Effect of diet on hunting performance of English pointers

Vet Ther. Winter 2001;2(1):10-23.


A study was conducted to evaluate the influence of diet on hunting performance of English pointers during the quail-hunting season in southwest Georgia. Twenty-three trained dogs were assigned to two commercially available diets (i.e., Diet A = Eukanuba Premium Performance Formula, The Iams Company, Lewisburg, OH; Diet B = Diamond Premium Adult Dog Food, Diamond Pet Foods, Meta, MO). Results showed that dogs fed Diet A maintained or gained weight and body condition throughout the hunting season while dogs fed Diet B lost body weight and body condition (P < .05). Dogs fed Diet A demonstrated superior hunting performance (P < .05) compared with those fed Diet B based on total finds per hunt and on the number of birds located per hour of hunting. All blood variables were within normal ranges for adult healthy dogs throughout the season. These results imply that diet can affect the overall performance of hunting dogs and should provide useful information to trainers, handlers, and clinicians who are concerned with promoting the best performance and health in hunting dogs and other canine athletes.

Publication types

  • Controlled Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Animal Feed / analysis*
  • Animals
  • Behavior, Animal
  • Body Weight
  • Diet / veterinary*
  • Dogs*
  • Female
  • Hot Temperature
  • Male
  • Time Factors