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When shopping for hunting dog owners, do you buy for the handler or the dog? We’ve found that the best approach in this gift-giving realm is to shop for the sport they both participate in and love. While most sporting dogs will have overlap in gear, focus on the individuals and what they need or want in that season.
For the hunters that seem to have it all already, ask them if there are any things in particular they need to replace or something fun they’ve been wanting. Another classic choice for hunters and their dogs is to buy something they can never have too much of, like dog treats or shotshells. Below, we’ve rounded up all the best gifts for hunting dog owners you can shop right now.
OnX Hunt gives the user all the benefits of a handheld GPS device (and then some) on their smartphone. Keeping things all in one place and often on a more user-friendly device can allow for a better experience overall. Some benefits of an OnX Hunt subscription include clear public and private land boundaries, offline maps, and the capability to mark waypoints, tracks, and area shapes. There is a one-week free trial that allows you to see if a membership is suitable or not. Then, choose between a premium and elite membership. OnX Hunt Premium ($29.99/year) gives you access to all features within one state. OnX Hunt Elite ($99.99/year) provides nationwide coverage, all standard features, and expert resources.
Help the hunter keep track of their four-legged companion with the Garmin Alpha 200. While you can buy the collar and handheld device separately, the bundle makes it easy to get a gift for both the handler and the hunting dog. The Alpha has a large screen making it easy to use, and it can pair with as many as 20 dog collars and store their information, so you don’t have to add or change dogs each time you hunt. Along with all of the mapping features Garmin typically offers, the Garmin Alpha 200 also shows the dog’s location and direction of movement. The collar receiver can track up to 9 miles away and is water resistant up to 10 meters. If the dog is ecollar trained, this collar can be used on any 18 levels of continuous or momentary stimulation or an audible tone or vibration. The Alpha 200 holds a charge for up to 20 hours, and the rechargeable collar has 80-hour battery life.
Best Budget-Friendly GPS Dog Collar: Garmin Astro 430
If you like the idea of the Garmin Alpha 200 but want to save a couple hundred dollars, then the Garmin Astro 430 is worth looking at. You can get the base model and collar separately, but the bundle is ideal for a hunting dog owner. Many of the same features overlap between the Alpha 200 and the Astro 430, such as storing up to 20 dog information and tracking up to 9 miles. The hunt metrics help identify individual dog movements and locations easily, and the device will also distinguish when the dog is on point or provide bark status alerts. The main difference between the two collars is that the Garmin Astro 430 lacks training collar capabilities and is solely a tracking device.
For all the waterfowl hunters in your life, invest in a MoMarsh Stand. It is a versatile stand perfect for retrievers. It can be set up in various settings because of the telescoping legs and the stability of the pivoting mud feet. The materials are designed to be outdoors and can be trusted in dry fields, swamps, flooded fields, and any shallow water up to 30” deep. MoMarsh stands can be used for training and in the field for hunting. It is lightweight and packable, so it isn’t hard to carry to the hunting location. The soft DuraMesh materials are comfortable for the dog, and water drains quickly. Other MoMarsh accessories are available, like an Invisi Lab Hunting Blind, if you want to gift a complete setup for their waterfowl hunting dog.
The big sell of the MoMarsh Neoprene Hunting Dog Vest is that it is tested and guaranteed to fit all sporting dogs. The design provides a secure fit for dogs weighing 35-100+ lbs with adjustable hooks and loops to ensure a perfect fit for the duration of your dog’s life. The outside panels are interchangeable and can be swapped out to fit the type of hunting and needs for visibility or camouflage. The materials are incredibly durable, and the vest is designed with a rubberized chest panel for added protection for the pup. Another functional feature we love is the stow-aways handle and leash anchor. This is one vest that you can trust they can use season after season.
Maybe they already have a Yeti cooler or two, so why not gift them something else from the brand—but this time for their four-legged friend. The Yeti Trailhead Dog Bed not only looks good, it’s also well-cushioned and has a removable pad that makes it ideal for travel, as well. Even more importantly for owners, it’s easy to clean. Our gear editor, Amanda Oliver, has it for her German shepherd and says that Lily is obsessed with it.
Treats of any kind are a perfect gift for the hunter that already has everything they need for their four-legged companion. The dogs will love them, and higher-value treats like Stewart’s freeze-dried treats are excellent for training sessions. While they have a variety of flavors, a fan favorite among my dogs is the freeze-dried beef liver. It is made with pure beef liver, so you can trust that the dogs are only eating simple, fresh ingredients with no dangerous preservatives or additives. Choose from the different sizes to fit the number of hunting dogs they have.
If you’re shopping for training tools for the hunting dog owner in your life and they have a waterfowl dog of any kind, get them some training bumpers. The HuntEmUp Standard Dog Training Bumpers are a durable and affordable option. Made from plastic materials, they are lightweight and work well for all breeds and training levels. A braided rope is attached to the standard plastic bumper to make it easy to throw longer distances for both marks and retrieves. Three colors are available (white, orange, and black/white).
Personalized gifts are the best gifts. Both your giftee and their pup will love this custom collar from Over Under. The up-and-coming brand is famous for its durable high-end hunting gear and this waterproof collar is no different. Available in multiple sizes and a bevy of colors from teal to alpine green, it can be customized with their dog’s name and phone number in case they ever get separated.
