Clearly, if you shoot a deer and night’s falling fast you are not going to be able to wait as long as you might if the animal was taken during morning stalk.
In the latter case you might give it as much as ten minutes for the deer to lie down, or die.
What you won’t know if the deer runs into cover – and it usually does – is how far it might travel before stopping, or dropping.
If one does run you must always mark the spot where it was struck by the bullet, then slowly follow its trail.
Take the rifle with you just in case the deer isn’t dead when you find it, and you can deliver a swift coup de grace.
It’s in situations like this (and especially with night descending) when a dog proves invaluable.