Photo by © Amy Fair
English Foxhound - Breed Profile:
Physical characteristicsThe English Foxhound is an elegant athletic hound with very strong hindquarters. Even though it looks very similar to its American cousin, the English variety of foxhounds is shorter, much stouter and stockier. The head and the muzzle are in good proportion to the body. The low-set ears hang down close to the cheeks. The long neck tapers nicely from the shoulders to the neck. The shoulders are well-muscled without being heavy. The eyes are brown. The legs are straight with round cat-like feet. The long tail is held up gaily.
English Foxhounds weigh 70 to 75 pounds and grow tall up to 24 inches.
TemperamentEnglish Foxhounds are very independent by nature and stubborn at times. They need firm and consistent human leadership, as well as a lot of daily exercise to burn off their tremendous energy. These dogs were bred to run for hours at a consistent speed, and this instinct should never be neglected. The dog can become destructive otherwise. There are two types of English Foxhounds: field lines and show (bench) lines. The field type is bred for hunting and field trial work. The show type is bred for conformation shows. Both types are very energetic and active, but field lines require even more exercise. The dominance level can vary in this breed from submissive individuals to very dominant ones.
English Foxhounds are excellent with children and do well with other animals. They feel more comfortable in a pack of other dogs but if you are an avid jogger, biker or hiker, they can do well as the sole pet. Do not let them off the leash unless in a safe place as they may easily take off after an interesting scent. Country living should be preferred, if possible, since this breed requires plenty of space and freedom.
Coat and groomingThe short coat is hard, dense and glossy. It comes in the typical hound colours: a mix of black, white and tan. Brushing and bathing should take place only when necessary. English Foxhounds are average shedders.
HealthThese dogs are very healthy and robust, with no serious genetic faults. The lifespan is relatively short - under 10 years.
Other interesting factsThe English Foxhound's origins go back to the 13th century when they were bred to hunt as part of a pack. Hunting foxes was all the rage, and people needed a hound that was quick, agile and hardy enough to chase small animals for long periods of time.
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