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Showing posts with label double coat. Show all posts
Showing posts with label double coat. Show all posts

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Common Collie types and breeds

Common Collie types and breeds
  The collie is a distinctive type of herding dog, including many related landraces and standardised breeds. The type originated in Scotland and Northern England. The collie is a medium-sized, fairly lightly built dog, with a pointed snout. Many types have a distinctive white pattern over the shoulders. Collies are very active and agile, and most types of collies have a very strong herding instinct. Collie breeds have spread through many parts of the world  and have diversified into many varieties, sometimes with mixture from other dog types.
  Some collie breeds have remained as working dogs, used for herding cattle, sheep and other livestock, while others are kept as pets, show dogs or for dog sports, in which they display great agility, stamina and trainability. While the AKC has a breed they call "Collie", in fact collie dogs are a distinctive type of herding dog including many related landraces and formal breeds. There are usually major distinctions between show dogs and those bred for herding trials or dog sports. They typically display great agility, stamina and trainability and more importantly sagacity.
  Common use of the name "collie" in some areas is limited largely to certain breeds – such as to the Rough Collie in parts of the United States, or to the Border Collie in many rural parts of Great Britain. Many collie types do not actually include "collie" in their name.
  Herding dogs of collie type have long been widespread in Britain, and these can be regarded as a landrace from which a number of other landraces, types, and formal breeds have been derived, both in Britain and elsewhere. Many of them are working herding dogs, but some have been bred for conformation showing and as pets, sometimes losing their working instincts in the course of selection for appearance or for a more subdued temperament.
  Herding types tend to vary in appearance more than conformation and pet types, as they are bred primarily for their working ability, and appearance is thus of lower importance.


1. Border Collie
The most well known breed for herding sheep throughout the world. Originally developed in Scotland and Northern England. Not always suitable for herding cattle. Ears semi-erect or floppy, fur silky or fairly long, but short on face and legs; red, black, black-and-tan or merle, all usually with white over shoulders, alternatively mostly white with coloured patches on head. Coat can be either long or short.
  The Border Collie breed boasts two varieties of coat: rough and smooth. Both are double coats, with a coarser outer coat and soft undercoat. The rough variety is medium length with feathering on the legs, chest, and belly. The smooth variety is short all over, usually coarser in texture than the rough variety, and feathering is minimal. His coat is most often black with a white blaze on the face, neck, feet, legs, and tail tip, with or without tan. However, he may be any bicolor, tricolor, merle, or solid color except white.

2. Bearded Collie
  Now largely a pet and show breed, but still of collie type, and some are used as working dogs. The Beardie has a flat, harsh, strong and shaggy outer coat and a soft, furry undercoat. The coat falls naturally to either side without need of a part. Long hair on the cheeks, lower lips, and under the chin forms the beard for which he is known. All Bearded Collies are born black, blue, brown, or fawn, with or without white markings. Some carry a fading gene, and as they mature, the coat lightens, darkening again slightly after one year of age. A puppy born black may become any shade of gray from black to slate to silver. 
  The dogs that are born brown will lighten from chocolate to sandy, and the blues and fawns show shades from dark to light. Dogs without the fading gene stay the color they were when they were born. The white only occurs as a blaze on the face, on the head, on the tip of the tail, on the chest, legs, feet, and around the neck. Tan markings occasionally appear on the eyebrows, inside the ears, on the cheeks, under the root of the tail and on the legs where the white joins the main color.

3. Shetland Sheepdog
  A small show and pet breed developed in England partly from herding dogs originating in Shetland. The Shetland dogs were originally working herding dogs, not collies but of Spitz type . However, in the development of the modern breed these Spitz-type dogs were heavily mixed with the Rough Collie and toy breeds, and are now similar in appearance to a miniature Rough Collie. Very small, nearly erect ears, long silky fur on body, most commonly sable or merle, with white over shoulders.
  Shelties have a double coat. The undercoat is short and dense, causing the longer, harsher topcoat to stand out from the body. The hair on the head, ears, and feet is smooth, but the mane and frill are abundant. The legs and tail are furry as well.

