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Basset Hound – Everything You Need to Know

Basset Hound is a short-legged dog breed with a long, low, and slightly convex head. It has large, floppy, drooping ears and concise hair. Basset Hound puppies are often portrayed as wise, patient, kind, and loyal, but independent thinkers with the inner strength to endure illness, pain, and loss without complaint.

Basset hounds are generally black, brown, or a combination of the two colors and white. Its most distinctive feature is its pendulous lower jaw. Its French name means “low-down dog,” which also describes its appearance.

Basset Hound Pros and Cons

ProsCons
Friendly, loyal, and good with childrenShort legs make it difficult for Basset Hounds to move around.
Easy to trainShortnose can cause breathing difficulties.
The coat is short, smooth, and easy to maintain.Basset Hounds make good watchdogs but poor guard dogs.

Basset Hound Basic Information

  • Name: Basset Hound
  • Origin: France
  • Group: Scent hound, companion dogs, family dogs
  • Size: Medium
  • Height: Male: 12 – 15 inches; Female: 11 – 14 inches
  • Weight: Male: 54 – 65 lbs; Female: 48 – 59 lbs
  • Coat: Smooth, short, hard-textured coat
  • Color: Black, tan, and white (Combination of three, Mostly), black and white, brown and white, red and white.
  • Energy: Medium to high
  • Activities: Agility, obedience, walking, tracking, sniffing.
  • Barking Level: High
  • Shedding Level: Medium
  • Hypoallergenic: No
  • Litter Size: 6 – 8 puppies
  • Other Names: Gazella
  • Breed’s Original Pastimes: Hunting and chasing
  • Life Span: 10 – 12 years

Basset Hound History

France, a country known for its many breeds of hounds, first developed the Basset Hound in the sixth century. Then, many strains came in a tall and a short-legged version, the Basset (bas in French means low-set). Basset Hounds and their long-legged cousin, the Bloodhound, are thought to have descended from St. Hubert hounds.

As the patron saint of the hunt, St. Hubert set out to develop a new breed of hound that looked like today’s Bloodhound. According to many authorities, the Basset resulted from a mutation of the St. Hubert strain. Genetic variations caused a short-legged, dwarfed hound, whose slower movement and low-set form were helpful to hunters on foot in search of small game.

As a result of their long ears, Basset dogs were used to drive small prey, such as rabbits and hares, out of dense undergrowth into open terrain where hunters could hunt with spears, nets, or clubs. In France and England, pack hunting with Basset Hounds continues today.

Types of Basset Hound

1. Basset Artesien Normand

Basset Artesien Normand (BAN) is a breed of greyhound originating in Normandy, France, in the late 15th century. The BAN’s short, smooth coat comes in tri-color fawn and white. The species has been widely exported to England, Italy, the US, and elsewhere in Europe. It is now one of the most famous greyhound breeds in Europe. They are often used as show dogs and these “energetic extroverts” are good-natured pets.

2. Basset Fauve De Bretagne

Basset Fauve is a small, stocky, rectangular breed developed to trail rabbit, hare, fox, roe deer, and wild boar. The breed’s harsh, wiry coat requires a moderate amount of upkeep and comes in colors that range from light golden to brick red. The Basset Fauve is a medium-sized member of the basset family, standing between 12.5 inches to 15.5 inches tall. The breed is cheerful and agreeable, making him a great family pet. 

3. Basset Bleu De Gascogne

The “bleu” part of his name refers to his short and dense fur, which is always mottled black and white, giving his coat a slate-blue appearance. The Basset Bleu is slightly taller than some bassets, standing between 13 inches and 15 inches at the shoulder.

4. Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen

Until the 1950s, the Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen and the GBGV were two varieties of the same breed, both large and small varieties appearing in the same litter. The PBGV is bold and alert and makes an excellent companion, but his “good voice, freely and purposefully used,” makes him unsuited to apartment living. PBGVs usually stand between 13 and 15 inches at the shoulder. This breed’s rough, tousled coat is always white with orange, black, sable, tricolor, or grizzle markings.

5. Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen

Grand Basset Griffon Vendeens are descendants of the Grand Griffon, a much larger rough-coated hound. As one of the tallest and fastest bassets, it is suitable for agility training and hunting. Although an attractive and elegant hound, the GBGV is generally more stubborn and less biddable than other Bassets. So, he is not an ideal family pet. Hard, mid length coats are available in white and black, black and tan, and white.

Basset Hound Highlights

  • Basset hounds have muscular bodies with well-developed heads.
  • Basset Hounds, like all hounds, can be stubborn and challenging to train and housetrain. Therefore, it is recommended that they be crate trained.
  • Dog breeds like the Basset Hound are known for their friendly nature and good temperament.
  • They are known for their loyal, friendly, calm, and friendly temperaments.
  • Basset Hound is one of the oldest and largest breeds globally.

Basset Hound Personality 

The personality of a Basset Hound is very keen, intelligent, and bold. It is a very active dog, but it is also prolonged to socialize. Originally hunting in packs, they tend to be good with other dogs and other pets in general. Bassets are people-oriented and get along well with children.

Fairly smart dogs are not easy to train as they are somewhat stubborn. A firm, patient hand with plenty of creativity is required to bring out the best in them. Bassets can be serious barkers, and with their sturdy feet and nails, they tend to be diggers. The hunting urge is still quite strong, and if not safely confined, they will go off hunting on their own.

Basset hound is a small and calm dog. It is a charming breed that loves people, especially children. However, it has a very vocal personality and is often called the “baby of the pack.”

Friendliness Overview 

  Affection level   High
  Family-friendly   Medium to high
  Kid-friendly   Medium to high
  Pet-friendly   Medium to high
  Stranger -friendly   Medium

Adaptability Overview

  Good for apartment living   High
  Good to new owners   Medium to high
  Sensitivity level   Medium to high
  Tolerates being alone   Medium
  Cold-tolerance   Low to medium
  Heat-tolerance   Low to medium

Basset Hound Physical Features 

Head: The head of the Basset Hound is a small, dark-coated hunting dog with extremely short fur. They are intelligent and loyal. However, most people do not know about the head of the Basset Hound because its coat is so dark, and it is hard to see them in the wild.

Neck: The neck is straight and tapers to a short, triangular shoulder length. It should be slightly arched.

Topline: The topline of the Basset Hound is flat, level, and straight.

Body: The body of the basset hound is short and compact with a long neck, short legs, and a small head with large ears. The coat of the Basset Hound is short and dense, while the tail is long. The ears are set high on the head, making them look like horns when seen from behind.

Tail: The length and shape of the bottom are highly variable. The tail is long with a bushy tip, medium in size, and carried curved and slightly upward. The seat is usually held in an open or semi-loose position.

Forequarters: The forequarters of the Basset Hound dog breed is a small, compact, and muscular body. It has a short tail, which helps to keep it balanced when it walks on hard surfaces. The hind legs are solid and sturdy, with well-developed pasterns. The front legs are straight with long, powerful toes that help the dog grip surfaces better than other breeds. It is also essential for this breed to have a good neck and strong back to hold its head up high when it walks on hard ground or in uneven terrain. This gives the dog an impression of strength and power when walking on these grounds and makes sure that they can jump over obstacles quickly without falling or getting stuck.

Hindquarters: The hindquarters of a Basset Hound are made up of two parts: the hip bones and the thigh bones. The hip bones are located on top of each other, with one bone on another bone. The thigh bones are located underneath each other, with one bone on top of another bone.

Coat: The hair length on the head is from 1″ to about 2½”. The coat is wavy, tight, close on the body, and dense and soft on the legs. The coat comes in a wide variety of colors, but black is the most common.

Color: The color of the Basset Hound is typically black but can be fawn, red, white, or beige. The longer the hair, the darker the color will be.

Gait: Basset hounds are known for their short, smooth gait. Their flexible spine allows them to move their hind legs backward and forward while walking. In addition, since their necks and heads are so long, they have enough room to move both parts of their bodies back and forth.

