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Old 01-10-2010, 09:07 AM
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Default Why do injured deer go to water??

Why does an injured deer head for water? I know cause he's thirsty,but why??
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Old 01-10-2010, 09:15 AM
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A lot of times, people that are badly injured get thirsty.
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Old 01-10-2010, 10:06 AM
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i think they just run down hill and thats were the creeks are, its easyer to run down hill than up one
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Old 01-10-2010, 10:21 AM
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I am going to agree with the down hill run in the short term. In the long term, a wounded animal, like any other, needs water and a wounded animal will likely need it more.
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Old 01-10-2010, 10:22 AM
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Water is needed to make more blood / replace blood. automatic response?
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Old 01-10-2010, 11:05 AM
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Originally Posted by JustUs4All View Post
I am going to agree with the down hill run in the short term. In the long term, a wounded animal, like any other, needs water and a wounded animal will likely need it more.
I agree w/ this. Most of mine go down hill when first hit, whether there's water or not. I've found several that died in the branch, though. A friend wounded one that got into a neighbor's pond one time. He had to get the guy's permission to get it. It was still alive when they got to it. It kept swimming from one side to the other, until the neighbor finally shot it with his pistol when it got to one of the banks. They kept throwing stuff at it but it never would get out of the pond.
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Old 01-10-2010, 01:03 PM
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It is easier to run down hill. If you shoot one and it runs up hill, most times you have a problem.
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Old 01-10-2010, 04:46 PM
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When people are wounded they are always thirsty. I worked a lot of wrecks when I was in the fire dept. and I have had a lot of people ask for water especially if they were bleeding. I seen it a lot when people were bleeding out internaly. It is a natural responce for an animal to find water as well.
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Old 01-10-2010, 09:18 PM
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slows the bleeding, maybe a natural instinct?
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Old 01-10-2010, 09:26 PM
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Been tracking now on the Dial a Dog list for 5 years. Weird thing is I have yet to find one in water, Found several close to water- but none in it. I know many have seen this happen before- I just have not. Just my 1 or 2 cents.
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Old 01-12-2010, 04:54 PM
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Default Blood Loss

Blood loss makes the deer extremely thirsty. A lot of times that is where they will die after drinking.
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Old 01-12-2010, 05:09 PM
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I was always told they run to water to try and stop the bleeding. That they do it whenever they are hurt. Roll around in the mud to help clog up the cut. So, when they get shoot, just a natural reaction to treat it like they got cut by something.
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Old 01-12-2010, 06:11 PM
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Default wound instinct

