Foxhunting is a highly organized sport. The Masters of Foxhounds Association, established in 1907, is a non-profit corporation formed to; set and maintain high sporting standards among its membership, encourage foxhunting, record countries and boundaries for organized hunting establishments and extend registration of hunts as a preliminary step toward recognition, settle disputes in regard to the same and register eligible foxhounds in a "Foxhound Stud Book".
To be a member of the MFHA a hunt must have the necessary number of qualified hounds, proper kennel facilities, a hunt country of sufficient size that does not conflict with another hunt and an established organization. Most importantly, member hunts must agree to abide by the rules and guidelines which include animal care and good sportsmanship as directed by the MFHA. The MFHA encourages membership as the best way to keep up the high sporting standards it insists upon.
The MFHA insists on compliance with its rules and standards in order to organize and supervise the conduct of the sport. Since the sport does not have the agricultural imperative to control the fox population, American foxhunting emphasizes the thrill of the chase in a beautiful natural setting. To ensure that the sport is conducted with respect for its quarry, the Masters of Foxhound Association of America published a booklet entitled "Code of Hunting Practices" which emphasizes that mounted foxhunting as a sport is the hunting of the fox, coyote, bobcate or other acceptable quarry must be hunted in their wild and natural state with a pack of hounds. Any other practice which does not give an animal a sporting chance, is contrary to the best traditions of the sport and is strictly forbidden. All hunts, in both the United States and Canada, who are members of the MFHA must follow this code or lose their membership.