Bloodhound Dog Breed Profile

by Dr. Chris

Bloodhound Dog

Bloodhound Dog

AKC Group: Hound Group

The Bloodhound is best known for its scenting ability and was deployed to capture escaped slaves and criminals. The most noted breeds are the Cuban, the English and African. Interestingly, the Bloodhound's evidence is the only dog evidence permissible in an American Court of law.


The Bloodhounds are one of the oldest breed of hounds. Their breed can be traced back about a thousand years. Their history can be traced to the 8th century to the grounds of the abbey with St. Hubert. The monks perfected the breed but did not originate it. Other scent hound breeds such as the Swiss Jura Hound, the Coonhound and the Bavarian Mountain Hound can trace their origins to the Bloodhound.

A highly prized dog, Henry IV, king of France presented a pack of them to King James 1 of England in the late 1500's. There popularity declined during the French Revolution, but since then their have grown tremendously in numbers.

Physical Features

The Bloodhound's coat is short, harsh, dense and close lying to the skin. The fur around the tail is somewhat longer and coarser. The Bloodhound is a large loveable dog. It stands about 25-27 inches tall and weighs about 90-110 pounds. It is suited for hunting when blood was already spilt, not for spilling blood. On the head and ears the hair is short and soft to the touch. Its usual colorations are black and tan, liver and tan and red. White can appear on the chest and in spots along the body. The Bloodhound's head is narrow in proportion to its body and its length, about 12 inches from the back of the skull to the tip of the black nose. It is covered with an abundance of loose skin.


The Hound will greet and be friendly toward strangers. It is loveable and gentle and makes a great pet. Affectionate, it loves to please. It can sense danger with its strong nose even before it appears. The Bloodhound is not noted for its playfulness, but it allows children to climb all over it. Intelligent, but can be stubborn. Be patient, gentle but firm.

Common Health Problems

Hip and elbow dysplasia; Gastro Intestinal Bloat (food blockage- watch for excessive drooling, vomiting and take to vet); Feed three smaller meals rather than one large one; dry eye, cherry eye; Entropion (eye problem); skin fold dermatitis (rubbing of the skin wrinkles).

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