Terminology

Autumn Hunting – the early part of hunting until the Opening Meet

Cap – a daily charge for non-subscribers

“Car Please” – s shouted to tell the Field to keep to the left to let cars through on the road.

Cast – when the hounds are looking for the line. The huntsman may cast the hounds towards where he thinks the hounds will pick it up.

Check – when the hounds lose the line.

Couples – hounds are counted in couples. i.e. one hound, a couple, a couple and a half, two couples, etc. Couples are also two collars linked on a chain and can be seen hanging on the hunt staffs’ saddles

Feather – hounds are said to feather or be feathering when they have the line but are unable to speak to it.

Field – the mounted followers.

Field Master – the person in charge of leading and controlling the Field.

Field warden – a person specially designated to shut gates and mend walls/fences. May wear a red armband.

“Gate Please” – shouted backwards on going through a gate which should be closed.

Gate shutter – a person specially designated to shut gates and mend fences. Sometimes wears a white armband.

“Good Morning” – the appropriate greeting at the meet.

“Good Night” – the appropriate salutation for the end of the day even if it was an Autumn Hunting morning which ended before midday.

Harrier – a hound that was originally bred for hunting hares

Heel – hounds are said to be hunting heel when they hunt the reverse

“Hold Hard” – shouted by the Field Master to stop the field.

Hound – all scent hunting dogs are referred to as hounds

Huntsman – the man who hunts the hounds. There is only one huntsman on the hunting field per day, he may also be a Master, and he has right of way at all times.

Hunt – a hunting day usually consists several hunts, each hunt varying in length, sometimes incorrectly referred to as “runs” or “lines”.

Hunt Button & Collar – subscribers who, over a period of time, have gained knowledge and been helpful to the hunt may be awarded the hunt button and collars of the hunt.

Hunt Staff -the people responsible for working the hounds. i.e. Huntsman and Whippers-in. They may be Masters, amateurs or professionals

“Keep in Please” – a signal given to members of the field when riders must keep in to the verge or off the crop.

“Kick on” – you may get this response when you make way for someone at a gate or jump. It means you don’t have to wait for him/her and should carry on. Or it may be just general encouragement

Line – the scent left by the trail.

“Loose Horse” – shouted when someone has fallen off and the horse is running away.

Master – maybe a Joint Master. These are the people responsible for the running of the hunt. They should have right of way at all times second only to the hunt staff.

“Master/Huntsman/Whip/Hound please” – this means give way to these people as they have a job to do. If it is heard on a road or a track everyone should get to one side, not line both sides, to reduce the chances of them being kicked.

“Master/Huntsman/Whip/Hound on the right/left” – this means the Master/Whip/Hound should be let through on the side shouted. The side corresponding to the direction of travel of the majority of the Field.

Mixed Pack – a pack consisting of dogs and bitches

Opening Meet – the start of formal hunting.

Puppy – a hound which is new to hunting that season. It will appear fully grown.

Rat Catcher – term used to describe the official dress for mounted followers during Autumn Hunting; see dress code under the tab information and etiquette.

Riot or rioting – when hounds hunt something other than that which they are supposed to be hunting, they are rioting.

Scent – the smell, indiscernible to the human nose, left by the trail layers. The hounds also use the smell of the disturbed ground, where the trail layers have been, to stay on the line.

Speak or speaking – hounds do not bark, they speak or are speaking when they are “on the line”, when hunting a ‘scent’, see above.

Stern – a hound’s tail.

Walk – hounds at walk, often known as Puppy Walking, is where whelps are sent to private homes, in minimums of two’s, from the age of eight weeks until they get too big and boisterous for the walkers, at which point they return to kennels to learn how to fit in to the pack.

“Ware Hole/Wire/Glass” – ware is often pronounced “War” and means beware. Therefore if you hear “War Hole”, or “Ware Hole” it actually means mind out there is a hole in the ground coming up! Similarly any other hazard.

Whelp – a new born hound is a whelp and remains so until it come back from walk.

Whipper-in – the person who helps the huntsman control the hounds. This person has right of way at all times and will only give way to the Huntsman.