Hiking or Geocaching with your dogs in unfamiliar areas is not without risk. Today I've been researching one of those risks - animal traps. Learn the basics now rather than in the heat of the moment.
NOTE: There is no graphic content in any of the following links. They are safe for all to view.
"Trapping remains a socially and economically important activity for many people in Ontario. The province is considered one of the world's leading suppliers of wild fur. Trapping also plays an important role in current wildlife management."
Read more about trapping in Ontario: The Ministry of Natural Resources
Finding your dog in a trap would be unpleasant, but it can happen and if you spend any time in the wild it's best to be prepared. Education, licensing and reporting are all required for trappers, but unfortunately not everyone follows the law and/or accidents can happen if you range into the wrong areas. I personally know of one dog who got caught in a trap in Ontario. The size of the dog vs the size and type of trap used determine how dangerous the trap will end up being.
Here are some informative links you may want to check out:
Not all traps are the same. Some are meant for live captures, others to kill. Find an illustrated overview of traps on HunterExam.com
Terrierman.com has step by step instructions on how to release a Conibear/Bodygrip trap. The Conibear trap is meant to kill and knowledge of it can save your dog's life.
It's important to keep the dog from struggling if it gets caught in a snare, and heavy duty cable cutters may be required and might not be a bad idea to carry in your pack. How to release a dog from a snare.
This excellent video was created by a vet and demonstrates how to open a foothold trap. (What you see in the preview is a bully stick. I promise, nothing graphic.)
Hopefully none of us will ever have practical need of this information.