While we all practice to the extreme .... sometimes, if you hunt alot and take shots at animals in the natural surroundings, then a well place shot could turn up to be less than expected.
Since I haven't seen a important post on a gut shot deer, let me give some help and information on the best way ( really the only way ) to retrieve your deer, if the the shot was off the mark by only inches ( back of the ribs ) in the gulet area.
This can be determined by the color of the arrow if you are fortunate enough to be able to recover it.
The slimy green, foul smelling arrow will give you your clue that the shot you intended wasen't the case. Don't fear, stay calm.
This is still a leathal shot, however I would recommend that if you are goin to retrieve this animal then you need to wait a minimum of 7 to 8 hours before you start the tracking.
This is critical to recovery, because once you jump a gut shot deer, the problems you had are nothing less than worse.
Most gut shot deer will only travel 100 yards or maybe 150 yards, total recovery at this point, so don't make the mistake of jumping up a dying deer because you are too excited....patiance is the key, with a less than than the best placed shot.
The only key to recovery, is to give the animal enough time to expire, before you jump it from it's recovery bed!