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Bear Hounding: Why it's Unnecessary, Unfair, and Downright Cruel

Updated on June 22, 2016

What it is

As if hunting animals solely for the purpose of "the fun of it" isn't shameful enough, bear hounding is one of the exceptionally painful methods of hunting. It's not an immediate death following one single gunshot; it's a process that involves panic, exhaustion, and possibly a slow and torturous death for the bear and sometimes for the hunting dogs that are chasing the bear into a position of surrender. You see, the objective of bear hounding is to physically exhaust the bear until it desperately seeks refuge in a location (usually a tree), where it's trapped and forced to submit to the hunter's bullet.

Bear hounding does not give bears a fair chance at a getaway. When the bear frantically tries to run from the radio-collared pack of hunting dogs, they become exhausted and overwhelmed with body heat, due to the thick layers of fat they have gained during their hibernation period. Therefore, they are at a disadvantage and tend to get exhausted quickly and give up trying to run from their pack of energetic antagonists. Bear hounding is unfair and unethical for the following reasons:

  • Bears are forced to run from a pack of radio-collared hunting dogs, which subjects the bears to quick exhaustion from the layers of fat on its body accumulating heat from the intense speed of their running.
  • Bears are forced to seek refuge in a tree while desperately trying to flee the hounds, even though they are well aware of the tree branches snapping beneath their heavy weight. If they are lucky, the hunter will shoot them before they crash to the ground and suffer injuries.
  • Sometimes the bears try to fight off the hounds, causing horrific injuries to both the bear and the hounds. And sadly, the injured hounds are sometimes abandoned in the woods as punishment for their "poor hunting."

Not only that, these bears are often hunted down for absolutely no reason except for the "fun of it." Yes, you read that correctly: these exotic wildlife animals are hunted, made to suffer, and are executed solely for fun.

Don't Support This Grotesque "Sport"

There are ways to curb the cruel act of bear hounding. Sign petitions, contact your state senators, or research your favorite wildlife park to find out whether or not they condone this type of bear hunting. You would be shocked to know that some wildlife parks and organizations do support bear hunting/hounding. Urge them to stop and make them aware of the cruelty and severity of the act towards wildlife. End any financial support for these organizations until they decide to do the right thing!


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      Amy 18 months ago from Colorado Springs

      Thank you for bringing this to light!! Additionally bear baiting a a huge problem. I am originally from Wisconsin and people feed them all summer to then ambush them. Really sad that feeding bears is legal in some states...

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      Debbie Ott 22 months ago

      How sad! Thank you for beinging this to our attention! Wonderful article.