Basset Hound Temperament

Basset hounds are very friendly dogs. They are usually calm and easy going. They make great pets for families and can be trained as well. However, not all Basset Hounds are alike. Some have a more outgoing personality, while others can be very shy and reserved, especially when they feel nervous or scared around strangers or unfamiliar people.

The temperament of the Basset Hound dog breed is a compassionate one. Therefore, it needs to be trained and prepared for all kinds of situations. During the training, You must always treat him gently and calmly. 

The temperament of the Basset Hound is an essential aspect to consider when choosing a pet for your home. Additionally, it is necessary to consider the disposition of this breed when you are looking to buy one.

Basset Hound Training 

Basset Hounds are very independent, and training the breed can be challenging. Over the centuries, scent hounds of this type were developed to hunt independently and follow a track without distraction. Because of this, they can seem aloof and not interested in following your commands. However, a Basset can be trained, taking time, consistency, and persistence. Using treats and early socialization in puppyhood is crucial, and as the Basset matures, he and his owner can benefit from continued positive obedience training.

A good Basset Hound is one of the most sought-after breeds. They are intelligent, loyal, and very protective. They are also very active and energetic dogs. However, this dog breed needs to be adequately trained to avoid getting aggressive with other dogs and people in general. You can do this by using a training program or working with a professional trainer.

Trainability Overview

  Easy to train   Low to medium
  Intelligence   Medium to high
  Mouthiness tendencies   Medium
  Barking and Howling tendencies   Medium to high
  Prey drive   High
  Wanderlust tendencies   High

Basset Hound Exercise Needs

Exercise is an integral part of a dog’s life. It is necessary for their physical and mental health. In addition, a Basset Hound needs to be exercised regularly to avoid many problems, often the result of inactivity.

Basset Hounds need at least 15-30 minutes of exercise every day to maintain good health. The best way to get their daily activity is through walks or jogs that last for about 30 minutes each time.

Basset hounds are breeds that need more exercise due to their low energy levels. You should take them on long walks or runs every day. If you don’t have the time to take them on walks, you can consider taking them on a jog with you instead!

Exercise Needs Overview  

  Energy level   Low to Medium
  Exercise needs   Low to Medium
  Intensity   Low to Medium
  Playfulness   Low to Medium

Basset Hound Grooming 

Grooming is the process of cleaning the body of an animal, including its fur, feathers, or scales. Grooming is also done to make animals more attractive and show off their condition.

Grooming a Basset Hound is not complex if you have the right tools and know what you are doing. A gentle brush will help you get rid of excess hair that can end up in your home. If you want to do it yourself, you should use a rubber curry comb for dogs with long hair to get rid of mats and tangles.

Grooming is an integral part of the life of a Basset Hound. However, the amount of time they need to be groomed depends on how often they are bathed and how much hair they have.

  • Bathing a Basset Hound once a month is enough for a dog with short hair. For dogs with long hair, wash them every two weeks.

Grooming should be divided into two steps: brushing and bathing.

  1. When brushing, use a slicker brush or a pin brush to remove loose hair from the dog’s skin and coat.
  2. When bathing, use shampoo designed for dogs or dish soap diluted in water to wash your dog’s coat and skin

Other grooming requirements that have to be done regularly include:

Grooming Overview

  Easy to groom   High
  Drooling tendency   Medium to high
  Amount of shedding   Medium to high

Basset Hound Health 

Basset Hounds have been around for over 300 years, and they are widely regarded as one of the most lovable and loyal dogs in the world. However, Basset hounds are known for their short life span and health issues. They are prone to Hip Dysplasia, Cardiac problems, Eye problems, Skin diseases, and other illnesses.

Some health issues they may have are bacterial infections and ear infections. In addition, some health concerns are specific to this breed, which includes a form of epilepsy called Basset Hound syndrome.

