Do you have a soft spot in your heart for those big and floppy ears and doleful eyes? If the answer is yes, then it is time to delve a little further into the pros and cons of owning a bloodhound
Bloodhounds are an ancient breed, known for their love and loyalty to their human family. But what else do they offer that would make them a good fit for a family with kids? The answers may surprise you.
In this article we’ll look at what kind of pet experience can be expected from a bloodhound, embracing both the highs and lows of inviting such an animal into your life. You’ll find out if this particular breed makes a good family dog.
Living with a Bloodhound can be an incredibly rewarding experience. These dogs are an active breed known for their loyalty and affection, as well as their intelligence and tenacity.
Their high energy levels make them a great choice for an active family that is willing to give them plenty of exercise and attention.
While bloodhounds are gentle and affectionate but very strong which can cause problems with young children without meaning to be, so it’s important to supervise them when they’re around kids.
With proper training and socialization, Bloodhounds can make wonderful companions for an active family that is willing to give them love and attention
What Are Bloodhounds Like To Live With?
Like all breeds, bloodhounds have their own particular quirks that you need to be aware of.
The first is that food and garbage must be secured at home as, like all scent hounds, their nose and tracking abilities will find anything left out and they are known for counter-surfing and rifling through the trash
They also have a tendency to swipe things off counters and clear coffee tables with their wagging tails, so put that cup of coffee higher up than the coffee table when they’re inside the house.
Bloodhounds are also known for their slobbering, so frequent brushing and cleaning of their folds are necessary to keep their skin healthy.
Additionally, they are great chewers but need to be taught what is acceptable to chew on. However, they do require patience and consistency in training due to their independent (read stubborn!) nature.
They are also intelligent dogs with a strong tracking instinct, so they need training and stimulation as bored bloodhounds may become destructive or vocal.
Exercise is essential for these dogs to remain quiet and content; otherwise, they may become boisterous or clumsy. They also need a secure fenced yard to explore the world with their noses. It is also very important to always have some form of identification on them, as they are true born escape artists.
Away from home, Bloodhounds enjoy outdoor activities such as hikes and splashing in the water, but not swimming. They should always be kept on a leash when outdoors due to their scent drive.
Bloodhound Temperament & Personality
Bloodhounds are known for their even-tempered and affectionate nature towards humans, making them excellent family pets.
Bloodhounds can get along with other dogs and cats if raised with them at a young age, but they may still display some territorial behavior. This can be addressed with good socialization while young.
They have a strong tracking instinct and are tireless when following a scent, which allied to their strong sense of smell, can lead to them following scents and escaping if not contained properly. It can also lead them to find uncontained food or garbage let out.
Bloodhounds can be willful and somewhat difficult to obedience train, and they need plenty of exercise and mental stimulation to stay happy and healthy.
Professional conservation detection canine trainer Brenda Wendt states that “A happy life for a bloodhound is at the end of their nose.” Their excellent sense of smell also allows them to detect hidden food or toys, which is a great way t keep the entertained
Bloodhounds have a one-track mind and can be intently focused on a scent once they’ve found it and will not give up until they discover where it came from. When they have caught a scent, they tend to bay rather than bark to tell you they smell something interesting.
The Bloodhound’s loud baying is another trait that owners should be aware of. This vocal behavior is a form of communication with their pack and humans. It is a trait that has been bred into them over countless generations, so it is unlikely you’ll be able to train them out of it.
However, providing plenty of exercise and mental stimulation can help reduce the amount of barking they do.
How Friendly Are Bloodhounds?
Bloodhounds are known for their friendly and affectionate nature. They are patient and gentle with people, making them great family pets.
Bloodhounds can be independent when following a scent, so it is important to provide training to ensure they don’t get distracted by smells outside the yard.
Although Bloodhounds are generally friendly, they do have a high prey drive which means they should not be kept with smaller pets such as cats or rabbits.
Supervision is recommended when introducing a Bloodhound to other animals in the home, as this will help them learn how to interact safely and appropriately.
Are Bloodhounds Good With Kids?
Bloodhounds are known for their gentle placid nature which makes them suitable for children of all ages.
However, due to their size and strength, they may be too rough with infants and toddlers when they start playing. Make sure you keep your Bloodhound calm around younger children and vulnerable adults in order to prevent any potentially stressful situations.
If you have an older child or adult who can handle the size of the dog then they can make excellent companions.
