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Everyone has a question at some time on an arcane hunting term, correct attire, a point of etiquette. The FHL Panel of Expertswill answer your question on any aspect of hounds, hound breeding, hunting hounds in the field, training the field hunter, foxhunting history, sporting art, and literature. Try us!
Diane Farrington, a non-foxhunter, has asked an interesting question that we think would stump most foxhunters. She writes, “I have been seeing lots of photos online from recent hound shows. What is the reason or significance of showing the hounds in white lab coats?”
We asked Messrs. Jerry Miller, MFH of the Iroquois Hounds (KY), and C. Martin Wood, III, MFH of the Live Oak Hounds (FL)---members of Foxhunting Life's Panel of Experts---for an explanation. Both men agree that the underlying purpose is simply to protect and keep the show staff’s clothing clean, but going back to the origins of the style leads us to an appreciation of practical solutions!
At home with Cathy and friendCathy Eising has a twenty-month-old foxhound out of her mother’s rescue foxhound, and she works at his training diligently. She writes:
“I am seeking advice on how to raise the foxhound as a family dog, especially off-leash training. Will he ever stop chasing wild things and pay attention to me outdoors? I have done a lot of obedience with him, and all areas are coming well except off leash outdoors. He needs to run and I can't walk fast enough or long enough for him to get properly exercised, so I need to trust that he will come when called under all circumstances (including around deer). I'm very dedicated and work with him every day.”
By Paul Striberry, Lilla Mason, and Robinson Duncan
Paul Striberry on Valentine / Erik Olsen photoA reader who we’ll call Easy-Does-It asks Foxhunting Life for advice on how to get her horse to exit the trailer slowly and safely, as opposed to ejecting itself like an equine cannonball.
We went to Paul Striberry, Lilla Mason, and Robinson Duncan for their expert advice. All agreed that this is a problem that needs fixing, yet each individual took a different approach. While the three recommendations are mechanically different, each is sensible, thoughtful, and promises success. Which all goes to reaffirm that there is more than one way to skin a cat! Or civilize a horse.
During the off-season is a good time to think about clothing and tack you may be needing next season. Here's one expert's overview of foxhunting style. Specific guidelines may also be found under the Resources dropdown menu above; click on Attire, Tack & Appointments. We'll be talking more this month about some lesser-known yet fascinating aspects of foxhunting attire.
While each equestrian discipline has its own specific requirements for riders’ attire, I am going to desribe the correct terms, style and fit of foxhunting attire. And although specific hunt clubs may dictate individual modifications, there are generally acceptable standards.