Bluetick Coonhound

devoted / smart / tenacious

Average sizes and life
expectancy of the breed.

Height

22-27 inches (male)

21-25 inches (female)

Weight

55-80 pounds (male)

45-65 pounds (female)

Life Expectancy

11-12 years

Breed Traits & Characteristics

Affectionate With Family
  • Independent Lovey-Dovey
    60% 60%
How affectionate a breed is likely to be with family members, or other people he knows well. Some breeds can be aloof with everyone but their owner, while other breeds treat everyone they know like their best friend.
Good With Young Children
  • Not Recommended Good With Children
    60% 60%
A breed's level of tolerance and patience with childrens' behavior, and overall family-friendly nature. Dogs should always be supervised around young children, or children of any age who have little exposure to dogs.
GOOD WITH OTHER DOGS
  • Not Recommended Good With Other Dogs
    100% 100%
How generally friendly a breed is towards other dogs. Dogs should always be supervised for interactions and introductions with other dogs, but some breeds are innately more likely to get along with other dogs, both at home and in public.

Shedding Level

  • No Shedding Hair Everywhere
    60% 60%
How much fur and hair you can expect the breed to leave behind. Breeds with high shedding will need to be brushed more frequently, are more likely to trigger certain types of allergies, and are more likely to require more consistent vacuuming and lint-rolling.

Coat Grooming Frequency

  • Monthly Daily
    40% 40%
How frequently a breed requires bathing, brushing, trimming, or other kinds of coat maintenance. Consider how much time, patience, and budget you have for this type of care when looking at the grooming effort needed. All breeds require regular nail trimming.

Drooling Level

  • Less Likely to Drool Always Have a Towel
    40% 40%
How drool-prone a breed tends to be. If you're a neat freak, dogs that can leave ropes of slobber on your arm or big wet spots on your clothes may not be the right choice for you.

Coat Type

Corded
Curly
Double
Hairless
Rough
Silky
Smooth
Wavy
Wiry
Canine coats come in many different types, depending on the breed's purpose. Each coat type comes with different grooming needs, allergen potential, and shedding level. You may also just prefer the look or feel of certain coat types over others when choosing a family pet.

Coat Length

Long
Medium
Short
How long the breed's coat is expected to be. Some long-haired breeds can be trimmed short, but this will require additional upkeep to maintain.

Openness To Strangers

  • Reserved Everyone Is My Best Friend
    60% 60%
How welcoming a breed is likely to be towards strangers. Some breeds will be reserved or cautious around all strangers, regardless of the location, while other breeds will be happy to meet a new human whenever one is around!

Playfulness Level

  • Only When You Want To Play Non-Stop
    60% 60%
How enthusiastic about play a breed is likely to be, even past the age of puppyhood. Some breeds will continue wanting to play tug-of-war or fetch well into their adult years, while others will be happy to just relax on the couch with you most of the time.

Watchdog/Protective Nature

  • What's Mine Is Yours Vigilant
    40% 40%
A breed's tendency to alert you that strangers are around. These breeds are more likely to react to any potential threat, whether it's the mailman or a squirrel outside the window. These breeds are likely to warm to strangers who enter the house and are accepted by their family.

Adaptability Level

  • Lives For Routine Highly Adaptable
    60% 60%
How easily a breed handles change. This can include changes in living conditions, noise, weather, daily schedule, and other variations in day-to-day life.

Trainability Level

  • Self-Willed Eager to Please
    80% 80%
How easy it will be to train your dog, and how willing your dog will be to learn new things. Some breeds just want to make their owner proud, while others prefer to do what they want, when they want to, wherever they want!

Energy Level

  • Couch Potato High Energy
    80% 80%
The amount of exercise and mental stimulation a breed needs. High energy breeds are ready to go and eager for their next adventure. They'll spend their time running, jumping, and playing throughout the day. Low energy breeds are like couch potatoes - they're happy to simply lay around and snooze.

Barking Level

  • Only To Alert Very Vocal
    80% 80%
How often this breed vocalizes, whether it's with barks or howls. While some breeds will bark at every passer-by or bird in the window, others will only bark in particular situations. Some barkless breeds can still be vocal, using other sounds to express themselves.

Mental Stimulation Needs

  • Happy to Lounge Needs a Job or Activity
    60% 60%
How much mental stimulation a breed needs to stay happy and healthy. Purpose-bred dogs can have jobs that require decision-making, problem-solving, concentration, or other qualities, and without the brain exercise they need, they'll create their own projects to keep their minds busy -- and they probably won't be the kind of projects you'd like.