Although a deer does not have the same reasoning
to decide as a human I think that they do cool their
wounds as in privious post but remember that the edge
of water is mud and scraping or lying in it helps close
the wound. I believe that GOD gave the animals the sense
of instinct to do so.
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Old 01-12-2010, 09:40 PM
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Ya'll keep this up and i just might not shot another one.
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Old 02-15-2010, 06:57 PM
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the cold water will clot the hole same thing with leaves.i tracked deer, and found them in creeks with there nose just above the water line still breathing. and once i got up on one and it took off runnin and didt bleed a drop more. he is probley still kickin
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Old 02-16-2010, 07:47 AM
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It seems to me that a gut shot deer will run to water more often that one that isn't gut shot. I've shot them before and totally destroyed the heart and they ran 30, 40,50 yds but I call that a "dead deer running".
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Old 02-16-2010, 08:44 AM
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I think it all depends on how bad the deer is hit. If you put an arrow through both lungs they usually run the direction they were heading, not very far ever. They don't have time to think about it. I have found them in water, and I have found them up the side of a hill that I could hardly climb.
If a deer is not hit that good they do run out of steam and down hill is way easyer than up hill.
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Old 02-16-2010, 09:14 AM
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IMHO it is mostly when the wounded deer hits a water obstacle it stops. If it runs to the edge of a lake or river and does not have the energy to swim, it stops. If it does try to swim the excess energy required to swim causes it to die quickly and it is found in the water. If it goes down a creek/river bank and can't climb the opposite bank it stops. Also if there is thick cover near the waters edge it will be a good place to hide so it stops. It is not that the wounded deer runs to water, the wounded deer runs into a water trap.
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Old 02-16-2010, 10:31 AM
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They get thirsty due to the loss of blood (fluids). They instinctively know to go to water. Sometimes they submerge in the water because submerging in water helps them to feel better because cold water constricts the blood vessels which slows the bleeding and soothes the wound.
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Old 02-16-2010, 11:55 AM
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i disagree with the downhill run theory. there are no hills down here near the coast and wounded deer do the same thing: head straight for water. so do deer being run by dogs, but i know they head for water to lose the dogs.
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Old 02-16-2010, 12:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Philbow View Post
IMHO it is mostly when the wounded deer hits a water obstacle it stops. If it runs to the edge of a lake or river and does not have the energy to swim, it stops. If it does try to swim the excess energy required to swim causes it to die quickly and it is found in the water. If it goes down a creek/river bank and can't climb the opposite bank it stops. Also if there is thick cover near the waters edge it will be a good place to hide so it stops. It is not that the wounded deer runs to water, the wounded deer runs into a water trap.
This is the most logical answer I have seen yet . Most deer make it to water in a short while . Do you really think they say to themselves " Man I am getting thirsty !". Thats just not logical . I have been a paramedic for 7 years now and the only reason I have been asked for water when it is trauma related is when someone has the mettalic taste of blood in their mouth . I think deer know that water is one of the only places they can hide or most places that hold water are usally steep and are hard for a weak animal to cross .
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Old 02-16-2010, 12:27 PM
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i disagree with the downhill run theory. there are no hills down here near the coast and wounded deer do the same thing: head straight for water. so do deer being run by dogs, but i know they head for water to lose the dogs.
I agree. I hunt only a few miles from the coast on flat land also.
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Old 02-16-2010, 12:52 PM
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I've always heard that a wounded deer will head for water, but my experience tells me that this is not always the case. I think that a lot of deer will eventually end up at water if wounded, but I don't think that is their immediate reaction to being wounded. I think their first instinct is flight, and they will go until they feel safe or they can't go any farther. I find they will most often head for the thickest cover around. A lot of times, I think they'll end up in creeks or gullies because they try to cross and can't make it up the other bank.
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Old 02-19-2010, 07:04 AM
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I've always heard that a wounded deer will head for water, but my experience tells me that this is not always the case. I think that a lot of deer will eventually end up at water if wounded, but I don't think that is their immediate reaction to being wounded. I think their first instinct is flight, and they will go until they feel safe or they can't go any farther. I find they will most often head for the thickest cover around. A lot of times, I think they'll end up in creeks or gullies because they try to cross and can't make it up the other bank.
exactly
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Old 02-19-2010, 09:03 AM
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I had a buck on the last day of season run 40 yds to a creek and die right in the middle of it. Dont know why but that was the 2nd time it happened to me. From that stand the creek is the path of least resistance...
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Old 02-19-2010, 09:21 AM
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A lot of new research about blood tracking shows that wounded deer are typically wanting to find thick cover. This can often be found near creeks and other water sources. Makes sense to me. Over the years, I've helped blood trail deer up hill and into cutovers or pine thickets. But, I have also helped track deer down hill towards water...often to thickets. To me, thick areas have been a common theme when trailing a wounded deer.

Just my .02
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Old 02-20-2010, 03:37 PM
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Been tracking now on the Dial a Dog list for 5 years. Weird thing is I have yet to find one in water, Found several close to water- but none in it. I know many have seen this happen before- I just have not. Just my 1 or 2 cents.
Buddy of mine shot a doe down at beaverdam last year. We tracked her for about 200 yds, and I had to shimmie down a fallen tree to tie a rope around her neck to drag her out.
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Old 02-21-2010, 10:41 AM
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They get thirsty due to the loss of blood (fluids). They instinctively know to go to water. Sometimes they submerge in the water because submerging in water helps them to feel better because cold water constricts the blood vessels which slows the bleeding and soothes the wound.
YEP!! This is atleast part of the story anyway...and I don't discredit the theories of downhill running and searching for cover...

