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Thread: Bloodhounds and Stalking

  1. #1

    Bloodhounds and Stalking

    Bloodhound - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Much is spoken about dedicated deer dogs and recovering wounded deer, but very little about using bloodhounds for this task . . . . . . . I have no experiance of them whatsoever however on the face of it they would appear to fit the bill quite nicely as a stalking dog . . . . anyone on the site using a true bloodhound for stalking?

  2. #2
    Unlikely. I had a similar thought and went along to a 'meet' in which folks brought along their bloodhounds.
    Those who brought their dogs got to enter trail comps in which a scented rag was dragged through a series of more complex trails. Whilst watching the dogs work i go to discuss the suitability for deer stalking with owners. Not the type who prance around in rings; those who actually work them. However pretty much all thought them too single minded and unsuitable. Some had tried.

    1. Once on a trail the dogs will not stop, will not listen to most commands. They're solely fixated in following the trail. Hence to need to keep them on a lead/harness. I watched one ownr after another being dragged through bushes, etc whilst trying to hold thedog back.
    2. They never shut up. They sound off all the time so any thoughts of sneeking up on an injured deer is out.

  3. #3
    Went to a BDS run event on deer dogs. The guy doing the demo turned up with two dogs. One was a BMH/lab cross and the other I am fairly sure was a blood hound/GWP cross. Never seen this before but he tracked both dogs at the same time on two leashes.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Cadex100 View Post
    . . . . . . . I have no experiance of them whatsoever however on the face of it they would appear to fit the bill quite nicely as a stalking dog . . .
    An interesting idea but I think the Bloodhound, (previously St Hubert's Hound and before them probably Talbot Hound), as a breed has gone too far away from hunting/stalking as practiced today to do the job we require.

    You have to remember that even when the breed and it's forebears were used for deer, boar and wolf hunting as sleuth or lymer, (leashed) hounds, it would have been to locate and drive the quarry towards the waiting archers/pikesmen/shooters, so a totally different scenario from our post-shot tracking requirements. As that style of hunting declined they made a natural and successful transfer using their other skill - man tracking - giving us the image of the hound, plod handler, Inspector Snapper of the Yard, and a bloke in a Deer Stalker pulling on a Mershaum, hot on the trail of a gnarled 19th Century criminal across the moors.

    In reality it's not that far from the truth. As Scotsgun has described, it's all hell for leather when they get going and not for the faint of heart. Judges need to be just as fit as the handlers and are often mounted on horseback. The Senior Stake at a licensed Bloodhound Trial will be over 3 miles and a minimum of 2 hours cold - although aficionados are recorded as successfully running small packs on lines of 6-12 miles and 2 hours or more cold, (depending on scenting conditions). At the end of a trial the hound is expected to identify 'his' runner from a group. And don't forget that this is purely following scattered 'air' scent and footfall - no blood or biological track.

    As working man trackers they've fallen out of fashion as the police and military requirements are now geared towards either multipurpose dogs or specialist location animals. For any of these roles a number of factors count against the Bloodhound - it's style/method of working and temperament, (it would probably lick a felon to death after a successful track!), specialist handler requirements, physical size, (they are big animals at up to 60kg), and health considerations, (eye and skin problems and being prone to bloat, which can prove fatal).

    Having said that, they have seen Army service in Kenya, Malaya, Borneo, Cyprus and Northern Ireland, where they apparently performed very well in the man tracking role. Mick McCarthy in his book about Irish SAR dogwork, 'In Search of The Missing', mentions that he eventually went with Bloodhounds for dedicated tracking work rather than his previously employed air-scenting dogs.

    If you want to get a good insight into Bloodhounds, their history and the way they work, try and get hold of a copy of 'Hunting the Clean Boot' by Brian Lowe, and although it's been out of print for a while it can sometimes be found for a reasonable price at the specialist secondhand dealers such as AbeBooks.

    BTW: Those who have an HS or BGS/BMH for deer work are already using a 'bloodhound' - the 'Schweiss' in Schweisshund means blood not sweat when used in relation to dogs or in a hunting context.
    Last edited by Orion; 31-07-2012 at 16:17.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Gazza View Post
    Went to a BDS run event on deer dogs. The guy doing the demo turned up with two dogs. One was a BMH/lab cross and the other I am fairly sure was a blood hound/GWP cross. Never seen this before but he tracked both dogs at the same time on two leashes.
    No trees in the way then

  6. #6
    The Bloodhound , Chien de St Hubert, originally is the hound from the Ardennes. As said before a hound used for all type of hunting , boar , deer , bear , wolf, etc..... The type we do will hardly be of the fitness to do this task.
    These people try to "rebuild" the old type : http://www.ardennenbracken.de/
    Unofficial up to this date.

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