Animals & Wildlife Magazine

Featured Animal: American Foxhound

By Azanimals @azanimals
American Foxhound American Foxhound History and Domestication
The American Foxhound dates back to the 1700s, when they were bred from English Foxhounds and French Foxhounds by George Washington. Their most notable ancestors though are the English Foxhounds that arrived in North America in 1650 with the English settlers. Back then, hunters required a domestic breed that had similar physical characteristics to the English Foxhound, but one that was both faster and had a keener sense of smell than the already existing breeds. In the 17th century, the American Foxhound was most commonly used for seeking out the native people, before it later became a highly effective hunter of wild animals. American Foxhounds are kept both on their own and as pack animals, in groups that tend to contain between 10 and 20 individuals, primarily by hunters and farmers.

American Foxhound American Foxhound Physical Characteristics
The American Foxhound is large breed of domestic Dog, growing to an average height of 63cm tall. They are long and lean animals, with straight, long legs and a narrow tail which curves slightly upwards. The American Foxhound has a short coat of coarse fur which is most commonly white, brown, tan, or black in colour, and is known to shed fairly regularly. The American Foxhound's long head is dome-shaped with large, wide-set eyes that are generally hazel or brown in color. Their wide pendant-shaped ears lie flat on either side of their head, framing the American Foxhound's face. Despite being leaner than the English Foxhound, the American Foxhound's body is incredibly muscular, allowing it to pursue a chase with great stamina, speed and agility.

American Foxhound Behaviour and Temperament
The American Foxhound has a generally loyal, sweet, affectionate and gentle nature when at home, but like other Hounds, they are incredibly dedicated and brave when hunting. They are however known to be relatively stubborn when they come across a scent trail and can run incredibly fast when giving chase. As a household pet, the American Foxhound needs a great deal of exercise due to it's incredibly active nature and is known to get on well with other domestic Dog breeds, mainly due to it's history as a pack-animal. The American Foxhound does however need a constant pack-leader to avoid any behavioural issues that may occur. Even though the American Foxhound is an incredibly responsive animal, they are not known to be particularly wary of strangers and rarely show any aggressive tendencies.

American Foxhound
American Foxhound Breeding
The American Foxhound was first bred in the 1700s by George Washington, by using what is believed to be a combination of the English Foxhound and the French Foxhound, which each had their own desirable traits. Hounds were primarily used by hunters and farmers to seek out animals and all have a very strong sense of smell. Washington however, required a breed that had an even keener sense of the smell than the current breeds, and also had incredible speed and stamina. Since then, the American Foxhound is still found throughout the United States but is thought to be most popular with hunters and farmers. Although they do make good companions, they are not particularly common household pets probably because of their high energy levels and the fact that their incredibly sensitive nose can lead them to become very stubborn.

American Foxhound Interesting Facts and Features
The American Foxhound was bred by the President after having received a gift of a French Foxhound. Having written about both the French and English Foxhounds in his journals on many occasions, the leaner, lighter and faster American Foxhound appeared soon afterwards and quickly became a popular choice among Hounds. Despite however, being one of the few domestic breeds native to North America, the American Foxhound is actually quite rare today with adoption levels of these Dogs being very low. The American Foxhound though is loved by owners, particularly for their special bark which consists of a loud, deep bark followed by a high-pitched howl. The bark of the American Foxhound is apparently so harmonious that is has appeared in songs.

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