Luna's Tracking Journal 2016

Discussion in 'Deer Tracking Dogs' started by outdoorstom, Jul 26, 2016.

  1. outdoorstom

    outdoorstom Active Member

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    Luna is a 2 year old female Wirehaired Dashchund. I got her when she was 13 months old, and last year was our first tracking season......she recovered 11 deer and 2 bears. After a successful track I allow Luna to chew on the animal as her reward, I also ask the hunter to cut her a small piece of meat when he field dresses it. Early bow opens September 27th and we're anxious for the season to get here. Attached is a video of her getting her reward.
    [​IMG]
     
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  2. wbpdeer

    wbpdeer Well-Known Member

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    My dad raised bird dogs - both Pointers and English Setters in his kennel. When I was in high school I was a two-year starter on our Basketball Team. We would play Friday and Saturday nites. My Saturday morning duty was to shoot pen raised birds on dogs / pups he was training.

    It was amazing to me to watch a new litter of pups when they were first shown a bird wing on the end of a fishing rod. To see a wobbled leg pup lock up on a wing my dad would drag into the scent path is simply astonishing. That is one of the reasons I love these dog thread.

    What I didn't enjoy - if I killed 24 out 25 birds during dog training - I caught living you know what. I loved my dad - he was hunting role model but he was not fair. He had the patience of job with you pups - but if had a 96% kill rate I got wore out for the one miss. I was the only son of three that took the hunting gene. Training should be fun is the moral of that story.

    I bet your dog is a natural! It is in the breed and the genes IMHO.
     
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  3. dogdoc

    dogdoc Moderator Staff Member

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    Looking forward to following along the journal

    todd
     
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  4. lakngolf

    lakngolf Well-Known Member

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    Glad we will have some tracking threads. Those are always good reads.
     
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  5. outdoorstom

    outdoorstom Active Member

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    On Tuesday Luna and I are making the 4 hour drive to see John and Jolanta Jeaneney. They're being kind enough to do some mentoring. Trust me, I'll be all ears!
     
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  6. outdoorstom

    outdoorstom Active Member

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    Unfortunately, I picked up a bug on the flight home from Alaska and had to cancel. We're rescheduling though. I couldn't believe the number people coughing on that flight....I checked my ticket to make sure I hadn't mistakenly gotten on a TB mercy flight.
     
  7. Brushpile

    Brushpile Moderator Staff Member

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    Sorry to hear that, and that's the main reason I don't like to fly.
     
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  8. outdoorstom

    outdoorstom Active Member

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  9. outdoorstom

    outdoorstom Active Member

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    Two calls tonight.....one is a gutshot from yesterday morning and they searched all day today. This ones a long shot due to them walking all through the area, but for sure its a dead deer and we'll give it try. The other was shot tonight. They lost blood and backed out.....the way it should be done.
     
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  10. cutman

    cutman Administrator Staff Member

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    Good luck!
     
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  11. outdoorstom

    outdoorstom Active Member

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    This morning on my way to the first track (gutshot), the other hunter texted and told me he was on watch this morning and saw the buck he shot last night. He said it must have jumped the string because it had a crease through the skin on its back.

    The gutshot track didn't go well....

    Luna and I went on our first track of the season this morning. We were tracking a buck that had been gutshot 48 hours earlier. The hunter backed out of the area for 24 hours after retrieving his arrow and seeing evidence of the poor hit. He spent all of yesterday grid searching the area. We started the track at the hit site and quickly advanced the 100 yards or so to the hunters point of loss. Luna appeared focused and still on track for a very short distance beyond there, then clearly looked unsure. We went back to the point of loss many times for restarts, slowly searched in circles, and went to a river a quarter mile away and searched there, all with no results. I'm at a loss, as I know that deer is dead, and since it wasn't pushed it seems like it would have bedded close and died. I can't help but think I should have found this deer. A couple other things that are noteworthy......very dry tracking conditions, and the hunter told me he and his wife 10 days ago counted over 90 deer in the alfalfa field bordering the woodlot.
     
