THE PERFECT PAIR DOLPHIN TRILOGY IS DELIGHTED TO PRESENT "fOX CUBBING" BLOG BY HELEN SEDDON, AUTHOR OF "WHY HAVE ALL THE ANIMALS GONE?"
Allowing the hunt’s hounds to kill defenceless fox cubs is to ‘give them a taste of blood’! That’s it in a nutshell. The vile activity that fox hunting wants to keep covered up and out of sight. It’s been going on since hunting foxes began. The hunts meet from 6-6.30 am in August and then later in the morning during September and October as the days grow shorter. They can also meet in the evenings.
Apparently these are the times to maximise scenting conditions. This helps young hounds to follow trails when the main season starts. Oh come on! Have any of the hunts actually laid down honest trails for hounds to follow during any hunting season since the ban was implemented?
Some people have suggested it’s held so early in the morning or during the evening so the hunt is not seen to be carrying out ‘real life hunting’. Well it is definitely hunting, made worse by chasing off the vixen so the young hounds can kill her defenceless fox cubs. Yes the hounds are allowed to rip them to pieces.
Apparently it’s all about educating and teaching the hounds the smell and taste of foxes. You may ask why does this disgusting ritual of training young hounds to kill defenceless fox cubs go on? Wasn’t this banned back in February 2005? Yes it was, is the absolute resolute answer to that question. Hunts think it’s their right to break the law….but it’s not and people are becoming more disgruntled by their criminal activities.
The Countryside Alliance came up with the term ‘Autumn Hunting’ to replace the term ‘cubbing’ after the ban. Horse & Hound likes to describe it as “Autumn hunting is a gentle introduction for young hounds, new hunt staff, horses and followers to the forthcoming season.”
Yet cubbing is a very grotesque illegal activity so you can see how the hunting fraternity are trying to give it a softer approach. Let’s cut out the small talk then! It’s actually about ripping up baby foxes so their hounds can know their smell and taste of them.
Fox cubbing goes on for multiple days each week during every season. So what does it entail out there in the woods? Well the huntsmen, their terriermen, farmers and gamekeepers will have made it their business to find out where vixens and their cubs are living.
The hunt and hunt supporters will surround the area and if the cubs try to escape they will make loud noises to make them scared so they go back to the hounds. Usually all the fox cubs are killed. Any that do escape will probably end up being hunted at a later date. Some young hounds have been known to be killed if they are not aggressive enough to want to kill a fox cub.
It seems cubbing is a necessary evil for the purpose of hunting foxes. But hunting and killing wild mammals with a pack of dogs is illegal!! I think it’s worth reminding ourselves what the late 10th Duke of Beaufort wrote in his book “Fox-Hunting”:
“The object of cub-hunting is to educate both young hounds and fox-cubs. As was said earlier, it is not until he has been hunted that the fox draws fully on his resources of sagacity and cunning so that he is able to provide a really good run….I try to be out cub-hunting as often as possible myself, and the ideal thing is for the Master to be out every day….Never lose sight of the fact that one really well-beaten cub killed fair and square is worth half a dozen fresh ones killed the moment they are found without hounds having to exert themselves in their task. It is essential that hounds should have their blood up and learn to be savage with their fox before he is killed.”
It’s was no different then, and before that and today fox cubbing is just the same. They say the more hardcore people in fox hunting enjoy the slaughter of baby foxes. In my mind they must be all hardcore to have anything to do with hunting and killing wildlife for fun.
Please take note of this telephone number. We need to get the message out that breaking the law should not be tolerated. Calling the tip-off line could save our vulnerable wildlife!
If you witness any illegal cub hunting please contact The Hunt Saboteurs Association by phoning the TIP-OFF HOTLINE 07443 148 426 They have been very successful getting Sabs out to the hunts at short notice and it can save the lives of defenceless fox cubs. Don’t hesitate to call the Police on 101. Ask for your call to be logged as a hunting incident and request an incident number.
LINK TO ORIGINAL BLOG: Fox Cubbing | The Ageing Warrior
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Impressive and engaging - a must-read for anyone who cares about our precious wildlife
Helen's research is excellent and she gets straight to the point. Nothing dry and boring like you find in many academic books. This would make a great handbook for keyboard warriors on Twitter or Facebook, and for those attending demos. Tells them all they need to know without their having to dig the info out for themselves.
Tracy J Holroyd, Cert Ed, BA(Hons), Member of the Society of Authors
Co-author of The Perfect Pair Dolphin Trilogy and The Belinda Fellgate Fantasy Series.