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Dog Moving From Tree to Tree, Dogs Declared Treed / Coon Caught, Reminder to Clubs Regarding Formal Complaints and Honesty and Integrity
Posted on 01/01/2006 in The Coonhound Advisor.

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January Advisor
Allen Gingerich

Dog Moving From Tree to Tree
Q: Four dogs in a cast are declared struck. Dogs A, B, C and D are declared treed in that order. The cast members arrive at the tree and find Dogs A and B are on one tree and Dog C is treed on a separate tree. Meanwhile, Dog D is running back and forth between the two trees barking treed. It is determined that both trees run into each other, therefore, the decision is made to score both trees as one. How should Dog D be scored, who is running back and forth between both trees? DW / IN

A: Since the decision was made to score both trees as one, Dog C cannot be moved up to first tree even though it is on a separate tree. Rule 4(c) states, Points will be minus [when dog has been declared treed and dog leaves tree. (If he goes on trail just his tree points will be minus.) In the scenario described, it sounds like Dog D did not leave the tree, in your case, two trees because they were scored as one. Therefore, Dog D should not be penalized or minused. Some will say the dog is getting a lucky break and we won’t argue that point. Fact is, there is probably more than one dog getting a break if you know what I mean! Whenever you score multiple trees as one at the top; you must also score them as one at the bottom!

Dogs Declared Treed / Coon Caught
Q: Three dogs are declared treed while the fourth dog is trialing in a cornfield nearby. The five minutes expires and the fourth dog has not been declared treed. The cast proceeds to the tree. Halfway there a ruckus breaks out. Upon arrival, the cast finds all four dogs some five to ten rows inside the cornfield with a coon caught on the ground. There was an argument made that the dog who had not been declared treed had caught the coon and the three dogs that were declared treed had left their tree to join in the fight and should be minused for leaving the tree. The majority of the cast voted that the dogs should not be minused because more than likely they had pulled the coon out of a bush along the edge of the cornfield. I know the dogs declared treed would at least get their strike points plus but what about the fourth dog who is also in there on the fight. How does he get scored since he was not there within the five minutes? AS / NC

A: Let me guess; the cast member whose dog was not declared treed is the one who wanted the other three dogs minused for leaving their tree and joining his dog who had caught the coon? Couldn’t be! Or…maybe that is exactly what happened and the majority of the cast took advantage of the situation and voted in their best interest? Hmmmm? Then again, maybe the three dogs did indeed pull the coon out of a tree or a bush along the edge of the woods. For the sake of fairness, honesty, sportsmanship and integrity, I hope the cast members did in fact vote honestly and not as whatever was in their best interest. Regardless, the vote was three to one so Rule 3(b) would apply in the given situation. [When dog is declared struck and treed and coon is seen other than in tree, dog declared treed to receive strike and tree points. Dogs not declared treed, strike points only. If dog catches coon, strike points only.] All dogs, including the dog that wasn’t declared treed, would receive plus strike points. Dogs that were declared treed would have a line drawn through their tree points.

Reminder to Clubs Regarding Formal Complaints
With the amount of hunts throughout the country every weekend, it is not unusual for us to see a few Formal Complaints come into the office each week. For whatever reason, some clubs or Officials tend to disregard the proper procedures to be followed at the club when a Formal Complaint is filed. Every now and then one comes in where the club did not hold a hearing or meeting to listen to the complaint. More times than not the excuse is that there were not enough club officers or members present to conduct such a meeting or they simply didn’t know the procedures. As a club, you should be aware of such procedures if a Formal Complaint is filed at your club. After all, I’m sure if you check your bylaws that you would see where you agree to follow UKC rules, procedures and policies. Make sure you follow the procedures on page 59 of the 2005/2006 Official Coonhound Rulebook. Step 3. There shall be a Formal Complaint Committee consisting of three officers of members of the Host Club or organization who must be on hand to timely serve should a meeting become necessary. Anytime a club does not follow the proper procedures and a letter will be sent informing the club that a meeting will have to be scheduled to hear the complaint. The only UKC Licensed events where the club does not hold a Formal Complaint meeting is at Regional Qualifying Events. They will be sent directly to UKC with the hunt report for review. As much of a headache they can be for officers and members to have to deal with at times, unfortunately, it is something that has to be done when a Formal Complaint is filed. If they are not done at the time when they are filed it can be even more of a headache to have to deal with it later. Oh yeah, I’m sure you’ve heard this before. “Don’t let it happen again”!

Honesty and Integrity
honesty, n.1. Quality of being honest; a honour, seemliness of behaviour; b chastity; c uprightness of character; freedom from deceit and fraud; integrity, trustworthiness.
integrity, n. ‘completeness, soundness; blamelessness, innocence’.
How many times have you heard someone tell the story of how they got cheated out of a cast win by some crooked Judge or handler? Sometimes it is a matter of the complainant not knowing and understanding the rules well enough. Sometimes it’s an excuse for the dog. Unfortunately, sometimes it is the truth! Honesty certainly is a key factor when it comes to making decisions in the field. Thank God we do have hunters that when they are called upon to make a decision, they will make an honest decision regardless of how it affects the dog they are handling. The rules provided for UKC Nite Hunts work flawlessly for the most part if hunters are honest when it comes to making these decisions whether it be as a Judge in a cast or a cast member in voting situations. Being dishonest in making judgment calls or voting situations can certainly change the outcome of a cast winner. Dishonesty will turn away many a potential young hunter, or any hunter for that matter, from hunting his or her dog in the hunts. Dishonest Judges and cast members will more than likely turn away potential future entries for the club because some hunters will not be back if they keep getting shafted. There is simply nothing good that can come from being dishonest. What is a Nite Champion or a Grand Nite Champion title really worth when they pick up wins where something ended up not being scored correctly for the simple sake of winning? I can guarantee the hounds don’t care whether they win or lose! On any given night, the dogs will merely perform according to their ability, desire and speed etc; etc.., titles on the line or not. However, what is on the line at these hunts is the reputation and integrity of the hunters and handlers. Five or ten years from now, people will have forgotten the dog you hunted but they certainly won’t forget the face of a dishonest crook! If Honesty is an important factor for you, when it comes to making decisions in a Nite Hunt, the Integrity will surely follow. Something to keep in mind for the New Year. Take a kid with you to the event and have a great year!