This section is from the book "Hunting: A Manual of Fox, Hare, Stag & Otter Hunting", by J. Otho Paget. Also available from Amazon: Hunting: A Manual of Fox, Hare, Stag & Otter Hunting.
I shall speak of hunting in another portion of this work, but before we leave the hound I should like to add a word or two on feeding. Custom and experience have proved that the best old oatmeal and horseflesh is the diet best suited to hounds in hard work, and I do not advise you to try anything else, but cabbages should be boiled with the flesh. The oatmeal is boiled until it forms a thick pudding, and is then allowed to get cold, when it is broken up and mixed with the soup, flesh, and vegetables. After the hunting season you should give them a change of food, and directly the young nettles appear employ some one to gather them and boil them for your hounds. Nettles are most valuable for purifying the blood, and in the springtime when hounds are changing their coats you will find the effect is marvellous. Be sparing with the flesh in summer, but always give some and boil it with the nettles. I do not know what are the chemical changes which occur, but flesh is perfectly good for use even though it smell a trifle unpleasant to your nostrils; when, however, it reaches the rotten stage it should never be given to hounds. Buy your horses alive, if possible, or you may get some animal that has been dosed with physic or that has had some disease.
Feeding hounds is an art in itself and requires the strictest attention. One hound will fill himself with three gulps at the trough, whilst another will pick and lap daintily. The latter should be allowed in a second time, and the feeder or huntsman must know exactly the moment when each hound has had enough. If you want your pack to be level in condition, great care and trouble must be bestowed on this part of the business. The day before hunting, feed early, and do not allow the thin ones to have a lap before they go out, as some people advise. If you have a hound a little too fine, give him a rest or send him home after half a day; but if you adopt my suggestions about summer work you will never have any that are not able to stand the longest day.
If you are a good sportsman you will not be cruel, but the necessary punishment of a hound is not cruelty. Your pack must be obedient if you wish them to show sport. I very much dislike to see a whipper-in continually hitting hounds for only trivial offences, and it is the duty of the huntsman to see that his charges are not abused. If a hound will not do what he is told, he must feel the lash and should be rated afterwards as well, but always approximate the punishment to the offence. In the case of any serious sin, such as sheep-running and hunting hares or other riot, the delinquent should be tied up and have a severe flogging that will leave a lasting impression on his mind. It is a mistaken kindness not to do it thoroughly, and you would only have it to do over again in a very short time. Let me, however, beg of you when you wish to enforce discipline and administer punishment, to reserve it for a moment when you have only the hunt-servants for an audience. It is quite natural that any kind-hearted man should object to see an animal hit, and knowing nothing about the case it may seem to him too severe. No one likes to see children spanked, but I have no doubt it is good for them. On the way to the meet or coming home you can generally find an opportunity of giving the sinner a lesson, but it must be a hound that has sinned before and has refused to hearken to your remonstrance. He must know for what he is being chastised, and he must also know in doing it he was doing wrong. Never allow a hound to be flogged until he has had a warning and has refused to listen. You have noticed Rusticus on several occasions during the day in full cry after a hare, and though you were close to him, he was deaf to your appeal and continued in his misconduct. Now you mean to give him the opportunity of committing the offence again, and to catch him red-handed. On your way back to kennels you go through a field where you know a hare to be lying, and there, sure enough, she is, getting up from her form right under the noses of the pack. None, however, take any notice except Rusticus, and he dashes off in pursuit, but your whips are ready in attendance on either hand and speedily cut off the culprit. The next thing is to couple him up to a rail and give him a sound flogging to the tune of ' ware-hare.' It is advisable to first blood a young hound with fox two or three times before you administer punishment for running riot. You want to enforce obedience, but you must be careful not to kill the dash and spirit, without which the fox-hound is worthless. One hound will take a flogging as if he liked it, whilst a single stroke of the whip will cow another so that he may not get over it for several days. Of course, punishment of a hound should be for the purpose of curing a fault, and not a vent for the ill-temper of the striker. There are many things, no doubt, to try the temper of a whipper-in, and he may get into the habit when annoyed of taking it out of hounds with his whip. This is a habit which he must not allow himself to indulge, and if it becomes confirmed, he had better try some other walk in life. Hounds appreciate justice in discipline quite as much as children, and will not readily forget an unjust blow. If a hound commits an offence of any kind, he should be punished at once or not at all. In covert it is not always easy to reach the offender, but an opportunity is sure to occur at some future time when he will again transgress, and when he is not sheltered by thick undergrowth. Kennel discipline is the first lesson in a hound's education, and when once they have learned obedience at home, they will give little trouble in the field, but this should be accomplished more by patience and kindness than by the whip. Whips for kennel use should be as light as possible. Calling in each member of the pack by name to the feeding-trough is an excellent means of instilling obedience, and is the usual custom in nearly every kennel, but it should be done without any unnecessary roughness. Unless hounds are under good control, many foxes will escape that might otherwise have been killed.