Hot dogs are intriguing catfish fishing baits that few fishermen have tried but which appear to work in theory. Hot dogs are simple to come by and even quicker to prepare. For some kinds of fish, hot dogs have a seat at the table of excellent catfishing baits, but they are ineffective for others.
Hot dogs make excellent catfish baits due to their ease of usage, lack of mess, and overall appeal to some catfish, particularly channels.
Hot dogs are capable of capturing good channel catfish, even though they aren’t as good as live or chopped natural bait for these types of fish.
Many anglers add Kool-Aid, alcohol, or garlic to increase their flavor. However, it is not the ideal bait for huge channel cats, flathead catfish, or blue catfish.
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Hot Dogs as Bait for Catfish
Hot dogs are substantial, with a pleasant natural aroma and flavor. As a result, they’re an excellent choice for hungry catfish searching for quick and tasty food. Hot dogs come in a number of tastes and sizes; however, hot dogs sliced into thirds perform better since they fit more easily into the mouth of a channel catfish, for example.
It is true that this type of bait can be very effective to catch certain species of catfish, especially channels; however, many anglers do not recommend using hot dogs to attract blue catfish or flathead catfish.
This is because these fish prefer another type of food. In the specific case of flatheads, they love live fish like shad or bluegill. You could be successful in catching small blue catfish using trotlines, but you may not have the same luck if you try to catch a large one.
What about bullhead catfish? In many aspects, bullhead catfish are simply little catfish. Big bullheads and little channel catfish are similar in size and eat similar foods such as minnows, shad, clams, insects, plants, worms, and crayfish.
Because bullheads have smaller jaws than channel catfish, it is recommended that you fish for them with hot dogs chopped into 1/4 chunks rather than thirds.
Best Time to Use Hot Dogs for Catfish
Catfish can be caught all year with hot dogs as bait, but the summer is the best time to do it. That is the perfect time of year to use hot dogs to capture channel cats, bullheads and little blue catfish.
Catfish will become more energetic throughout the summer, eating in deeper water throughout the day and moving into shallower water close to the coast at nighttime. Since catfish are active at all hours of the day and night in search of food, you have a far greater chance of 1 or 2 of them spotting your hot dog and biting into it.
This is particularly true if you season them with flavor and smell. Catfish depend primarily on their ability to smell to discover food, so using garlic on hot dogs could really help you attract these fish to your hook.
Keep in mind that while hot dogs can be good year-round baits, catfish may prefer to look for fish-based foods in winter.
Additional Scents for Hot Dogs
Just spice up your hot dogs to make them even better for catfish. Kool-Aid powder, garlic salt, and even a little beer or red wine may really bring them to life. The above-mentioned flavorings appeal to catfish, and the meat of this type of bait will take them if marinated in them for a specific period of time.
You’ll only need a package of hot dogs, a pale or a plastic baggie, and your preferred flavoring. Put the bait in the bag after cutting them in thirds. Let the hot dogs marinade for at least an hour after adding the seasoning.
Can the Hot Dog Stay on the Hook?
This is a problem that many fishermen have when catching catfish using hot dogs as bait. Because they are slimy, they may come off the hook easily. Fortunately, there are several methods that can help us keep our hot dogs on the hook so that we can safely fish catfish.
The Double Back Method
It is simply to make sure the hot dog goes back through the second half of the treble hook and that the barb is securely buried in the hot dog.
A word of caution: do not use large bits of hot dogs. It’s not essential, and it’s one of the main reasons they fall off. Keep it tiny, with a total length of less than 1 inch. In general, one complete hot dog should provide roughly four pieces of bait.
The Kool-Aid Method
Simply prepare a pot of Kool-Aid and immerse the hot dog parts in it for one day or 2 before catfishing with these baits.
This strategy is also used by many fishermen when fishing with chicken livers. It’s just a quick and easy technique to tough them up somewhat, which maintains them tighter and helps them stay on the hook longer.