Affectionate With Family

  • Independent Lovey-Dovey
    60% 60%

How affectionate a breed is likely to be with family members, or other people he knows well. Some breeds can be aloof with everyone but their owner, while other breeds treat everyone they know like their best friend.

Good With Young Children

  • Not Recommended Good With Children
    60% 60%
A breed's level of tolerance and patience with childrens' behavior, and overall family-friendly nature. Dogs should always be supervised around young children, or children of any age who have little exposure to dogs.

GOOD WITH OTHER DOGS

  • Not Recommended Good With Other Dogs
    100% 100%
How generally friendly a breed is towards other dogs. Dogs should always be supervised for interactions and introductions with other dogs, but some breeds are innately more likely to get along with other dogs, both at home and in public.

Shedding Level

  • No Shedding Hair Everywhere
    60% 60%
How much fur and hair you can expect the breed to leave behind. Breeds with high shedding will need to be brushed more frequently, are more likely to trigger certain types of allergies, and are more likely to require more consistent vacuuming and lint-rolling.

Coat Grooming Frequency

  • Monthly Daily
    40% 40%
How frequently a breed requires bathing, brushing, trimming, or other kinds of coat maintenance. Consider how much time, patience, and budget you have for this type of care when looking at the grooming effort needed. All breeds require regular nail trimming.

Drooling Level

  • Less Likely to Drool Always Have a Towel
    40% 40%
How drool-prone a breed tends to be. If you're a neat freak, dogs that can leave ropes of slobber on your arm or big wet spots on your clothes may not be the right choice for you.

Coat Type

Corded
Curly
Double
Hairless
Rough
Silky
Smooth
Wavy
Wiry
Canine coats come in many different types, depending on the breed's purpose. Each coat type comes with different grooming needs, allergen potential, and shedding level. You may also just prefer the look or feel of certain coat types over others when choosing a family pet.

Coat Length

Long
Medium
Short
How long the breed's coat is expected to be. Some long-haired breeds can be trimmed short, but this will require additional upkeep to maintain.

Openness To Strangers

  • Reserved Everyone Is My Best Friend
    60% 60%
How welcoming a breed is likely to be towards strangers. Some breeds will be reserved or cautious around all strangers, regardless of the location, while other breeds will be happy to meet a new human whenever one is around!

Playfulness Level

  • Only When You Want To Play Non-Stop
    60% 60%
How enthusiastic about play a breed is likely to be, even past the age of puppyhood. Some breeds will continue wanting to play tug-of-war or fetch well into their adult years, while others will be happy to just relax on the couch with you most of the time.

Watchdog/Protective Nature

  • What's Mine Is Yours Vigilant
    40% 40%
A breed's tendency to alert you that strangers are around. These breeds are more likely to react to any potential threat, whether it's the mailman or a squirrel outside the window. These breeds are likely to warm to strangers who enter the house and are accepted by their family.

Adaptability Level

  • Lives For Routine Highly Adaptable
    60% 60%
How easily a breed handles change. This can include changes in living conditions, noise, weather, daily schedule, and other variations in day-to-day life.

Trainability Level

  • Self-Willed Eager to Please
    80% 80%
How easy it will be to train your dog, and how willing your dog will be to learn new things. Some breeds just want to make their owner proud, while others prefer to do what they want, when they want to, wherever they want!

Energy Level

  • Couch Potato High Energy
    80% 80%
The amount of exercise and mental stimulation a breed needs. High energy breeds are ready to go and eager for their next adventure. They'll spend their time running, jumping, and playing throughout the day. Low energy breeds are like couch potatoes - they're happy to simply lay around and snooze.

Barking Level

  • Only To Alert Very Vocal
    80% 80%
How often this breed vocalizes, whether it's with barks or howls. While some breeds will bark at every passer-by or bird in the window, others will only bark in particular situations. Some barkless breeds can still be vocal, using other sounds to express themselves.

Mental Stimulation Needs

  • Happy to Lounge Needs a Job or Activity
    60% 60%
How much mental stimulation a breed needs to stay happy and healthy. Purpose-bred dogs can have jobs that require decision-making, problem-solving, concentration, or other qualities, and without the brain exercise they need, they'll create their own projects to keep their minds busy -- and they probably won't be the kind of projects you'd like.

