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Letting Young Kids Kill Deer: Is It Right?

Old 12-16-2002, 05:02 AM
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Location: Barryton MI USA
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Default RE: Letting Young Kids Kill Deer: Is It Right?

My grandma let shoot my first deer when I was 9,been hooked ever since but I was raised around hunting and she taught me how to shoot and about were to shoot a animal.And she made me gut it to she said that if I was going to hunt and take a animal I best be learning it all I still remember puking about 4 time's.I have taught my own son's early as soon as they showed intrest and now they are 20 and 18 and very fine hunter's and far as the draging out part I'm proud to drag it for them and I still do and they do the same for me,half the time when I get one I don't even get a chance to gut it because they are right there knives ready,Teaching them young about hunting,shooting and woodsmanship I think makes the sport that much stronger and gives alot of memories that I cherrish
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Old 12-16-2002, 06:37 AM
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Default RE: Letting Young Kids Kill Deer: Is It Right?

this is a pretty interesting thread. Lots of different ideas. My take on the situation is this. Taking a kid out and letting them shoot a deer just to say they did, isn't my way of doing things. However if that is what gets them hooked I guess it might be ok, but should never be construed as hunting. I personally was 12 before I could legally hunt. I followed my dad into the woods countless times before that though. I was a mature child and my dad had enormous confidence in me at that age. I gutted my 1st deer, with a little help. Also dragged it. I was small, but its amazing what an adrenaline rush can do for your strentgh to drag a deer. I swear I have a harder time dragging a deer now as a full grown man than I did as a little tiny kid.
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Old 12-16-2002, 06:44 AM
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Default RE: Letting Young Kids Kill Deer: Is It Right?

Check the law. If it's illegal don't do it. Even if it is legal then you have to be careful to assess the youngsters ability and maturity. As has been said, if you have to aim for them or hold the gun, it's too young.
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Old 12-16-2002, 07:26 AM
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Default RE: Letting Young Kids Kill Deer: Is It Right?

I appreciate everyone's comments and thoughts. I agree that dragging the deer out is something someone should not be expected to do alone in every situation. I have helped others and they have helped me do this. However, I do think anyone who shoots an animal should know how to field dress it and clean it. My comments to Cardeer were concerning his arguments about eating at McDonalds and using a fork or spoon.
My topic is not concerned with adults with a disability or "little ladies" as some have put it. That is a different issue as far as I am concerned. A healthy child still has the potential to learn to hunt in all its aspects and clean animals. A disabled adult would not. I also think an adult would have a greater capacity than a child to understand the taking of an animal and the implications of killing an animal without actually doing the associated dirty work. The comparison is not valid in my opinion. I am not so stupid that I would not recognize the limitations of a disabled adult and that the normal rules shouldn't apply to them. I'm sorry, I just don't buy the disabled adult-healthy child analogy.
The thrust of my post is aimed at those parents who make "hunting" similar to a video game, where there is no responsibility for one's actions. Simply pull a trigger, and there is meat in the freezer. The child does no scouting, no preparation, or no dirty work after the kill. I simply do not think this is teaching proper respect for the game.
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Old 12-16-2002, 07:38 AM
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Old 12-16-2002, 07:51 AM
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Default RE: Letting Young Kids Kill Deer: Is It Right?

I feel the same way about a kid killing a deer before they know how to hunt as I do about a person who pays a guide to do all the work for them. They are shooters and not hunters.

My 10 year old twin girls started learning to hunt last season and have continued learning through this season. They have sat on stand with me one at a time, they have preseason scouted with me(they can tell the age of deer crap, recognize a rub and a scrap, and tracks), they have helped me drag out a deer, field dress a deer, skin a deer, and butcher a deer. They have yet to carry a weapon into the field. They are becoming hunters, not shooters!

I will be buying them thier first gun, a single shot 22 and will start them squirrel hunting next year, if they do the following:

1. Pass the hunters safety course.
2. Prove to Dad they can handle a gun safely.
3. Prove to Dad they can shoot well enough to hunt.

They will first become squirrel hunters, then deer hunters! They will not be shooters. They will help with it all until they are strong enough to do it alone, but they will be hunters and not shooters.

