Devoted, smart, and tenacious; words that impecably describe the Bluetick Coonhound. This breed is a medium-large hound dog that originated in the United States and is known for its distinctive blue ticked pattern on its short and smooth coat. Bluetick Coonhounds are used for hunting raccoons and other game and for companionship. They have a sweet and affectionate temperament but also have a high prey drive and energy level that require proper training and exercise. This article will provide you with some Bluetick Coonhound information, including its history, characteristics, care, health, and more.
History of the Bluetick Coonhound
The Bluetick Coonhound is a descendant of French hounds that were brought to America by Marquis de Lafayette in the 18th century. These hounds were crossed with English Foxhounds and other hound breeds to create a scenthound that was adept at hunting raccoons and other game in the American wilderness. The breed was named for its blue ticked coat, which is a mottled black-and-blue pattern that helps it blend in with the night sky. The breed was also known for its loud and distinctive baying, bawling, and chopping bark that alerted hunters to its location and quarry.
The United Kennel Club (UKC) recognized the Bluetick Coonhound in 1946 as a separate breed from the English Coonhound. The UKC is an organization that focuses on hunting dogs and field trials. The American Kennel Club (AKC) recognized the Bluetick Coonhound in 2009 as part of the Hound Group. The AKC is an organization that focuses on conformation shows and breed standards. The National Bluetick Coonhound Association (NBCHA) is the official AKC parent club for the breed and promotes its interests and welfare.
Physical Characteristics of the Bluetick Coonhound
The Bluetick Coonhound is a sleek and muscular dog that has a graceful and racy appearance. The breed standard states that males should be 22 to 27 inches tall at the shoulder and weigh 55 to 80 pounds, while females should be 21 to 25 inches tall and weigh 45 to 65 pounds. The head is broad and slightly domed, with a long muzzle and large nostrils. The ears are long and pendulous, reaching at least to the tip of the nose when stretched forward. The eyes are large and round, ranging from dark brown to hazel in color. The tail is set high and carried gaily over the back.
The Bluetick Coonhound’s most striking feature is its short, smooth, glossy, and dense coat. The coat color is blue ticked or blue ticked and tan, with black spots on the head, ears, back, and tail base. The ticking is a fine flecking of black hairs on a white background that gives the coat a bluish appearance. Some dogs may have tan markings on the face, chest, legs, and feet. The AKC breed standard allows for any amount of ticking or black spots on the body.
The Bluetick Coonhound has a personality that is sweet-tempered, active, affectionate, and loyal. The breed is devoted to its family members and loves to cuddle and receive attention. However, the breed also has a strong hunting instinct and prey drive, making it independent, stubborn, and adventurous. The breed needs early socialization and proper training to learn good manners and obedience. The breed also needs plenty of opportunities to exercise its body and mind, such as walks, hikes, games, puzzles, or hunting activities. The breed may become bored, frustrated, and destructive without enough stimulation.
Bluetick Coonhound Personality
The Bluetick Coonhound has a personality that is a mix of sweetness and spunk. This breed is very affectionate and loyal to its family members and loves to cuddle and receive attention. This breed is also very playful and fun-loving and enjoys games and toys. This breed has a good sense of humor and can make you laugh with its antics.
However, the Bluetick Coonhound also has a strong hunting instinct and prey drive, making it independent, stubborn, and adventurous. This breed is very curious and will follow any scent or sound that catches its interest. This breed is also very vocal and will bay, bawl, or chop when it is excited, bored, or on the trail. This breed can be challenging to train and may not always listen to commands.
The Bluetick Coonhound needs early socialization and proper training to learn good manners and obedience. The breed also needs plenty of opportunities to exercise its body and mind, such as walks, hikes, games, puzzles, or hunting activities. The breed may become bored, frustrated, and destructive without enough stimulation.
The Bluetick Coonhound is not a breed for everyone. It is best suited for active owners who have experience with hound dogs and can provide them with enough space, stimulation, and attention. It is also best suited for homes without small animals or young children, as it may chase or knock them over. However, if you are looking for a devoted, smart, tenacious, sweet, and affectionate dog, you might want to consider the Bluetick Coonhound.
