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Q & A
Posted on 08/12/2014 in The Coonhound Advisor.

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Five-Minute Tree Clock When Hunt Time Expires

Q: If only one dog remains in the hunt, that dog must hold its tree for five minutes before the dog may be handled. What about at the end of the hunt? If hunt time expires before the five-minute clock expires, may that dog be handled before the five minute clock expires?

A: Rule 11(a) states; {Dog must hold tree for five minutes, unless all dogs are declared treed or hunting time expires.} The key portion of this rule that pertains to the situation given is, or hunting time expires. As soon as the hunt expires, the cast may handle dogs at the tree, regardless of how little time is used on the five-minute clock. That also includes a cast where only one dog remains in the cast.

Specific Times When Handler May Separate From Cast

Reminder: There are only two situations where a handler may separate themselves from the rest of the cast.

1. When the judge gives them permission to handle a dog on a split tree. The only time a judge cannot give a handler permission to handle their dog on a split tree is if the cast is in the process of shining a tree. This is a new rule that went into effect in 2014. Rule 11(c) {Judge shall give handler permission to handle dog on split tree unless cast is in process of shining a tree.}

2. When time out has been called and the handler needs to go catch his dog.

Otherwise, the cast MUST STAY TOGETHER. The judge is also responsible for maintaining a pace attainable by all members of the cast. Again, who’s responsible for keeping them together? And who’s responsible for scratching a handler that refuses to stay with the cast? The judge is responsible on both accounts.

Time Allowed for Tree Decision in a UKC Field Trial

Q: During a Field Trial, Dog A came across the line first and was awarded line points. He trailed on to the tree but never opened within the marked circle to qualify for a tree decision. Dog A then eventually ran off and headed back in the woods with the remainder of the dogs in the heat still working the track. No other dog came through the line before the 15 minutes expired after having been released by the Starting Judge. How is this situation scored properly?

A: Dogs are allowed a total of 15 minutes to qualify for a line decision after having been released by the Starting Judge. After the first dog crosses the line a three minute time period is allowed for a dog to be eligible for a tree decision. Under Field Trial Running Rules see Rule 12.

After Dog A crossed the line and was awarded line points, a three-minute clock should have been started. Any dog in this heat must now have crossed the line and opened within the marked circle around the tree, within that time period, in order to be eligible for tree points. That did not happen. Although, Dog A left the tree area he retains the line points originally awarded to him. When no dog came through the line and opened on tree after the three-minute time period expired, the heat is considered finished. The only dog to receive any points in this specific heat is Dog A, who receives line points. Tree points are not awarded to any dog.

Bench Show Judge and Master of Hounds Apprenticeship Information

The purpose of the apprenticeship program is not to learn the hunt rules or the Coonhound breed standards. The individual should already be experienced and well versed in that department. Rather, to learn the proper procedures of conducting a hunt or show, fill out Event Reports properly, how to conduct a licensed event properly, proper procedures to draw casts, and things of that nature. Personal experience suggests that when serving under three different officials, an apprentice will find they learned more from one than they did another and that they don’t all do things the same exact way. That’s okay so long as everything is done within the rules. The apprentice may even learn certain things not to do. The important thing is for to learn everything they can from each one of the three different officials they serve under to better serve the apprentice as an event official.

Master of Hounds Apprenticeship. The following pertains to an individual serving as an apprentice at a UKC Licensed Nite Hunt.

• The rules for an apprentice are the same as they apply to the Master of Hounds.

• The apprentice must remain at the club headquarters at all times.

• A dog owned by the apprentice may not be entered in the hunt.

• Any decision made regarding questions that come back is made by the Master of Hounds and not the apprentice.

• Even though the individual passed their Master of Hounds Test, they are subjected to the approval of the three licensed officials whom they served their apprenticeship under.

Bench Show Judge Apprentice. The following pertains to an individual serving as an apprentice at a UKC Licensed Bench Show.

• Their dogs may not be entered in the show. Their dogs may not be entered by a handler.

• A dog owned or handled by their immediate family may not be entered. Immediate family is defined as; husband, wife, father, mother, brother, sister, son or daughter.

• While the apprentice should be involved in a hands-on manner, they shall not be called upon to make any final decisions when it comes to selecting the winner of any class. The licensed judge does that.

• Even though the individual passed their bench show judges test, they are subjected to the approval of the three licensed judges whom they served their apprenticeship under.

Apprenticeship Forms. At the conclusion of the event, the apprentice fills out their portion of the apprenticeship form (name, address, etc.), and hands it to the licensed judge. The licensed judge fills out their portion, including comments, concerns and approval or not. The event official is responsible for mailing the form to UKC. The official should not give the completed form back to the apprentice. This policy allows the licensed official to report an honest evaluation of the apprentice that is kept confidential. In other words, it’s a private matter between the official and the UKC to assure the individual is qualified before issuing a license.