Easily recognisable because of their noble, wrinkly heads, droopy lower eyelids and long, pendulous ears, Bloodhound breeds have powerful bodies and limbs, and are truly big dogs! They have a short, smooth coat that is black and tan, liver and tan, and red. Adult females measure 58-63cm in height and adult males 63-69cm. They weigh 41-50kg.

I've looked after dogs before, so I have some experience
I'm an experienced trainer and comfortable with any breed
I'd like to go on active walks with my dog
For one to two hours a day
I'd love a large dog
Dog drool? As little as possible, please!
I can groom my dog once a week
I love dogs that are chatty and vocal


The ancestry of modern Bloodhound dog breeds can be traced back to the monastery of St Huberts where dogs called 'Segusius' were originally used to track wolves, big cats or deer, or to follow the trail of wounded game. When the Normans conquered England in 1066AD they introduced many of their dogs and the St Hubert Hound was one of those brought to England and became known as Bloodhounds — or, to be more precise, the black and tan dogs were (the whites were called Talbot Hounds). The modern Bloodhound is not the identical dog of that time but is still called the Chien du St Hubert in Belgium.


These are gentle-natured, affectionate dogs who usually get on well with children and can live in harmony with other dogs and household pets. They are friendly dogs who will welcome both wanted and unwanted visitors. Although quiet in the house, they can be very vocal outdoors. They are family dogs and do not like to be left alone.


As with many breeds, Bloodhound breeds can suffer from hip dysplasia (a condition that can lead to mobility problems). Hip scoring of dogs prior to breeding is therefore important. The droopy skin on the head of Bloodhounds can result in problems with the eyelids and eyes.


Because of their size and growth rate, do not over-exercise them as puppies. Care must be taken in the first year to ensure their bones and joints are given a proper chance to grow. As adults, the Bloodhound has phenomenal stamina and needs two-plus hours daily. Primarily tracking dogs, once on the trail of an enticing smell, they will be desperate to find its source! There are classes and trials for tracking, and participation in this, or at least a chance to use his nose, is vital to the well-being of this breed.


Large breed dogs, as well as having large appetites, benefit from a different balance of nutrients including minerals and vitamins compared to smaller-breed dogs. The Bloodhound is prone to bloating and stomach problems; smaller, more frequent meals can help minimise this risk.


There is little grooming needed for this breed, as the coat is short and smooth. A brush over once in a while will suffice to remove loose and dead hairs. However, regular checks should be made of their ears and eyes to ensure early diagnosis of any infections.

Best Dog Breeds for Children

While many dogs are traditionally thought of as being good with children , all dogs and children need to be taught to get on with and respect each other, and be safe together. Even so, dogs and young children should never be left alone together and adults should supervise all interactions between them.

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Easily recognised by their wrinkly, droopy faces, these gentle-natured dogs have incredible stamina and love to play scent-finding games. Read more here.

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Is this the right dog breed for you?

All dogs have their own, unique personality, but some instincts and behaviours they’re born with. Try our breed selector and find out which dog breeds better match your preferences and lifestyle. If you and your dog enjoy similar things, you will be more likely to live a happy, fulfilling life together.


What to Consider next


It is incredibly fulfilling to adopt a dog from an animal shelter or rescue organization. It often means offering them a second chance in life. There are many dogs waiting for a loving family, a forever home. Reputable centers will be very careful about matching the right people with the right dogs. Staff learns all they can about the dogs they take in, and will spend time getting to know you, your family and your lifestyle, before they match you with any of their dogs. They’ll also be happy to give you advice and answer any questions you might have before and after the adoption.

Finding a good breeder

If your heart is set on a pedigree puppy, then your best bet is to find a reputable breeder. Contact The Kennel Club or a breed-club secretary who may have a list of litters available, or should be able to put you in contact with breeders in your area. Try to choose a breeder who is part of the Kennel Club’s assured breeder scheme.Visit dog shows to meet breeders in person and inquire about availability of pups of your chosen breed.

Welcoming your dog home

Whether you’re bringing home a tiny puppy or rehoming an adult dog, this is a hugely exciting time for everyone. While you’re waiting for the big day you might need to distract yourself, so luckily there are a few things you need to sort out before you welcome your new arrival. Click here for more information