A Bloodhound is essentially a scent hound. It is a large type of dog which was mainly created for hunting and tracking other animals. This breed originates in France where they initially sued it for hunting deer and wild boar and later also even people. This dog has a keen sense of smell, very unique in the dog world. That is why its purpose is very valuable to people so in today’s world these dogs are used in law enforcement. With its key sense of smell Bloodhounds are used to track missing people, fugitives and lost children.
They can even track certain items as they have developed their smell to such an extent that they can track even after a few days. They are very loveable in nature and have a unique appearance to them. Because of its French origin, bloodhounds are also called “Chien de Saint-Hubert”.
Bloodhound History & Origins
Based on certain stories, bloodhounds go way back to 1000 AD. The story said that these dog originate from the Saint Hubert monastery in Belgium. According to some facts the breed which was developed there was a mixture of various types of dogs. There are no exact records which breeds they used to create their Hubert dog. The result was an ancestor which is related to many different types of dog breeds, one of which is the bloodhound. The monks of St. Hubert used to send these dogs to the King of France, then Charles IX, who did not value them so much as he preferred his white hounds which he had back then
It was later with Henry IV that bloodhounds came to more prominence. Generally, they were ultimately used for hunting and their popularity rose and declined with the popularity of hunting back then. Today these dogs are recognized as one of the best breeds used for tracking any kind of prey. This is why they have found great use as police dogs as they help track fugitives and help solving various cases.
Characteristics & Temperament
A temperament of a bloodhound can be quite contradictory at times. Generally they are very gentle, but at the same time can be stubborn. They can be determined but not really quarrelsome, and they are both affectionate but can be shy around certain people. This can sometimes make this kind of a dog hard to train, but if you have a steady hand you will have no trouble. They actually react more to kindness and correction, but they still tend to do things their own ways in certain situations. That is why it is important to socialize them from early age and but there are other factors which are hereditary and based on training for determining the temperament of your bloodhound. They are not good guard dogs as they are playful and love people, so they are good with strangers. If properly trained bloodhounds can be also very good and affectionate with children as well.
Bloodhounds are very energetic and very much relentless. They do not give up easily when tracking and are going to go until they find their prey.
Bloodhound Appearance, Colors, Size
A bloodhound is a large dog. A full grown hound can grow up to be somewhere between 25 to 27 inches in height and can weight about 90 to 110 pounds. Females are a bit lighter and smaller and they grow up to be somewhere between 23 to 25 inches and can weight approximately 80 to 100 pounds.
Because these are large dogs, they possess a large skeletal structure as well. Most of their weight is in their bones as they are very thick, but it also makes the dogs strong and agile. Bloodhound usually have a hard coat consisting of fur mainly. What is characteristic for them is that the fur around the neck is loose and hangs around, which is one of the ways that you can recognize a bloodhound.
Bloodhounds are usually black and tan, liver and tan, or red. There are some darker variants like which are then mixed with some lighter patches of hair, usually badged collared or some white patches as well.
Unfortunately, bloodhounds do not have a very big lifespan. They have one of the shortest life expectancy rates among pure bread dogs. They can live somewhere from 7 to 12 years the most. Their high mortality rate is caused by a few illnesses and with bloodhounds gastrointestinal ailments are very high. The most common illness which affects them is gastric dilatation volvulus. Due to the skin hanging around their mouths and eyes, they suffer from incidence of eye, skin, and ear ailments. If you want to prevent those, you should regularly inspect thoroughly these areas. Owners should also be aware of bloat, which is actually the leading cause of deaths of Bloodhounds.
Bloodhound Grooming & Shedding
Bloodhounds shed seasonally, but during that time they should be have weekly brushes. You can use a rubber mitten to prevent any additional shedding. You can also use a shedding blade so you remove any excess fur or hair that remains behind.
Grooming a bloodhound is very important to prevent infections. You need to inspect and clean the wrinkles of their skin and that way prevent any possible diseases. You do not need to bathe a bloodhound regularly but they do have a distinct odor to them. Some people do not mind it but others hate it. This odor cannot be washed away so do not try doing that as it will not help, this is something that you will have to learn to live with if you want to won this type of a dog.
Price and Breeders
Bloodhound breeders are found almost anywhere. There are various kinds of places where you can find a puppy and buy one. Of course, the most popular areas are America, England and France. The average price of a bloodhound is $800 – $1200 USD.
Rescuing a bloodhound is also an option for you. If you think that this breed is expensive to get, you can always find a good place and adopt or rescue a bloodhound. Some which are available to you include American Bloodhound Club Rescue, The Canadian Bloodhound Club Rescue, Pacific Rim Bloodhound Rescue and Southeast Bloodhound Rescue. All of these are great places for find a this type of dog for you.