By PINK SHROUT
Well, brother coon hunters, I am going to tell some experiences I have had buying coon dogs. So-called coon dogs. Every fellow has a coon dog to hear him tell it, but I notice their coon pelts are few and far between. Boys, real coon dogs are as scarce as hen's teeth. Any old bull or cur will run a coon and tree it if he jumps up like a rabbit, or leave the lantern too far or if the coon will run a good race. Old Tiger will quit and come in and lay down and pant like sixty and the coon has gotten away.
Boys, all you fellows know who have had any experience hunting old ringtail. That it takes a nervy dog with a good nose and a head full of sense to be successful in treeing Mr. Coon.
Now, I am going to tell the experiences I have had buying coon dogs. I quit hunting Mr. Coon for about three years and finally 1 was talking to my youngest brother and he had the coon fever and he got me back at it again and I have been soaked for about $200 in the last two seasons.
The first dog I bought after I took the second spell of fever was from a kennel in Kentucky. I wrote them and asked them if they could furnish me a real. Coon, opossum and skunk hound and of course they had just what I wanted. Well, in goes the order for $75.00. In about four days the nicest looking hound I ever saw was waiting for me at the express office. Well, I took him out that night to see if he would run rabbits but nothing doing in running them. It was a light night with about one-half inch of snow on the ground. Of course I did not expect anything to be out such a night, I was out to see if he was a rabbiter; he was rabbit-proof.
The next good night that came I gave him a good trial. He was a good coon dog if you would run him over the track. He would not range at all. I caught three opossum and one coon that night with him and an old water spaniel, twelve years old. I would have kept the hound if he would have left fox alone, but just as soon as he found a fox the hunt was over for an hour or two. Boys, this fox hunting don't go with me when I am out after coon, opossum and skunks, so I sent him back and they sent me another one worth about a dime. He was a little red hound about the size of a rabbit and he was the noisiest thing I ever heard. He never treed anything so about two or three trips done me on him, and I sent him back and had them to refund my money and they did without an argument.
No. 3 came from Illinois and I got him and he died on me the fifth day after I got him. I lost the dog and $50.00 beside the express on all three of them. I was out about $65.00 and quit until this fall. I bought another one from a kennel in Tennessee giving $85 for him. He is fair, nothing to brag on, but better for skunk than anything else. I let my brother have him and we had a racket a while back and I laid the hammer on him and he will not follow me any more. I don't want in his company, anyhow. I am just as contrary as he is, so I almost gave him to my brother, losing about $75 on him.
Boys, the best dog I ever owned I bought for $50.00. I have him now. He is the second best dog I ever saw. His main fault is just as I stated about the first hound I ordered. He is a fool after fox. He will tree more game and run fox half the time than any dog in this part of the country. He is about three-fourths hound and one-fourth bird. I have him sold now. Boys, when I go coon hunting I don't go fox hunting.
Anything that gets my goat is for my old dog to be running a fox and my young hound running a rabbit at the same time. -It makes a man want to pull all the hair out of his head. He wants to get hold of the dog so bad that he would kill him if he could get him while his temper is up.
• Boys, I have told you that coon dogs were very scarce and many of you know it. I never saw but one real coon dog in my life, what I call a coon dog. This dog was black and tan, three-fourths hound and one-fourth setter. He was the fastest thing I ever saw on a coon trail. It was a common thing for this dog to tree coon, as other dogs opossum. He came from old Kentucky when he was a small pup. A tramp brought him in and told a lady this pup was out of the best coon stock in the world and if she would fix him up something to eat, she could have the pup. He said this pup followed him all the way from Kentucky to Bedford, over eighty miles. The last word the tramp said was, "Remember what I tell you, this pup will make the best coon dog that ever lived," and I believe that this tramp come mighty near telling the truth. Of course, I know others have seen coon dogs beside myself.
Boys, you know that some far exceed others and this dog was an exception of anything that I ever saw. I never saw a dog that could tree a coon when he was at four; he was so full of speed and a head full of sense with it that no dog that I ever saw could even get a smell until the coon was treed. He did not make much fuss on a coon trail, just one long bawl and the next thing you would hear; he would have him up about a mile away. I have watched this dog on a cold and puzzling coon track. He would give one long bawl and track out for about five hundred yards, and start to circle until he hit him hotter, and it would not be long until Mr. Coon was up anything he could get up.
He has treed them up thorn trees and hedges or anything to get in the clear.
Hunter-Trader-Trapper. October: 1921,
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