You could say hounds are the nosiest of their dog peers and they don’t mind giving anything or anyone a good sniff. Of all the canine groups, the Hound Group has the best sense of smell. In fact, these dogs are known to just up and leave to follow a scent. The reason for their independence is the Hound Group was first bred to hunt without supervision, or commands. In fact, commands may fall on deaf ears if a dog in the Hound Group smells something interesting. So, if you are planning on adding a dog from this group to your family, you should keep them safe. These dogs do well living in a fenced in area that allows them free access to roam, sniff and play.
Dogs in the Hound Group can have a wide range of personalities, depending upon which breed you choose. For instance, Afghan Hounds tend to be aloof and free thinkers. Basset Hounds can be stubborn and they need a patient and consistent owner. Beagles are very friendly, easygoing and playful. Dachshunds and Elkhounds tend to be feisty and love to stay busy. Coonhounds tend to be very relaxed and mellow.
The Hound Group is not as energetic as the Sporting Group . . . unless they pick up on a scent. Hounds will gladly lounge around, if they are given a decent amount of exercise and playtime. It is good to give this group a chance to smell a wide variety of things and to let them chase a ball.
This group is divided into two categories: Scent Hounds and Sight Hounds
Scent Hounds use their smell either through ground sniffing or air sniffing. These dogs are comfortable putting a great deal of distance between themselves and their owners. Scent Hounds are social and do work well with their canine peers.
Sight Hounds are very fast runners. They are able to chase after a small animal without any direction or command from their owners. These dogs are used today at racetracks and other courses. Sight Hounds are more aloof than Scent Hounds.
Before you purchase a dog from the Hound Group, you should research each breed and learn about its characateristics and personality. Make sure the breed is a good match to your home and lifestyle. The American Kennel Club, The United Kennel Club and The Canadian Kennel Club are wonderful resources if you wish to learn more about the Hound Group. You can learn about each breed, as well as gain access to the National Breed Club and Classifieds.