Pros and Cons of the Bluetick Coonhound
The Bluetick Coonhound is a breed that has many positive and negative aspects. Here are a few pros and cons of owning this breed:
- The Bluetick Coonhound is a loyal and affectionate dog that loves to cuddle and receive attention from its family members.
- The Bluetick Coonhound is a smart and tenacious hunting dog that can track and chase its prey by sight or scent.
- The Bluetick Coonhound has a distinctive and beautiful coat color that is easy to groom and sheds moderately.
- The Bluetick Coonhound is a stubborn and independent dog that can be difficult to train and may not always listen to commands.
- The Bluetick Coonhound is a vocal and noisy dog that can bay, bawl, or chop when it is excited, bored, or on the trail.
- The Bluetick Coonhound has a high prey drive and wanderlust potential that can make it chase after small animals or scents or escape from its home.
Care of the Bluetick Coonhound
The Bluetick Coonhound is not a low-maintenance dog breed. It requires regular grooming, exercise, training, socialization, and health care to thrive.
The Bluetick Coonhound has a short coat that sheds moderately throughout the year. It should be brushed weekly with a rubber curry brush or a hound glove to keep the coat healthy and reduce shedding. The ears should be checked regularly for signs of infection or debris and cleaned with a cotton ball moistened with a mild ear cleaner. The nails should be trimmed monthly or as needed to prevent cracking or overgrowth. The teeth should be brushed daily or at least several times a week with dog toothpaste to prevent dental problems.
The Bluetick Coonhound is an active breed that needs at least an hour of vigorous exercise every day. This can include walks, jogs, hikes, bicycle rides, fetch games, agility courses, or hunting trips. The breed should always be kept on a leash or in a fenced area when outdoors, as it may chase after any small animal or interesting scent it detects. The breed also needs mental stimulation to prevent boredom and boredom-related behaviors, such as chewing or barking. This can include puzzle toys, trick training, or nose work games.
The Bluetick Coonhound is an intelligent breed that can learn quickly but can also be stubborn and independent due to its hunting heritage. The breed responds best to positive reinforcement methods, such as praise, treats, and toys, rather than harsh corrections or punishments. The breed should be trained from an early age to establish good habits and prevent bad ones. The breed should also be socialized to expose it to different people, animals, places, and situations to help it become confident and well-adjusted.
Some basic commands that every Bluetick Coonhound should know are:
- Sit: This command teaches the dog to sit down and wait for further instructions. It can help calm and control the dog in various situations.
- Come: This command teaches the dog to come back to its owner when called. It can help prevent the dog from running away or getting into trouble.
- Stay: This command teaches the dog to stay put in one place until released. It can help keep the dog safe and out of harm’s way.
- Leave it: This command teaches the dog to drop or ignore something that it wants but shouldn’t have. It can help prevent the dog from eating or chewing something harmful or inappropriate.
- No: This command teaches the dog to stop doing something undesirable. It can help correct unwanted behaviors such as jumping up, barking excessively, or digging holes.
Common Health Issues Affecting Bluetick Coonhounds
The Bluetick Coonhound is generally a healthy breed with an average lifespan of 11 to 12 years. However, like all dogs, it can be prone to certain health issues, such as:
- Hip dysplasia: This is a genetic condition where the hip joint does not fit properly into the socket, causing pain, inflammation, and arthritis. It can be diagnosed by X-rays and treated by medication, surgery, or weight management.
- Bloat: This is a life-threatening condition where the stomach twists on itself, trapping gas and fluids inside. It can cause symptoms such as abdominal distension, restlessness, drooling, and collapse. It requires immediate veterinary attention and surgery.
- Ear infections: This is a common problem for dogs with long ears that trap moisture and dirt inside. It can cause symptoms such as redness, itchiness, odor, and discharge from the ears. It can be prevented by regular ear cleaning and treated with medication.