4. Australian Cattle Dog
  Dog used in Australia for herding cattle, one of several Australian dogs interbred with the wild Dingo. Dogs of this type are also known as Queensland Heeler, Blue Heeler and Red Heeler. Powerful build, erect ears, short-haired, mottled grey or red with solid colour patches on head, and no white.
  The Australian Cattle Dog's coloring is blue or red speckle. Blue or blue-mottled includes black, blue, or tan markings on the head; partially tan on the forelegs, chest, and throat; and tan on the jaw and hind legs. Sometimes the undercoat is tan with a blue outer coat. Red speckle means red all over, including the undercoat, and sometimes including dark red markings on the head.

5. Old English Sheepdog
  Derived from "Shags", hairy herding dogs, themselves derived from "Beards", the ancestors of the Bearded Collie. Modern dogs larger than most collies, no tail, floppy ears, long silky hair , usually grey and white. Not to be confused with the English Shepherd.
  If you want a dog with big hair, the Old English Sheepdog is the one for you. This breed has hair galore: a profuse, shaggy coat that is neither straight nor curly. The breed has a double coat, with a textured outer coat and soft undercoat. Colors include gray, grizzle, blue or blue merle, brown, and fawn, usually mixed with white markings. 
He's certainly a large dog at 60 to 100 pounds, but his profuse coat of blue-gray and white makes him appear even larger. Known for his wonderful temperament, he's powerful, sturdy, and hardworking. Those who know and love him are familiar with his sense of humor. He can be playful and comical, although he is also the guardian and protector of his family.
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Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Everything about your Kai Ken

Everything about your Kai Ken
  Indigenous to Japan, Kai Ken is a medium sized rare breed with an athletic body, wedge-shaped head, erect ears, robust and hardy limbs, well-developed hocks, and a curled or sickle-shaped tail. These intelligent and loyal dogs occupy a significant place in Japanese culture, preserved as their natural monument.

Overview
  Kai Ken is a very old hunting breed from the Japanese island of Honshu. Although not very large, these dogs hunted a variety of game, even wild boar. The Japanese people designated the Kai Ken as a national treasure in 1934 and, as such, all dogs are protected by law.
  The Kai Ken dog breed stands from 17 to 22 inches tall and weighs 30 to 40 pounds. The head is wedge-shaped, with small, dark eyes and upright ears. The body is sturdy, and the tail curls up over the hips. The coat is double and does shed. All Kai Ken are brindle, although the colors can vary from red brindle to brown and even black brindle. The coat needs brushing twice a week; make sure to get through the thick coat to the skin. During the worst shedding, usually in spring and fall, the coat may need to be brushed daily.
  The Kai Ken needs daily exercise; however, since the breed retains its hunting instincts, all exercise should be within a fenced-in yard or on leash. The fence should be away from any overhanging trees, as this breed is known to climb trees capably. Socialization should begin early in puppyhood and continue on into adulthood. Training, preferably in a group class, is helpful for socialization as well as behavior. Training should be structured yet fun.
  The Kai Ken is intelligent, loyal to owners yet aloof with strangers, and very easy to housetrain. This is not a city dog; he rarely does well in the hustle and bustle of an urban environment. The Kai Ken needs an owner who understands northern and spitz-type breeds. A Kai Ken is devoted and loyal to his family and watchful of strangers. He will thrive with attention and will do best when he can spend time with his owner. The breed is good with children who treat the dog with respect. Although Kai Ken may be good with smaller pets, owners should keep in mind that this breed was bred to hunt and retains those hunting instincts. Kai Ken is a healthy dog breed.

Breed standards
AKC group: AKC Foundation Stock Service
Group: Rare Dog, Working Dog, Hunting Dog
Average lifespan: 14-16 years
Average size: 30 - 50 pounds
Coat appearance: Harsh, medium-length with a striped appearance
Coloration:  Black brindle, Red brindle and Brindle
Hypoallergenic: No
Best Suited For: apartments, houses with yards, active singles, families with older children
Temperament: friendly, intelligent, loyal, athletic

Comparable Breeds: Japanese Spitz, Shiba Inu

History
  Being one of the six native breeds of Japan to be maintained and protected by Nippo or Nihon Ken Hozonkai, it was developed as a hunting breed in the steep mountainous terrain of the Yamanashi region to track down deer, wild boar, bear and the Japanese serow (Kamoshika). This was possibly because of its great climbing ability as mentioned in traditional writings. With the creation of Nippo in 1928, the Kai Ken became Japan’s natural monument in the year 1933.  Recognized by the Japanese Kennel Club in 1934, there is little information regarding the breed due to language constraints.
  It came to the United States in the 1950s, though it is unknown whether the original ones survived or not. When male and female puppies started being imported to the United States, the foundation of the American Kai Ken began.