It is also important to socialize your Bloodhound with children from an early age in order to ensure a safe and comfortable relationship between the two. This will help your Bloodhound become accustomed to the presence of children, as well as teach them how to interact appropriately with them.
Bloodhounds and other pets
Bloodhounds are a historic breed of dog that has been used for centuries to track a human scent and hunt prey.
This same strong sense of smell, and tracking instinct makes them excellent at tracking can make them difficult to manage due to their high drive and need for socialization. So it is important to start socializing Bloodhounds from a young age in order to get them used to other animals in the home.
Training should begin as soon as possible and use positive reinforcement techniques in order to avoid stressing the dog out. Supervision is recommended when introducing a Bloodhound to other pets, as they may not always get along with smaller animals.
While bloodhounds are generally very friendly, socializing a bloodhound from a young age is important as they can display some territorial behavior with other dogs. It is essential to expose bloodhound puppies to different people, sights, sounds, and experiences when they are young in order to ensure that they grow up to be well-adjusted and friendly dogs.
One way to do this is by enrolling them in a puppy class, which will help them get used to being around other animals and people. Taking them out in public is also recommended as it will help them become accustomed to different environments.
Bloodhounds are known for their gentle nature with humans and other animals, including cats. This makes socializing them even easier as they tend to be more accepting of new situations than some other breeds.
With proper socialization, Bloodhounds can make wonderful family pets that are loyal and affectionate towards their owners. They may even become the life of the party with their outgoing personalities!
Bloodhounds are a generally healthy breed but do suffer from some typical health conditions
Commonly referred to as “bloat” gastric dilatation-volvulus (GDV) is a serious condition that is the biggest cause of death of bloodhounds.
Bloat is the twisting of the stomach after gas, food, or fluid buildup. It can happen without warning and develop rapidly. Thus, GDV is always considered an emergency situation.
Lymphoma or lymphosarcoma, a type of cancer, is the second most common cause of death in Bloodhounds, occurring more often than in other breeds.
Like many larger breeds, Hip dysplasia is a common condition afflicting bloodhounds. This is the medical term for a hip socket that doesn’t fully cover the ball portion of the upper thighbone.
Similar to hip dysplasia, but affecting the front legs, Elbow dysplasia is the most common cause of forelimb lameness in young, large, and giant breed dogs.
Due to their loose skin and facial wrinkles, Bloodhounds are also prone to a form of skin infection called lip-fold pyoderma.
This can form in any of the folds of skin, but the lower jaw of bloodhounds is usually moist, so bacteria and yeast can readily gain a foothold in the deep wrinkles there.
So your bloodhounds will need their wrinkled skin groomed on a regular basis to keep this at bay.
Bloodhounds, with their droopy eyelids, are also prone to several eye conditions.
Ectropion is the term for when the lower lids are everted (turned out), while entropion is when the upper lids are inverted (turned in). These conditions disrupt the eye’s protection and tear drainage, as well as cause chronic abrasion of the eye’s surface.
This can lead to chronic conjunctivitis (or pink-eye) causing varying degrees of discomfort and pain that may require surgical correction to fix.
Dry eye, or keratoconjunctivitis sicca or KCS, is also common in Bloodhounds, which results in sore, itchy eyes and infections.
What is a Bloodhounds’s Typical Life Span?
Bloodhounds are not the longest-living dogs, but with proper care, bloodhounds can live up to 10 years old, making them great companions for many years!
Bloodhounds make excellent family companions if you are prepared to exercise them. They have a gentle and affectionate nature and are incredibly loyal to their families.
They are highly intelligent, eager to please, and trainable with patience and consistency. Plus, the deep baying of their signature bark is sure to keep intruders away!
But just as importantly, with a bloodhound around you’ll never be short of cuddles or sloppy kisses. So if you’re looking for an affectionate and loyal addition to your family, consider getting a bloodhound today!
Sam is an award-winning canine photographer and runs Farlap Bloodhound breeders and Kennels in Devon and is the secretary of the Bloodhound Club.
Sam Clark has a passion for bloodhounds and their amazing ability to track a scent, and was one of the first in the UK to train her dogs to either track humans or other dogs for canine rescue.
- 1 Family Compatibility
- 2 What Are Bloodhounds Like To Live With?
- 3 Bloodhound Temperament & Personality
- 4 How Friendly Are Bloodhounds?
- 5 Are Bloodhounds Good With Kids?
- 6 Bloodhounds and other pets
- 7 Socializing
- 8 Health Concerns
- 9 Conclusion