  12. Doctorbrady

    Doctorbrady Well-Known Member

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    Tom, As you are aware tracking is hard, mentally challenging work. Rarely do things go according to plan. Even the best dogs can struggle in difficult conditions like you were presented with. Also, it is easy to second guess a dog that looks unsure when there is no visible sign over a long distance. Keep your head up and stick with it. Both you and Luna will learn things with each and every track. In 7 years we have failed to recover 3 deer that were later found by the Hunter or members of their party. One was our first track this year. Another was our last track last year. My dog would have found the deer last year if I would have trusted him more. This year's loss, who knows. In the end we give hunters an edge on deer that they wouldn't find without us. Also, I always ask the hunters to call me if they recover a deer that we aren't able to because getting the final story on where the deer was at can help guide you as to where things may have fallen apart.
     
  13. outdoorstom

    outdoorstom Active Member

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    Thanks for the good advice. With her looking unsure, I didn't think I should blindly follow for a long distance. I definitely need to learn to trust her more, which I'll work on. I did ask the hunter for a call if the deer is ever found. I've got a lot to learn!
     
  14. outdoorstom

    outdoorstom Active Member

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    image.jpeg Oct 3 - I had a call last night from a hunter that shot a 7 pointer. He said the deer moved just as he released and the arrow hit way back. The good news is the buck was quartering away. He stated the arrow was sticking out about 8 inches as it ran off, and the hunter and his friend followed good blood for a couple hundred yards, then marked where it became sparse and called me.
    We started at the hit site and Luna quickly covered the trail to the point of loss. We went about 400 yards with no sign and did a restart. We ended up at a dry creek bed and were walking it when Luna shut down due to the warm temps. It was at this point I realized I left the water in the truck, and Luna and I headed to a nearby waterhole. One of the guys headed to the truck to get the water and unknown to me, another guy had gone ahead. He called and said he found where the buck crossed the creek. Luna refused to drink any water, which is normal while she tracks and we headed to the crossing. Luna immediately went back to work. We followed the track for about 100 yards or so and found the buck.
     
  15. Doctorbrady

    Doctorbrady Well-Known Member

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    Great job Tom and Luna!
     
  16. Brushpile

    Brushpile Moderator Staff Member

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    Luna is an amazing dog. Elkie recovered her first deer of the season today. :-0
     
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  17. outdoorstom

    outdoorstom Active Member

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    Congrats! Today was Luna's first of the season too.
     
  18. atgvir01

    atgvir01 New Member

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    Great job. I know there are a lot of people that appreciate what you do.
     
  19. outdoorstom

    outdoorstom Active Member

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    10/6 - I got a call this morning from a hunter that said he shot a broadside doe high in the shoulder and was unable to find any blood, or his arrow. He made the shot at 7:00 and we started tracking at 9:45. He only looked in the foodplot, then backed out and called. We started at the hit site and Luna got on it right away and took us to where the hunter saw the doe enter the woods. We found a little blood a few yards in, and an occasional drop every 75 yards or so. We were a few hundred yards into the track when Luna started pulling like crazy and opened up with her high pitched bark which is reserved for live animals. We were in the thickest, nastiest prickly ash patch I've encountered, so it was slow going for me and Luna was going nuts. She barked and we tracked for well over half a mile before Luna eased up. We tracked at a slower pace for a couple hundred more yards and Luna definitely lost the track. For curiosity's sake, we went back to where Luna first started barking and found fresh blood where the deer had stood, and also very fresh turds right next to the blood. I felt bad for Luna, she really deserved to chew on this deers leg.
     
    Brushpile likes this.
  20. jlane35

    jlane35 Well-Known Member

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    In that scenerio do you believe the deer will survive?

    Keep up the good work.
     

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