Consider the following as it pertains to personal preferences of deer hunting and efforts being made to improve the current situations that are being discussed on these sites. Also consider that when dealing with Hot topics that it is somewhat natural to try and swing things to an extreme. Compromise is not extreme, it is a balance from those making real efforts to improve and coexist. When you swing extreme left or right their is always turmoil. I will tell you up front that I support Hunting which includes but not limited to; hound hunting, still hunting and Sunday Hunting. These are my comments and my suggestions and nobody else influenced them.
Controlling Hounds - It wasn't that long ago that houndsman had no means to track hounds which made it extremely difficult to locate and retrieve, With the introduction of telemetry greatly increased the handlers ability to catch up but was not easily mastered. More recently the GPS system provided a huge improvement in locating and pin pointing the hound and in my opinion was instrumental in the decision to create the RTR law. The latest step in technology was the GPS coupled with improved tracking ability and training features and anybody that has one will tell you that if used correctly will be invaluable. My point is that hound owners are investing in technology to improve our ability to limit the presence of hounds in unwanted places whether it is roadways or places that they do not have permission to be. These systems are very expensive but should be viewed as one step that hound owners are taking to limit the ground time on unwanted property. Houndsman are upgrading their system everyday and I feel it wont be long before 90 percent will be using the upgraded technology.
Landowners and RTR - Landowners have the right to allow or disallow hunting. A trespasser is someone that does not have permission or the legal right to be there. In my opinion the spirit of the RTR was to limit the presence of hounds on property where they are not wanted. Removing it would only increase the amount of time that a hound will spend on your property and the number of hounds that may be there. Handlers that are turning out and trying to push dogs onto your property are exercising poor judgement and if he comes onto your property to drive dogs he is trespassing. To suggest that a handler be fined for each occurrence that a dog trails up or runs a deer onto a landowners property with the ultimate recourse being the removal of the clubs permit is not at all realistic and has multiple pitfalls. There are many landowners that depend on the lease fees to maintain their farms or land, they grew up with many of these hunters that are their neighbors and friends. While I believe that the fast majority of landowners permit hounds I realize that we must strive for realistic answers that are not too far left or right.
Give the newer GPS technology time to take hold.
Stay off posted property unless you are truly trying to retrieve and if so do it legally.
Landowners that object to hunting with hounds should want to get the hounds off their property as soon as possible. In many cases the handler can even show the GPS screen to them and show them the dog in question.
All hound clubs should be members of the the VHDA and adopt their Code of Ethics AND abide by them. This way we are in a better position to hold clubs accountable for their members actions. Not to mention that it would help with all the individual bickering that goes on in FB and I think we would all agree that doing so has not been productive.
If anyone feels that the current laws are not being enforced then why would anyone think additional laws will be. Support and enforce the game laws on the books. I would support a training season for hounds on deer as long as Fox pens remain open which by the way isn't free. Some may not look at this as a compromise but by doing so would enhance the still hunting season for us all while we would still be sharing the regular gun season and with sharing should come tolerance by the outspoken hunters that prefer season long still hunting.
Practicing Respect and Tolerance will go a long way. Maybe a better term would be Respect to Retrieve.
In closing think before you speak/post, seldom do people come to agreements while arguing.