The Tazman aka Martin Price
Founder and President of
Virginia Disabled Outdoorsmen Club
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Old 12-16-2002, 10:21 AM
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Default RE: Letting Young Kids Kill Deer: Is It Right?

Taz I don't know how you do it? You almost always say what I'm thinking first.<img src=icon_smile_big.gif border=0 align=middle> My daughter isn't much into hunting and I'm not going to force her. She gets light headed when she sees blood My son on the other hand wants to learn he is only 9 He has gone and sat with me in the woods, he gets bored and starts moving around alot, thats fine with me it's part of being a kid. He has never been with me when I've shot a deer, but he has helped me skin them and cut them up for the frez. I try to take him target shooting as much as possible. I also preach gun safety. Same as taz said he will carry a gun when it's legal, and only after he has taken a safety(hunting) coarse, and when I believe him to be as safe as possible. As far as the question goes I think each case is different just like cardeer pointed out. Just because a kid is 16 and has the strength to pull a truck backwards doesn't mean he has the smarts to go hunting.
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Old 12-16-2002, 11:09 AM
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Default RE: Letting Young Kids Kill Deer: Is It Right?

Quote&quot;Dad and Jr. get to Dad's stand opening morning. Jr. has not been in the woods at all except for his one day hunting last year. A deer shows up and Jr. shoots it. Dad loads the deer up and takes it to camp. Jr. is dropped off at the house so he can brag to Momma and his friends. Meanwhile, me or someone else helps Dad clean the deer (or track or drag, depending on the circumstances). Dad is happy because Jr. killed a deer and he can brag on his boy. Jr. is happy because he killed a deer and can brag to his friends. My question: is this hunting? What has Dad taught Jr.?&quot;
__________________________________________________ ____________________

I can't say I would agree with the above senario but I also would not blame the kid for it. I think the father is the one you should be upset with. I is our responsibility as adults be it a father, mother, friend or relative to teach kids about hunting.

Do I believe that kids should hunt when they can't field dress a deer?

Sure as long as they are involved in the process in some sort. It would prob. surprise you how many adults do not scout for deer or spend very very little time in the woods before season. Most will go back to the same place every year and hunt without giving it a thought. We need this type of hunters to help control the population.

Alot of people on this board grew up around guns and had hunting parents or friends that introduced them to the sport. This can be done in alot of different ways.

I think we should teach all aspects of the hunt from start to finish but age is not always the best judgment as to when someone should be allowed to hunt.

Supervised deer hunting or any hunting for that matter should be the way you start a kid. I am not saying aim the gun for them (although I doubt this is happening because I don't know how you aim for someone else.) But sitting beside you kids in the stand and watching them shoot a deer, then teaching them to gut it (even if you are doing it), helping drag it out (obviously doing most of it yourself), and skinning it out or whatever, this is how they learn it. I didn't know it the first time, they have to have practice and that takes experience.

I don't know if we should judge someone for thier method of hunting if they are following all the game laws in thier state. For me personally deer hunting doesn't end until the deer are skinned and deboned then the jerky, summer sausage, brats, polish dogs, and steaks are cut up and in the freezer.

Does that make me more of a hunter than the guy who drops it off at the locker?

&quot; Anyone can be a father, but it takes a real man to be a Dad&quot;
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Old 12-16-2002, 01:17 PM
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Location: Grand Rapids Michigan USA
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Default RE: Letting Young Kids Kill Deer: Is It Right?

Isn't there laws against young kids killing deer. I know my father made me wait until I was 12 to bow hunt and until I was 14 to hunt with a rifle because those are the laws here in Michigan. I hunted with him with out a bow or a gun several times before I was of legal age but I had to wait until I was 14 to carry a gun. Don't we as hunters have some moral responsiblity to teach our young hunter to follow the law even if they are ready to hunt at a younger age?

It is not good to have zeal without knowledge, nor to be hasty and miss the way
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Old 12-16-2002, 01:23 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Garner NC USA
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Default RE: Letting Young Kids Kill Deer: Is It Right?

Interesting post. I was just thinking about this the other day myself (as my son is only 1yr old). When will I take him hunting? I tend to look at it the same way Tazman does. I will not let him pull the trigger until he can pass the Hunter Safety course and he has proven to me the he is responsible with guns. I too think 5 yr olds who have to have someone steady a gun for them is to young to hunt..
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