Are you looking for a new dog for your family — or just trying to learn more about your hound? Hound dogs can make great pets, but there are some considerations to keep in mind, too. Let’s talk about the pros and cons of having a hound dog for a pet and cover some common health problems you can expect to find in hounds.
What type of dog qualifies as a hound and what were hounds originally bred to do? Hounds were bred to hunt, which is something you probably already know if you own one (my beagle likes to “bury” her bone in the couch cushions and then dig it out). The American Kennel Club points out, however, that hunting is about the only thing hounds have in common — this group is so diverse that it’s hard to narrow in on any further similarities besides hunting.
Hounds come in many different shapes and sizes, both large and small. So if you’re afraid a hound might not be right for your family, don’t count them out just yet, because there are lots of different options within the hound family. The following dog breeds are all hounds:
This is just an abbreviated list — there are many other types of hounds that can make great pets, too.
Many types of hounds are good family dogs and excellent around kids. They’re also fairly low-maintenance as far as grooming and other care.
Because of their strong nose, hounds can be helpful dogs to have around on a ranch or a farm, and they’re also very intelligent.
Of course, hounds aren’t perfect. They can be very loud, so they might not be the best dog for an apartment or a condo. They’re stubborn and easily distracted (make sure there aren’t any holes in your fence). And some hounds, like basset hounds, are prone to developing health problems that could get costly (pet insurance can help!). But overall, hounds are great dogs to have — and remember, there are so many different types of hounds that it will be easy to find the perfect one for you.
Like any dog group, hounds are prone to several specific health problems. These include:
- Ear issues: Beagles and basset hounds are examples of dogs that have heavy drop-over ears. Their ears trap both dirt and moisture, so if you don’t clean your hound’s ears regularly, it may develop an infection.
- Obesity: Hounds are more prone to gaining weight, but this isn’t what they’re designed to do; they’re naturally very athletic dogs. If you have a hound, try your best to resist those deep brown eyes begging for just one more bite, and talk to your vet if you think your dog is overweight.
- Bloat: Bloat, a condition that is also known as gastric torsion, occurs when the stomach distends itself; a build-up of gas and fluids pushes the stomach outward, and when the dog moves around, the pressure might cause the stomach to turn over. This can increase pressure on the heart and lungs and might result in death. To prevent bloat, feed your dog several small meals a day and refrain from exercise until a couple of hours after your dog has eaten; symptoms of bloat include distension of the stomach, retching (but no vomiting), discomfort, and salivation.
You can prevent your hound from developing health problems by regularly taking it to the vet .
Looking for more ways to keep your pup happy and healthy? Consider investing in a dog insurance policy with MetLife Pet Insurance.1 Our dog insurance policies can provide the coverage and care your furry family member deserves. Get your free quote today.