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Quick facts

Otterhound AKC Group: Hound
Height: Male: 27 in., Female: 24 in.
Weight: Male: 88-115 lbs., Female: 105 lbs.
Colors: any color but usually brown with a combination of black
AKC recognized in: 1909

The Otterhound is an old dog breed which comes from Britain. Its origins are quite mysterious with most people pointing to France as its native land. This breed has lots of energy and is a willing and reliable working dog. It is no surprise that it was first used as a hunting dog.

The Otterhound is a capable and well-adapted hunter both on dry land and in the water. A double coat and webbed feet which is unique to this breed in the hound group makes all this possible. When otters started preying on fishes in inland water, the English called on this breed t solve the problem.

Although otter hunting was banned in 1978, the breed still exists today. Instead, Otterhounds are now used to hunt for minks. Its powerful jaws and keen sense of smell make it perfect for performing a hunter role.

This breed also stands out in terms of its appearance. It has a shaggy coat which is uncommon to the hound group. The Otterhound has a commanding presence and impressive stance thanks to its muscular body. Although classified as a working dog, they also enjoy the spotlight in dog shows and other events.

Statistics point out that the Otterhound is an endangered breed with only 1,000 known registered dogs worldwide. The UK Kennel Club puts them in the list of Vulnerable Native Breeds. As such, several dog breeders spare effort in saving this dog breed. One of the most famous ones however starred in the movie Annie as Sandy.


Otterhound Summary
Affection five paws
Cold Tolerance four paws
Ease of Training two paws
Energy level two paws
Exercise Requirements three paws
Friendliness : Children three paws
Friendliness: Other Animals three paws
Friendliness: Other Pets three paws
Grooming Requirements three paws
Heat Tolerance two paws
Playfulness three paws
Protection Ability one paw
Watchdog Ability four paws

True to their hunting background, Otterhounds are fearless and very energetic. They can however be loyal to their adoptive family. Although they are good around children, no one can blame you if you think otherwise especially when considering its size. The same can be said for older people or those who have physical disabilities and find it difficult to move around.

Aside from people, these dogs also get along quite well with other animals and even cats and other dogs. They are not as friendly to smaller creatures and may find them as prey though.

Although intelligent, it takes a lot of patience to train an Otterhound. They are a bit lacking in the response department since they were not intended to become house pets. On the other hand, it does not take much to bring out its affection and kindness. A firm but gentle hand is advisable in handling this dog.

Health and Exercise

Otterhounds usually live up to somewhere between 10-13 years. They are subject to a number of ailments in their lifetime. These include hip and elbow dysplasia, hemophilia, and bloat. Obesity often results from overfeeding and a lack of proper exercise.

This makes daily exercise a necessity. Aside from walking, swimming is also a viable option for Otterhounds. As a result, this dog should not be kept in an enclosed space. Doing so can lead to inactivity and transform one into a couch potato.

Visitor Comments

This is your chance to add your feedback. Do you have a Otterhound in your family, or know one in someone elses? Do you have a story to tell related to that Otterhound? Or maybe you have more questions that either or another of our visitors might be able to help you with? Feel free to add your comment or question below.

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