So how do you know and decide if a bloodhound is suited for you and your family?
Let me start by saying that in my experiences working with dogs professionally and personally for over 27 years, that each dog is an individual, with different personalities within each and every litter.
It is OK to talk about some generalities of breeds, and many breeds of dogs are easier to group together in this way, for sheer volume of numbers of animals within that breed. You can not compare numbers of Bloodhounds with, say, Golden Retrievers, or with German Shepherds, or Labrador Retrievers, where in these breeds, it may be easier to talk about perceived generalities - i.e. "Labradors are sweet-natured fun loving and active dogs", or "All German Shepherds are natural guard dogs".
So in saying that i will give you some general 'rules of thumbs' when it comes to owning and working with Bloodhounds:
*Most slobber a lot. More so after drinking and after exercising. This slobber will get everywhere such as, your walls, car, floor, windows, and your hair! Be prepared and willing to deal with this. Bloodhounds do not walk around all day with massive amounts of drool coming out of their mouths for no reason - unless you live in a continually excessively hot environment 24/7.
*They will need a fenced yard for exercise and off-leash play; keeping your dog inside or on-leash or tied in the back yard for its entire life is not a fun existence for any dog; as well - when your puppy reaches a certain age, if it is off- leash not within a contained area, it is sure to run off, even for a short time or distance, and possibly be injured by many dangers in the environment. Bloodhounds naturally love to follow their nose, wherever it leads them! It only takes a second for your puppy or dog to chase a squirrel across the road, and be in the line of danger. Even if you think your dog is well trained. Why risk it?
*Bloodhounds need fair and consistent training for basic obedience. Also puppy classes for socialization are very important to the well-being of your puppy and growing dog, as well as continued socializing as an adult dog. They will be a more calm and easy-going and obedient dog with a vast amount of socializing!
*They will need a moderate to large amount of exercise on a daily basis. But most bloodhounds in- between exercise, are fine with being calm and happy to sleep in the house until you are ready to go do something with them! Be aware though, that up until about the age of 3 or 4, more exercise and attention the better. After that routine exercise and attention is needed, but on an individual basis. Use your best judgment, or your veterinarian's advice for your dog's individual needs.
*Exercise before the age of 18 months should be frequent but not stressful - no long jogs on pavement, doing agility jumps all day, or high or hard jumping, as this will cause unnecessary strain and injury to growing joints on the large-breed puppy/dog.
* Bloodhounds can do Trailing, Tracking, Conformation Showing, Obedience, Agility, Police Work of many different varieties, Therapy work with children and adults, and the list goes on. As breeders we try to determine which puppy within the litter would be best suited for these types of activities.
* Bloodhounds, being large breed dogs, should (if planning to do so) be neutered/spayed NOT BEFORE 18 months of age; so that their bone and muscle structure has time to mature naturally while the dog still has its hormones/sex organs. After that time it is safer and healthier to do the surgery.
* Bloodhounds naturally LOVE to trail. "Trailing" is - having your bloodhound in harness, while you follow behind with a long lead, letting him follow a scent laid in the natural path that the scent has fallen, not necessarily where the exact footprint has been laid. They love old trails, they love new trails, and everything in between. If you can get a trailing/tracking harness for your bloodhound, and learn to do this with them, you will both be happier for it! We can help you get pointed in the right direction for training, with links to books you can read to help you, along with people we can get you in touch with for further training. There are also events all over Canada and the USA to achieve different Trailing titles.
*Some Bloodhounds can be prone genetically to different afflictions as many other breeds of dogs are as well. Some of these include - Hip dysplasia, Elbow dysplasia, Entropian, Bloat (GDV), Heart conditions, Poor behaviour, and the list goes on. By working with our Veterinarians and National Breed Clubs, we work endlessly in making sure our dogs, to the best of our ability, do not fall prey to any of these problems. Our job as breeders, and keepers of this breed, is to try to keep the bloodhound looking, moving, and acting like a bloodhound, while minimizing or eliminating the possible inherited health hazards. At Copperleigh, we strive on achieving healthy longevity.
*Bloodhounds need to have their ears, eyes checked daily for any debris. Some bloodhounds are much higher maintenance than others. i.e. Some with too heavy of wrinkles (not to standard) may be harder to keep skin and ears and eyes clean and disease free. But again, each dog is an individual, and you need to treat it as such. A lot of Bloodhounds are 'easy keepers'.
* They need a high-quality large breed dog food, and this can cost you approximately 100 dollars per dog per month or more.
Once again, these are just 'generalized' statements for the Bloodhound, and each one is an individual with different needs and personalities.
We hope this information helps you with your decision on a Bloodhound. Please don't hesitate to contact us with any other questions or concerns about owning and living with one!
Send mail to Jill Taylor with questions or comments about this site. Copyright © 2016 Copperleigh Bloodhounds reg'd