Field Emergencies and First Aid for Hunting Dogs: Be Prepared!

This course is a comprehensive guide for dog owners to learn about hunting dog health and field emergencies. We created this course based on decades of first-hand experience and knowledge to help you become an educated handler, reduce vet costs and keep your dog happy, healthy and in the field.






We spend months, and sometimes years, training and conditioning to have them ready to perform at their best each fall. However, all the preparation in the world isn’t always enough to keep your working dog happy, healthy and productive. As a sporting dog specialist, avid hunter and dog owner I have experienced first-hand the issues encountered by these amazing animals and the devastation it can cause. I’ve created this course to help working dog owners become empowered with the knowledge to properly care for their dog should injury, illness or disaster strike while in the field. If you want to keep your working dog safe, and be the best partner to your dog you can be, this course will offer your everything you need to know.


Every Hunting Dog Owner

This course will allow you to address the issues you’re bound to encounter, ranging from minor issues like cuts and bruises to life-threatening injuries and conditions.

Recognize and Treat the Unique Injuries of Working Dogs

We will teach you how to recognize the unique injuries we encounter with our working dogs. How to triage these issues and know when you can address them in the field and when to seek veterinary care.

Improve the Health and Address Common Hazards of Working Dogs

Our working dogs have unique health issues and encounter hazards in the field that most dogs will never see. We will teach you to recognize these and help guide you through some of these conditions that your veterinarian may not see on a regular basis.

Learn the Tools and Skills to Keep Your Working Dog Happy and Healthy

The goal of this course is to empower you to be an engaged dog owner able to address the conditions you can, and should, and to be an advocate for your dog with the conditions that may require a trip to the vet.



To Create Empowered Dog Owners

Learn how to identify and manage the diverse situations you may face while in the field with an active working dog.


The course is designed to prepare you for the unique issues you will encounter with your working dog. Often this starts before a problem occurs and being able to recognize issues early in their course before they become a season ending issue.

Ensuring you are correctly equipped

Working dog owners typically fall into two categories, those that carry too much stuff and those that carry nothing. Our hope is to have you properly equipped to handle all the situations you encounter, and understand what and why you should carry the items in your first aid kit.

Become an Educated Dog Owner

It’s cliche to say that knowledge is power, but often the key to the best treatment is understanding the condition and potential outcomes. This course is designed not only to show you how to treat and handle the conditions you may encounter with your dog, but to also understand these unique issues.

Be able to treat your own dog

The nuts and bolts of the course is teaching you how to properly care for your dog when you encounter these issues in the field. This course isn’t designed to replace veterinary care, but rather to supplement and enhance your dog’s care when a veterinarian isn’t available.

Prevent Injuries and Illness

Obviously the best medicine is through prevention. Where applicable we will teach you how to best avoid or prevent many of these conditions or hazards. Accidents are bound to happen, but we will want to control the controllable.

Optimizing Your Time in the Field

The ultimate goal with this course is to keep your hunting partner happy, healthy and in the field living their best life and creating lifelong memories.




The original GunDogDoc, Dr. Joe Spoo is a veterinarian of small animal medicine with a special passion for sporting dogs and, more specifically, the gundog breeds. He believes in a cradle-to-grave approach to managing the canine athlete over the course of its lifetime rather than just focusing on the problem of the moment. Dr. Spoo is board-certified by the American College of Veterinary Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation and is one of only a handful of such specialists in private practice in the world, and the only one whose primary focus is hunting dogs. In addition to practice, Dr. Spoo also has numerous research publications to his credit as he pushes to advance the field of veterinary medicine. In addition, he is an invited speaker to state and national veterinary meetings as an expert on the subjects of canine rehabilitation and sports medicine. For more than a quarter century Dr. Spoo has been treating hunting dogs with all manner of injuries and conditions and over that same time frame he’s chased his own dogs, that have included retrievers, setters and spaniels, all over the Midwest in pursuit of birds and the very rare ribbon.

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Field Emergencies, First Aid and Unique Issues of Hunting Dogs

We designed this course to educate and prepare you for the common injuries and issues we encounter with our hunting dogs in the field. Once the problem is identified we also go into detail on how to treat and address these issues so that you can keep your hunting partner happy, healthy, and hunting throughout the season. The course is built in a way that it can be watched from start to finish to expand your knowledge and awareness of these issues. Where applicable we also created shorter, more direct, videos on the treatment side of the equation. The hope is that these shorter videos will be used as a reference when needing to apply this knowledge in the field. This course is not meant as a replacement for veterinary care, but rather as a supplement to be able to start the treatment and recovery process when a veterinarian isn’t immediately available.

CHAPTER 01: Introduction to the Course

The core to many of the issues we encounter in the field is the tailgate exam. We dive into that as well as why what vest you choose matters and how to muzzle your dog without a muzzle.

CHAPTER 02: Building a First Aid Kit

Learn to build a base kit for the truck as well as a kit to carry in the field.

CHAPTER 03: Eye Care

Topics covered will include eye injuries, how to flush the eye and apply ointment.

CHAPTER 04: Nose Care

The business end of the dog. We will discuss nasal foreign bodies and flushing the nose.

CHAPTER 05: Foot Care

Where the rubber meets the road. Topics cover nail trims to boots and when to hunt or not.

CHAPTER 06: Lacerations

Learn when you should and shouldn’t close a wound and how to use a skin stapler.

CHAPTER 07: Bandaging

We will cover the principles of bandaging, applying a simple bandage and a splint.

CHAPTER 08: Migrating Foreign Bodies

You will learn the plants that cause them, what infection can look like and how to guide treatment.

CHAPTER 09: Temperature Extremes

From heat stroke to hypothermia, we will prepare you for both situations.

CHAPTER 10: Lameness

We will walk you through a lameness exam and present our decision tree on whether to hunt or not.

CHAPTER 11: Hypoglycemia

Learn to recognize the signs of low blood sugar and then how to treat and prevent it.

CHAPTER 12: Exertional Rhabdomyolysis

Sometimes these dogs work too hard and can result in muscle breakdown. Learn to recognize and prevent this condition.

CHAPTER 13: Toxins

Dogs like to eat things they shouldn’t. We will also discuss blue-green algae, inducing vomiting and poison control.

CHAPTER 14: Major Trauma

It’s important to understand that sometimes the only option is to stabilize the injury and seek immediate veterinary care.

CHAPTER 15: Animal Encounters

Porcupines, rabies, and skunks … oh my!

CHAPTER 16: Post-Hunt Issues

Sometimes the problems start when the hunt ends. We will tackle diarrhea, anorexia, soreness, and infectious diseases.

Do you have a passion for hunting with an amazing hunting dog at your side? Do you want to build your confidence to be able to protect and maximize your hunting partners’ health year round? Do you want to gain the knowledge to manage any unexpected health issues with your hunting dog? If so, this course is here to help teach you what you need to know!


Get Lifetime Access

Field Emergencies, First Aid and Unique Issues of Hunting Dogs

$ 297

For less than the price of an emergency visit, get access to this one-of-a-kind course. Become the dog owner your dog deserves and gain access to priceless knowledge that just might save their life.