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Discussion Starter #1
Field Trialling or any kind of actual hunting in the UK is very restricted, and are very very few basset packs. However if the sole intention is to go after Rabbit thats OK.

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OK here goes, this is where you look dull or may have a point; get the disclaimer out of the way first. I would like to do a hounds day out for Bassets, where it is wholly about the Basset. Where the owners enjoyment comes about from being out with ones hound watching it trying to do what comes naturally, in this case scenting RABBIT. This type of thing is something that could pan out to be a total shambles and just a yomp over muddy fields or something quite enjoyable.

Bassets were originally bred for hunting by flushing out prey such as rabbit. But because of their cute looks and friendly manner and other aspects they have gained the misconseption of being sedentary and rather comical.

We try to keep our two Bassets fit, they love to chase and go around the fields off the lead for a good old sniff.

My aspiration is to put together the "Friends Group Bassets" where owners of domestic Bassets can come together for a meet to go out into the field in an attempt to hunt Rabbit. I have had considerred the 2004 Hunting Act, and from what I can gather going after Rabbit is exempt, so what I am proposing is legal.

I would look to enlist the services of huntsman and whippers in. to go through protocol and lead etc. This would necessarily incur a cost, but hopefully would not make an event prohibitive.

This is not intended to a serious hunt with the view to catching a rabbit, but serious in stimulating ones hound in taking part in an authentic hunt.

One other serious matter is that if this were to happen ones hounds must be desensitised to sheep.

Please join if this is of interest.

Nexr step is to find whether this technically do-able or whether I being rather naive
 

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I would look to enlist the services of huntsman and whippers in. to go through protocol and lead etc
Given the hunting ban the protocol may be necesaary but in the use Huntsmen, whipper ins etc are only used by formal hunt packts that tied to the english tradtions.

Akc trial will use spectators and competetor to beat the brush and in AHBA the dogs must find rabbits on there own. Don't know if letting dogs chase rabbits is against the hunt ban but you need some one save enough to determ if the dogs are chasing game that it is not restricted game or you could end up in a pile of trouble. So hounting in areas with known populations of fox and deer could be troublesome especial for dogs that have not been specifical trained to ignore them.

I would thing the first place to start however is securing acess to land to hold such an event. The problem with tring to guage intrest of people is because depending on how far they have to travel there interest is going to change dramatical.
in the US I know of one formal basset hunt club that has I informal hunt a year which individual from outside the hunt pack estqblishment can bring their dogs see
TCB Gold Cup
You may which to contact them as the may have contact in Great britian that do similar event or are looking to do so. which would great reduce your efforts

also see
World Hunt
the last post by Ronald J. Ausman Jr. who happen to be a whipper in at TCB also has a contact number.

Whether any of the basset pack in Great Britian are ammendable to such an event I don''t know but it worth a shot.

In contrasty to the formality of an English style hunt Field Trial In the us are very much less formal

see
Brace two dogs at a time



Pilgrim basset hound club has a fun hunt every sunday after thanksgiving where they secure the ground of a beagle club for the day and anywhere between 30-60 bassets from mostly pet owners ie don't hunt with them participate in a giant pack hunt. It is very informal but the beagle grounds are completely enclose so that loosing a basset is extreemely unlikely and when the pack spilts multiple time it is not a big deal as it would be on the open grounds most English hunts use.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Cheers Mike for that. I read my initial post, I articulated it poorly really, but I think you know where I am coming from.

I am a bit envious of the fact that in the States you have your field trials and in France they have the Brevet de Chasse, but in the UK we seem to have nothing like it.

I am thrashing about at the moment looking for a steer to do something meaningful and not a joke, and without others thinking you are being foolish

A labrador will play fetch and retrieve, whereas a basset sniffs. I think this is one of the contributing factors to obese basseets, because it needs to be more readily recognised this is what bassets do. Out there in the field with their nose to the ground.

I will ramble on in future posts, I am trying to consult at the moment to gather ideas together.
 

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I think "but don't quote me on this" :p that there are some basset hunting packs in the uk, it may be worth looking them up and asking advice. We've also got a local beagle pack in East Yorkshire, though not sure what they do to get round the ban and exercise their dogs legally.

There's nothing my little Bagel loves to do better than hunt down Bert, my giant French Lop bunny in the garden, then tell me she's found him rather loudly.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Making head way, finally starting to track things, my basset nature is being exposed :D:D. There is East Lincs Bassets and one a two others.

I am also trying to find out if I am in the minority in the UK of wanting my bassets to do a bit hunting in a proper controlled manner.
 

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I used to hunt after the ban and i seem to recall that its legal to hunt with a pack so long as there is someone trained to dispatch the fox with a gun before the dogs get it. I remember thinking it was stupid and dangerous and probably more cruel to be honest however i seem to remember that that is the rule.
Albany & West Lodge Bassets of Hertfordshire - About Us
These guys may be able to help/give advice to you or contact your local hunt [basset or otherwise] as they will be able to give you a clear idea of do,s and donts. The other thing of course we do is a drag hunt, folowing a scent pre placed for the hounds to follow. Not sure if you could get the bassets to track scents in a trialing environment but its always another option.
 

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When talk to hunting pack owners etc be prepared for a bit of predjudice most don't believe a UK conformation basset counld hunts it way out of a paper bag.

I know when the hunt ban was being voted on proposed etc the Harrier clubs were perpared to bassical kill of the breed (even though the breed started in ENGland Harries only exist there in hunt packs.) they will not sell tham as pet because they are certain they are unsitable as such. The harrier culb of America members mad concerted effor to import form many different pack to help preserve the genetic diversity of the breed. The would sell to US breeder but not to some one in the UK looking for a pet. It is the a common mentality of hunt pack members they dogs are hunting dogs and only suitable as such. An anything that is not raise and bred as a 'hunting" dog is not suitable to hunt.
 

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We used to puppy walk Foxhounds, and their hunting instinct is apparent from being tiny, not sure if a pet Basset that hasn't been exposed to hunting would really know what to do when it's found and hunted it's prey, I mean lets face it the majority are a wee bit lacking in energy stakes. :p I do think though in the UK you would get a lot of opposition if it was widely broadcast what you were intending to do, and you would need a landowners permission before you went on to any land.

My princess Bella goes off hunting down the fields at my mum's farm though I sometimes think it's only so she can eat some sneaky rabbit poo. My mum's elderly retriever and princess Bella go hunting as a pair, she flushes the bunnies or mices out, and Toby tries to catch them, most of the time unsuccessfully.

I found out a useful piece of info about the cross between the Beagle and the Basset as I was researching, hunters crossed them originally to have a dog that would have a fab tracking nose but also have energy at the end of the hunt.:D My Bagel has 2 modes, Basset mode where she sleeps a lot and is very well behaved, and Beagle where she's like a fast blur round and round the living room generally being extremely naughty.
 

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