If you are getting them a few bumpers for their dog’s retrieval training, consider getting them a bumper bag. The HuntEmUp Bumper Bag fits not only HuntEmUp bumpers but it can also fit Dokken Deal Fowl Trainers or Avery EZ Birds. Made from polyester materials with a vinyl-coated mesh front, the bag contains wet bumpers without letting the moisture leak out onto you as you carry the bag or toss it in the car. The bag is plenty large to carry all dog training accessories making traveling to training locations quickly and efficiently. It is easy to carry, easy to keep clean, and an effective way to organize all their dog training equipment.
Help them mix up their training tools with a Dokken Dead Fowl Trainer. These trainers are durable and long-lasting as long as they are used as a retrieval tool, not a chew or tug toy. Available in a few different sizes and colors, these pair well with waterfowl scents to further help young dogs be exposed to the smells of working in the field. They are as easy to throw as other bumpers mentioned in the gift guide, but they provide the dog with a different experience they’re sure to love.
A training whistle is a tool that most hunting dog owners will already have, but if you are shopping for a new hunting dog owner or know they need a new one, then whistles are a cheap yet thoughtful gift option. The SportDOG Whistle is easy to blow and has a convenient key ring connector. The whistle design provides long-range sound control even in windy or wet conditions. Unlike standard whistles, this whistle also moves the sound away from the handler’s ears.
Help them keep their hunting companion safe traveling to and from hunting locations with a Ruff Land Kennel. The Gen II dog kennel utilizes a Flex Technology material helping all sides absorb energy if there were to be a crash. Available in several sizes, you can buy a crate that fits your dog. The SureVent walls allow airflow through the kennel, and the raised floor channels keep any dirt, mud, debris, or water away from your dog during transport. This kennel is designed for vehicle transport, making it a safe and comfortable crate option. If they have multiple dogs, the crates are designed to be stackable.
If they already have a Ruff Land Kennel, consider getting them an accessory like the Ruff Land Kennel Water Dish. We like this design because it is a water jug and dish. The watering system is easy to use in and out of the kennel. It can hole up to 1 gallon of water, and as the dog drinks, the bowl automatically refills. The one-piece molded construction makes it a durable water carrier, and the integrated carry handle allows it to be carried from place to place easily.
Allow their dog to travel in comfort with the Mud River Crate Cushion. The cushion is made from 1200D nylon, durable, water-resistant, and quick-drying material. Designed with dogs in mind, the cushion has whip stitching to ensure that it stays intact even with dogs that aggressively nest after a long day in the field. While it may not be necessary for short trips, having a crate cushion is ideal for longer treks or older dogs that need more comfort as you drive.
While most of our gift guide is for the dogs themselves, this one is for the owner and the owner alone. The Garmin Instinct Solar is a watch they will love outside of a hunt. This watch does way more than keep time. It can track mileage, pace, health monitoring, and location. If in service, the watch can connect to a smartphone to make it easy to take calls or receive texts while on the go. Unlike other smartwatches, this one can be charged with solar in just 3 hours, making it hard for the battery to die even on a week-long expedition.
A Leatherman Multitool is excellent for hunting, outdoor recreation, and daily life. The Leatherman Surge is one of their largest tools, with built-in pliers and 20 other tools. Leatherman offers a 25-year warranty, but anyone who owns one knows they’re a tool to last a lifetime. Several other Leatherman tool options are available if you don’t think this one fits their specific needs or if you’d like to spend a little less on a gift.
Keeping the gift-giving focused on the human in this hunting pair, one gift that you can’t go wrong with is some quality lead-free shotshells. The Kent Fasteel Precision Plated Steel Shotgun Shells are a high-quality zinc-plated steel shot with nickel-plated heads. These materials protect the shot from corrosion and provide a reliable shot in modern semi-auto shotguns. These shotshells are sold in a few different sizes and quantities, so you can tailor them to the person you’re gifting.
A first aid kit for dogs is one thing, but some injuries can require the handler to carry a dog out of the field. Since most hunting dogs are 35+ pounds, depending on how far away the car is, it can be difficult to carry large breed dogs very far or efficiently. The Fido Airlift Pro is a sling that fits medium-extra large breed dogs, making it easier to carry them long distances or over rugged terrain. These are available in M, L, and XL sizes, are compact and are made from durable materials.
Hopefully, they already carry a first aid kit, so why not get one with all the right things for them and their dog? The Dog Adventure Medical Kit contains all the classic items that we are used to seeing in a backcountry first aid kit, along with an emergency cold pack, a 10 CC irrigation syringe to clean wounds, and a splintering pack to make it easy to remove spikes, splinters, and thorns from a dog’s paws or body. It comes in a convenient carry cast that is compact and relatively lightweight. There is room inside the kit to add any other essentials you may need while hunting.
Help them teach their dog a new skill by getting them the DogBone Shed Training System. This is an affordable yet thoughtful gift for anyone that has a dog and wants to integrate more scent work into their training. With this system, they will be set up for success since it includes a training manual, antler dummy, and antler scent. The full training system makes it easy to train their dog to be a shed dog with an easy 3 step training process. Product made in the USA.
Are you looking for a stocking stuffer or a small and simple gift? Get them a portable dog dish. We like the Browning Portable Dog Dish for hunting and traveling with dogs because it is very compact and has space for food and water. Since it is lightweight, it comes with a metal stake to keep it secure and on the ground when you are in camp. The bowls are removable, making them easy to clean after use.