|Sensitivity to strangers|
|Affection for family|
|Suitable for first-time owners|
|Ease of grooming|
The Bloodhound’s name comes from the ability of this dog breed to track wounded prey during hunting.
The Bloodhound’s origin is from Belgium, and belongs to the hound and tracking dog’s group. And not only that, this dog breed is not only included in the FCI’s group number 6 (Hounds’ Group), it is also considered the most skilled dog to recognize smells. In fact the word “Bloodhound” literally means hunter of blood.
The Bloodhound is one of the Belgium dog breeds recognized by the AKC. In Spanish it is called Perro de San Huberto (St Hubert’s dog); Huberto was the Bishop of Liège, who founded an abbey where the monks carefully raised this dog breed.
The Bloodhound origin dates from Middle Ages, in a region known as the Ardennes, located in Belgium. Like many others, its breeding and physical characteristics come largely from English contribution.
It is said that its origins are ancient; some people even assure that it is an Asian dog breed. Some scholars support the hypothesis that its ancestors were tracking dogs from Gaul, introduced by the Roman legions.
It was a very popular and well-known dog breed in the Royal Court, and was used as a gift from the Nobility. It has been carefully bred since the 16th century.
Despite being considered a National Symbol, the Bloodhound is not so popular in Belgium, its country of origin. There are more specimens in Germany and the Netherlands. It was imported for the first time to the US back in 1885, since then, it has had great success in this country.
In England, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand this dog breed is very valued, but the number of specimens is not high. As mentioned before, the name “Bloodhound” means hunter of blood.
The progeny of these Bloodhounds received this name as a derivation of blooded hound which means a dog of pure blood, therefore a pure-bred. Subsequently, the breed was also developed in the United States. One trágico aspecto of their history is that in the Southern states, especially, these dogs were used for hunting runaway slaves.
The Bloodhound is a hunting and tracking dog par excellence. It is the perfect tracking dog due its highly developed sense of smell which is superior compared to other dog breeds from the same group.
This dog breed is very smart and it is perfect for hunting in hostile territories due to its resistance. It does not have any issues with climate or temperature; it adapts perfectly to perform tasks in any place. Its temperament is simply magnificent.
It loves being its owner’s center of attention. It adores having as much contact with the people it considers its friends. The Bloodhound is affectionate and faithful. It can adapt to stay inside the house with its family. It will be a peaceful dog if it is well trained and has the proper stimuli.
Bloodhound: Physical Characteristics
The Bloodhound is a medium-large dog classified as a pointer. Its body is robust and has a spectacular way of walking with slow and stunning movements. Also its head is large and easy to recognize; as for the rest of the body it is very well-proportioned.
However it is not a “bulky” animal, its body is muscular and strong, it is very harmonious and in general conveys strength and tranquility.
Bloodhound’s puppies are quite big and strong, when they have reached adulthood the males can be 26 inches (66 cm) tall and weigh 90 to 110 lb (41-50 kg). As for the females they stand at only 23 inches (59 cm), and weigh between 79 to 99 lb (36-45 kg).
The back is long and wide; the head and muzzle are big even during puppyhood. As they grow, puppies start to have small wrinkles on the skin of the forehead and cheeks. Along the years those wrinkles deepen and become more noticeable.
Another unique characteristic of this dog breed that makes it easy to identify are its long and hanging lips; the nose is not very peculiar it is just black colored, same as other dog breeds.
The Bloodhound’s neck is long and strong; its ears are also long and touch its jaws. Its eyes are hazelnut and a bit sunken which makes them look smaller than they really are.
During puppyhood, this dog has straight and muscular extremities that contribute to its slow walking movements, which are followed by its curvy tail decorated with long hair (up to 2 inches or 5 cm) in the lower part. The tail is curved and has some long hair on the tip.
The Coat is Short in the Rest of the Body and Might Be of Different Colors, Such As:
- Tawny and Black
- Liver and Tawny
- Reddish Brown
The first color is the most sought after one. The black color must be at the back, sides and the top of the head forming a saddle. The white color is not allowed, however a white spot on the chest or paws are permitted.
Bloodhound’s Sense of Smell
As we mentioned before the Bloodhound is a tracking dog par excellence, it has a truly extraordinary sense of smell; nowadays it is the most effective tracking dog known. If it is trained properly it can be used by the police as a narcotic detection dog, as a rescue and tracking dog of missing people or to catch criminals; it has the ability to detect and follow human trails, even if a human has walked by a certain place a few days earlier.
Besides its olfactory skills it stands out for its great intelligence; it used to be a hunting dog and today it is used in a wide variety of places where a sensitive sense of smell is needed.
This dog breed has a strong hunting instinct. As previously stated, it is equipped with an admirable intelligence, however it is independent and willful, this is the main reason training during puppyhood is imperative, so it can respond and follow orders or commands.
The Bloodhound can easily adapt to live inside the house of its family, but it must always be taken outdoors to keep its primal instincts intact.
In general, a Bloodhound has good health and an average lifespan of 12-13 years. It is a healthy dog breed without any particular diseases; however as all the same large sized dog breeds, it could suffer from some conditions, such as:
- Gastric Torsion
- Hip Dysplasia
- Intervertebral Disc Disease
Its ears and eyes must be always controlled, and its skin and wrinkles must be carefully cleaned. You can also read: Tips to Clean Your Dog’s Ears without Being Invasive or How to Brush Your Dog’s Teeth, Removing Tartar and Eliminating Bad Breath.
Bloodhound: Price, and Puppies For Sale
A Bloodhound puppy could be expensive, remember that it is not a dog breed that has greatly spread around the World, and also because of its unique qualities. The price will not be less than 1200 dollars, or 1100 English pounds, as it is not easy to find.
The most common defects of this dog breed are: deviated jaw, lack of premolars, snow nose, yellow skin or eyes (Jaundice), incorrect movements, monorchidism, cryptorchidism, and the shy or fearful temperament.
Remember to ask for a pedigree certificate, which allows you to check your dog breed´s purity. An animal with pedigree has certain characteristics that distinguish it among the others.
Now that we have mentioned the most important aspects, you can go to your new four-legged friend, who is certainly waiting for you.
You may be interested in reading another article related to other dog breeds such as:
- Maremma-Abruzzese Sheepdog
- Greenland Dog
- White Swiss Shepherd Dog
- Labrador Retriever
- Alaskan Malamute
- Bavarian Mountain Hound
- Basset Hound