Facts about Basset Hound Puppies

Are you unsure how to care for Basset Hound puppies, or just want to learn more about this breed?

Maybe you are thinking about buying a puppy and want to know if this is the right breed of dog for you?

No matter what your situation may be, you will find the answers to your questions right here!



Basset Hound History

The breed, also known simply as Basset, was developed in France and along with its cousin, the Bloodhound, is a descendent of the St. Hubert hound. Many experts believe the Basset was a result of a mutation in the St. Hubert.

The word "Basset" is derived from the French word "bas" and means "low-set". The first mention of it as related to a dog breed dates back to the late 1500s.

The Basset Hound was developed to hunt small game. With his long ears helping to stir up the scent, packs of Bassets were used to drive small prey from dense undercover into open terrain where hunters could move in for the kill.

Early Basset Hounds closely resembled the Basset Artésien Normand, which is still a breed today, but by the turn of the 20th century, the breed began splitting into two distinct lines -- the straight-legged hunters and crocked-legged, droopy-eared companion and show dogs.

It's believed the first Bassets in the United States were brought by Marquis de Lafayette as a gift to George Washington to use in his hunting expeditions. The breed was recognized by AKC in 1885.

Today, the breed is commonly used to hunt small game, such as rabbits. Because of its excellent sense of smell, it can be taught to track just about anything. And, of course, it makes a good pet and companion.

Physical Characteristics of Basset Hound Puppies

This is one of the most easily recognized dog breeds.

It has a heavy body with large head, short legs, deep chest that extends in front of the legs, and a slightly curved tail that usually ends with a white tip.

While Bassets are short, don't make the mistake of calling them small! They are very heavy for their size. Their extra weight is due to their bone structure -- compared to other breeds, their bones are more massive and are much heavier.

The hanging face skin, along with brown, soft, slightly sunken, and sad-looking eyes add to the breed's charm.

But probably the most recognizable trait of all Basset Hounds is their ears. They are very long, low-set, and velvety in texture. Just how long are those ears? When drawn forward, they can fold well over the end of the nose!

The coat is short, dense, hard, and shiny. It comes in a variety of colors common to all hounds, such as black and tan, red and white, tan and white, and tri-color.

    Height Weight
  Male 12 - 15 inches 50 - 65 pounds
  Female 12 - 15 inches 40 - 60 pounds


The Basset Hound is a friendly, gentle, and easygoing dog. It gets along well with other dogs and humans, including children. Because of its mild personality and tolerance to children, it became one of the most popular family dogs.

Bassets are known to be a vocal breed, especially when they want something. They might howl, bark, or whine when they think something is wrong, when trying to get attention, or when just begging for food.

Like many hounds, the Basset can be stubborn, especially with an owner who doesn't exert his authority.

When properly trained, this is an obedient breed, but like other scent hounds, such as the Bloodhound and the Beagle, once it catches an interesting scent, it may be difficult for you to get his attention.

They can be easily taught to perform tricks or to play games, especially when rewarded with food treats.

Because they were bred to be pack animals, Basset Hounds are not as aggressive towards other dogs as some other breeds. They are equally friendly towards dogs of the same and opposite sex.

Best Owner / Living Conditions

This is a very adaptable breed and can adjust equally well to a city or suburban lifestyle.

If you live in the suburbs, never leave your dog in an unfenced yard. This breed will follow his nose when it catches an interesting scent and you may never see your dog again.

To combat stubbornness that is common to this breed, be prepared to establish yourself as a pack leader.

Some Basset Hound breeders will interview prospective owners to make sure this is the right breed for them.

Activity and Exercise

This is not one of the most active dog breeds when indoors, but when outdoors, they enjoy running and playing.

When playing with your dog, always discourage him from jumping as it puts too much stress on his front legs.

At a minimum, the Basset Hound requires one or two long walks every day.

When outdoors, always keep your pet on leash or in a fenced yard. This will prevent him from escaping when he catches a scent.

Grooming your Basset Hound

These dogs are above average shedders. Brush several times a week with a firm bristle brush to remove dead hair.

Check ears for any sign of infection (a foul odor coming out from an ear canal is a sign that something is wrong) and trim toenails regularly.

Bathe only when necessary and try to keep the water out of your dog's ears. You may also use dry shampoo instead of bathing.

Health Concerns

Like all dog breeds, the Basset Hound is susceptible to complications caused by parasites such as ticks, fleas, and worms.

Additional health concerns include hip and elbow dysplasia, glaucoma, thyroid problems, weight gain, and bloating. To prevent bloating and protect legs from too much extra weight, feed your dog several smaller meals instead of one large meal.

To learn more about dog diseases and health care, visit dog health problems.

Buy only from reputable Basset Hound breeders to reduce the risk of health problems (visit dog breeders to learn how to identify responsible dog breeders).

No matter how small the risk of health problems is, any puppy may get sick or injured. Learn how to diagnose and treat dog health problems that don't require your Vet's attention.

Life Expectancy

The average life expectancy for a healthy Basset Hound puppy is between 10 and 12 years.

Did you ever consider adopting your next pet?

If this is the breed you are interested in, and adoption appeals to you, consider contacting your local Basset Hound rescue. There are thousands of pets waiting for a loving home and, yes, it's possible to adopt a purebred dog.

Puppy Training

Not happy with your pet's behavior? Need help with training your dog for obedience? Then check this Basset Hound Behavior and Obedience Training Guide.

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