The American Foxhound is a distinguished breed of dog that is known for its intelligence, loyalty, and stamina. Originally bred for hunting, these dogs are now commonly kept as companion animals due to their gentle nature and friendly temperament. In this article, we will explore the history of the American Foxhound, its characteristics, how to choose the best foods, training and taking care of the breed.
History of the American Foxhound
The American Foxhound is one of the oldest and most beloved breeds of hound in the world. Bred in the early 1700s by American settlers, the breed was originally created for fox hunting, a popular American pastime at the time. It is said that George Washington was a great lover of this breed, and kept a pack of them at Mount Vernon.
As the years progressed, the American Foxhound breed has evolved from being purely a hunting dog to being a much-loved companion animal. The breed was recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1886, and today, is widely loved for its affectionate nature, loyalty and athleticism.
Location of Origins
The American Foxhound was originally bred in the United States, particularly in the southern states of Virginia and Maryland, where fox hunting was a popular pastime. It was said that the American Foxhound breed was developed from various English hound breeds imported by early settlers.
Today, the breed is found throughout the continental United States, and is popular with families because of its friendly and affectionate disposition.
The American Foxhound is a medium-sized dog, with a height range of 21-25 inches at the shoulder, and a weight range of 60-70 pounds. Its coat is short and glossy, and comes in a variety of colors, including black, white, and tan.
The American Foxhound is a very energetic and athletic breed, and requires regular exercise to stay fit and healthy. Due to its hunting heritage, the breed has a keen sense of smell, and can be easily trained to track scents. They are friendly with humans, children, and other dogs, and are known for being gentle and sweet-natured.
However, they do require training and socialization from an early age, as they can be stubborn and independent. With proper training, the American Foxhound can be a very obedient companion, eager to please its owner. This breed also has a tendency to bay, which can be a pro or con depending on your living situation.
Choosing the Best Foods
Choosing the right food for your American Foxhound is essential to ensure that they maintain their health, energy, and well-being. As a breed, the American Foxhound has a high energy level, and requires a diet that is rich in protein and nutrients.
An ideal diet for the American Foxhound would consist of high-quality kibble, which should contain at least 20% protein, and minimal fillers such as corn or soy. You should aim to feed your dog 2-3 small meals per day, rather than one big meal, as it will help to prevent bloating and weight gain. Consult with your vet to determine the appropriate calorie intake for your specific dog’s needs.
It is also beneficial to supplement your American Foxhound’s diet with fresh vegetables and fruits, such as broccoli, carrots, and apples. These foods provide additional vitamins and minerals, and help to promote overall health and well-being.
Training is an essential aspect of raising an American Foxhound. Proper training can help to control their independent nature and can make them well-behaved members of your household. These dogs are intelligent and eager to please, making them receptive to positive reinforcement training techniques.
The key to training an American Foxhound is to establish yourself as the alpha in the relationship – in a kind and firm way. Begin training early in the dog’s life, with simple commands such as “sit” and “stay,” and gradually progress to more advanced commands. Consistency and patience are important when training this breed, as they can be independent and stubborn at times.
Socialization is another important aspect of training an American Foxhound, as they need exposure to different people, animals, and environments to be content and balanced. Early socialization will help your dog to become comfortable with new situations as they grow older and will prevent them from becoming fearful or aggressive in new environments.
Taking care of your American Foxhound involves several key elements, including grooming, exercise, and regular check-ups with your vet. These dogs have moderate grooming needs, requiring weekly brushing to maintain their short, shiny coat. They also require occasional baths to keep their coat clean and healthy.
The American Foxhound is an active breed and requires regular exercise to stay healthy and happy. Aim for at least 30 minutes of exercise daily, through activities such as walking, running, or playing in a fenced-in yard. Be sure to keep your dog on a leash in public areas to ensure their safety, while keeping in mind their strong hunting instincts as mentioned before.
Regular check-ups with your vet are essential to maintain the health of your American Foxhound. You should schedule visits at least once per year to ensure that your dog is up to date on vaccinations and is free from any health issues. Additionally, always keep tabs on your dog, watch for any changes in their behavior, or approach your vet with any health issues concerns you have.
Q: How long is the life span of an American Foxhound?
A: The average lifespan of an American Foxhound is between 10-12 years.
Q: Are American Foxhounds good with children?
A: Yes, American Foxhounds are generally friendly and gentle with children, making them ideal family pets.
Q: What is the American Foxhound’s baying?
A: Baying is a unique vocalization that the breed naturally makes. It is a hunting instinct that the breed uses to alert their owner or pack of their whereabouts during a hunt.
The American Foxhound is a friendly and active breed that is beloved by many. With their gentle nature and love of exercise, they make wonderful family pets, but they do require a level of patience and training to keep them happy and healthy. With proper care, attention, and training, an American Foxhound can provide many years of companionship and joy. Give this breed a chance, and you’re certain to fall in love with their loyal, loving nature.