They may be short and sweet-natured, but Basset Hounds are tenacious and full of energy. Throw in that they have the second strongest nose of all dogs and you’ve got yourself a fine hunting companion. You may have been hunting for the last few years, but adding a canine pal to your team is an effective way to improve results. Not only is it great to have some company and bond, but the Basset Hound can help sniff out birds and retrieve them.
The only problem is, you can barely get your Basset Hound to ‘sit’ and ‘roll over’, let alone go out on the hunt. Training him to hunt birds will add an effective weapon to your hunting arsenal. The discipline it will instill in him will also make teaching him a range of other commands easier too.
Training any dog to hunt birds is challenging. Fortunately, a Basset Hound has plenty of the attributes you’d want in a hunting dog. They’re devoted, energetic and eager to please. Training will consist of numerous obedience commands to develop an efficient working relationship. You’ll also have to familiarize him with both his prey and the hunting environment in general. Find the right incentive though, and the training process will be far easier. Appealing to their strong sense of smell with food is often an effective means.
If your Basset Hound is a puppy he should be raring to go and receptive. You could see results in just a few weeks. If he’s older and not quite the fast learner he once was, then you may need a while longer. It could take up to 6 months. Get this training right and you’ll have a fantastic way to exercise him, plus you'll make a formidable hunting team.
Before work can begin you’ll need to get your hands on a whole host of things. Some decoy bird and scent spray will be required. You’ll also need a place outside to practice regularly. A big yard or local fields should do the job.
You’ll also need a generous supply of treats or his favorite food broken into small pieces. Then just set aside a few minutes each day for training.
Once you’ve got all of that, just bring patience and a positive attitude and training can begin!