November Sneak Peek

Observations From A Rabbit Hunter

By Gary Blevins

When I started running dogs back in 1988, the beagling world was at a crossroads. The Hounds and Hunting magazine I received was 99% brace dogs and there were a couple of pages in the back for gundogs. I was born into a family that hunted deer, quail, coons, squirrels, etc. So, the first beagle I got was gun hunted and that is what I assumed the dogs were meant to be. My mentor, Arlon Culpepper, taught me the ins and outs of what made a good rabbit dog. He told me stories about how the brace beagles had become too slow to hunt and the damage that field trialing had done to the beagle as a hunting hound. My goal was to build a pack of gun dogs that would hunt, circle the rabbit time after time, and do it in a timely manner. Mr. Arlon had told me that if he was going to Michigan, he wanted to get there as fast as possible without being in danger.
My dad and I mostly hunted cut-over pines. It was tough hunting with plenty of briars and cover. If we were to get a shot at a rabbit, it would have to be circled more than once and sometimes multiple times. With years and years of having this ingrained into me, I knew what it took to have a rabbit dog and what qualities they should possess. Those qualities are still necessary today. Those are, first, the desire to hunt for the rabbit. Then, it takes the ability to circle the rabbit continuously in a timely manner. At the other end of the spectrum are negative faults. They are tendencies that will cause the loss of the rabbit. Faults that were, and are, at the top of the list for me are: babbling, quitting and not hunting. Notice that I never mentioned style. I have stood on countless rabbit stands in the freezing cold waiting on the rabbit to come back and style never played into it. I am not going to say that style is not important, because it is. I am saying it is not the most important.

For the remainder of this article, check out page 14 of our November issue!

Pucketos September Ad

Pucketos Beagle Club is hosting a Dave Swarmer Memorial Trial on September 19 & 20. Check out the full ad for all of the details. Be sure to pass this on to anyone you know who may be interested in attending!

August Sneak Peek

Dealing with Trauma in the Field: Blood, Cuts and Impalements

By Dr. Luke Peterson, DVM

In the January issue earlier this year, Dr. Diggs wrote an excellent article on what to have for first aid kits and other useful medicines. I want to build off that knowledge you have gained from his article and provide you with some care tips for some of the more serious traumatic wounds which may occur in the field. All of you have your own level of comfort with doctoring your hounds so my general advice is: if you encounter something you’re uncomfortable taking care of, seek veterinary care.


It never ceases to amaze me the variation in how people describe wounds to me, especially lacerations. I’ve had owners call me in hysterics, sure their dog would bleed to death from a cut, only to find upon examination a deep scratch that needed nothing more than a good cleansing and topical antibacterial ointment. On the other end of the spectrum, I’ve had owners call wondering if they should have their dog stitched up and upon examination find a dog with a gaping wound half the length of its body dripping blood from all ends. The two primary issues of concern with any laceration is 1) the amount of bleeding and 2) preventing infection/damage to underlying tissues. Dogs can lose about 10% of their blood volume with little or no effect to their everyday function (although a performance dog would suffer a slight decrease in stamina for 1-2 weeks). So, for a 22 pound beagle, they could lose about 100mL of blood or about 3 ½ ounces. A 20% loss in blood volume is tolerable provided they are treated with IV fluids. These dogs will require a couple of weeks to generate red blood cells back up to normal levels. Anything beyond 20% loss and a blood transfusion should be performed. When dealing with a laceration, the most important thing is to control bleeding, usually by direct pressure or by using a hemostat from your first aid kit to clamp off any squirting arteries or veins. Once you use something to apply pressure, don’t remove it from the wound until you are ready to apply a more permanent bandage or until a veterinarian is ready to repair the wound. Why? Every time you remove the bandage, you are removing the blood clot that has been laid down on the wound. This causes the wound to start bleeding again and defeats the purpose of constant pressure. If you are concerned the item you are using to apply pressure is dirty and may cause an infection remember this: dead dogs can’t fight infections, but living ones can.

Don’t miss the rest of this informative article on page 18 of our August issue.

July Sneak Peek

Canine Influenza – Don’t Let the Hype Take Your Breath Away

By Dr. Luke Peterson, DVM

The media quickly locked onto the canine influenza outbreak that began in early April in the Chicago area and other nearby Midwestern states. The flu always seems to get their attention and for good reason. Historically, influenza viruses have been responsible for millions of deaths of humans, swine, poultry and other domestic animals. Luckily for us, this magnitude does not occur in dogs with influenza but that could change in the future if the virus mutates. There are always three important questions scientists seek to answer when dealing with influenza isolated from animals:

Is it zoonotic (can it infect people)?

Can it infect other species?

From where did it originate (both geographically and host species – for example, did it come from swine in Asia or poultry in California)?

Canine Influenza Background

Canine influenza in general has a relatively young existence in the United States. The most common strain H3N8 was first isolated in 2004 in racing Greyhounds. This flu strain originated in horses and has now adapted to dogs as a unique canine strain and has no evidence of being infectious to humans. The strain that has caused the most recent outbreak has been identified as H3N2 and has been reported in Alabama, California, Texas, Massachusetts, New York, Wisconsin, Michigan, New Jersey, Iowa, Indiana, and Georgia. This strain appears to be more contagious than the H3N8 strain. A recent genetic analysis shows this strain has very low potential for infecting humans. (As a side note, there is a human H3N2 influenza strain but it is not the same virus as the Canine influenza H3N2 strain.) A canine H3N2 strain was identified in Asia in 2007 originating from avian influenza and some have speculated the current US outbreak was introduced by infected dogs imported from Asia; however there is currently no evidence to support or deny this speculation.

Don’t miss the rest of this article. It’s on page 16 of our July issue!