By: Paula Walter
The Doe Valley Sportsman Association will sponsor the United Kennel Club Hunting Beagle World Championship on September 30th, October 1st and 2nd. The event will begin at Bill Roark’s Roan Valley Auction at 5235 Highway 421 S in Trade. Breakfast will be available before the hunt begins to kick off the morning activities.
According to Doe Valley Sportsman Association member, Pamela Fenner, the beagles need to have already been qualified as winners of a world qualifier at any of the host clubs in the country to enter the United Kennel Club World Championship. It is strictly running the rabbits and no shooting. Doe Valley Sportsman Club alone does six hunts a year at different locations in Johnson County.
Currently 235 dogs are registered for the rabbit hunt coming from as far away as Missouri and Michigan. According to Pamela Fenner, the dogs will run twice a day for approximately two hours in the morning and then two hours later on in the day. The event is set up as a playoff where the dogs that win on Friday will progress to Saturday, and then Saturday winners will move onto Sunday.
There are approximately 25 different locations in Tennessee, Virginia and North Carolina where the dogs will run in the hunt this year, including locations on Route 421, the power station and local tree farms. According to Fenner, the United Kennel Club and Tennessee Wildlife Resource Agency supplies any necessary permits and licenses for the three-day event. There will also be a bench show where the dogs are paraded as in the Westminster Dog Show and are judged in different categories.
According to Fenner, hotels and cabins have been booked for the dog owners throughout Johnson County, over to Boone and up to Damascus to accommodate the large number of participants and their owners.
The deadline to enter dogs for the three-day run is 7:00 am Friday, September 30th.