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It appears to me that many of you are concerned over the foxhunting debate, mainly because you view the death of the fox as being destructive as it wastes the fur etc.


An interesting point that would have PETA totally short circuited!!!!!


However let me assure you. The few foxes I have seen caught in 20 years I have made a point of examining. Their coats were without exception mangey and in one case the animal was being eaten alive by maggots until intervention by the hounds.


You really wouldnt want the fur.


If the ripped apart problem is because of some possible cruelty, let me assure you the end is quick and the chase actually means such a high degree of adrenalin present that the fox does not suffer.


A healthy fox would indeed always get away. I have even seen conscientious huntsmen rescue healthy foxes from the hounds if they have been unfairly cornered and its a good fox for another day.


However now things are rather different. Technically, all flushed foxes must now be shot, and that is indeed a tragic waste as it means good foxes are being shot. This is not wanted by anybody in hunting, but it has been imposed on them by the government. I have seen huntsmen in tears.The only way to reverse this tragic state of affairs is to elect an mp with a pro hunting stance.

Not all Tories are, but most. Not all Labour arent; some are. Choose. The same anti hunting mps are also anti fur.


Many hunting folk I hear saying fur is cruel; many fur wearers I hear saying hunting is cruel.


Remember. The enemy of my enemy is my friend.

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I have no real opinion on fox hunting either way.


I would however like to state again that the vast majority of foxes are killed by cars so i suggest to people who are sooooo concerned about the killing of foxes should stop driving their cars and not belly-ache about foxes being hunted by "toffs on horse-back".


How do the anti-hunt protestors get to the hunts; cycle?

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I know virtually nothing about fox hunting. I live on the wrong side of the Pond, I guess. The only things I know, I see in movies or on T.V.


What's fox hunting all about?


When I was young my father (when he was still alive) used to raise bird dogs. He used to enter them in field trials:


Men on horseback take their best dogs into the field on a simulated bird hunt.

Birds are flushed. The judges (the only ones allowed to have guns) fire a blank into the air. The judges evaluate a dog's ability to find birds then remain on the "point" until commanded to fetch. (i.e.: "Steady to Wing and Shot.") The man with the best dog(s) takes the prize.


I'm guessing that field trials are an Americanized version of fox hunting. No?


Teach me!...

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My knowledge of fox hunting is that a bunch of upper class men wearing funny uniforms on horseback trek into a forest with a big pack of dogs (whichever type is used for foxhunting). They look for foxes, when one is found the dogs go insane and run it down and tear it to pieces. I'm sure someone has a more informed description of this 'sport' though

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So, is there a prize if your dog gets the fox first?

If there is no prize or no way to win or gain recognition it seems pointless.


Personally, I don't care for bloodsport. I am a civil libertarian so, in the words of Voltaire:


I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.
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I'm not exactly sure what is gained from the sport. The pelt is mangled to bits by the dogs. And I don't think there'd be a way to know which dog got the fox first, seeing as they (I think) always run far ahead of the horses because their smaller and thus more able to chase a fox in a forest. Seems quite pointless and unecessary to me..

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Okay here goes. Its really best not to have an opinion if its uninformed. I have an opinion on nuclear fusion however it isnt worth much as I know nothing about it. So heres how foxhunting started and why it exists.


The first pack of foxhounds in the British Isles were those of Owen Glyndower the Welsh folk hero who fought the Norman english.


The hounds bloodlines are still today in the Curre hounds of South Wales.


During cessation of hostilities, the Nomans would often request to hunt with the Welsh who were recognised as great and fair hunters. It was the welsh longbow that secured victory for the English at Agincourt and Welsh hawks are considered the worlds finest even today. Celtic people are hunting people.


Glendower claimed his hounds were descended from the whist hounds, the hounds of hell (saxon: white). The Original curre hounds were white...some still are....the only white foxhounds in fact must have Curre blood.


They were used to hunt fox, which seemed remarkably daft to the saxons who considered the animal vermin. They thought they should be exterminated. Glendower told the Normans, who were hunters themselves unlike the saxon settlers, that the fox was admired by the Celts and it should be given the opportunity to escape, and that the correct way to keep its numbers down was with its natural enemy the wild dog.