Temperament
  The Kai Kens are bold, fearless, intelligent, alert, agile and loyal having natural hunting instinct, it makes a tremendous watchdog. Kai Ken is wonderful and loyal with its family, but reserved and distant with the strangers. Though, the breed was bred and developed to be an outstanding hunting dog; however, these dogs are very friendly and good with children as well as nice behaving with other dogs without any aggression. Most of them not only like to swim, but also know how to cross a river, and can climb up trees when chasing the quarry. Being highly intelligent breed needs a firm training by gentle and endearing hands. 
  As an enthusiastically devoted and dedicated to the family it will require a lot of care, attention and appreciation from their owner in order to stay happy and cheerful. With a considerable attention, love and care it will do well while staying inside the houses. For such a strong hunting dog early socialization and introductions are very necessary. They would have adequate amount of daily exercise in order to stay happy and healthy; however, never trust it while off lead in an unsafe place, it has a chasing instinct so keep it in a fenced yard.

Health Problems
  Given the genetic purity of the breed, the Kai Ken is not known to have many congenital health problems. Like all dogs, however, the breed is prone to several minor health issues.

Care
  The Kai Ken requires only minimal coat care. He needs brushing only occasionally; the most important thing is making sure that there is no matting in his undercoat. It is recommended that he be bathed only occasionally as well. He may benefit from a dry shampoo along with occasional brushing. Their double coat sheds at least twice a year; you may need to strip his coat in order to help remove the old coat so that he will remain looking healthy. 
  The Kai Ken is highly energetic, so it is a good idea to give him as much exercise as possible. The Kai Ken enjoys long walks with his master; he also loves play time of any sort. Owners should focus on playing games that give this inquisitive dog the mental stimulation he craves. It is important that your dog be kept on a leash; he will run if he is not kept restrained beside you. This canine can be happy in an apartment if he has a huge wooded area provided to run in so that he gets adequate exercise every day; however, most experts do not recommend that the Kai Ken live in an apartment unless the owner is prepared to devote at least an hour daily to free play. This breed is known to be very clean and virtually odor-free.

Training
  Originally bred to hunt boar and deer, the Kai Ken makes a great hunting dog. These dogs are highly intelligent and respond very well to training, especially if it is started at an early age. This breed learns very quickly so, if you provide firm and consistent training you may be amazed at how much this dog can learn and retain. 
  The Kai Ken is not as independent or strong-willed as some highly intelligent breeds – they have a natural desire to please their human companions.

Exercise Requirements
  As a hunting breed, the Kai Ken is fairly active but the breed only has moderate needs for exercise. You will not need to take your dog out for hours every day – a long 30-minute walk or a brisk jog will be adequate. This breed is adaptable to apartment life and can get along without a yard as long as its daily exercise needs are met. Because this breed is so intelligent, it requires frequent mental exercise as well as physical exercise – plan to engage your dog in games often and consider agility training to keep him sharp and active.

Grooming 
  They should be brushed weekly to keep their fur mat free and clean. Bathe them as necessary, depending on how dirty they are. Their ears should be checked routinely for wax build up, infection or dirt. Their nails should also be trimmed regularly. Kai Kens shed once or twice a year, making grooming at these times needed. Kai Kens should be trained from puppyhood, as they are very willful.

Children and other pets
  If early socialized, the Kai Ken is wonderful and loyal with its family, but reserved and distant with the strangers. Though, the breed was bred and developed to be an outstanding hunting dog; however, these dogs are very friendly and good with children as well as nice behaving with other dogs without any aggression. Children should be taught how to treat and interact with such kind of dogs.

Is the Kai Ken the Right Breed for you?
Low Maintenance: Infrequent grooming is required to maintain upkeep.
Difficult Training: The Kai Ken isn't deal for a first time dog owner. Patience and perseverance are required to adequately train it.
The box art of the video game Ōkami. 
Slightly reserved with strangers, the Kai Ken has very strong protective instincts. It makes an excellent watchdog. In fact, the Kai Ken often prefers to keep watch from a spot with a good vantage point, like a porch, a balcony or a hilltop.

