Country of Origin: England
Color: Black, Black & Tan, Blue & Cream Gray Wheaten
Life Expectancy: 10-13 years
Height: 24-26 inches (60-65 cm)
Weight: Male: 41-50 kg, Female: 29-41 kg
Litter Size: 4-8 puppies
The Otterhound's exact origin is not known, but some believe it originated in France. This rather old breed was developed by crossing the Bloodhound with rough-haired terriers, Harriers, and Griffons.
When fishermen realized that otter were preying on the fish supply, they used packs of Otterhounds to hunt the otter, hence where the dog got its name.
The Otterhound has a sense of smell so acute that it can smell in the morning an otter that passed through the water the night before. In the 20th century the otter population dropped and since the dogs were no longer in high demand their numbers dropped as well. In 1979 sea otters were added to the protected species list and the Otterhound numbers dropped dangerously low.
A group of breeders dedicated themselves to saving the breed. While the breed is still rare it is no longer endangered. They have been successfully used to hunt bear, raccoon and mink. It has a good sense of smell and is ideally suited to drag-hunting or searching.
Temperament: Amiable, Even Tempered, Boisterous
Health Problems: Some lines are prone to hip dysplasia, thrombocytopenia, hemophilia and bloat. Do not overfeed for it will gain weight easily. A minor concern is elbow dysplasia.
More Breeds with O