About the Breed

While the sleekly attractive Bluetick Coonhound is a charming and loving charmer who likes to nap in the shade, when it comes to hunting, he is unrelenting, brave, and single-minded. His extreme prey drive needs to be controlled. The name “Bluetick” comes from the glossy coat’s mottled (or “ticked”) black-and-blue pattern. Blueticks are swift and small nocturnal predators. Females are smaller than huge males, who can grow to be 27 inches and 80 pounds. Blueticks are well-muscled but elegant and sexy; they never appear bulky or ungainly. To some, the Blueticks’ baying, wailing, and chopping bark may sound cacophonous, but to coon hunters, it is the nighttime soundtrack. Blueticks have a droopy-eared appeal that is hard to resist. They are fiercely loyal to individuals who show them affection because they long for it. Blueticks have a strong desire to catch prey. Coonhounds that are mistreated or underemployed and without a way to express their innate urges can engage in problematic behaviors, such as playing loud, depressing “music” for the neighbors.

What To Expect When Caring For a Bluetick Coonhound

Owning a dog is not just a privilege; it’s a responsibility. They depend on us for, at minimum, food and shelter, and deserve much more. When you take a dog into your life, you need to understand the commitment that dog ownership entails.

Health

Generally speaking, the Bluetick Coonhound is a healthy breed. Any dog with a deep chest may be vulnerable to bloat, a sudden and deadly condition in which the stomach swells and may twist, cutting off blood flow to vital organs. Owners should become knowledgeable about the signs of bloat and what to do if they arise. Every day, inspect Bluetick's low-hanging ears for any indications of an infection. The teeth need be washed frequently, as with all breeds.

Grooming

The Bluetick Coonhound has a short, glossy coat that sheds only moderately. Weekly brushing with a medium-bristle brush, a rubber grooming mitt, or a hound glove will help to remove loose hairs and keep him looking his best. In general, Blueticks require only an occasional bath, unless they've gotten into something, especially messy. As with all breeds, Bluetick's nails should be trimmed regularly, as overly long nails can cause the dog pain as well as problems walking and running.

Exercise

Due to their breeding as hunting dogs, blueticks need a lot of exercise, however they also like to nap at their owners' feet. They will like going on long leash walks or playing with their owner in a securely fenced yard; just keep in mind that they are scent hounds with strong prey drives. Canine activities like agility and tracking, in addition to hunting and field trials, are effective ways to harness the Bluetick's energy.  

Training

As with all breeds, early socialization and treats can be very useful aids in training a Bluetick.

Nutrition

The Bluetick Coonhound should do well on a high-quality dog food, whether commercially manufactured or home-prepared with your veterinarian's supervision and approval. Any diet should be appropriate to the dog's age (puppy, adult, or senior). Some dogs are prone to getting overweight, so watch your dog's calorie consumption and weight level. Treats can be an important aid in training, but giving too many can cause obesity. Learn about which human foods are safe for dogs, and which are not. Check with your vet if you have any concerns about your dog's weight or diet. Clean, fresh water should be available at all times.

History

Hounds are dogs that were bred to hunt warm-blooded prey. The two main types of hounds are “sighthounds” and “scenthounds.” Sighthounds, like Whippets and Greyhounds, use their sharp vision and speed to locate and pursue prey. Scenthounds use an extraordinary sense of smell to follow a trail over great distances in order to find their prey, whether it be a Beagle after a rabbit or a Bloodhound on human scent. Scenthounds include blue ticks and their related coonhounds.

The Bluetick is an American-breed coonhound, much like all other varieties. According to legend, Bluetick’s bloodlines go all the way back to French staghounds that George Washington received as a present from his dear friend, the Marquis de Lafayette, before the country was even founded. These were large, heavy dogs that were simple to follow on foot. Breeders mixed in some English Foxhound along with a few other hound breeds to develop a high-endurance and meticulous hunter with a “cold nose.” (This is raccoon-hunter lingo describing a dog capable of working scent trails that are hours, even days, old.)
These early Blueticks were used by frontiersmen in pursuit of the wily raccoon but were often expected to work in packs as a big-game hunter on such dangerous quarries as a bear, wild boar, lynx, and cougar. In the early 20th century, Fred Gipson, author of “Old Yeller,” wrote about a line of famous Blueticks: “In this breeding, they have a big, bell-voiced hound with the stamina to run a trail for 30 hours straight and the lusty courage to take on anything that won’t take a tree before he catches him.”

Since Gipson’s day, the breed hasn’t undergone many alterations. Raccoon hunters still like blueticks, and they continue to be important figures in Southern society. The Bluetick Coonhound has served as the University of Tennessee’s official sports mascot since 1953.

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