Black and Tan Coonhound

Type: Scenthounds

Height: Males: 25 - 27 inches; Females: 23 - 25 inches.

Weight: Males: 60 - 80 lbs.; Females: 40 - 75 lbs.

Life Span: 10 - 12 years

Litter Size: 7 - 8

Country of Origin: United States of America

Activity: Indoor - Low. Outdoor - High. They enjoy a good hunt and are lively when given the space.

Watch-dog: High. Once they catch a scent they are determined to find it. They are assertive and watchful.

Guard-dog: Medium. Although determined, they are very friendly.

Description: Varying in coloring, there are many similarities among the six types of Coonhounds: the Black and Tan Coonhound, the Blue Tick Coonhound, the English Coonhound, the Plott Hound, the Redbone Coonhound and the Treeing Walker. Black and Tan Coonhounds were and still are used for trailing and treeing raccoon, bears, big cats, or whatever their master is hunting. They run their game entirely by scent, often hunting at night for raccoons, as raccoons are nocturnal. Black and Tan Coonhounds are especially friendly to people and animals (except the animals they trail). They are eager to please, confident and well rounded in temperament. These Coonhounds are determined in their scent tracking, and were bred specifically for that purpose. They are the first Coonhound to separate from the American Foxhound umbrella of breeds, and were also the only Coonhound to be accepted by the AKC, although they are mostly bred for treeing and rarely bred for show. Black and Tan Coonhounds do well at adapting to different environments. They do well in both extremes of weather, and are highly intelligent animals. They are hard workers and live for the hunt. They bawl quite loudly and quite often because when they catch the scent of a raccoon and start following it, they bay for their master to hear them. As soon as they corner the quarry they bay and howl in a different tone so that their master knows they've got the animal cornered. Black and Tan Coonhounds require a high-fenced yard, as these dogs will run off on a scent if they get the chance. Strong in instinct and confident of their abilities, the Black and Tan Coonhound makes an excellent Coonhound or pet.

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Other Names: American Black and Tan Coonhound

Colors: Black and tan only. Black and Tan Coonhounds have tan muzzles, usually two tan points above the eyes, as well as tan on their legs and paws. The rest of the body is black.

Coat: Short, dense, and smooth.

Temperament: Black and Tan Coonhounds are determined, lively, very friendly and active. They do not require a lot of exercise, but do enjoy it greatly and are willing to walk long distances. They can be mellow, amiable, calm and unobtrusive while indoors, while they can be lively, active and determined outside when they find a scent. Black and Tan Coonhounds are strong, stubborn, and independent. They love to bay and howl.

With Children: Usually does best with older children, but can be around younger children as well.

With Pets: Yes. Black and Tan Coonhounds are friendly towards almost anyone.

Care and Training: Brush the Black and Tan Coonhounds coat two or three times weekly. Check their long ears regularly, as they are prone to infection. The Black and Tan Coonhound is an extremely active breed who requires a great deal of space and will be happiest on a farm. Puppies need to be well-socialized and and taught not to roam. Black and Tan Coonhounds can be stubborn. The best owner for this breed would be a family in a rural or suburban home with a lot of space.

Learning Rate: Low. Obedience - Low. Problem Solving - Low. Black and Tan Coonhounds aren't the brightest of the breeds, but are excellent at the purpose they were bred for.

Special Needs: Ear cleaning, fenced yard, leashed.

Living Environment: A house with a high-fenced yard. Does best with an owner who is a hunter on a regular basis, or with a family in a rural or suburban living environment.

Health Issues: Progressive retinal atrophy, eye problems, hip and elbow displaysia.

History: Simon Kenton and the Poe brothers were the first to encourage this breed. Thanks to their efforts and the combination of the efforts of Simion Shirk and Holmes Lingo, the "Old Glory" strain was created which lasted pure up to 130 years. Traced back to an extinct Talbot Hound from the eleventh century, Black and Tan Coonhounds also contain within their genes some Bloodhound, English Foxhound, Virginia Foxhound and a few other Irish breeds in their ancestry. Development of the breed occurred in the mountains of Virginia, the Ozark Mountains and the Great Smoky Mountains in the 1700s. Black and Tans were bred for their ability of not only trailing the scent of raccoons, bear and even big cats, but to "tree" them, meaning to chase the animal up a tree, then howl until their master comes. Black and Tan Coonhounds howl in a certain tone when they find a scent and are tracking it, during which the hunters will follow the dogs. Then when the Black and Tan Coonhounds find the animal and chase them up a tree, they remain at the tree while baying in a different tone so that the owner knows when the Black and Tan Coonhound has found his prey. Bred for trailing techniques as well as endurance, these dogs are known to be able to trail bears and stags in extremely hot or cold weather. E. S. Traverse was a knowledgeable houndsman who once quoted this breed as "a cold-nosed hound that opened on tracks the other hounds didn't even know were there, with the determination to finish the track even if it led to Hell's backdoor." Occasional Black and Tan Coonhounds can be seen at AKC shows, and AKC sponsors some specifically Black and Tan Coonhound shows. But to this day, their main purpose in life is to be an excellent scenthound their masters can be proud of.

First Registered by the AKC: 1945

AKC Group: Hound

Class: Hound

Registries: AKC, CKC, FCI (Group 6), UKC, AKC (1/2004)