keep things regular. Some dogs, due to stress of travel or slight changes in their routine can develop loose stools, and probiotics, such as FortiFlora can help. Bring plenty of water for your dog, realizing that you will likely need to refill the supply often throughout the trip. 

For the Birds:

Orca Coolers - After all the hard work and boot leather worn down in the field, you want a cooler that can keep your harvest cold. An Orca Cooler makes the perfect addition to your packing list. Contents inside an Orca Cooler will remain fresh and cold for up to 10 days, so you can feel confident about placing your meat in the cooler and extending your hunt just one more day… Available in a variety of sizes, there is bound to be the perfect Orca Cooler for you. Look for Orca Coolers at your local Pheasants Forever or Quail Forever banquet held in your local community. 

Utensils – Whether you’re using a knife to field dress your harvest, or in need of a fork to enjoy a healthy meal, good utensils are a must on any hunting trip! 

Plastic Bags – Once your bird is cleaned, seal your meat in a plastic bag before placing in your Orca Cooler. Always remember to leave the required identification from your harvest that is necessary per state laws. 

After a successful trip, remember to take note of any items you wished you had included as you plan for your next hunting adventure. 

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Rooster Road Trip 2019 Sponsors:

Sincerest thanks to our partners riding shotgun: Apple Autos, Browning, Federal Premium Ammunition, Garmin, ORCA Coolers, Ruff Land Kennels, CampChef, SoundGear, Irish Setter, and Nebraska Game & Parks Commission.