Basset Hound

Basset Hound

Basset Hound originated in France (bas in French means low-set) in the mid-1500s. The Basset Hound was developed by friars of the French Abbey of St. Hubert. They wanted a slower-moving hound who could be followed by men on foot. For centuries, the Basset was used to track and hunt rabbits, hare, and deer, as well as any other game that could be trailed on foot.

The Basset Hound is a large dog, of heavy bone, with short legs. She should stand no taller than 14 inches at the shoulder, and most weigh between 40 and 60 pounds. She is powerful and has great stamina, able to work in the field day after day. The head is large, with very long ears and dark, soft eyes. The chest is deep, the body is long, and the tail is carried gaily in hound fashion. The skin is loose, while the coat is short and may be any hound color.

The Basset Hounds coat is not difficult to groom; it may be brushed with a soft bristle brush twice a week to loosen dead hair. The ears should be cleaned at least twice a week also, as the heavy ears can get dirty. A young, healthy Basset Hound will have plenty of energy to go for walks or to play. Unfortunately, the breed is prone to obesity, and as a Basset Hound gets heavier, she also gets lazier.

Basset Hounds need exercise. A good walk morning and evening is great, but a play session midday is also good. Although training can be a challenge, Basset Hounds can participate in some canine sports, including tracking and therapy dog work. Bassets are one of the most amiable breeds.

They are good with children, other dogs, and other pets, although Basset puppies can be rowdy and must be taught to be gentle with children. Basset Hounds do not like to be alone, however; if they must be left alone, having another dog for companionship is a good idea. Bassets can bark and bay, which can cause neighborhood problems. The breed has some health issues, including obesity, back problems, hip and elbow dysplasia, eye problems, and bloat.

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  1. Basset hound characteristics says:

    Basset Hounds are among the most pleasant-natured and easygoing of all breeds.
    Some are dignified, but most are clownish. Almost all are reliably good-natured, sociable, and peaceful with everyone — strangers, children, and other pets, too. At a dog show, one can count on seeing cheerfully wagging tails in the Basset Hound ring.
    However, this is not necessarily the easiest breed to live with or train! Many people are very surprised, when encountering a Basset Hound up close, at how bulky and heavy this breed really is. They may be short-legged, but Bassets weigh 50 or 60 pounds and need a moderate amount of daily exercise to stay fit, even if they appear to be content snoring in front of the fireplace. Lazy owners have fat Bassets with concurrent health problems.
    When you do take your Basset Hound outdoors, you need to keep him in a fenced area or on-leash. This is a hunting hound with a powerful nose and a yen for the chase, and if he picks up an interesting scent and launches himself, your shouting and arm waving will fall on totally deaf ears. “Come” is not a command that Basset Hounds are eager to obey.
    Indeed, Bassets are not eager to obey many commands. Stubborn and slow to obey (you should expect thoughtful, deliberate responses), the Basset Hound can exhibit an amusing sense of humor while doing his own thing. Yet he responds amiably to patient, consistent obedience training that includes praise and especially food rewards.
    Did I mention the food rewards? Basset Hounds live for food, are champion beggers, and will steal any tidbit within reach – and be forewarned that their reach includes countertops when they stand up on their hind legs.
    Finally, Basset Hounds bay and howl (especially when bored), and they are notoriously slow to housebreak.

  2. Basset Hound says:

    I did a LOT of research before we decided to adopt a dog—at least a year’s worth. It seemed like every question we had was answered by your site—housetraining and training in general, feeding, walking, etc. We learned a lot from your site alone, and narrowed our list of compatible breeds down to a select half dozen or so. About a year after we started planning, we went to the local Humane Society and met all the dogs there. We settled on a young adult (approximately one year old) Basset Hound that was skinny and had been walking the streets of the city for a while before he was turned into the Humane Society by a Good Samaritan. He seemed to choose us, too—he sort of seamlessly settled into our lives like he had been there all along. Now, Walter is as happy as ever, and spends his days acting like a big dork and stepping on his own ears. He’s always happy to meet another person or dog, and loves sitting on his rug in the living room with us and chewing on a bully stick for hours. He tries to play fetch but doesn’t quite get that it requires him to actually get up and move!

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Basset Hound