Activities For Harriers

1k Views
0 Comments
0 Votes

Introduction

The Harrier, often referred to as a small English Foxhound or large Beagle, is a scenthound who loves to hunt. This is a rare breed that you are lucky to have. Dating back to the middle ages, this medium-sized hound is about 50 pounds and is a loving, loyal dog who loves to work as much as play. Your Harrier needs to stay active, or they get bored and lazy, even overweight, so it is a good idea to find some pawesome activities for you and your hound to enjoy together.

Hunting

Popular
0 Votes
Any Day
Expensive
Hard
1 hr
Items needed
Prey
Treats
Activity description

Of course, the obvious choice for your Harrier is hunting because they were bred to do this, so it is in their genes. They have the nose to find and follow just about anything, so you won’t have to do much to train your poochie to hunt. However, they will need to get used to being around loud noises like gunshots and working with other Harriers if you plan to hunt with a pack. This sport is done in any kind of weather. Although hunting in the rain or snow is not as fun as hunting when it is warm and sunny, the hunting season is usually during the cooler months of the year, so you will have to get your hound used to all temps. To train your dog to hunt properly, you will need to purchase a good hunting gun and some kind of prey animal to train them with. Most people use rats because they are cheap and more available than rabbits. 

Step
1
Get your commands down
Make sure your little buddy knows the commands that you will be using while hunting such as heel, come, stay, sit, and down. This should be done for about an hour a day for several days to make sure your dog knows what they are supposed to do. Get your dog used to the other dogs if you are pack hunting as well. To do this, make sure the other dogs are with you whenever you train your dog.
Step
2
Desensitizing your buddy
All guns are loud and if your dog has never heard a gunshot, they are likely to take off running after the first shot. That is not a good way to hunt so you need to get your fur buddy used to the sound of your gun. Take your Harrier out to shoot your gun several times a week for a few weeks and they should not flinch at all after a few trips.
Step
3
Intro to the prey
Let your dog know what they are supposed to be hunting. Show your hound the rats or whatever else you may be using for prey practice. Place a cage with the rats in the middle of the room and let your pooch sniff them and bark at them. Reward your Harrier with treats whenever they show interest in the prey. Then, you are ready for the field.
Love this activity?

Tracking Trials

Popular
0 Votes
Sunny Day
Cheap
Easy
1 hr
Items needed
Harness
Treats
Activity description

Even though the tracking instinct is built into the Harrier just like any other hounds, you have to practice to keep your dog’s tracking skills sharp. Tracking trials are the perfect sport for this as all the hounds involved use their nose to follow a trail. This is good for search and rescue training since the dogs in the trial are following the scent of a human who is “lost.” A scent trail is laid out for your pooch, and you and your Harrier have to follow the track to find the lost person. This activity is typically done in good weather as rain or snow can cover or wash away the scent. To train your Harrier for this sport, you won’t need to buy anything at all except treats, which you probably already have in your cabinet. If you don’t have a harness, you should get one of these as it is easier to train that way. The amount of time to train your dog depends on your dog, but it usually takes about 45 minutes to an hour a day for several weeks for your pup to get the tracking perfected. 

Step
1
Setting the trail
Making a scent trail for your Harrier is easy to do with some items of clothing or pieces of cloth that smells like the person you will be tracking. At first, make the trail straight, simple, and short. When your dog gets too good at that, make it harder. Remember to reward your fur buddy every time the lost person is found. Do this for about an hour a day for a few weeks.
Step
2
Watch a trial
Take your Harrier to a tracking trial and let them watch the other dogs hunt. This is a good way to determine how your dog is going to react to all the noise and crowds. See if your pooch gets excited or seems scared. If they are excited, you can go ahead and let them run a trial, but if your dog is nervous or scared, a few more times watching the trial should be enough to get them ready.
Love this activity?

Park Day

Popular
0 Votes
Any Day
Free
Easy
2 - 3 hrs
Items needed
Dog Parks
Activity description

All dogs love the park, and your Harrier is just like any other dog when it comes to this type of fun. Even though they love to work, playing is great too. To find the best dog park for your buddy, do some research and check out a bunch of them. Your fur baby will love it as you try out different parks with the various amenities and random furry friends to meet. This can be done on any day with any weather but, of course, it is much more comfortable for you both if it is not raining or freezing cold outside. This is a free activity, so that makes it even more pawesome! Spend an hour or two a day, several days a week visiting different parks until you find the best one for your dog. 

Step
1
Do your research
Go online and find all the parks in the area where you and your pooch want to visit. Whether that is close to home or anywhere in the city, that is up to you. Choose the parks that have different types of activities like agility equipment, water access, toys, segregated large and small pups, and those with walking paths. Check the reviews online to see what others have to say about the parks you choose.
Step
2
Check them out
Go to these parks by yourself and just watch. See if there are a lot of visitors, what days are best to go if you want privacy, and how well the owners pay attention to and clean up after their pups. Spend a few weeks scouting the places before taking your Harrier to visit.
Step
3
Choose your favorite
Take your canine kid to visit these parks and see how they react. Do they love the place or are they scared of other dogs? Are they bored? Is your buddy running around having fun with the other pups and using the equipment? Spend a few hours at one park on one day and then try another one on another day. Figure out which one your Harrier likes best and make it your new hangout.
Love this activity?

More Fun Ideas...

Obstacle Challenge

Dogs love jumping over, crawling under, and running on obstacles like those they use in agility courses. Just like a child, your Harrier will run on the ramps, play on the see-saw, and run through the tunnels like a pro. These dogs are energetic and athletic, so this is a great choice for them.

Barn Hunt

This is a hunting sport where your dog has to find the rat that is hidden somewhere under some loose hay, usually inside a barn. They use bales of hay to make a maze, tunnels, and hurdles for your Harrier to maneuver while searching. Once they find the rat, which is in a protected tube, time is called, and their performance is judged.

Conclusion

The best thing about a Harrier is that they love to do just about anything. They have plenty of energy and listen well, so they are good at all sports and activities no matter what they are. However, it is best to try more than one activity and see how well your dog likes it before you decide to do it every day. After all, the whole point is for your pooch to enjoy themselves as much as you do.