Large soulful eyes, a humble spirit, and quiet confidence best describe the Basset Hound dog breed. If you’re looking for a purebred dog that’s calm, low-key, and inquisitive, the Basset Hound is one of the best dog breeds for families with children. This friendly, non-territorial dog is sure to melt hearts and be a puppy you’ll love forever.
In this blog post, you’ll learn about the physical traits, personality quirks, and characteristics of the adorable Basset Hound.
Basset Hounds have large, droopy heads, short legs, and a long carriage. Their humongous floppy ears add character to their expressions and can sometimes get in the way when they’re trotting along.
Whether male or female, adult Basset Hounds stand at no more than 14 inches tall. They have a sturdy, heavy frame, and so can weigh up to 75 lbs (adult males) or 65 lbs (adult females). This means that this breed will not move too quickly. Basset Hounds don’t need sprinting exercise and though they might enjoy a game of fetch, they probably won’t play for too long. The low-key energy levels of the Basset Hound make this dog breed a top choice for individuals and families that don’t have the time and energy for high-energy dog breeds that need a lot of outdoor play time.
But just because the Basset Hound tends to be slow and thoughtful doesn’t mean he’s apathetic. Basset Hounds are very strong and determined. Basset Hounds love to sniff around and collect valuable information about their surroundings especially during their outings. If your Basset Hound picks up an interesting scent, be prepared, he might not stop until he locates the source!
Out of all the “hound” dogs, the Basset Hound is the most patient and mild-mannered at home. But if you’re out on the trail, then watch out! If this breed picks up an interesting scent, it will not be deterred from its investigation!
The Basset Hound belongs to the “hound dog” group of working dogs, according to the American Kennel Club. But unlike other hounds that were bred to hunt, retrieve, and otherwise sprint across fields and through forests, Basset Hounds are sub-categorized as “scent hounds.” This means that they have an especially keen sense of smell and prioritize finding the source of a scent over using speed to locate the source. Similar to Bloodhounds, Basset Hounds have been used to locate lost children and people hours and days after their disappearance based solely on their highly acute sense of smell.
Just because your Basset Hound doesn’t work for the local police department doesn’t mean he won’t put his skills to good use at home. Your Basset Hound will gladly help you locate lost and misplaced items. Basset Hounds are also known to “investigate” garbage bins at home, so be sure to buy bins with lids that shut tightly. If this isn’t the case, you may be surprised to find garbage all over your bathroom because a particular smell in the bin was too interesting for your Basset to resist.
Though Basset Hounds are basically the Sherlock Holmes of the canine world, they make terrible guard dogs. Your Basset Hound will likely greet any intruder with friendly curiosity rather than territorial aggression.
ENERGY LEVEL & EXERCISE REQUIREMENTS
Basset Hounds are moderately playful, and since they have low energy, this breed is perfect for anyone who wants a dog that’s low-maintenance and needs no more than a half-hour of daily outdoor time. That being said, Basset Hounds need a fair amount of mental stimulation every day and this need is lifelong, not just during puppyhood. Providing your hound with “puppy puzzles” and “dog games” will do the trick. Your Basset will also love the occasional game of “hide and seek” in your home. Hide a treat or your dog’s favorite toy for him to locate with his powerful sense of smell.
The Basset Hound breed has a short, double layer coat of fur, and sheds very lightly. Other than a weekly brushing, this purebred dog breed doesn’t require a lot of grooming. Depending on how much outdoor time he gets, you may need to bathe your Basset Hound once every two months. For nail trimming and a full groom, you can bring your Basset Hound to the professional groomers once a year.
In terms of at-home grooming, however, one aspect you’ll need to stay on top of are your Basset Hound’s ears. The long, floppy ears drag on the floor wherever he goes, which means that you’ll need to check them and clean them from dirt, making sure that there are no cuts or abrasions. If you discover that your Basset Hound’s dragging ears have become cut or lacerated, or if the fur is wearing away, please take him to see the vet to prevent infections.
One caveat with Basset Hounds that many people aren’t aware of is that this breed does in fact drool. Thanks to their loose, droopy lips, the Basset Hound can’t help it. Pet parents of these hounds are generally in the habit of keeping drool towels placed strategically around the house!
HEALTH CARE CONSIDERATIONS
Basset Hounds have unusual legs and posture. Their legs tend to be slightly “bowed.” If and when a Basset Hound becomes overweight, this could put too much pressure on their knee joints. If you notice your Basset limping or hobbling when he tries to walk, examine him right away and schedule a vet appointment. Considerations should also be made regarding your Basset’s hips. As Bassets get older, they become at risk for hip dysplasia and other issues. By keeping annual vet check ups, your dog’s vet can keep an eye on things.
In relation to the Basset Hound’s long, droopy ears, owners of this breed need to pay special attention to their pup’s ear health, as we mentioned. In addition to checking and cleaning the tips of the ears, you’ll also need to clean inside his ear canals. And if you notice your Basset scratching inside his ears or shaking his head a lot, it could be a sign of an ear infection. Bring him to the vet right away if you notice these warning signs.
If you’re convinced that you’ll forever love a Basset Hound, stop in Petland Kansas City and meet our adorable Basset Hound puppies in Overland Park!