Basset Hound Dog

The Basset Hound dog is a short-legged breed of dog in the hound family. It is a scent hound that was originally bred for the purpose of hunting hare. Their sense of smell and ability to ground-scent is second only to the Bloodhound.

The Basset Hound dog breed was originated from France. It is one of the six recognized ‘basset’ type breeds in France. The name basset is derived from the French word bas, meaning ‘low’, with the attenuating suffix -et-together meaning ‘rather low’.

The modern Basset Hound dog descends from French dogs that were bred in Great Britain in the late 1800s.

The earliest-known depictions of short-legged hunting dogs are engravings from the Middle Kingdom of Egypt. Mummified remains of short-legged dogs from that period have been uncovered in the Dog Catacombs of Saqqara, Egypt. Scent Hounds were used for hunting in both Ancient Greece and Ancient Rome.[1]

The Basset Hound dogs probably descended from the St. Hubert Hound, the ancestor of the present-day Bloodhound, and came about when a mountain in the St. Hubert strain produced a short-legged or dwarfed hound.

Perhaps the dwarf hounds were kept as curiousities and later bred on purpose when their ability to track rabbits and hare under brush in thick forests was observed.

Although the Basset probably came to America in colonial times, the breed did not come into its own in the U.S. until early in the 20th century. The American Kennel Club (AKC) began registering Basset Hounds in 1885, the first one being a dog named Bouncer, but it wasn’t until 1916 that the AKC formally recognized the breed.

Basset Hound Dog Characteristics

The Basset Hound dogs are large, short, solid and long, with curved sabre tails held high over their long backs. This breed, relative to it’s size, is heavier-boned than any other dogs.

This breed has a hanging skin structure, like it’s ancestor the Bloodhound, which causes the face to tend to have a sad look (this for many people, adds to the breed’s charm).

The dewlap, seen as the loose, elastic skin around the neck, and the trailing ears which along with the Bloodhound are the longest of any breed, help trap the scent of what they are tracking.

Its neck is wider than its head. This, combined with the loose skin around its face and neck means that flat collars can easily be pulled off.

The Basset Hound dogs are usually bicolors (tan/lemon and white) or tricolors (black, white and tan) of standard hound coloration.

Average height of the mature dogs is between 12 and 15 inches at the withers for males, and between 11 and 14 inches for the females. And average live body weight of the mature dogs is between 25 and 34 kg for males and between 20 and 29 kg for females.

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The Basset Hound dog is a friendly, outgoing and playful dog. It is tolerant of children and other pets.

These dogs are extremely vocal and famously devoted to tracking. They are also widely known for being stubborn. Prospective owners must be prepared to handle these dogs firmly and patiently.


Average lifespan of the Basset Hound dog is between 10 and 12 years.


How much a mature dog eats depends on it’s size, age, build, metabolism and activity level. Dogs are individuals, just like people, and they don’t all need the same amount of food.

The Basset Hound dog are larger sized dogs. So, their diet should be formulated for a larger sized breed with average exercise needs. You can consult with a vet in your area for better recommendations.


Taking good care of the animals is very important for raising Basset Hound dogs. These dogs are usually calm that do well even in small houses and apartments. They should live indoors with their family, ideally with access to a yard. And they are not suited to living outdoors in extreme heat or cold.

The Basset Hound dogs are inactive indoors, happy to lie in the sun all day, but they will enjoy a long and meandering walk with lots of sniffing time. They are prone to obesity, and too much weight can stress their joints.

These dogs can be independent, with a mind of their own. Train them with kindness and consistency, using positive reinforcements that include food rewards and praise.

The Basset who is treated harshly will simply become stubborn and less willing to do your bidding.


The Basset Hound dogs are generally healthy. But like all other dog breeds, they are also prone to certain health conditions.

Their common health problems include hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, hypothyroidism and von Willebrand’s disease. Always keep good contact with a vet in your area.

Breed NameBasset Hound
Other NamesNone
Breed SizeLarge
HeightBetween 12 and 15 inches at the withers for males, and between 11 and 14 inches for the females
WeightBetween 25 and 34 kg for males, and between 20 and 29 kg for females
Good as petsYes
Climate ToleranceAll climates
ColorUsually bicolors (tan/lemon and white) or tricolors (black, white and tan)
LifespanBetween 10 and 12 years
Good for childrenYes
Country of OriginFrance

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