- Eye problems: This includes conditions such as cataracts, glaucoma, entropion, ectropion, and cherry eye. They can cause symptoms such as cloudiness, redness, swelling, or discharge from the eyes. They can be diagnosed by an eye exam and treated by medication or surgery.
To keep your Bluetick Coonhound healthy, you should:
- Take it to the vet for regular check-ups and vaccinations.
- Feed it a high-quality diet appropriate for its age, size, and activity level.
- Provide it with fresh water at all times.
- Keep it at a healthy weight to avoid obesity-related problems.
- Spay or neuter it to prevent unwanted pregnancies and reproductive diseases.
- Monitor it for any signs of illness or injury and seek veterinary help if needed.
Interesting Facts about the Bluetick Coonhound
The Bluetick Coonhound is a breed that has a rich history and a unique personality. Here are some interesting facts that you may not know about this breed:
- The Bluetick Coonhound is one of the few dog breeds that originated in the United States. It is said to be a descendant of French hounds that were brought to America by Marquis de Lafayette in the 18th century.
- The Bluetick Coonhound is named for its distinctive coat color: a mottled black-and-blue pattern on a white background. The ticking is caused by a fine flecking of black hairs that gives the coat a bluish appearance.
- The Bluetick Coonhound is known for its friendly persona, cold nose, and deep bawl mouth. The cold nose means that it can pick up and follow old or faint scents. The deep bawl mouth is a loud and distinctive bark that it uses to alert its owner or other hunters to its location and quarry.
- The Bluetick Coonhound was originally bred for hunting raccoons, but it can also hunt other game, such as bears, wild boars, cougars, and deer. It can work well in packs or alone and track its prey by sight or scent.
- The Bluetick Coonhound is not only a hunting dog but also a companion dog. It is loyal, affectionate, and playful with its family members. It can also be a good watchdog and guard dog, as it has a strong protective instinct and a powerful jaw.
- The Bluetick Coonhound has been featured in some literature and pop culture. For example, it is the mascot of the University of Tennessee and its sports teams. It is also the breed of Old Blue, the dog in the song “Old Blue” by Joan Baez and Bob Dylan. It is also the breed of Little Ann, one of the dogs in the novel “Where the Red Fern Grows” by Wilson Rawls.
Buying a Bluetick Coonhound
If you are interested in getting a Bluetick Coonhound, you have several options:
You can adopt one from an animal shelter or rescue group. This way, you can save a life and give a home to a dog in need.
You can search online for local shelters or rescues that have Bluetick Coonhounds available for adoption or visit them in person to meet their dogs.
Some websites that can help you find adoptable dogs are:
You can buy one from a reputable breeder who cares about the health and welfare of their dogs. This way, you can get a puppy with known ancestry, health history, and temperament.
To find a reputable breeder, you should:
- Do your research and learn about the breed’s characteristics, needs, and potential health issues.
- Ask for referrals from friends, family, or other Bluetick Coonhound owners who have had good experiences with breeders.
- Contact the National Bluetick Coonhound Association or the AKC for a list of approved breeders in your area.
- Visit the breeder’s premises and meet their dogs. Observe how they are kept, treated, and socialized.
- Ask the breeder for proof of health testing and clearances for their dogs and puppies. They should be able to provide you with certificates from the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA) for hip dysplasia and eye problems and DNA tests for other genetic diseases.
- Ask the breeder about their breeding goals, practices, and policies. They should be able to explain why they chose to breed their dogs, how often they breed them, how they select their mating pairs, and what they do with their puppies.
- Ask the breeder for references from previous buyers and contact them to get feedback on their experience and satisfaction with the breeder and their dog.
- Avoid buying from puppy mills, pet stores, online ads, or backyard breeders who do not care about the quality or welfare of their dogs. They may sell sick, poorly bred, or unregistered puppies at low prices.
Some websites that can help you find reputable breeders are:
- AKC Marketplace
- NBCHA Breeder Directory
- Good Dog
Bluetick Coonhound Mixes
If you are looking for a dog that has some of the traits of the Bluetick Coonhound but also some of the traits of another breed, you might want to consider a Bluetick Coonhound mix.
