Hunting can be a fun and safe sport if you just remember to take some safety precautions. Not taking these precautions can cause serious injury, or even death to your friends/hunting buddies, other hunters that may be hunting around you, your hunting dogs, or yourself.
– First of all, remember the three r’s: Rules, regulations, and restrictions. Be aware of the hunting seasons in your area, and never sneak on someone else’s property to go hunting. They may shoot you on purpose and its okay because you’re trespassing.
-Always bring food and water/drinks in case something happens and you get lost out in the woods. If you are stranded, you will at least have food and water until you find your way back. A good way to not get lost is to use markers in case you have poor sense of direction. A compass might be handy too. You can find these in the sporting good stores.
-Wear proper clothing for the occasion. If it’s cold outside, be sure to wear warm socks, gloves, and hat that covers your ears so you do don’t freeze. Long sleeves may not be a good idea during hot weather, but long pants and closed toe shoes are a must when hiking around in the woods. This prevents your legs and feet from bugs, animal bites such as snakes, and brier patches. Especially if you are wearing camouflage, you need to wear a bright orange or yellow safety vest (Neon pink if you like) to alert other hunters that may be hunting in the area that you are not an animal.
-Always assume that your gun is loaded even if you think its not. People make mistakes.
-Keep the safety on your gun until ready to fire.
-Verify with yourself, and possibly with a hunting buddy that what you’re aiming at is indeed an animal before you shoot it. Every year people are mistaken for deers.
-Never point your weapon at your friend’s face! Or in the direction of anyone including yourself. Make sure that your target is clear of all humans and human body parts before aiming and firing. When carrying your gun, carry it over your shoulder with the barrel in the air away from people. Holding it down toward the ground may cause you to loose a foot.
-Clean your gun before and after every hunting trip to ensure no debris is stuck in the barrel. If debris is present when firing, it could cause face injuries or even death for yourself. Also, be sure to check out your weapon to make sure it works properly
-Wear ear plugs every time you fire a gun, or if your friends are firing a gun to protect your ears. The sound could bust your ear drums and make you deaf.
-Make sure the animal is dead before putting it into your truck. I don’t think I have to explain that one.
All I can say now is safe and happy hunting! Don’t forget your camera!