Posted by James Briggs on November 07, 2003
In Reply to: Barking up the wrong tree posted by GPP on November 07, 2003
: : Can you please tell me how this originated? Thank you, sax
: Just off the top of my head, how about hunting raccoons or possums at night with a hound dog, or a pack of them? The dogs could hear and smell the animal, which has now been treed--it ran up a tree and is sitting very quietly. The dogs can still smell it, but can neither see nor hear it, so they aren't quite sure exactly WHICH tree.
That is correct and is the widely acknowledged origin of the saying.