This philosophy of fair play appealed to the Normans very much, and some centuries later the alliance between Norman/english landlord, and celtic gamekeeper, became a powerful one, and still is. A sporting chance means just that: a fair chance based on the rules of fair play adhered to in the hunting field. Nearly all huntsmen, gamekeepers etc are welsh irish west country or scots. The upper classes are decended from the Normans. The saxon settlements became urban ones over time, and therein lies the seeds pf power change, cultural difference resentment and misunderstanding. In Celtic lands, the Hunt has nothing to do with class. Our local Hunt are steelworkers, small farmers, agricultural labourers,vets, saddlers, nurses, farriers, etc and the neighbouring ones miners in some cases. The Banwen Miners Hunt for example. But in Ireland, Wales, Scotland, the Czech rebublic and parts of celtic France, foxhunting and steeplechasing the sport for horses trained in the hunting field , are hugely important features of our cultural identity. Go to www.cheltenham.co.uk . Next week celts will come from all over the world with the english and watch their heroes do battle: 70 000 people a day. Go to the site. It is the most important event in Britsh and Irish rural culture. It is profoundly inportant to us and it is inseperable from hunting.Forget Ascot or Wimbledon; this isnt sport its a way of life.


Hunting (and Racing) is percieved by many to be about class and thats the reason people are anti it...the same as they are anti fur: the politics of envy.


Now back to the story. The hunt became an integral part of land, predator and game management. The ritual as we know it today goes back about 500 years. It was thought that the fair way to hunt the fox was by giving it a very proper respect and ritual. Rules were formed based on fair play and chivalry which were practised on the battlefield. It was not considered correct just to kill the fox in large numbers as it was an admired adversary.


Still even today it is referred to as Charlie.


The hounds scent the fox, it doesnt hunt by sight. The fox therefore finds it easy to escape if he is any good....the real motive is dispersal, as fox umlike big cats do not disperse (they breed and colonise and area swiftly decimating it of all wildlife and domestic stock) and do not control their own breeding with an alpha male system like the wolf.


Only the weak, sick,injured and old are caught and then only after a chase which enables the animal to get high on adrenalin and therefore feel no pain whatsoever. It is not terrified...terror implies lack of understnding of stimulus and therfore a short circuit resulting in freezing.

Fear yes...but it is entirely natural and considered by animal bevaviourists as necessary and important...its called a" motivator" and is as important as hunger and sexual interest and excretion. It is in other words NECESSARY for animals to be frightened and that adreanlin is actually enjoyed. The nearest we can feel to that is our need to watch horror movies or do extreme sports. Horses for example make up fear when they are bored....they "spook" imagining a drifting plastic bag is a predator. Its fun, fear. Remember the fox doesnt abstract about it like we do...it isnt necessary.

Foxes are often observed to be apparently enjoying the chase, often basking in the sun for a rest near to the horses as the hounds go careering across the field in the opposite direction. They are not stressed.

They believe instinctively in their own ability to escape.


The desire to watch and follow the hounds (though only the huntsman ever see the kill) is two fold.

1. Firstly to see the hounds work, which is a beautiful sight, remember these are not "dogs"...they are semi wild...they are hounds. the team work is beautiful. If you find predator prey relationships disturbing (cheetah/gazelle, cat and mouse, wolf and caribou etc) then you are alienated from nature itself and I am sorry you are a lost cause; you dont understand what nature is. Its life and death in motion and to see any animal hunt, and flee, is indeed beautiful.

2. Horses are animals who get easily bored. They actually resent domestication UNLESS they get the odd piece of "wild" action...they are adrenalin junkies. Racing suits them just fine, but when they get older they risk injury. So the vast majority of ex racers find a happy long semi retirement with a bit of sedately paced galloping across vast countryside (something the farmers would never allow unless they were having the fox chased off his land) in the Hunting Field.

They respond incredibly to the sound of the Hunting Horn...yes they do love it and THATS why people like to ride to hounds...because the horses are so ALIVE when they do so.


As I said already, the effect of only catching the sick and weak is to keep fox stock the healthiest in Europe, and the most common. Hunting has served the Fox well. it has put selection back where it was absent...the fox was never bioloigically intended to be chief predator.


Everybody I know in hunting loves foxes, and will do a great deal to protect their habitat and coverts, and hedgerows etc only exist for horses to jump. These support a unique eco system that the ignorant think is there by accident. Its not. The British countryside is a carefully preserved and maintained hunting field.

