Bluetick Coonhounds are an American breed of hound that originated in the Southern United States, which is a pretty common story for American breeds, particularly hounds. When European immigrants came to the New World, they set about mixing hound breeds to make the perfect dogs to deal with the new terrain and animals. Bluetick Coonhounds originated in Louisiana and are likely descended from a French breed, the Bleu de Gascogne (essentially a much bigger version of the Bluetick). The English Foxhound also likely contributed to the Bluetick Coonhounds’ ancestry. Bluetick Coonhounds were originally used as hunting dogs, and they primarily worked as coon hounds, hence the name. In fact, it is one breed that even today is rarely kept as a pet. While they can make good house dogs, Bluetick Coonhounds are still mostly hunting dogs and take a decent amount of training from an early age to make good companions for indoor living.
Bluetick Coonhounds are friendly and intelligent dogs, who are much happier when they have a job to do. Because of their tendency to get restless or destructive if they get bored or are under-exercised, they are not well suited to city life and fare much better in the country or the suburbs. They are striking dogs, with an unusual, deep blue coloring and long, floppy ears. They have a characteristically low and powerful howl, which neighbors definitely won't appreciate. They also really like the sound of their own voice, and they will howl and bark relentlessly unless taught not to from an early age. It's important to train Bluetick Coonhounds as pups, because they can be slow learners—but not because they lack intelligence. They are very smart and want to please their owners; however, Bluetick Coonhounds can be extremely stubborn, so early, consistent training and socialization are important.
Bluetick Coonhounds do well with children and other dogs; however, because of their high prey drive, they are not well suited to homes that have smaller pets. Homes with cats or other small animals might not be the best choice for Bluetick Coonhounds.
Raccoon hunters should look no further for a fabulous hunting companion and friend. If prospective owners are not hunters, they should think carefully before adding a Bluetick Coonhound to a home. While they are beautiful, intelligent, and loyal dogs, they stay true to their roots and need to be taught to live inside as family pets. If trained properly, Bluetick Coonhounds are striking and wonderful companions for the entire family.
Huckleberry Hound, the blue hound dog with the Southern drawl from the late 1950s and ‘60s cartoons, is a Bluetick Coonhound.
Explore some Embark dogs that share Bluetick Coonhound ancestry.