Warwickshire Hunt has been criticised after its hounds ran amok in villages during a chase.
A mother in Oxhill expressed outrage after she had to grab her baby when a hound got through her door and ran around in her home.
“I have just had an altercation with Warwickshire Hunt at my property where not only did a massive fox-hound get into my garden but also entered my house where my six-month-old baby is on the floor in a baby walker. Thankfully we got to her before it did,” she said just after the incident.
“We have reported it to the police and I am waiting for the officer to attend now. I am shaken and beyond furious. I can’t bear to even speak to the hunt master who obviously thinks that my home, a haven for my children, is fair hunting ground for their hounds to come and go freely with complete disregard for the safety of my children.”
The hunt, which met between Brailes and Tysoe on Saturday said hounds had been diverted from a trail hunt and caught scent of a fox while in scrubland behind the village.
Hunting with dogs was banned in 2004 after a vote in Parliament. Since then hunts say they have abided by the law and hunted by setting trails for the dogs to follow.
However anti-hunting activists claim full fox hunting has continued.
West Midlands Hunt Sabateurs, who filmed the incident on Saturday, said in a statement: “This incident highlights the arrogance of this hunt who obviously think they are above the law and can do what they like where they like with complete disregard for people’s private property. Luckily West Midlands Hunt Saboteurs were on hand to stop the hounds from chasing the fox.
“This incident shows that hunts have very little control over their hounds and that strengthening the Hunting Act is the very minimum that needs to happen.”
Sam Butler, Master of the Warwickshire Hunt, said: “We do not take this lightly. The hounds did get in the gardens and we have apologised.
“One of the organisers went round on Saturday evening and again on Sunday to see everyone who was affected.
“All the people he saw would much prefer this didn’t happen but didn’t see it as a major issue.
“As far as the lady (whose house had a fox-hound enter) is concerned, someone got off their horse and went to see what the problem was and apologised profusely at the time. It is not true to say she had no apology and I will send someone round to emphasise it.”
Mr Butler said the hunt was on a trail outside the village on farmland and hounds diverted into rougher woodland.
“They must have found a fox and the fox ran through the gardens,” he said. “The organisers acted as quickly as they possibly could. We are sorry it happened but everyone did their level best to get hounds out of the village.
“They were hampered by saboteurs screaming and shouting and creating merry hell. They do not wish us well or anyone in the countryside.
“We did everything possible to get hounds out of the village and apologised immediately.”
Laura Rainbow of Warwickshire Police said they had two reports that a group of people with horses and dogs had trespassed on to private land around homes in Oxhill.
“An investigation commenced and no evidence of illegal activity relating to The Hunting Act 2004 (www.warwickshire.police.uk/article/16031/Hunting) was found.
“Officers then gave the concerned parties advice on how to progress their complaints of trespassing, which is a civil matter.
“Anybody with information about the incident, should call police non 101, quoting incident reference 199 of January 13.”