The health issues that are specific to this breed include:

  • Epilepsy
  • Osteosarcoma
  • Hypothyroidism

Health Overview

  Overall health   Medium to high
  Weight gain tendencies   Medium to high
  Size   Medium

Hip Dysplasia

Hip Dysplasia is a disorder in which the socket section of the hip joint does not entirely fit the ball portion, putting the joint in danger of dislocation. Hip dysplasia can manifest itself at birth or develop later in life. Arthritis can develop as a dog gets older. On one or both rear legs, some dogs display indications of discomfort and lameness. X-ray screening for hip dysplasia in animals is available through the Orthopedic Foundation or the University of Pennsylvania Hip Improvement Program.

Cardiac problems

Cardiac problems are one of the most common health problems in dogs. The most common symptoms of cardiac problems in dogs are:

  • Coughing
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Structural defects such as aortic stenosis
  • Hypoplastic left heart syndrome.

Obesity

Basset Hounds are prone to obesity, exacerbating hip and elbow dysplasia. This disorder negatively hits a dog’s health and durability. Obese canines exhibit an increased risk of heart disease, digestive disorders, diabetes, joint problems, and hypertension. 

Eye problems

Dogs are the most popular pets globally, and they have been around for thousands of years. They are also one of the healthiest animals you can own. However, there are some eye problems that dogs might suffer from, including cataracts, glaucoma, and corneal dystrophy.

The breeds that have a higher risk of eye problems include: 

  • Bulldog
  • Boston Terrier
  • Boxer
  • Bichon Frise
  • Cocker Spaniel
  • Dachshunds/Dachshund Mixes (including Miniature Dachshund)
  • English Bulldog
  • French Bulldog
  • German Shepherd Dog (including Miniature Schnauzer)
  • Irish Setter (including Miniature Irish Setter)
  • Poodle (including Miniature Poodle)
  • Portuguese Water Dog

Glaucoma

It is caused by increased pressure in the eye and is found in two forms: primary, which is hereditary, and secondary, which is caused by the decreased fluid in the eye. Symptoms include pain and loss of vision. Treatment includes surgery or eye drops.  

Cherry Eye

The gland beneath the third eyelid protrudes and looks like a cherry in the eye’s corner. Your vet suggests the removal of the gland.

Allergies

Basset Hounds can be allergic to various substances, ranging from food to pollen. If your dog licks his paws or rubs his face a great deal, get him checked by your veterinarian. 

Patellar Luxation

When the dog patella (kneecap), which typically lies in the cleft of the femur (thighbone), slips out of position, it is known as luxating patella. Your dog may feel periodic hind limb “skipping,” lameness, or locking up the leg at an abnormal angle if the patella luxates. 

Thrombopathia

Thrombopathia is a blood platelet disorder that commonly affects Basset Hounds. It affects the blood’s ability to clot, like von Willebrand disease.

Skin diseases

Basset hounds are known to have a lot of skin problems. Their short, dense fur is not very easy to maintain. As a result, they also tend to develop skin diseases. Some of these diseases are caused by genetic factors, and the dog’s environment causes some.

Treating skin diseases in Basset Hounds can include antibiotics, anti-inflammatory drugs, and corticosteroids.

Bacterial infections

Basset Hounds are prone to bacterial infections because their long snout can trap bacteria. As a result, they have suffered from ringworm, staphylococcus, bacteremia, and pyoderma.

Basset hounds tend to pick up bacteria from their environment, but if you live with your dog, you can help prevent bacterial infections by keeping your dog on the regular schedule of cleaning their teeth and skin.

Ear infections

Ear infections are a common problem in dogs. It affects the eardrums and ear canals, leading to hearing loss or death. The most common cause of ear infections in dogs is a bacterial infection, but this is not always the case.

Basset hounds are breeds most prone to developing ear infections because they have folds inside their ears that make it difficult for dirt and debris to escape. As a result, bacteria can accumulate and cause an ear infection.

Epilepsy

The Basset Hound has suffered from epilepsy, found in the breed’s history. The condition makes it difficult for the dog to control its movement or walk correctly. Many dogs are euthanized because of this condition, but a few have managed their seizures with medication or surgery.