The basic theory behind fair play in vermin management is that its morally wrong to use thinhs like snares and poison.


For a mouse...a cat

for a rat....a terrier/cat

for a pigeon...a hawk

for a rabbit/rat....a ferret

for a fox...a hound.


No poison. All natural. The best ecsape, making British wildlife in the countryside very healthy next to its urban counterparts.


the effect of persecuting cats in England as they were thought to be evil, bad luck etc, was the balck death. If hunting disappears, a similar fate will befall the fox...maybe rabies.


Its not about fun...its a natural balance. Nobondy wants to see the fox wiped out...but eqaully if you had ever seen the sight I saw after nursing lambs all through three nights only to find their shed broken into, and all 8 torn to piecs and nothing eaten...you would appreciate that they do indeed need to be controlled somehow, and this is the fairerst way.


A marksman at twenty metres cannot tell a sick from a healthy, a dog from a vixen etc.

Poison is equally as indiscriminate...kills over days with burst stomach agony...awful.


Hounds are discriminate, kill very swiftly, and the fox feels nothing cos hes high on adrenalin.


Oh and as a footnote, the only other givernment to ban foxhunting were the Nazis. The result wa the extinction of the fox in the czech republic within two years. I was in Pardubice when the foxhunt and hounds were welcomed back, to the appluase if thousands of people who lihed the streets, some in tears, to welcome it back after years of Nazi/commie opression. Efforts are under way to reintroduce the fox....



Today at the yard where we keep out horse, sadly a horse died. Our government in its utter stupidity ignorance and heartlessness have made it a criminal offence to bury a horse. It can cost several thousand pouds to incinerate it and its a wasteful and ignoble death. So we call in the Hunt and they take it for the hounds. Part of the cycle. Natural. Beautiful. Without it what do we become?


I have seen civilisation, as Labour calls it. It is sick decaying and crumbling. It is hypocritical fascist and corrupt. It murders animals in the millions daily with poison and destroys wildlife habitats the world over to feed consumers with utter rubbish, (then they regurgitate it and spill it out all over the countryside again)It treats animals with profound disrespect to feed its drones with cheap meat. Thankyou, I prefer to be a savage.


I will fight for hunting as I will fight for fur as I will fight for the rights of hunting cultures the world over. Because not to spells destruction of the planet.

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I barely knew any of that, I always thought that the stereotypical english gentleman *cough* royal family *cough* would be the only type who'd participate in fox hunting. It does seem justified if it is to keep the population of foxes controlled and if they're feeling no pain then even more so. In the end, it's up to the hunters to carry out their hunt humanely. I read that activists say the vigorous nature of training and breeding horses and dogs to the high levels of skill that fox hunting requires may involve what they perceive as cruel treatment, unnecessary pain and risk. Is that true??

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On the contrary

for example, hunting is considered a gentle pusuit for horses who need some "kicks" but are of an age where they cannot stand up to a rigorous exercise regime.

Hounds are semi wild, and hunt in pairs called a couple. Thay have to be trained to scent the fox and it requires a great deal of patience, but hardly rigorous exercise. In fact usually they are exercised by friends of the hunt called puppy walkers who gently exercise them...often they are old people who cant ride anymore but still want to be a help....so its ridiculous when the antis suggest this. They just walk them.


Most of the antis photos of hounds with blood on their muzzles which they claim are the result of killing cubs or from cruel regime are actually the result of stubble injury, which isnt serious.

So excited to the young hounds get that their nose is flat to the ground and tends to get spiked by stubble. It doesnt bother them in the slightest.


As you can see the propaganda of the antis on the hunting issue is as crass and stupid as their attacks on the fur trade. Problem is that people believe it, and they have a multi million

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That clarifies a lot ToS, thanks for your posts because I found them very interesting and informative. The antis should really be fighting fast food chains more than anything.

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Thankyou for reading them....as I say what normally happens is people dont have the patience to look past the arguments of the antis. It is significant however that there has been a massive shift in public opinion since the formation of the Coutryside Alliance which has been informing the media and people of the facts.


Now the majority of British people are pro hunting.


Now we just need to get the argument for fur won, and attack the actions of the British government in its persecution of hunting cultures.


