Field retrieval, handling and care of harvested game

One of the most emotional conflicting times a hunter experiences during a hunt is right after a shot is taken. On one hand your hunting plan came together and a shot opportunity was presented, on the other hand you may not be entirely sure where, or even if, you hit the animal. Everything looked good, but the animal ran off. Did it die just out of sight, or do you have a blood-trailing job to do? You have an obligation to the animal to make a quick clean kill, but what if that did not happen?

All of these questions, plus the excitement of seeing a deer and getting a shot, will result in an emotional rollercoaster, as well as plenty of anxiety.

Novice hunters will likely experience all of these emotions, and likely even more anxiety than an experienced hunter because all of aspects are new to them.

Experiencing, and embracing, this emotional rollercoaster is part of the hunting experience. Many experienced hunters claim that if they were not excited after getting a shot they would quit hunting; part and parcel with the excitement is the anxiety, at some level, of making sure they made a good shot.

Helping novice hunters anticipate and understand this complex emotional response is an important part of becoming a long-term deer hunter.