It's cutting them loose and having the pack run the rabbit until it gives up and goes in a hole or gets caught. And although the dogs usually don't catch it, they run like they want to. Just me and my pack of hounds, in any condition, on any day, in the roughest places I can find . . .

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Starting Pups

I recently read an interesting article by Sam Butler, a successful beagler that runs in the United Beagle Gundog Federation. Although the style of dogs that he runs is much more conservative than mine, he has some interesting ideas.

This part sounds a lot like how we start pups.

We don’t go into the pen unless we hear pups running. They have to hunt, jump and start on their own. Like people, they will adapt easily to hand outs. Jump their first three or four rabbits, and that might be your job for the rest of their lives. We are often asked how long it takes for a pup to start. We have litters start in minutes, and some take six weeks. We see no difference after they start.
When we take pups out of the one-acre pen, we put them in our 32-acre running pen. You want to get them running as soon as possible. If you lay them up, you might have to restart them. Once they are running, we take them out in packs of three or four. We want them to learn to run with other dogs before they run solo. 
Once we run the pups a few times, we try to match them with pups of about the same ability. We want every pup to get a chance to run the front, middle and back and to get checks.

Here is the entire article, The Mechanics of Training Pups.

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