Basset Hound

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  • Basset Hound in the UK
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Hound Group

Size:
Grooming:
Exercise Level:
Trainability:
Barking Level:
Good with Children:
Good with other pets:
Affectionate:
Protective:
Height: 30 - 38cm M | 30 - 38cm F
Weight: 14 - 23kg M | 10 - 20kg F
Life Expectancy: 8 - 12 Years

Considering getting a Basset Hound?


The Basset Hound is instantly identifiable by its strikingly long ears and stocky body. In fact, it holds the record for the world’s longest dog ears. It has bones so dense that it will easily sink when put in the water. As such, it has short legs and big paws to support all that weight.

This dog breed was bred to hunt. Aristocrats bred them to track rabbits, and thus the Basset Hound is very good pursuing game. It has the second best nose in the world, second only to the Bloodhound. It can take in a variety of scents all at once and focus on a specific one.

Funny, loving, and hardy, the Basset hound is a wonderful family pet and is good with children. However, it can be stubborn and thus challenging to train. It also needs a spacious home, although its short, low-shedding coat is very easy to groom.


book icon History

The Basset Hound is a short-legged breed that is believed to have descended from the St. Hubert Hound. Its name comes from the French word bas which means low. Bassets were popular with the French nobility and later on became hunting dogs of commoners after the French Revolution. They were used to track small animals in places that horses could not reach.

Sir Everette Millais first brought a Basset named Model to England in 1874. He started a breeding program independently and sought the help of Lord Onslow and George Krehl. He was then referred as the father of the Basset breed in England for his efforts.

The Kennel Club in England recognised the breed in 1882, and the English Basset Hound Club was established in 1884.


comb icon Appearance and Grooming

The Basset Hound weighs between 50 and 65 pounds, and stands at 33 to 35 centimetres at the withers. It is known for its short stature caused by the genetic condition osteochondrodysplasia (abnormal growth of bone and cartilage). However, it is well-balanced, active and strong, which makes it a good working hound. The breed has a thick body, a domed head, and big, long low-set ears.

Bassets have short, smooth and hard-textured coats that are water and dirt repellent. According to The Kennel Club, the standard colours are tri-colour of black, white and tan, and bi-colour of lemon and white. Any recognised hound colour is also acceptable.

They are easy to groom and only need occasional bathing, unless they have played or rolled in something smelly. Since they shed all year round, weekly brushing is needed. Using a bristly cloth or brush will keep their coat healthy. Their facial wrinkles and ears should also be regularly cleaned.


bulb icon Temperament and Intelligence

The Basset Hound is friendly, loyal, calm, and easy going. It is a good family companion, which can be lazy around the house. It is gentle towards children and other pets. It loves being with family so it tends to have separation anxiety when left alone for long periods of time. They have a tendency to howl loudly and be destructive. The company of another dog will be helpful.

Bassets have an exceptional sense of smell, second only to Bloodhounds. However, training can be challenging as they can be stubborn. You definitely need a lot of patience and positive reinforcements that include a lot of tasty food. They do not respond to harsh commands because they are emotionally sensitive.


food icon Nutrition and Feeding

A typical serving for an adult Basset Hound is 1.5 to 2.5 cups of excellent quality dry dog food per day. Like every breed, the amount of food for your dog depends on its age, size, build, activity level, and metabolism. It is important to consider the individual needs of your dog aside from considering its nutritional needs as a breed.

Typical calorie needs of adult Basset Hounds per day:

  • Senior and less active: up to 1,000 calories daily
  • Typical adults: up to 1,230 calories daily
  • Physically active/working dogs: up to 1,960 calories daily

Bassets have small but dense bodies that require a lot of muscle so protein is very important in their diet. Animal proteins are the best sources such as beef, lamb, chicken, and eggs. As working dogs, they need Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids for energy and healthy coats. Vitamins A, D, E, and K are also significant fat-soluble vitamins to assist in strengthening cell membranes.

Another source of energy, as well as for metabolism regulation, is carbs. However, since this breed is prone to obesity, control the amount and choose the good kinds. See to it that they come from barley, oats, sweet potatoes, and complex carbs. Steer clear from refined, starchy fillers like corn, wheat and soy.


stethoscope icon Health and Exercise

The average lifespan of Basset Hounds is 10 to 12 years. The breed is generally healthy but predisposed to the following health conditions:

  • Gastric Dilatation-Volvulus (GDV) or bloat
  • Von Willebrand's Disease
  • Panosteitis
  • Thrombopathia
  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Patellar Luxation
  • Intervertebral Disc Disease.
  • Allergies
  • Ear infections
  • Obesity
  • Glaucoma
  • Cherry eye and other eyelid and eyelash problems

Since Bassets were bred to hunt by following scents, they have a great amount of endurance. They require plenty of exercise or they will get destructive. Taking long walks and incorporating tracking activities are great physical activities that will also prevent obesity. Make sure to place them in a fenced area and keep them on a leash during walks. They tend to wander when they catch an interesting scent and would not mind any threat or danger.


pound icon Cost of Ownership

To acquire a well-bred Basset Hound puppy, expect to spend £500-£800. Insurance may cost about £27 (basic) to £65 (lifetime) a month. The food costs may reach about £40-£60 monthly. For vaccinations, boosters, annual checks and other veterinary costs, pet care costs may add up to more than £1,000 annually.

On average, a Basset owner will spend about £80-£120 each month. The insurance costs can also affect the cost estimates. For its lifetime (10-12 years), the costs can be as low as £9,600 to as high as £17,280 overall. This range does not include the expenditures incurred in acquiring a puppy.


Is a Basset Hound Right for You?

  • The Basset is a laid-back, intelligent, and friendly dog that is great with children and makes a wonderful family pet.
  • It tends to be stubborn and needs much positive reinforcement in training in order to respond well.
  • This canine is easy to groom because its coat is short-haired and sheds minimally.
  • The Basset needs a lot of space to roam about.

Are you sure the Basset Hound is the best breed for you? Take the Pet Breed Selector Quiz to find your perfect breed match.

Dog Breed Selector Quiz

Are you having doubts if the Basset Hound is right for you? Simply take our Pet Finder to determine the best breeds that suit your lifestyle.

Disclaimer:
The information, including measurements, prices and other estimates, on this page is provided for general reference purposes only.

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