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Villagers help hunting group search for missing hound in West Farleigh, Maidstone

A hunting dog has turned the tables on its owners by becoming the target of a woodland search.

A fox hound called Polka has been living as a stray in West Farleigh since she was separated from her pack over 10 weeks ago.

Members of the Ashford Valley Tickham Hunt say they have returned almost every day since the animal’s disappearance but have been able to catch her, despite help from villagers.

Polka, a fox hound, is living as a stray in West Farleigh, Maidstone since March 11.
Polka, a fox hound, is living as a stray in West Farleigh, Maidstone since March 11.

Punters at The White House in Heath Road have left out food and water for the dog, and volunteers from Pukka Ponies rescue centre, in Dean Street, East Farleigh, have spent hours scouring the area.

Polka’s presence caused a stir in the community this week when rumours surfaced of plans to shoot her when she was finally caught.

A spokesman for the hunt who vehemently denied the claims, said: “We now feel that, although we are extremely grateful for everyone’s help, we need to get her back to kennels so she can be reintroduced into the pack which is where she had spent her life before getting separated.

“If she is not caught in the next few days we will employ a licensed vet to dart her with a tranquilliser, so she can return to care, a warm kennel and her friends.”


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