A Bluetick Coonhound mix is a cross between a Bluetick Coonhound and another dog breed.
Some examples of Bluetick Coonhound mixes are:
- Bluetick Beagle: A cross between a Bluetick Coonhound and a Beagle. This mix is a small to medium-sized dog with a friendly, curious, and playful personality. It may inherit the blue ticked coat of the Bluetick Coonhound or the tricolor coat of the Beagle. It may also inherit the baying bark of both breeds, which can be loud and frequent. This mix needs moderate exercise and grooming and may have some health issues such as ear infections, eye problems, or obesity.
- Bluetick Hound Lab: A cross between a Bluetick Coonhound and a Labrador Retriever. This mix is a medium to large-sized dog with a loyal, intelligent, and energetic personality. It may inherit the blue ticked coat of the Bluetick Coonhound or the solid coat of the Labrador Retriever in various colors such as black, yellow, or chocolate. It may also inherit the hunting instinct of both breeds, which can make it chase after small animals or scents. This mix needs high exercise and grooming and may have some health issues such as hip dysplasia, bloat, or allergies.
- Bluetick Hound Pit: A cross between a Bluetick Coonhound and an American Pit Bull Terrier. This mix is a medium-sized dog that has a confident, protective, and affectionate personality. It may inherit the blue ticked coat of the Bluetick Coonhound or the short coat of the American Pit Bull Terrier in various colors such as blue, red, or brindle. It may also inherit both breeds’ strong jaw and muscular body, which can make it powerful and agile. This mix needs moderate exercise and grooming and may have some health issues such as skin problems, heart disease, or deafness.
The Bluetick Coonhound is a dog breed that has a lot to offer to the right owner. This breed is a devoted, smart, and tenacious hunting dog that can also be a sweet and affectionate companion. However, this breed also has some challenges and requirements that need to be met. This breed needs a lot of exercise, training, socialization, and health care to be happy and healthy. This breed also needs a home that can provide it with enough space, stimulation, and attention. If you want a Bluetick Coonhound, you should research and find a reputable breeder or adopt from a shelter or rescue. You should also be prepared to commit to the breed’s needs and personality. If you do, you will have a loyal and loving best friend for life.
We hope this article has provided you with some useful Bluetick Coonhound information. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to contact us at our email address. Thank you for reading, and have a great day!
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Do Bluetick Coonhounds like to swim?
Bluetick Coonhounds are not particularly fond of water, but they may enjoy swimming occasionally if they are introduced to it in a positive way. Some Bluetick Coonhounds may swim for fun or to cool off, while others may swim only if they have to chase their prey.
Are Bluetick Coonhounds aggressive?
Bluetick Coonhounds are not inherently aggressive but can be territorial and protective of their family and property. They may also be dominant or assertive toward other dogs if they are not socialized properly. Bluetick Coonhounds need early and consistent training and socialization to prevent aggression and other behavioral problems.
How long do Bluetick Coonhounds live?
Bluetick Coonhounds have an average lifespan of 11 to 12 years. However, some Bluetick Coonhounds may live longer or shorter depending on their health, genetics, and lifestyle. Bluetick Coonhounds can be prone to certain health issues such as hip dysplasia, bloat, ear infections, and eye problems that may affect their longevity.
Are Bluetick Coonhounds good family dogs?
Bluetick Coonhounds can be good family dogs if they are raised and trained properly. They are loyal, affectionate, and playful with their family members and love to cuddle and receive attention. They can also get along well with older children who can respect their boundaries and energy level. However, Bluetick Coonhounds may not be suitable for families with small animals or young children, as they may chase or knock them over due to their hunting instinct and prey drive.
Do Bluetick Coonhounds shed a lot?
Bluetick Coonhounds have a short coat that sheds moderately throughout the year. They should be brushed weekly with a rubber curry brush or a hound glove to reduce shedding and keep the coat healthy. They do not need frequent bathing unless they are dirty or smelly. They may also need occasional nails, ears, and teeth trimming.