For my birthday present one year, I didn’t get the usual jewelry, perfume, romantic dinner or tickets to a play many women like. My husband bought me exactly what I wanted – a wild hog hunting trip to Louisiana. I’d hunted wild hogs before, and this hunt was special because we were hunting with Mike Jones with dogs. This hunt was neither a gun hunt or a bowhunt but a knife hunt. Hunting hogs with a knife was legal in Louisiana, as it was in many other southern states.
I enjoyed learning about the dogs that would get into the thick and wet places, find the wild hogs, jump them and run them until the dogs bayed them. I was impressed with the fearlessness of Jones’s dogs when they latched on to the ears or the jowls of the wild hog. I learned that the most important aspect of taking a wild hog with a knife was to trust the catch dogs when you moved in to stick the feral pig. My guide on the hunt went in with me to the hog, once the dogs had caught the hog to protect me if the hog did something unexpected.
Another part of my birthday present was a handmade Damascus steel knife I received to use to take the hog. This knife was absolutely beautiful and had a long, big, sharp blade. The knife had been custom-made for me to hunt feral hogs. I learned before I attempted to take a wild hog that I needed to put the blade behind the hog’s front shoulder and in-between his ribs to get the blade into the hog’s vitals. My guide told me that as I started putting the knife into the pig, I would feel whether or not I was on a rib or between the ribs.
What I thought was really neat about this feral hog hunt was that there was a village down in the swamp where people who lived there planned to hold a wedding in a week or two. So, I donated the hog to these people to help celebrate the wedding. In Tennessee, we take numbers of wild hogs with our rifles, and we clean those hogs, grind the meat up and most of the time make sausage from the meat.