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Simple Trick to Keeping Your Dog Hydrated When Hunting

Posted by Bob Ford

Conditioning and hunting dogs in the hot months of summer and early season requires that we are careful about hydration. No doubt about it, my dogs will drink from the nastiest mud puddle in the field, but I prefer that they do not. Stagnant water in the field could carry germs and disease that I prefer my dogs not be exposed to. I also do not like a bunch of jugs of filtered water rattling around the bed of my truck. So, I knew I needed a solution, but didn’t want to break the bank. After a few prototypes I found the perfect solution for me and my dogs, and if you have even minimal carpentry skills, you can do the same.

My creation looks pretty cool, but it’s just a simple PVC pipe with an end cap that contains a spigot on one end, and a plug with a removable threaded plug on the other. The threaded plug is so it can be cleaned—you will need to put some plumbing tape on the threads. I have a self tapping screw on the top of the pipe that is screwed into the water tube while traveling so that the water doesn’t spill out, and I remove the small screw to let air into the system so the water will pour from the spigot. You could also use a different spigot that allows air into the tube in addition to letting water out, I am told. My water tube hangs from a ladder rack that supports my rooftop tent, but you could easily mount it in the bed and above of the wheel well by attaching it to the bed rail.

A six foot length of pipe that is four inches in diameter holds almost four gallons. Filling your water tube will require a little ingenuity. The spigot on your house is a male end, and so is the spigot on the water tube. I made a small adapter that is simply a short piece of hose that has two female ends. One end goes on the water tube and the other attaches to the hose. I keep it in the truck and can fill the water tube anywhere there is a hose. I do not plan to leave water in the water tube during the winter, as freezing would break the pipe.

This has been a great solution for me and my pups and we think it will work well for you. Keep your dogs cool and healthy!

Happy Hunting!

Bob Ford

Ramey, PA

Bob has hunted with beagles from Alabama to the Quebec border in pursuit of swamp rabbits, the eastern cottontail, and hare. He has owned beagles since 1985 and trains his hounds year round, sometimes competing in field trials, but always conditioning his pack with an eye looking forward to the...

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