Paul, I would not reccomend pushing that pup. At your pups age they are completely vulnerable to what ever that pack decides to do on that given day. This could be a good thing or not. Have you thought about if that cast decides to run off game such as a deer ect.. Your pup probaly will not get much scent on a rabbit in that pack especially this time of year, but on a full blown speed beef chase (Mr. Whitetail) he's gonna love that! Heck he'll probaly even pick up a few checks on that line. All kidding aside Paul, it's just to risky running that pup now. Solo him if he can run a line by himself. Watch for signs of too much independence, if this happens throw a old dog in with him to keep that pack mentality strong. He will need all these skills to perform in P.P. See how that dog looks at 1.5-2 yrs of age as Leo said. That old Kentucky rabbit hunter knows a few things about these trials. Just have patience and keep that dog in the field, you can't go wrong if you do both of those!
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May GOD bless you and your hound this year!
Scott Johnson