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What a good Beagle is worth?

Have you ever considered what the value of a good rabbit dog is? I suppose that it all hinges around the value a person places on a fun rabbit hunt. What is the value of a good time with friends and family? How much is it worth to be out with you son or grandson listening to a rabbit race rather than constantly worrying about the race ending or the dogs getting off on deer or other off game?

Let's take a look at the numbers and we'll see how they stack up. Suppose you wanted a real dog, a sure enough good one. A great mouth, good search, the ability to make the bunny go, no deer, with drop dead gorgeous looks. How much for a dog like that? For this example I'll say a dog that meets these criteria is worth a thousand dollars. That's sounds like a lot huh, well it is. If they were easy to come by the price would be much lower.

The first thing you'd need is a female of fairly good quality from a family of good hounds. Suppose you could find a dog like this for $500. Next you would need to find the right dog to breed to. It's safe to say you'd have another $250 in a bruce test, stud fees and travel. Oh yah, you'll need a good heated whelping pen to raise pups, figure another $200 if you do the work yourself. Next comes puppies and I am going to skip the fact that you could be in for a C section and a $600 vet bill. You buy the best puppy feed. You give them their shots right on time. They grow, get sick, and grow some more. Finally they're six months old and ready for the starting pen (you'll just have to take my word that you have another $250 in shots, food, and vet bills to get them to this age.) You send them off to be started. The man charges $50 a pup to start but you make a deal to give him one to start them all so there is no cost here. You get your three pups from the starting pen and you start running them. You're out countless hours in the dark after work listening to the pups run. Your wife complains because you're always out with those dogs. You take them hunting and work through the issues all pups seem to go through. Finally they are two years old and if you super lucky one of the pups is just what you were hoping for.

Now lets recap, you have to buy a fairly good female $500, find a stud $250 (don't skimp here) build a whelping pen $200, raise the pups $250, and send a hundred or so hours out training and working the pups in the heat, cold, and rain ($5/hour so another $500.) I ad that up to be $1700 and it took 2 years to get the dog you originally wanted that only cost $1000. The fact is, if you were to breed one litter as I described, you, would likely be the luckiest man alive if you were to get the dog of your dreams.

So what is your "fun" worth?
This article was writen by my good friend Scott Wilson from Pendelton, SC.



Bacon Creek Kennel

Aaron Jaggers
Richmond, KY

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