In popular culture
  • Many Kai Kens play important roles in the Yoshihiro Takahashi's series Ginga: Nagareboshi Gin and its sequel, Ginga Densetsu Weed, including the brothers Kurotora, Chūtora, and Akatora. In the sequel, Ginga Densetsu Weed, Kurotora's son, Kagetora, stars as an important character, with his less prominently featured brothers, Harutora and Nobutora, and cousins Dodo, Buru, Shōji, and Shigure.
  • Another Yoshihiro Takahashi's manga, Kacchū no Senshi Gamu featured a villainous Kai Ken named Gama.
  • Chu, a Canine Warrior from the 2006 video game Ōkami, is also a Kai Ken.

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Thursday, December 8, 2016

Everything about your Old English Sheepdog

Everything about your Old English Sheepdog
  Beneath that shaggy coat and gentle disposition, the Old English Sheepdog is an independent thinker with his own agenda and a powerful herding instinct. He loves people and is an excellent watchdog, but proper care of his coat requires a serious time commitment.

Overview
  The exact origin of the Old English Sheepdog is unknown; however, there are traces of its heritage in the western counties of England. Bred by farmers as fast and intelligent sheep and cattle herders to take animals to the market, their tales were docked for identification purposes. When sheering the sheep, farmers would often do the same to the Old English Sheepdog for blankets and warm clothing. Known also for herding deer due to its dense coat and cold-weather durability, the breed makes a great working and guard dog.
  In reality, the OES — nicknamed "Bobtail" because of his docked tail — is an easygoing, fun-loving, intelligent dog. He's a member of the American Kennel Club Herding Group. He's certainly a large dog at 60 to 100 pounds, but his profuse coat of blue-gray and white makes him appear even larger. Known for his wonderful temperament, he's powerful, sturdy, and hardworking.

Highlights
  • Training and proper socialization is essential for Old English Sheepdogs. They are large, bouncy and enthusiastic, but when they are young they can be especially rowdy. Patient, consistent training is must.
  • Old English Sheepdogs are not for clean freaks. They tend to drool and are heavy shedders. Also, their heavy coats trap debris and dirt, which ends up on your furniture and floor.
  • Originally bred for driving cattle and sheep, the OES is an active breed that requires a lot of exercise.
  • The Old English Sheepdog coat is high maintenance. Keeping it clean and tangle-free is time-consuming and expensive.
  • Separation anxiety is common in Old English Sheepdogs. They live for their families, and they can become destructive if they're left alone too much.
  • To get a healthy pet, never buy a puppy from a backyard breeder, puppy mill, or pet store. Find a reputable breeder who tests her breeding dogs for genetic health conditions and good temperaments.
Other Quick Facts

  • The Old English Sheepdog has a shaggy double coat that comes in any shade of gray, grizzle, blue or blue merle with or without white markings.
  • Besides herding, the Old English can be found competing in agility, obedience and rally.
  • His bobtail is a distinguishing characteristic of the Old English. Working dogs had their tails docked so their owners wouldn’t be taxed for them.
Breed standards
AKC group: Herding Group
UKC group: Herding
Average lifespan: 10 - 12 years
Average size: 60 - 100 pounds
Coat appearance: Double coat with hard and coarse hair; textured outercoat; and waterproof, soft undercoat
Coloration: Gray, grizzle or blue with or without white markings
Hypoallergenic: No
Other identifiers: Strong, square body with deep chest; black nose; flat ears close to the head; brown or blue eyes; short tail
Possible alterations: Can have one brown- and one blue-colored eye; born tailless
Comparable Breeds: Bearded Collie, South Russian Ovtcharka

History
Ch. Slumber, best in show at the
Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show in 1914
  The Old English Sheepdog comes from the very old pastoral type dogs of England, but no records were kept of the dogs, and everything about the earliest types is guesswork. A small drop-eared dog seen in a 1771 painting by Gainsborough is believed by some to represent the early type of the Old English Sheepdog. In the early 19th century a bobtailed drovers dog, called the Smithfield or Cotswold Cor, was noticed in the southwestern counties of England and may have been an ancestor. Most fanciers agree that the Bearded Collie was among the original stock used in developing today's breed. Some speculate that the Russian Owtchar was among the breed's ancestors.
  The Old English Sheepdog was at first called the "Shepherd's Dog" and was exhibited for the first time at a show in Birmingham, England, in 1873. There were only three entries, and the judge felt the quality of the dogs was so poor that he offered only a second placing.   From that beginning, the breed became a popular show dog, and, although the shape of dog itself has changed very little over the years, elaborate grooming including backcombing and powdering the fur were recorded as early as 1907. The breed was exported to the United States in the 1880s, and by the turn of the 20th century, five of the ten wealthiest American families bred and showed the Old English Sheepdog. The breed continues to be a popular show dog today.

