The Hampshire Hunt horses and hounds are all kept in the centre of the country. We hold annual open days and encourage visitors to come and see our hounds and learn more about the activities of the HH.

Our hounds have been carefully bred for over a century to produce a pack ideally suited to our woodland country. It is especially important that hounds draw well, and have good feet to cope with the vicious flints commonly known as Hampshire diamonds.

Between the wars legendary Master, George Evans, bred a fine pack many of which have won numerous prizes at major hound shows as well as excelling in their work. This original line is still present in the kennels and the pack has two other main breeding lines. One was introduced from the North Cotswold by huntsman Steve Andrews in the 1970s and the other by Bob Collins who came to us from the Curre in 1991. Over the years we have also had great success using stallion hounds from the VWH.

Short-legged compact horses are ideal for the HH country. They need to be good timber jumpers and very fit as few people have second horses. It has always been said that the ideal HH horse is "one that will jump 3'6" of timber out of 3' of mud when three horses have refused in front of it"!

Foxhound history
The UK consists of vastly different types of country and hounds have susequently evolved over time to suit different countries. A different sort of hound is required in the steep fell of the Lake District (regularly inaccessible by horse) compared to the hard riding fields of Leicestershire. However, hounds require some 'generic' qualities no matter the country.

  • An excellent nose - hounds hunt by following a scent rather than by sight
  • Stamina - hounds are on the go for many hours, two and sometimes three days per week
  • Cry - cry or tongue is very important so that a hound can let other hounds (its Huntsman and followers) know that it has the scent
  • Pack sense - hounds need to work as a pack and not become too independent
  • Drive - the ability to keep going forward and not to dwell on the line
  • Courage - the ability to get back to the pack when separated and to enter thick cover when asked to

The Foxhound has been very carefully bred and in many cases pedigrees can be traced back to the early 1700s, although the first volume of the Stud Book was not produced until 1841. The main type of hounds are:

  • Modern Foxhound
  • Old English Foxhound
  • Fell Hound
  • Hill Hound
  • Welsh Hound
  • West Country Harrier

Most packs now trail hunt with the Modern Foxhound but many have been bred using a careful blending of Welsh and Dumfries bloodlines. In some cases packs have out crossed to other types, the most recent being the American.


Puppy Walking

Every year the puppies are sent out to 'walk' with volunteers for several months. An extract from an article Captain Ronnie Wallace wrote for Hunting magazine describes the process:

"The development from bundles of charm as puppies to grown hounds ready to hunt depends tremendously on devoted puppy-walkers. The cult of puppy-walking has developed greatly since the war. Although there were a few famous puppy- walkers, sometimes puppies then were kept largely confined. Now that has changed. Puppies live as members of the family, and improvements in worming and inoculations against distemper have helped to create excellent conditions for the rearing of hounds.

"Care of puppies is just like care of children. Both need some discipline. For hound puppies this need only include answering to their names, basic instructions, and possibly, going comparatively willingly on a collar and lead. After that all depends on love, as with children. Young hounds who are given genuine interest and love are the ones that flourish all their lives."

We are extremely grateful to our loyal puppy walkers. Without them we would not be able to produce the pack we have today.

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