Join us at the Symposium on Hunting with Hounds on July 26-28!

Professional Development Program


Sponsored by the Hunt Staff Benefit & Development Foundation

The Professional Development Program (PDP) was started in 2006 to supplement the education professional hunt staff receive on the job. Over the life of the program, we realized that the need also extended to honorary staff as well. We now accept honorary staff at the discretion of the committee.

This is a year-long course that runs from May 1 to May 1, in parallel with the traditional employment of hunt staff.

Each participant receives an extensive library of hunting books, audiotapes, DVDs and pamphlets. Professional staff participants receive a small monetary grant to assist with their expenses during the course.

Much of the class is conducted online through email. All participants will have access to the course instructor via email or phone at any time.

Apply for Program

Hunt Staff Benefit & Development Foundation
Attn: PDP Program
PO Box 207
Middleburg, VA 20118



  • Attend the Virginia Hound Show and spend time in the ring with judges to learn what they are looking for and how they make decisions.
  • Visit the MFHA Office (the day after the Virginia Hound Show) to learn what the MFHA does and how they can assist them, review the online MFHA Stud Book Program, research potential breeding combinations and how to register hounds.
  • Group kennel tour (3-4 day trip) visiting some of the premier kennels in the country and allowing the group to build their network with each other and the host huntsmen.
  • Hunt with a hunt (or hunts) in a different part of the country. When possible, participants are sent to an area of the country with several hunts, providing the opportunity to hunt with as many as possible.
  • A day of hunting with the course instructor at participant’s hunt. The participant will receive personalized guidance and the opportunity to ask questions and get acquainted.
  • Participants must meet all testing, task and travel requirements to graduate from the PDP. The course can be demanding but will in no way interfere with their regular duties with the hunt.
  • All travel and official activities will be paid for by the Hunt Staff Benefit and Development Foundation and/or donors.
hounds and hunt running in field