Osteosarcoma

Osteosarcoma is a type of bone cancer. It is a rare form of bone cancer that affects the long bones in dogs. There are about 1,000 new cases each year in the United States. The treatment for osteosarcoma includes surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy. However, there is no cure for this type of cancer, which can be fatal to dogs.

Basset hound is one of the most common breeds affected by osteosarcoma, and it can be seen as an essential risk factor for developing this disease.

Hypothyroidism

Basset Hounds are known to have a higher risk of developing hypothyroidism, which is a condition that occurs when the thyroid gland doesn’t produce enough thyroid hormone.

When a dog has hypothyroidism, it will experience weight loss and muscle weakness because of the low metabolism. The hair will also start to fall out because the thyroid gland is not producing enough hormones to keep it healthy and strong.

Bloating

Also known as Gastric Dilatation Volvulus, is a condition in which a dog’s stomach twists when it fills with gas, food, or liquids. GDV appears out of nowhere and can progress swiftly. There is always a situation that requires immediate attention. 

Von Willebrand’s Disease

The most prevalent hereditary bleeding problem in dogs is Von Willebrand’s disease (VWD). It’s caused by a lack of a specific protein that helps platelets (blood cells that aid with clotting) adhere together and form clots to close damaged blood arteries. Von Willebrand factor is the name of the missing protein (VWF).  

Genetic testing is strongly recommended for the Basset Hound dog breeds.

Recommended Tests for Basset Hound 

  • Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA) for hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, hypothyroidism, and von Willebrand’s disease
  • From Auburn University for thrombopathia
  • The Canine Eye Registry Foundation (CERF) certifies that eyes are normal. 

Basset Hound Diet and Nutrition 

Basset hounds are not known for their speed, agility, or jumping ability. However, they are known for their endurance and stamina. The breed is also known for being easy to take care of and low-maintenance.

Basset hounds have a unique diet that includes vegetables and fruits in addition to meat and bones. Their diet is rich in protein, calcium, phosphorus, iron, zinc, and vitamins A and C. They also have a high level of fiber which helps them maintain healthy digestive systems.

Basset Hounds have a diet that consists primarily of meat and vegetables. However, they also need to drink lots of water because they cannot sweat like other dogs. Feed your dog 1.5 to 2.5 cups of high-quality dog food every day, divided into two meals. You can also check some healthy homemade recipes rich in protein, fiber, and other nutritions. 

Basset Hound Living Condition

Basset hounds are often chosen for their docile, calm, and affectionate disposition. However, they suffer from several health problems because of how they were bred. They have a life expectancy of 6-8 years on average and are prone to hip dysplasia, dental disease, epilepsy, and other eye diseases.

Basset Hounds are often seen as lazy, but they are pretty active. They spend their days playing, exploring, and sleeping. As they age, they become more sedate, but they still enjoy simple activities like playing with ropes or balls.

Basset Hounds are serene dogs that are well-suited in tiny houses and apartments, with access to yards. Living indoors with the family keeps them engaging. However, they are not suited for outdoors in extreme heat or cold.

The Basset Hound Club Of America is working to improve the health and well-being of basset hounds by advocating for legislative change in states that allow breeders to sell dogs with no restrictions on breeding practices or animal care standards.

Did You Know?

  • The ears of the Basset Hound are small and pricked up, and the eyes are usually hazel or dark brown. 
  • The body of the Basset is short and compact, with a smooth, short coat, and is between 20 and 28 inches tall.

Basset Hound Club Recognition 

  • UKC = United Kennel Club
  • AKC = American Kennel Club
  • CKC = Canadian Kennel Club
  • KC = Kennel Club
  • BHCA = Basset Hound Club of America
  • FCI = Federation Cynologique Internationale
  • Fédération Royale Belge d’Association Canine de France

Basset Hound Rescue Groups

Adding a Basset Hound to Your Family 

Things to remember before adding a Portuguese Water Dog to your family.

It is best to get a Basset Hound from a reputable breeder to prevent unavoidable circumstances like health and vaccination. In addition, it is best to visit the puppy’s parents to cross-check its health and happiness.

The cost of a Basset Hound ranges from $2000 to $3000.





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