Personality
  The Old English Sheepdog is a playful, affectionate clown who delights in frolicking with his family and neighborhood children. In fact, adolescence in the OES often extends to about age three, and an adult OES will retain his playful demeanor well into his golden years.
  An intelligent breed, the OES is a quick learner, always looking for something interesting and fun to do. He's capable of performing numerous tasks, including herding, agility, obedience, and search and rescue.
  This breed requires significant physical and mental exercise. He doesn't enjoy being left alone for long periods of time and much prefers — in fact needs — to be in the company of his family.
  A properly bred OES is good-natured and kind, and this is what makes him an excellent children's companion and a super family dog. He's sometimes called a nanny, a term of endearment that arises from stories surrounding the role he sometimes takes on within his family.
  However, the OES is not known for being an assertive watchdog. He may bark when strangers come to his home — or he may not. Some OESs are highly protective, while others aren't.

Health
  The Old English Sheepdog, which has an average lifespan of 10 to 12 years, is prone to minor health conditions like deafness, cataract, gastric torsion, otitis externa, progressive retinal atrophy (PRA), cerebellar ataxia, retinal detachment and hypothyroidism, or major health issues like canine hip dysplasia (CHD). To identify some of these issues a veterinarian may run hearing, hip, thyroid, and eye exams on the dog.

Care
  The Old English Sheepdog can live outside in temperate or cool climates, but it should have access to indoor quarters or the house, as it seeks constant companionship. A moderate or long walk or an energetic romp can fulfill its daily exercise requirements. And the Old English Sheepdog's coat needs combing or brushing on alternate days to prevent it from getting matted.

Living Conditions
  The Old English Sheepdog will do okay in an apartment if it is sufficiently exercised. These dogs are fairly active indoors and will do best with at least an average-sized yard.

Training
  As with many assertive and sometimes strong-willed breeds, the training will be crucial. Old English Sheepdogs come from a clear hierarchy both in dog packs and in the farming structure in western England, which means they need to feel like they have a place within your home’s own hierarchy. Good training, setting boundaries, and even giving your Old English Sheepdog a job to perform are all good ways of establishing this hierarchy.
  A particularly weak-willed owner can sometimes find the Old English Sheepdog to be a handful, especially as the dog gets older and becomes more set in its ways.

Activity Requirements
  Apartment dwellers may be drawn to this breed because they have a reputation for being well-behaved indoors but Old English Sheepdogs are not city dwellers and should not be kept in apartments or condos. They are country dogs, who do best in the suburbs or on a farm where they can herd livestock. At least one hour of vigorous activity per day is required for Sheepdogs to maintain health, happiness and an even temperament.
  Sheepdogs make excellent walking, jogging, biking and hiking companions and should be included in these activities. Their heavy coats can make them prone to overheating, so most owners keep their long coats cropped short.

Grooming
  The glory of the Old English Sheepdog is his coat. The most difficult part of caring for an Old English is also his coat. Expect to spend at least a half hour to an hour a week keeping it groomed. Along with time devoted to coat care, be prepared for dog hair around the house and on your clothes, as well as dirt, mud and debris tracked in on the dog’s furry feet.
  One of the advantages of buying an Old English from a breeder is the opportunity to learn how to groom him from a master. Even if your dog’s breeder does not live nearby, she is only as far away as an email or phone call if you need advice on how to groom the dog.
  Get a puppy used to grooming from day one. Comb and brush him gently but thoroughly so that he learns to welcome the attention. If you neglect the coat, it will get so tangled, dirty and smelly that it will have to be shaved. Grooming tools that will come in handy are a dematting comb, a shedding rake and a wide-toothed comb. Use shears to trim the hair between his paw pads and to trim the hair around his rear end to keep it free of fecal matter and urine stains.
  The Old English also needs the basic care that all dogs get. Trim his nails as needed, usually every week or two, and brush his teeth with a vet-approved pet toothpaste for good overall health and fresh breath.

