Otterhounds were bred for hunting out otters. Otters were considered to be partial aquatic mammals who hunted down fish. To form these type of dogs, they needed to breed bloodhounds with different types of dogs that were used for hunting until they got the right type of species. Using these dogs made it easier for fishermen to catch fish. These aquatic mammals started to decrease and so did the otterhounds. This happened during the 1900's. Something had to be done about it. In 1978, strict measures were done so that these type of dogs will not be non – existent. There was a group of breeders who took up the cudgels in order that the population of these dogs would increase. They were said to have possibly originated in France. It is hard to find these type of dogs because there are not so many of them. They are now not facing extinction.. These dogs can track racoons, bears and minks. Their sense of smell is tremendous
The hair of these dogs are ragged and rather thickset. Otterhounds have rectangular shaped bodies and square like heads. Their muzzles are quite long. Their noses are dark and their nostrils are large. They have teeth that have been enjoined in scissor like bites. Their eyes are dee p setted and the color of their eyes reflects the color of their coats. Dogs who possess darker rims have eyes that are dark. Otterhounds with dark bluish gray coats have light golden brown eyes.They have long ears that can touch the top of their nose. These dogs have ears that are folded and hanging freely. Their necks are sturdy and it reaches all the way to it's wide shoulders. They have tails that are set at a high level, becoming thinner at it's base point. Their feet are shaped in a rounded way and are located at the bottom of their long legs. It is entwined together with hair that is rough. Otterhounds have outer coats that have bristly, unrefined and thick. The appearance of their coats are distorted.. They have denseand shaggy eyebrows. The colors of their coats are the same when you compare them to the colors of other hounds.
Otterhounds have nice characters. They are friendly and happy dogs. They are smart, loving and they do rely on themselves. Besides that, they can make decisions on their own. They make good companions because they are quiet. They like to run around and are known to sniff a lot. Otterhounds have loud voices but it's quite pleasing to the ear. These types of dogs seldom bark. There are times you can hear their snoring. They are brave and faithful dogs. They are good dogs that even children will like. Any owner of these dogs will treasure them because they are good companions. Owners must be the pack leaders because if they do not have a strong will, these dogs can take advantage of them. Always be in command but also be loving toward these dogs.
Dogs of these type will reach heights of 24 - 26 inches. They can weigh as much as 66 – 115 pounds. Their lifespan is about 10 – 12 years.
Otterhounds are prone to having sicknesses like: hip dysplasia, thrombocytopenia ( immune system disorder ), hemophilia, elbow dysplasia and bloat. Do not overfeed these dogs because they can gain unwanted weight. These dogs are not suited to live in apartments because they need a lot of space to exercise. They must be allowed to roam around in big yards that have been properly fenced. They can adapt to mild and cool climates but they must be given appropriate shelter.These kind of hounds must be able to walk with their owners. Just keep in mind, that owners are the boss and these dog must walk by their side or at their backs. This way, you are showing them, that as owners you are the leaders.
Take care of these dogs and they will love you till their last breath.