Our four-legged hunting companions will do just about anything for us, but that drive to please often forces them into hazardous situations. Whether they're tearing through a barbed-wire fence after a grouse or launching into frigid water to retrieve a mallard, hunting dogs continually face the risk of injury, or worse.

Of course, if ever your dog is injured in the field—no matter how insignificant it may seem at the time—a trip to the vet is a must. Often, though, you'll initially need to apply first aid in the field. With that in mind, we consulted Rhonda Shewfelt, a veterinarian and instructor at Saskatoon's Western College of Veterinary Medicine, and Tracy Fisher, a veterinarian with Regina's Albert North Veterinary Clinic. What follows is their advice on how best to prepare for, and treat, the most common injuries and ailments your dog is likely to encounter.