Children And Other Pets
  The well-bred and well-socialized Old English Sheepdog is a trustworthy children's companion. Some say he will supervise and herd young children, keeping them in a particular area. Others say the OES acts as a means of support to the toddler learning to walk.
  Unfortunately, there are some exceptions to the Old English Sheepdog's role as a loving nanny, due to poor breeding that has resulted in ill-tempered and neurotic dogs. Buy only from a reputable breeder and ask to meet the puppy's parents. And it is extremely important to note that children should never be left unsupervised with any dog, regardless of breed or temperament.
  The good-natured OES is friendly with other dogs and pets, provided he is properly socialized and trained.

Is this breed right for you?
  Friendly and active, the Old English Sheepdog is a lover of family and children. A gentle and loyal breed, it requires training to avoid herding humans. A natural-born worker, it does best when it has a job to do. Since it is active indoors, the breed needs a large yard to roam in and may not be satisfied with apartment living. Requiring a sufficient amount of exercise and an owner with strong leadership, the Old English Sheepdog can easily become distracted and troublesome. In need of brushing and regular grooming, the dog is not considered to be a large shedder.

Did You Know?
  There is no upper limit for the height of the Old English Sheepdog. Females are typically 21 inches and up, males 22 inches and up. That’s because sheep varied in size, so the dogs used to herd them also varied in size.

Famous Old English Sheepdogs
The Colonel in One Hundred and One Dalmatians

  • Ambrosius
    in Labyrinth (film)
  • Barney in Barney (TV series)
  • Barkley in Sesame Street
  • Barry in The Tale of Edward
  • Bebe in Captain Kangaroo
  • "Big Dog" in 2 Stupid Dogs
  • Boot in The Perishers
  • Broo in The Raccoons
  • Chiffon in The Shaggy Dog (1959)
  • The Colonel in One Hundred and One Dalmatians
  • Digby in Digby, the Biggest Dog in the World
  • Drooler in Krypto the Superdog
  • Edison in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
  • Elwood in The Shaggy D.A.
  • Lat in The Brady bunch
  • Farley in For Better or For Worse
  • Hot Dog in Archie Comics
  • Martha, Paul McCartney's Old English Sheepdog was said to be the namesake of Martha My Dear.
  • Max in The Little Mermaid and The Little Mermaid II: Return to the Sea
  • Mooch in Lady and the Tramp II: Scamp's Adventure
    Sam in Cats & Dogs
  • Muffin Mclay in Hairy Maclary from Donaldson's Dairy, the first book in a series of children's picture books featuring Hairy Maclary
  • Nana in Hook (film)
  • Nate in Open Season 3
  • Niblet, Giblet, and Rebound on Pound Puppies
  • Sam in Cats & Dogs and Cats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore
  • Samson in Samson en Gert (TV series)
  • Shag in Road Rovers
  • Schaeffer in The Raccoons
  • Tiger in The Patty Duke Show
  • Wordsworth in Jamie and the Magic Torch
A dream day in the life
  The Old English Sheepdog loves to be around its family members. Waking up surrounded by children and other people, it will happily greet each with a smile. Running outside for a bit, it'll guard the home as its number-one priority. Coming inside for a bit of play, this breed will be ready and waiting for its daily run. After its daily brushing, the Old English Sheepdog will engage in a game of fetch before snoozing at the foot of its favorite owner.
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Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Everything about your Otterhound

Everything about your Otterhound
  This is a large, shaggy scenthound who nearly disappeared after hunting otters became illegal in Britain, but fans have repurposed him as a companion. He’s entertaining to live with but can be difficult to keep clean. The Otterhound is laid-back, but that doesn’t mean he’s a couch potato. Expect to exercise him thoroughly every day.

Overview
  Thought to come from French ancestors, the Otterhound is a large breed that's close to extinction. Used in packs by fishermen to help catch and retrieve otters, the dog has a good scent trail and webbed feet to help retrieve fish. With sea otters on the endangered list, we're seeing less of this breed. Extremely affectionate and devoted to his family, this breed is a large and loving animal.