Tryxie posted this site but here it is again if you wanted to check out further information:




which at the moment is carrying a report on the conservation benefits of foxhunting in the UK which has been accepted by the Conservation and biodiversity journal. The CA is the best organisation in the UK for having rubbished so many animla rights arguments. Again...the enemy of my enemy is my friend

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TouchofSable, you are very well informed.


I agree with what you say, fox hunting is frowned upon because it is regarded as rich man's pursuit. It is not a sport, rather a traditon.


When the people are digging the badgers out of their sets and letting their dogs rip them to pieces where are all the protestors! No where to be seen, because the people are "common" and tough, plus they do it secretly.


And anyone who is a badger baiter obviously can't see anything wrong with it.



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Am intersting point allfurme.


However badger baiting does differ from foxhunting in:

1. Its unfair...the badger's claws and teeth are usually removed to give the dogs a chance. That horrid.


2. Sadly, badgers have no effective means of control......culls are not selective so its a horrible situation. It means that badgers do carry diseases like TB because the weak breed.


Interestingly enough the farmers answer is for them to have the right to judge if a badger is a possible carrier. If they cough, shoot them seems the best answer. the government wont allow this and as a result are in the process of culling tens of thousands of healthy badgers which is sad.


Where I live the best policing against badger baiting has been the Hunt itself because digging, pits etc are dangerous aswell as frowned upon. But you are very right...there are no animal rights people protecting badgers....just the gamekeepers, Hunts etc.


Why do people think hunting is for posh people? I met some on one Hunt once, and even they were friendly. All the others have been pretty average country folk really.

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Yes in big cities. Its a sad result of urban alienation from nature.


Now cockfighting I could argue a case for.


And certainly greyhound coursing is fabulous. It is a stunning sight to watch a hare evade chasing gounds at high speed and turns. Awesome.


But betting on two dogs till they hurt each other? Well I dont know enough about it but I cant see thats defensible since its a corruption of the dogs natural instinct. Cocks on the other hand do fight, and it is beautiful....the spurs are used so that kill is quick I am told and maimed birds dont happen .Two urban dogs fighting is ugly, and does result in maiming.

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...there are no animal rights people protecting badgers....


That's because badgers aren't cute and furry.

They have claws and nasty, big, pointy teeth!


Joking aside, people really don't care about saving a particular animal unless they are somehow appealing. They need to have big, round, cute eyes and childish faces for them to care.


As far as most people are concerned, the only thing badgers are good for is maknig brushes!

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British badgers are prettier than American badgers. You have crap Robins too.


That is purely subjective but it is my opinion and apparently I am entitled to say such nonsense.



But seriously of course you are right Worker. Not on the badger issue in the UK, but certainly with many animals.


My main gripe is Rats. Rats are clean, social intelligent animals but nobody cares about the millions of them exterminated every day with poison; a most horrible death. It really upsets me to see such a noble animal die in agony.


If we have rats at the stables we get the terrier man or the ferrets in.

That is correct. Fair. natural. humane.

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How many people even think that when their shaving brush says, "Pure Bristle" on the bottom of the handle it means somebody capped a badger to make that brush? (I do have to agree that the best badger bristle brushes come from the U.K.)


How about goose down? Do people never stop to think that those soft, fluffy, warm feathers came from the backside of a giant, squawking bird? I LOVE my goose down comforter! I thank the geese that made it every night when I go to bed!


Then, when I walk out my back door and step in a pile of goose sh**, I curse them!

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The cockroach is given a bad name too, and brutally squashed by many. PETA should be fighting for these creatures, they will continue life on Earth if nuclear war destroys everything else.

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Cockroaches haven't got a chance, or spider's or snakes or rats


The anti-fur people and animal rights people all suffer from a (Western) human frailty called "Cuddly Toy Syndrome' - 'Ah isn't it sweet and cuddly and furry, we must protect it; i used to cuddle up to a toy one of those in bed when i was little!"


I bet McC*rtney and the insignificant one wouldn't be photographed in the snow to stop the culling of rats (but the're not soft and cuddly!). He would be a lot better of giving away all his untold wealth; self-righteous ****!

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We seriously overfish our oceans and few people even care to notice, let alone complain. Why? Because you can't pet a fish. They aren't cuddly enough.


But, let even ONE dolphin get caught in a net, accidentially, and watch out!


"Flipper Syndrome" kicks in!

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