Hunting with Redbone Coonhounds

Coonhounds on Tree
Most people who do not already hunt with their Redbone Coonhounds do not understand how the process of hunting with a coonhound takes place.


Allow me to give you a short visual to better clear up some of the false assumptions.

This is very bare bones but I think you will get the picture. I’ll be covering this in much more detail in my upcoming book on Redbone Coonhounds. (ask me about it)

After a coon hound is properly trained – that is taught to know what animal they are supposed to be hunting – we take the hound out to the woods. redbone puppies on scent drag

In this example I’m using the traditional raccoon hunting though coonhounds can be, and often are, used to hunt bears, big cats, coyotes, etc. If they can smell it, they can find it.

Most people who do not already hunt with their Redbone Coonhounds do not understand how the process of hunting with a coonhound takes place.Once in the woods, we give our coonhounds a verbal cue before turning them off their leads. My favorite to use is “get the squeak toy”. Sorry, but I get a chuckle out of that one! 😉

The dogs generally take off lickity-split after their ‘prey’. Once they locate a track by scent, they will start baying and running onward towards the raccoon.

If the raccoon is spotted on the ground, the coonhound’s job is to chase it up a tree and hold it there. They will stand against the tree up on their hind legs usually and ‘chop’ – a sound only a coonhound can make. It’s a series of short bursts of very deep ‘oowoofs’

If the coon is not on the ground but already in the tree (usually the case), the dog will know this too, thanks to their very sensitive noses. Same scenario follows as above.

That’s it. The rest of the hunt is the hunter’s job. Sometimes they will shoot out the coon, sometimes they won’t. As far as the redbone coonhound is concerned, it’s game over.

Dog 1 – Coon 0

Now, if you’re hunting raccoons in a Nite Hunt competition, you are NOT allowed to shoot the raccoons your dog finds. If the officials so much as catch you with a gun even in your vehicle anywhere on the grounds, it’s an immediate axe to you… you will be ordered to leave. Pronto.

So even if you never want to harm Mr. Raccoon, you can still enjoy every moment of hunting with your Redbone Coonhound. The sounds, the run, the excitement… it will most certainly get your adrenaline pumped and you’ll be begging for more!



Welcome to my Redbone Coonhound blog. John and a Redbone Coonhound playing kissy face

My name is Janet Ford. Along with my husband, John, we raise both Redbone and English Coonhounds. John is a 3rd generation coonhound fancier and I was also raised in the world of dogs, though not coonhounds. My Mom raises boston terriers – her 2nd litter ever born to her was on the same day I was born, 38 yrs ago. She is now getting out of bostons so that she can now pursue cavalier king charles spaniels; which is the same breed my sister raises and shows extensively – which is her main reasoning behind the change. It’s just more fun to do these things together. 🙂 My brother raises newfoundlands. So you can see, from birth, I was destined to ‘go to the dogs’. LOL

My husband and I actually started out with border collies due to our farm needs. Only 3 border collies, it was a start into the world of dog breeding on our own without the umbrella of being at home with our parents. With the dispersal of our cattle and dairy goats (which I showed on the national level), all but one of our herding companions were placed in another home. Our remaining gal is now a teenager and official bed warmer.

Music with DavidSeveral years ago, we saw a need for a dog for our middle son, David, who was spending more and more time alone walking through the woods exploring the land we own here in Lake county, Michigan. A coonhound was the natural choice. In entered Music, dear sweet natured and beautiful Music. The bug of his childhood, very quickly bit John once again and we gradually increased the number of coonhounds living and hunting with us.

Dutchess - English Redtick

As one of John’s favorite childhood memories was of an English Coonhound named Tiny, it was only a matter of time before he brought one home. Tiny was a redtick english coonhound. We found Dutchess, a redtick who looks so like the charming black/white photo we have of John’s Dad and Uncle with Tiny that it could give you goosebumps. And like Tiny, Dutchess is a real go-getter in the woods. A true force to be reckoned with.

At the time of this writing, we are owned by 5 redbone coonhounds and 3 english coonhounds. And 21… count em’…. 21 gorgeous puppies. OIY!! Two redbone litters and after having english for years, finally our first english litter.

I put up this blog so I could share more info on my redbone coonhounds in a chatty sort of way versus the more static nature of my website.

I look forward to sharing more of our coonhound antics with you in the near future. Also, look for us to add an English coonhound blog very soon.