To National Cur & Feist Breeders:
In the last several weeks I have seen something I never thought I would have to deal with in your organization. The brother hood and family atmosphere has been strained at best. I have been asked to settle this problem with the treeing curs and try to please everyone, (good luck to me). In doing this, I have talked with several people on both sides of the debate including Melvin Hopper who registered the first treeing cur.
The treeing cur standards which are printed in your yearbook are vague, and were left like this on purpose. This organization was founded for hunters who had great dogs but no where to hunt. Other purebred organizations would not allow you to hunt so the NKC helped, and the partnership was formed.
Now it seems dogs with characteristics of pure bred dogs have been slowly creeping into our field trials as treeing curs. I am not blaming anyone, with our open ended standard it is easy to see how this could happen. I have had suggestions that a percentage approach might solve this problem. Example a treeing cur could be no more than 50% hound, 35% hound, 25% hound or no hound at all. I see two problems with this approach. First it would be impossible to enforce this, how would you ever be able to ascertain the exact % of hound in the cur. Second today hounds are the problem; in the future it could be a completely different breed of dog. The first treeing cur Melvin Hopper registered was a 50% Hound and 50% Airedale.
I have thought about this for several weeks and the solution I have come up with is based upon the dogs over all general appearance. We all know the standard’s for hounds and most other purebred dogs. Therefore if a dog has a dominate appearance of a hound, or any other specific breed it will not be registered with the NKC as a treeing cur. Some breeders have tried to alter a hounds appearance by docking there tails, cropping ears etc. These man made changes will not make them treeing curs, so please don’t try.
I will be appointing a three person panel to settle any disputes that will arise; however I reserve the right to make the final call if a consensus can not be reached. This policy will go into effective July 1st 2008 and will not affect any dog that is already registered with the NKC. New registrations for treeing curs after July 1st 2008 must be accompanied with 2 photos front & side view of the dog or a club with a licensed breed inspector will be allowed to inspect the dog and verify the registration. The NKC will reserve the right to nullify any new registration, if we find a dog with the characteristics of a hound or any other purebred dog has been allowed to be registered and hunt in a sanctioned event. This policy will also cover future litter of treeing curs being registered with the NKC, so make sure you are breeding correctly.
Once again I am doing the best I can; if this does not stop the problem I will do what is necessary to keep the NCFBA growing and a family oriented organization. I know we are just one company you could field trail with and we do appreciate all of you. But I will not allow anyone to purposely cause problems no matter which side of the debate you fall on. This is an NKC policy, not an NCFBA. Life is to short, lets try to get past this and leave this organization for our children to enjoy.
President & CEO
National Kennel Club