Dog Breeds

Basset Hound Advantage and Challenges


  • Loving and full of silly antics
  • Gets along well with kids
  • Very mild mannered
  • Intelligent and loyal companion


  • Can be independent and stubborn
  • Slobbers and drools a lot
  • Tends to run off to chase interesting scents
  • Barking and howling can be problems
  • Distinct “doggy” smell

Basset Hound Physical Characteristics


  • Small 14-15 inches


  • 40 - 80 pounds


  • Short, dense coat


  • Tri-color (black, red and white); red and white; or lemon and white

Life Expectancy

  • 10-12 years
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Basset Hound Personality

The Basset Hound has many devoted fans, thanks to its droopily dignified face, stocky “lowrider” body and very long velvety ears - this good natured and enthusiastic yet gentle dog is the 25th most popular breed registered with the AKC in the United States. The Basset Hound is a great choice for families and it can thrive in an indoor apartment setting or in a house with an enclosed yard, but in either case this breed requires regular moderate exercise to prevent obesity.

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Basset Hound History and General Information

History and Origin

The Basset Hound originated in France. In fact, “bas” means low-set in French, which is certainly truth in advertising. This extremely short-legged, dwarf hound was found to be very useful for hunting small game. Traveling in packs, the Basset Hounds’ long ears scooped up the scent of rabbits and other animals, enabling the dogs to drive their prey out from dense undercover into open terrain for hunters. Pack hunting with Basset Hounds continues in Franceand Englandto this day, although the practice is now considered controversial.

General Information

Loveable and loyal, the Basset Hound can nonetheless be stubborn and conveniently “hard of hearing.” Kind and patient yet persistent obedience training is important for this dog – which tends to take angry punishment or criticism deeply to heart.

The Basset Hound may sometimes move slowly, but this dog isn’t clumsy – remember, it was bred for hunting. This sporting breed loves nothing better than to be distracted by interesting scents (even more than most dogs), and will enthusiastically wander away from home despite your frantic calls. To keep your dog from getting lost or hit by a car, always keep your Basset Hound in a secure, enclosed area.

Famous Owner

The Basset Hound was originally brought to Colonial America by the British and French. In fact, General Lafayette reportedly gave George Washington a pair of these hounds. It took until the early 20th century, however, for the breed to really gain popularity in the United States.

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Basset Hound Health

Health Ailments

Generally healthy, the Basset Hound’s long back has a tendency to develop disk problems, especially if overweight or under-exercised. This breed is also susceptible to glaucoma, gastric torsion, allergies and joint problems. The Basset’s ears are susceptible to infections and should be cleaned weekly.

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Basset Hound Community

Your Basset Hound

Send us pictures and stories about your hound.

Basset Hound Discussion Group

Get tips from other Basset Hound lovers – and submit a few ideas of your own.

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