If you have a playful dog, it won’t take much time to turn him into a shed finding machine.
Anyone thats tried to shed hunt knows that its a bit like finding a needle in a haystack.
I constantly take walks this time of year, keeping an eye out for deer antler sheds and scouting for spring turkey. I rarely find sheds on my own.
You have to get lucky or do grid searches with a fairly big group.
That’s why a hunter’s best friend can be awesome and its really not as hard as you might think to train them.
Bob Murray with Point Blank Outdoors was a dog handler for the New York State Police for 13 years and shares some awesome tips below:
You don’t need a specific breed of dog to successfully shed hunt, but retrievers tend to be do well.
As Bob suggests, it helps to have a dog that loves to play.
The key tips:
- Stop working the dog if it gets bored
- Wear latex gloves so the dog isn’t identifying your scent.
- Grind off the points of the antler so they don’t get hurt. Otherwise, negative reinforcement might cause them to avoid sheds.
Even if they aren’t a great shed dog to start, just a few minutes a day will help their development.
And while your dog may not find every shed, even a beginning shed dog has a good chance of helping you find more antlers.