Highlights
  • Otterhounds require a great deal of exercise, and not just chasing a ball in the backyard. A vigorous daily workout of jogging or swimming for several miles is needed to keep him physically and mentally healthy. However, because of the adverse effect of strenuous exercise on growing joints and bones, you should limit exercise among puppies and adolescent Otterhounds. Swimming is the best exercise for younger dogs, because the risk of joint injury is minimal.
  • Otterhounds are enthusiastic and loud barkers. But don't expect yours to be a guard dog — he's far too friendly for that.
  • Don't allow your Otterhound off-leash in unfenced areas; you never know when he might catch an enticing scent and run off.
  • Otterhounds enjoy being outdoors, but they're best suited to living daily life inside the house with their families.
  • A fenced yard is mandatory. Otterhounds have been known to jump fences as high as five feet, so be sure the fencing is at least six feet tall.
  • The Otterhound is affectionate, but he's also independent. He won't follow you around, begging for attention. He'll probably greet you when you get home, and then — if he doesn't need exercise — he'll return to his favorite snoozing spot.
  • The Otterhound loves food and can become obese if you don't monitor his diet. Also, his incredible sense of smell enables him to locate those special goodies you've hidden in the cabinets, and his size and cleverness enable him to find a way to get at them.
  • Big dog, bigger expense. Everything for a big dog costs more, from food to grooming to veterinary care.
  • To get a healthy dog, never buy a puppy from an irresponsible breeder, puppy mill, or pet store. Look for a reputable breeder who tests her breeding dogs to make sure they're free of genetic diseases that they might pass onto the puppies, and that they have sound temperaments.
Other Quick Facts:
  • Otterhounds are rare - there are fewer than 1,000 throughout the world. Approximately 350 live in the U.S. and Canada. The rest are primarily in Great Britain, the Netherlands, Scandinavia, Germany, and Switzerland.
  • The Otterhound played a role in the creation of another breed: the Airedale. He was crossed with black and tan terriers to add size and water ability.
  • Comparable Breeds: Spinone Italiano, Wirehaired Pointing Griffon


History
  Closely resembling the Petit Basset Griffon Vendéen, the Otterhound may have its roots in France. Being a very unusual member of the Hound Group, the Otterhound is a hardy scenthound, whose origin is unknown. The Otterhound may have its roots in breeds such as the Welsh Harrier, Bloodhound, Southern Hound, or a kind of water spaniel.
  Although there is not much to be said about the genetic makeup of the breed, it was a prized otter hunter in England as early as the 13th century. In 1212, King John kept the earliest documented Otterhound packs. This dog was used for searching for otters, which were exhausting the fish in local streams. The dog trailed the prey to its hideout and bayed after locating it. After the hunters arrived, they would take away the Otterhound and use small terriers to kill the otter.
  Although otter hunting was not a popular sport - as it lacked the formality of foxhunting and took place in wet weather conditions - the breed rose in popularity during the later part of the 19th century, when more than 20 packs hunted in England. However, this sport started losing its prominence after World War II.
  The first Otterhound was introduced to the United States at the turn of the 20th century; soon thereafter, the American Kennel Club would formally recognize the breed.
  Unfortunately, this ancient English breed is slowly becoming extinct. Otterhound fanciers are often not in favor of breeding the dog for dog shows and thus it has not been very popular as a pet or show dog.

Personality
  The Otterhound is an amiable fellow, with plenty of affection for every member of the family. He loves children, though he can play a little rough due to his large size. He is devoted to his family, but not overly so.
  He's likely to extend happy greetings when you come home at the end of the day, but don't expect him to follow you from room to room. He's too independent for that.
  The Otterhound's characteristic independence makes training challenging. You have to convince him that he wants to do what you're asking. This is entirely possible, as long as you are patient and skilled.
  The good-natured Otterhound is not a top candidate for a watchdog. He'll sound a loud warning bark to intruders, but that's about it.
  As with every dog, the Otterhound needs early socialization — exposure to many different people, sights, sounds, and experiences — when they're young. Socialization helps ensure that your Otterhound puppy grows up to be a well-rounded dog.
  Enrolling him in a puppy kindergarten class is a great start. Inviting visitors over regularly, and taking him to busy parks, stores that allow dogs, and on leisurely strolls to meet neighbors will also help him polish his social skills.