Significant blood loss decreases their cardiac output. They suffer HYPOtension (or decreased blood pressure) and HYPOvolemia (decreased blood volume). In humans this causes a hormonal reaction that ultimately results in constriction of blood vessels, an increase in water reabsorption from the urine, and an increase in THIRST by a hormone called antidiuretic hormone.

Also, when a significant injury occurs certain signalers are released to increase their temperature to control infection (think of those days outside of hunting season when you call in sick to work...running a fever) which also causes them to become thirsty and desire water to decrease their body temperature.
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Old 03-01-2010, 06:11 PM
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frist deer I shot when I was a kid I shot with a shotgun he ran about 100yds to a small pond when we got there his head was the only thing sticking out of the water and he was not bleeding anymore, they do it like all other animals do, it is a natural instinck knowing this helps me find deer for other people I ask them where the nearest water is and thats where I find most deer that have stopped bleeding.
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Old 03-01-2010, 06:18 PM
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I've seen them go both ways - downhill to water as well as uphill and away from water, but for the most part, they head for water.

I would bet it is more instinct than anything else.
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Old 03-01-2010, 07:45 PM
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Originally Posted by bublewis View Post
I've always heard that a wounded deer will head for water, but my experience tells me that this is not always the case. I think that a lot of deer will eventually end up at water if wounded, but I don't think that is their immediate reaction to being wounded. I think their first instinct is flight, and they will go until they feel safe or they can't go any farther. I find they will most often head for the thickest cover around. A lot of times, I think they'll end up in creeks or gullies because they try to cross and can't make it up the other bank.
Most times you find the thickest cover around branches, creeks and wet weather ponds. As for running downhill, water is usually always found downhill or the lowest lying area.

That said I have found deer twenty thirty yards on the far side of a running branch of water, but is was the thickest cover. Which is the reason to give a deer that runs out of sight a chance to bleed out. Any deer that is shot is not going any further than the first thicket that it feels it has out run the predator. That is instinctive.

Depending on the wound they either lay down and die or they recover strength and move on under new pressure. It is that simple.
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Old 03-01-2010, 08:14 PM
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I like deer that run toward the truck.
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Old 03-02-2010, 04:32 PM
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many years ago we had one shot with nothing but its head stickin up out of the lake dont know bout running to water but that one was hidin in it.(maybe they run to water to hide in it and find out its not deep enough and give up)
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Old 03-03-2010, 07:20 AM
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YEP!! This is atleast part of the story anyway...and I don't discredit the theories of downhill running and searching for cover...

Significant blood loss decreases their cardiac output. They suffer HYPOtension (or decreased blood pressure) and HYPOvolemia (decreased blood volume). In humans this causes a hormonal reaction that ultimately results in constriction of blood vessels, an increase in water reabsorption from the urine, and an increase in THIRST by a hormone called antidiuretic hormone.

Also, when a significant injury occurs certain signalers are released to increase their temperature to control infection (think of those days outside of hunting season when you call in sick to work...running a fever) which also causes them to become thirsty and desire water to decrease their body temperature.
Your right when you are talking about the physics behind the event but I just dont think that a deer can think on this level . I think they simply know that they can hide better in the water and the thick cover around it or it may be an obstacle they cannot cross after they are weak . What other explanation would you have for a duck that dives and lodges himself under debri after he is wounded ? They die after drowning themselves . Does he simply not want anything or anyone to retrieve his dead body ?
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Old 03-03-2010, 07:03 PM
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I've tracked lots of deer and found them in water. Always heard it helps clot the blood. I don't think its to hide rather than natural instinct when our cows get sick or have trouble having calves we find them in the creeks too.
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