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The rarest foxhound breed, English Foxhounds are loving, gentle, and friendly, but they're not usually pets. In fact, experts don't recommend the English Foxhound as a family dog because they prefer to live in packs. This is one of very few breeds still performing the job it was developed to do — these dogs are determined, fast, and strong hunters.
Originally from England, this large and medium-energy breed can grow to between 60-75 pounds and lives an average of 10-13 years. The breed is recognized by the American Kennel Club and classified as a member of the Hound group.
AKC Recognized: Y
Breed's Original Pastime: Hunting
Breed Group: Hound
Average Lifespan: 10-13 years
Bark Factor: I love to talk!
Energy level A marathoner
Exercise needs An hour or more a day
Playfullness and Games A few times per day would be divine
Attachment to People Give me some love when you get home, maybe we'll snuggle later
Behavior with Other Dogs I like being part of a pack
Behavior with Other Small Pets I may be ok, when socialized early and often
Behavior Toward Strangers I've never met a stranger I don't like
Trainability I love to please
Watchdog ability I know all that's going on, all the time
Protection ability I'm not very protective
Grooming needs Easy maintenance, brushes and baths
Cold tolerance I'll probably need a jacket in the cold
Heat tolerance A warm day can be fun, but not too hot please.
BEHAVIOR & TRAINING
WHAT IS AN ENGLISH FOXHOUND'S PERSONALITY LIKE?
English Foxhounds are smart, strong, gentle, and graceful. They're sociable and great with other dogs, as you'd expect from a breed developed to hunt with its pack. They're also playful, affectionate, and often good with kids.
WHAT IS ENGLISH FOXHOUND BEHAVIOR LIKE?
English Foxhounds were bred for their speed, voice, drive, and nose. Most of the qualities that make them unparalleled hunters make them poor candidates for any other kind of living arrangement. They need constant exercise and lots of room to run. They are vigilant and alert though not particularly protective. And the voice they were bred for makes them very prone to barking.
HOW EASY IS IT TO TRAIN AN ENGLISH FOXHOUND?
English Foxhounds are independent-minded and sometimes stubborn, so be patient and consistent with your furry friend. English Foxhounds are particularly responsive to food rewards.
This dog's prey drive makes it a poor candidate for off-leash play outside a well-fenced or rural area.
CARE & HEALTH
HOW MUCH DO ENGLISH FOXHOUNDS SHED AND WHAT ARE THEIR GROOMING NEEDS?
An English Foxhound's short, glossy single coat is dense and hard. They are seasonal shedders who require only occasional grooming. Brush your English Foxhound about once a week and bathe when it's dirty.
WHAT HEALTH PROBLEMS DO ENGLISH FOXHOUNDS HAVE?
Some are born with congenital deafness; others have been known to develop hip dysplasia or kidney disease. Overall, though, English Foxhounds are a generally healthy breed.
Breed history has moved while this section is under construction. Please check out the first tab for fun facts about this breed's history. You can also read on to learn about this breed's ideal family situation.
ARE ENGLISH FOXHOUNDS GOOD FOR PEOPLE WITH ALLERGIES?
The American Kennel Club doesn't list English Foxhounds among its breeds recommended for allergy sufferers.
You can reduce your furry friend's impact on your allergies with frequent baths and brushings to reduce loose hairs and allergy-aggravating proteins in your pet's dander. Use a damp cloth to wipe off your dog after playing outside. Smaller dogs have less surface area, so they produce comparatively less dander than larger breeds — definitely something to keep in mind with a dog as large as an English Foxhound! Remember that no breed is 100% hypoallergenic, and any breed can aggravate allergies.
WHAT'S AN ENGLISH FOXHOUND'S BEST DAY?
Strutting around a rural area with their pack, looking for game, and creating a howling chorus would delight any English Foxhound for not only a day, but for life.
SHOULD I ADOPT AN ENGLISH FOXHOUND?
Probably not, unless you're up for adopting a whole pack of English Foxhounds and can keep them constantly on the go.
English Foxhounds look good on paper. They're equally well suited to warm and cold weather. They can be somewhat playful and affectionate and don't require much grooming. But their high energy levels, frequent exercise needs, and pack instincts make them tricky fits for an individual owner or family.
Have you decided that an English Foxhound is the perfect dog for you? Why not be your new best friend's hero and adopt a rescue! Be sure to check out our article on what to expect when you're adopting a dog or cat.