Other names: Chien de Saint-Hubert, St. Hubert Hound
Their name may suggest otherwise, but the Bloodhound is perhaps one of the friendliest, most gentle and most affectionate dog breeds in the whole world.
Amazing with kids, loving towards pretty much every human or animal they come across and eager to please their owners - we’d call them the perfect family dog!
Plus, we can’t forget the Bloodhound’s incredible talents - this breed is famous for their nose! They’re regularly used in the security and police world as scent detection assistants. As they say, ‘no nose knows like the Bloodhound’s nose’!
Key facts about the Bloodhound
Life expectancy :
Temperament :Affectionate Intelligent Hunter
Origins and history
The Bloodhound is believed to originate from the St.Hubert hound, dating back as far as the Middle Ages. The breed was famed for accompanying royals on hunting trips, thanks to its renowned sense of smell. Numerous hound breeds from Europe, however, have blended together to create the sweet-natured giant we know and love today.
FCI breed nomenclature
Group 6 - Scent hounds and related breeds
Section 1 : Scent hounds
Physical characteristics of the Bloodhound
Female : Between 23 and 26 in
Male : Between 25 and 28 in
Female : Between 88 and 106 lb
Male : Between 101 and 119 lb
- Black and tan
- Liver and tan
Type of coat
The Bloodhound’s coat is short and smooth.
They boast a short, flat, dense, double and highly waterproof coat.
The Bloodhound’s eyes normally complement the colour of the coat and can be seen in hazel, various shades of brown and deep yellow colours.
You can’t mistake a Bloodhound! This breed is best known for their wrinkly head and face, extremely loose skin and extra long ears - you either love it or hate it! They’re a huge breed with significant strength and power - the perfect example of a ‘gentle giant’!
They’ve got a long, sad-looking face with lots of pronounced folds. Their nostrils are large (hence their impressive sense of smell) and medium-sized, drooping, sunken eyes. The tail is long and set high.
Good to know
Experts believe that the Bloodhound has around 250-300 million receptors in its nose, which is the most of any dog breed!
With their scary name and intense looks, you might not think the Bloodhound is particularly affectionate - but they’re the biggest softies going! When part of a family, a Bloodhound will love and care with its entire heart. They’re known as loyal, sweet-natured and eager-to-please dogs who thrive in a family setting.
The Bloodhound is a clever dog, and one of the best ways to stimulate them mentally is through sports, with toys and through interactive games and puzzles. This is a breed who is more than happy to get involved, play games and mess around with the kids.
The Bloodhound boasts an extremely calm, easy-going, docile demeanour once trained and rarely cause trouble.
The intelligence of the Bloodhound is commonly debated. But one’s thing for sure - they’re good at what they do, which is tracking scents - and that certainly takes some determination and brains!
While some may say they’re not the most intelligent breed in the box, they’re certainly smart and require plenty of mental stimulation to keep them occupied.
Once trained and socialised, the Bloodhound is generally calm and unaggressive. However, they were originally bred to hunt and kill other animals, so a prey drive is definitely lurking. They’re able to track and follow any scent and beat any other breed in terms of smell.
Fearful / wary of strangers
While the Bloodhound is unlikely to be aggressive or threatening towards strangers, they may come across as shy and reserved towards them. If a Bloodhound is socialized from a young age, they’ll probably warm to strangers after some time and may even enjoy their company.
When you consider the Bloodhound’s working history, it comes as no surprise that Bloodhounds are rather independent, inquisitive and sometimes stubborn when they’re in the right mindset. This can make them hard to train - they’ll need to be in experienced hands.
Behaviour of the Bloodhound
We’ve already mentioned how much the Bloodhound loves their family. Because of this, they don’t like being left alone for too long and are prone to separation anxiety. In these cases, they’ll howl and cry for their owner, as well as chew and scratch furniture. This breed needs constant company and shouldn’t be left alone for too long.
Easy to train / obedience
Well-trained Bloodhounds make for the perfect family pet - it’s just getting to that point which is the problem! Their prominent independent and stubborn streak means they can be a little tricky to train - it’s a classic case of ‘my way or the highway!’.
It’s not impossible, though - with patience, persistence and plenty of positive reinforcement, a Bloodhound will eventually learn who’s boss. If you really struggle, it’s probably best to head to a doggy obedience class. Gaining a strong recall is especially important with this breed.
Thankfully, once they’ve started picking things up, they quickly turn into a well-behaved, calm, obedient pooch.
This breed’s bark is one of the loudest you’ll hear. However, a happy Bloodhound who has plenty of company and exercise is unlikely to bark excessively. However, due to their high exercise needs and tendency to develop separation anxiety, barking is a common problem - it’s all to do with pent up energy and loneliness.
Tendency to run away
The Bloodhound isn’t the kind of dog you can take off the lead. Their nose tends to take over everything, even their common sense - so they’d happily run into a busy road if it was on the scent trail.