Using a Retriever in Florida

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Using a Retriever in Florida

Postby Hunter06FLKY » Wed Apr 11, 2012 8:13 am

Hey Everyone,

I was born and raised in Florida and have hunted all over the state. I've lived in Florida all of my life until my current stint in NC due to work. I've had my fair share of run-ins with gators and snakes. I've never hunted with a dog in Florida before but I'm currently training my first duck dog and will be moving back to Florida sometime in the near future.

So my question is, how many of ya'll use dogs when hunting? If so what precautions do you take? I know you try and avoid warm weather and deep water but what else do you consider to keep your pup safe?

Thanks!
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Re: Using a Retriever in Florida

Postby quackhunter99 » Fri Apr 13, 2012 1:04 pm

I dont use my dog early season. This year, our temps stayed so warm i really only took my dogs hunting at the coast. I will usually start taking my dogs onto the lakes after we have a couple days where temps stay below 60. Thats when they typically are dorment, you may see them, but they are not moving
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Re: Using a Retriever in Florida

Postby waterdogds » Fri Apr 13, 2012 8:25 pm

Towards the end of the season, there were a few days that were warm, and on the way out I probably seen 25+ lizards, and had not seen any on previous trips(15+). Needs to be pretty cold to keep em out of sight. Use your best judgement, but always know that gators are everywhere there's water in Florida. I've read stories of people losing their dogs to a gator. I even think there's an old thread, where someone suggested to take along 2 buckshots. One for the gator and one for your dog. It would be a hard thing to watch and an even harder thing to do. Good luck with whatever you decide.
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Re: Using a Retriever in Florida

Postby Belly up dux » Wed Apr 18, 2012 6:04 am

I hunted with my dog all the time from early season teal to the closing day. I let the area I hunted help me decide on weather to take my dog or not. Big lakes with deep water seem to have more gators than marshes, but that is not to say I haven't seen a gator in the woodie hole. It takes a pretty good size gator to get an 80 lb lab, but smaller dogs make an easy target. The good thing is that gators get spookie after gator hunting season and learn to hide when seeing a spot light or hearing voices.
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Re: Using a Retriever in Florida

Postby jeepfreak304 » Fri May 25, 2012 7:06 pm

Advise for everyone: If you care at all for your retriever, DON'T HUNT HIM IN FLORIDA!!! All it takes is one time and he's gone, it's just not worth it. Gators can be anywhere, anytime-not just in hot weather-IN ANY WEATHER. I have seen two dogs get killed by a gator it's not pretty(not my dogs). And if you don't care for your retriever that much, you don't deserve him anyway. Pick another sport
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Re: Using a Retriever in Florida

Postby seminole_sigmanu » Tue May 29, 2012 9:37 am

I used my dog at the coast but wasnt able to use her much towards the end of the season. I saw gators on the coast but not that many.

Last day of the season we had a 10fter get a ringneck out of our decoys. I was on a WMA and 2 guys were using dogs around me. This gator came 100 yards across open water to get the duck that was flapping on the water.

The water is deep and they tried to tell me the "myth" of water temp below 60 and gators not feeding.....idiots.

Use caution and be smart about it.
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Re: Using a Retriever in Florida

Postby quackhunter99 » Fri Jun 01, 2012 7:50 pm

common sense goes a long way, if your hunting in the morning, watch you spotlight beam on the way out, watch for eyes.
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