About UKC

Field Operations

Show Operations




Contact Us

Glossary Of Cur/Feist Hunt Terms

Aggressive Behavior

Behavior displayed by a dog directed towards another dog or dogs that would be considered bad tempered. Face barking, growling, and snapping would be considered forms of aggressive behavior.

Attempting To Fight
A scratchable offense that requires two important elements before it is a violation. A dog must be showing “aggressive behavior” and in doing so, the dog must be “interfering” with another dog.

Authority Of The Judge
1) A time period reference that begins when the Judge is handed the scorecard, and ends when the Judge turns the scorecard in to the Hunt Master.

2) In the case of hunting vs. non-hunting Judges, they have different levels of authority in scoring dogs and handling questions on a cast.

Considered a fault, babbling is defined as when a dog barks three times or has been struck where no track is evident. In its most common form, it takes place right when the dog is turned loose and consists of a dozen or less excited barks as the dog is leaving the handlers.

1) A collective term for the group of three/four handlers and three/four dogs competing in a coon hunt or squirrel hunt.

2) The act of turning dogs loose to go hunting.

There are two very important deadlines in conjunction with coon/squirrel hunts.

1) The entry deadline is the time by which all entrants must be in line to enter at the entry desk. If the deadline is missed by even a minute the entry cannot be accepted.

2) The deadline to return scorecards is the time that the scorecard must be returned to the Hunt Master. Late scorecards cannot be accepted for placement in the event.

Deleted Points
Deleted points are those that get a line drawn through them and do not count for nor against a dog, not even in tie breaking situations. There are four common instances in which points are deleted. Scoring strike points for a dog shut out on strike, scoring dogs returning to a previously scored tree, scoring tree points for a dog when the dogs have not moved and game is caught and when a dog is declared treed on a tree not containing a squirrel or coon but containing tree game.

Eight Minute Rule
Commonly referred to as the “eight minute rule” in the Cur/Feist Coon Hunts, 4(d) requires that one of the declared struck dogs must open at least once every eight minutes or the strike will be considered finished and minused.

Elimination Style Hunt Format
In the elimination style format, all three categories (Registered, Champions, and Grands) are drawn out and compete together. First round plus point cast winners are to be drawn into a second round to hunt for final placement. The top ten Registered dogs will be placed as well as the high scoring Champion and Grand Champion. Placement is determined; first by order of second round plus point cast winners (based on second round score). Next, by order of second round non-cast winners (based on second round score). And finally, by order of first round non-cast winners. In order for a Champion or Grand Champion dog to place, it must have had a plus point cast win in round one.

Formal Complaint
A form which when properly filled out and submitted allows any owner or handler to appeal a decision made by the Hunt Master. Not to be used for situations covered under the misconduct guidelines, the formal complaint form must be requested, by name, from the Hunt Master. Failure to file a Formal Complaint results in the Hunt Master decision being final.

Free Cast On Wild Game
The method of hunting by which it is understood that licensed hunts are conducted. Dogs must be cast in search of wild game. Striking game from boats, vehicles, or in enclosures is not considered free casting and is not permitted.

The person responsible for striking and treeing the dog and participating as a cast member in the scoring of a cast.

1) A mistakenly used term that pertains to the situations for which a time out may be called.

2) A factor that must be present in order to scratch a dog that is showing aggressive behavior for attempting to fight.

Hunt Master
The official responsible for seeing that the hunt is run in a manner that is fair to all and that everyone is treated in a fair and equitable way. The duties of the Hunt Master include overseeing the draw, answering questions and resolving disputes and completing post event paperwork.

Term used to describe a dog that barks intermittently on a tree or trees in a certain area but does not settle on one.

Nite Hunt Rules
The running rules that appear in the Official Cur/Feist Rulebook and on the back of each scorecard for Coon Hunt events. The rules are reviewed on a biannual basis by UKC and its Field Representatives.


