Re: Dog Hunters
The love of hunting with dogs dates back before our times and is a form of recreation steeped with a lot of nostalgia and heritage. I love to hear a pack of deer hounds or rabbit beagles early on a cold Fall/Winter morning, their voices carry for miles. It's exciting and exhilarating, especially when you realize the pack is headed in your direction. If you've positioned yourself in the right stand, hopefully you'll get the chance for a shot. Squirrels with "two guys and a dog" adds a whole different element to the "sport" and is quiet enjoyable and productive, if the dog is well trained.
Just like most other activities that involve humans, eventually it's going to get screwed up and there will be misconceptions. I've never seen a shock collar used to make a dog, chasing a game animal, go where you wanted it to. It's for training, not herding! Don't be so naive and quick to judge until you have first hand experience in the subject.
As a boy, deer hunting with my dad, grand-dad, uncles, cousins and friends, we would find a promising looking track and turn a known good jump dog on it. This dog would track/trail the deer usually up to it's bed. The dog's voice changed and became more excited when it encountered a fresher smell from the deer. This meant "he's jumped" and we would all start dancing and singing "Let's turn the dog's out, hoot, hoot" - just kidding! The excited pitch in the jump dog's voice would excite the other hounds and then they could be turned out. Now it's on! Hopefully everyone in the hunt was positioned before the deer "got up" and all the known trails are covered. This doesn't always ensure success though. Deer know every inch of their territory and usually know what's going on around them. I've seen young does and big bucks run in a tight circle all day in the middle of a block of woods and eventually loose the dogs. Then I've seen big bucks head straight out and not look back. We get the dogs 10-15 miles from where we turned them out, if we're lucky.
Today a lot "dog hunter's" use radio telemetry and CB radios to keep track of their dog(s). This was somewhat frowned upon when it first started but seems to be the norm now, especially where I'm from in southeastern N.C. The exception(s) I have are; (1) shortly after the dogs are loosed the dog owners start tracking their dogs, calling each other over the CB with frequencies to check, especially if a big buck isn't killed within the first 30 minutes. (2) After the hunt has dissolved, hunters pile up in bunches along the rural roads with antenna's stuck out their windows tracking lost dogs and are a hazard and nuisance to the public. This confuses, scares and iritates city and country folk and gives deer hunters a bad name. I used to own deer hounds of my own so I know the why's and the how's of it. Doesn't make me right or wrong, just the way it is, as I see it. JohnnyK
“Men commonly think according to their inclinations, speak according to their learning and imbibed opinions, but generally act according to custom”
Francis Bacon, Sr. quotes (English Lawyer and Philosopher. 1561-1626).