Health Problems
  Like most large, rapid growing breeds, Otterhounds occasionally suffer from joint problems such as hip and elbow dysplasia. They are also known to suffer from ear infections due to the long, droopy shape of their ears. Otterhounds can also sometimes suffer from epilepsy and this is considered to be a hereditary ailment.

Care
  The Otterhound is not a breed that can brag of its tidiness, as food often gets trapped in its mouth a face, or mud in its hairy feet. Therefore, the dog should be brushed and combed at least once a week.
  More over, the Otterhound requires a daily exercise regimen. It can sleep outdoors in cool and temperate climates if given proper shelter.

Living Conditions
  The Otterhound is not recommended for apartment life. They are relatively inactive indoors if they have sufficient exercise. They do best with at least a large, well-fenced yard. It can sleep outdoors in temperate or cool climates if given a good shelter.

Training
  Otterhounds were never bred to be kept as companions and are therefore not the easiest of dogs to train. Training them requires a firm hand and a great deal of patience. They are also a good-natured breed and do not respond well to harsh training methods. A firm but gentle approach always works best with this breed. It is also important that an Otterhound’s owner display consistent leadership as this dog can turn willful and stubborn if faced with a meek or passive owner.

Exercise Requirements
  Otterhounds have a great deal of stamina and require strenuous and daily exercise. They make excellent jogging and hiking partners and can keep up a steady trot for the better part of the day. When not exercised sufficiently they can sometimes turn destructive.

Grooming
  The Otterhound has a rough double coat that sheds water and has a crisp texture. It’s easy to care for with weekly brushing. The coat can be two to six inches long, and some coats are oilier than others. An Otterhound who has a longer, oilier coat gets dirty more quickly than one with a shorter, less oily coat, so the need for bathing varies. Some Otterhounds need a bath monthly, while others can get by with a bath only once a year. However frequently you bathe him, plan to clean the Otterhound’s beard after every meal to prevent odor. You will also spend a lot of time cleaning his feet, which have a tendency to attract mud and debris.
  With some Otterhounds, you may need to strip the coat once or twice a year to maintain its crisp texture. Stripping is the process of pulling out dead hair by hand. Ask your dog’s breeder if it is necessary and how to do it. Clipping the coat will make it soft, which is okay as long as you don’t show your dog and don’t mind the loss of the traditional texture. The Otterhound Club of America offers good grooming tips on its website.
  Anytime the Otterhound gets wet, whether from a bath, a swim, or a face wash, be sure you dry him completely to avoid a mildew-like effect, especially under the chin or any other place he has skin folds. In addition, if the Otterhound doesn’t get dry right down to the skin, he can develop painful, itchy, tender spots.
  The rest is basic care. Trim his nails every week or two and keep his ears clean and dry. Good dental hygiene is also important. Brush the teeth frequently with a vet-approved pet toothpaste for good overall health and fresh breath.

Children And Other Pets
  Otterhounds are boisterous, fun-loving dogs, but because of their size and tendency toward clumsiness, you should supervise them when they are with small children. They love children and wouldn't hurt them intentionally, but their size and exuberance might cause them to knock a small child to the ground. The Otterhound is probably better suited to a family with older children, ages 10 and up.
  If properly trained and socialized, the Otterhound gets along well with other dogs. Use caution when introducing him to small pets, however. The Otterhound's hunting instinct is strong, and he's likely to chase animals he perceives as prey.

Is this breed right for you?
  A loving and devoted companion, the Otterhound is good with children of all ages. Affectionate and smart, this breed gets along well with all members of the family, including cats. Known to have a knack for hunting, he may chase small animals and fish if given the opportunity. A terrific companion and great for outdoor life and camping, he'll enjoy any type of activity that involves swimming. Although inactive indoors, this breed is not recommended for apartment living due to his large size and need for regular exercise.

Did You Know?
  The water-loving Otterhound has large webbed feet to facilitate his ability to swim. Combined with his rough coat, they give him a look all his own.

A dream day in the life of an Otterhound
Waking up to hang out with the family around the breakfast table, the Otterhound will be ready for his morning walk. Once back inside, he'll snooze before the gang leaves. When alone, he'll ensure the home turf stays protected. Frequenting the backyard, he may swim a few laps in the pool. Once home, he'll greet you with a furry smile. After a rubdown and another walk, he'll be ready to relax with the entire family.
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