You take some young dogs and run them hard during the winter/hunting season. You try to give them lots of chances to figure out what being a rabbit dog means. You pound them in a pack, trying to maximize opportunity and minimize chances for trouble. They are just starting to look good and figure some things out. Then you put them up for two months.
So then you take five dogs and do everything possible to get them at the top of their game. You run them hard and then run them sharp. In other words, run them all they can physically stand to get them in top shape, and then run them at the top of their game to maximize their ability. Then give them two weeks off.
Then you load the whole bunch up and head for a big clearcut. You see a rabbit crossing the lane on the way in and you know it's going to be exciting. You collar up the dogs and away they go. They pound off the hill so fast they are almost outrunning their bark.
You are on the edge of 2,000 acres and you may need it all. When you see the dogs on the first check, it seems like they are going to use it all just regaining the track. Quickly, Butcher snatched it up and away they went, hammering off the hill again.
The ARHA World Hunt is over and it's back to just running for fun. The dogs had a blast and most of the time, I did too. Some of the races were a little choppy, some of the time. Most chases though were fast and furious. It was wild but I had a blast.
I ran Butcher, Ob, Chip, Gypsy, Kurly, Dennis, David, and Trick.