Kids And Spouses

While you might love hunting, your spouse or your children might not understand the allure of the sport. How do you pursue your hobby while respecting your family members, or how can you get your family to hunt together? Here are some ways to help ease the tension between hunting and non-hunting family members.

Kids and Hunting

One of the reasons adults often frown on hunting is because it gives children access to guns. Children and guns are a very dangerous combination. Therefore, if your child shows a desire to hunt, you will need to teach him or her to respect guns as well as how to safely handle guns. Check with local associations to find out if you can enroll your child in a gun safety course.

The minimum hunting age varies state by state, so you will need to make sure that your child is old enough to legally hunt before you take him or her hunting. Also, many states require that children have hunting licenses and pass a hunting safety course before they can legally hunt.

It is, of course, important for your child to understand that he or she should only touch a gun under direct, responsible adult supervision. In order to keep them from playing with the gun while you are away, you should always store your guns unloaded in a locked case. You should store the bullets in a separate locked case.

You should never force a child to hunt. Many children will not want to accompany you on a hunting trip. If your child is reluctant to hunt, do not take him or her hunting. A child could be very traumatized by a hunting trip if they are not mentally or emotionally prepared for what is going to happen.

Tips for Hunting with Kids

Here are a few pointers for hunting with kids:

  • Do not take your child hunting if they are not old enough or mature enough to be a functioning member of the hunting team.
  • Never hunt with a child who has not passed hunting safety and gun safety classes.
  • Never leave your children alone on a hunting trip.
  • Teach your child that it is OK to go hunting and not make a kill. The point of hunting is hunting, not killing.
  • Wear appropriate safety gear while hunting with children. This gear should include brightly colored vests that alert others to your presence.

Spouses and Hunting

There are many couples in which one spouse hunts and the other does not. As with children, you should not force non-hunting spouses to go on a hunt with you. However, if they show an interest in the sport, you could allow them to accompany you on a hunting trip to see if they might like to hunt. If your partner likes the experience, you might become a “”hunting couple.””

However, if your spouse doesn”t enjoy the hunting trip, or if your spouse refuses to go on the hunting trip altogether, you shouldn”t get stressed about the situation. Many spouses enjoy activities that their spouses do not.

There is no reason why hunters and non-hunting spouses and kids cannot live under the same roof. If everyone respects each other”s views, then the hunters in the family can hunt, and the non-hunters can enjoy other activities.

Resources

Chastain, R. (2006). Take A Kid Hunting. Retrieved November 20, 2006, from About Hunting/Shooting Web site: http://hunting.about.com/library/weekly/aa000302a.htm.

Hendricks, DJ. (n.d.). Hunting Buddies. Retrieved November 20, 2006, from Hunting Net Web site: http://www.hunting.net/

articles/articles.aspx?articles_id=257.

Kids Fishing and Hunting World (n.d.). Hunting As A Youth. Retrieved November 21, 2006, from Kids Fishing and Hunting World Web site: http://www.kidsfishinghuntingworld.com/hunting/

hunting_youth.asp.

Humane Society (2006). Learn the Facts about Hunting. Retrieved November 20, 2006, from The Humane Society of the United States Web site: http://www.hsus.org/wildlife/issues_facing_wildlife/

hunting/learn_the_facts_about_hunting.html.

Sutton, K. (n.d.). Hunting With Youngsters. Retrieved November 20, 2006, from Bass Pro Shops Outdoor Library Web site: http://www.basspro.com/servlet/catalog.CFPage?
mode=article&objectID=28854.