Thursday, April 21, 2011

Hounds, Terriers, and Curs.

When I was 12, I was fortunate enough to spend a summer riding at a farm associated with a local hunt club. Though I was not a hunt member I was allowed to ride on several hunts. (Fox hunting in NY is what is now called "Fox Chasing" I believe. NY has long outlawed actual fox hunting. The hounds are taught to bring the fox to ground.) Tearing around in the woods with a bunch of crazy half drunk people (gotta love pre-hunt flasks and post hunt champagne breakfasts) can be terrifying and a lot of fun. I can reminisce on some of those stories another time.

The reason I bring this up is because hunt culture involves a peculiar snobbery when it comes to dogs. A foxhound for example is never called a "dog." They are hounds, and the highest class of canine to be found. Next  are terriers (generally of the Jack Russell or Parson Russell varieties.) And there isn't anything else. All other dogs are "curs." It has been a long time since I have talked to anyone actively involved in the hunt scene, but I do wonder if Corgis now merit their own classification as they have become increasingly popular with equestrians as well.

Anyway, the main purpose behind today's post is to introduce you to some new members of the terrier class.
Meet Bella and her 5 darling puppies, born this morning.

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