The word “open” in the competition Coon Hunts, and coon hunting in general, refers to the action of a dog barking on trail. Dogs participating in Cur/Feist Coon Hunts are not required to be open trailers, meaning that they bark on trail.

Pitching a dog is a slang term for when a handler strikes a dog that is not opening, or trees a dog that is not yet treeing. It is a form of cheating that should be closely monitored by Judges.

Place Of Refuge
This refers to places where raccoons or squirrels go to elude the dogs other than in a tree. Holes in the ground, stump piles, old barns, junk cars or farm machinery would all be considered places of refuge for a coon.

A dog’s position is the order in which he was struck in or treed in. Next available position is the next position after the last one that is being held.

Pulling is a term used to describe the act of a dog leaving a tree it is treed on (declared or not) and going to other dogs opening or treeing nearby.

Dogs that are scratched are considered to be eliminated from placement in the event. All of the reasons listed in Rule 6 are scratching offenses, as are some of the situations referred to in other rules. Of these many reasons that dogs can be scratched from an event, only those dogs scratched for fighting must be reported to UKC. Voluntarily withdrawing from a hunt is also considered a scratch.

Shaking Vines
A method of searching a tree in a squirrel that involves pulling on or shaking vines attached to the tree the dog is treed on to get the squirrel to move or reveal itself.

The act of searching a tree with lights to find the raccoon is simply referred to as shining.

Shut Out
If a dog is not struck in on trail before another dog in the cast is declared both struck and treed, that dog is considered shut out on that strike.

A) When dogs tree on separate trees from one another, it is referred to as being split treed.

B) When a Judge cannot determine which of two handlers struck or treed their dog before the other, the points may be split. Points may also be split in situations where all dogs are released on a track prior to free casting for that track.

Someone that accompanies a specific handler on a cast. Spectators are strictly regulated in licensed events. A back-up handler is also considered a spectator.

Standard Hunt Format
Dogs are drawn out into three categories based on their current Championship Points standing at United Kennel Club. The three divisions are Registered, Champions, and Grand Champions. Dogs must compete in their own division. Placements in each division will be awarded based on one round of competition. Placements will be determined in accordance with the UKC Licensed Cur & Feist Event Honor Rules. If the club wishes to run division winners against one another in order to award special Championship honors, it is considered a non-licensed category for which UKC is not responsible.

When a handler informs the Judge that his dog is opening on trail, and commits his dog to that track, it is called striking the dog. A dog must be struck on or before it’s third bark, or it will be scratched.

A sound made either by one’s own voice or by mechanical means that imitates a coon in distress. The sound is considered very helpful in locating coons while shining a tree.

Squirrel Hunt Rules
The running rules that appear in the Official Cur/Feist Rulebook and on the back of each scorecard for Squirrel Hunt events. The rules are reviewed on a biannual basis by the UKC and its Field Representatives.

Taking Pressure
Term used to describe the act of a dog holding its tree regardless of other dogs opening or treeing nearby.

Term used to describe the actions of a dog that it is moving with a squirrel as it “timbers” through the tree tops.

Also referred to as off-game. Any game other than coon is considered trash in a licensed event. Champion dogs are scratched for running or treeing off game.

When a handler informs the Judge that his dog is treed on a particular tree, and commits his dog to that tree, it is called treeing the dog. A dog must bark at least once before it is declared treed.

Tree Game
Tree game is defined as any game capable of climbing a tree. If a dog is declared treed on a tree that contains tree game in a coon or squirrel hunt, points are to be deleted.

Two Minutes
A) The amount of time during which a declared treed dog must stay treed in a Squirrel Hunt.

B) The amount of time during which a declared treed dog must bark at least once in a Coon Hunt.

Weight Class
In UKC Squirrel Hunts dogs hunt in two (2) weight classes: 1) all dogs 30 pounds and under; 2) all dogs 31 pounds and over. Weight class with one entry will be combined with other weight class in same category.

Previous page