Originally bred for the purpose of hunting raccoons, the Redbone Coonhound is a muscular dog that is medium in size and ideally suited for hunting, which was its intention. The Redbone Coonhound is the fastest among coonhounds when it comes to treeing raccoons though they are also well suited for hunting bear, bobcats, and cougars. Their agility makes them a good choice for many different types of hunting environments ranging from the swamps to the mountains. With excellent agility, exceptional endurance, and amazing strength these dogs are able to cover multiple terrains in pursuit of their prey.
These dogs make delightful pets for many families. They are good with children, friendly, eager to please, exceedingly playful, and very affectionate. They excel in environments that have more than one dog and are very loyal dogs. One word of caution is that these puppies love to chew. They will chew anything they can wrap their teeth around so be on the lookout for this. Another note to mention is that the term puppy dog eyes may very well have been invented with these dogs in mind. They always have a rather sad appearance whether they are happy or not with droopy eyes and ears. They are adorable and are often happy despite their sad sack faces.
Those who prefer not to invest a great deal of time into combing and brushing the hair of their puppies will be glad to note that the Redbone Coonhound has a smooth and shiny coat that is quite short and requires very little in the way of care. The coarseness of their coats is protective in nature and protects them from shrubs, bushes, briars, and thorns while hunting. It also helps protect them from the weather when necessary. In general the coats for the Redbone Coonhound is solid red though there may be patches of white on the chest or legs. This is the only breed of coonhound that is general solid in color.
The Redbone Coonhound is the result of dedicated efforts for breeding bloodhounds and foxhounds. There is some degree of debate as to whether the name of the dog is after Peter Redbone or the result of the fact that dogs of the day that were known as excellent hunters that were red in color were often referred to as redbone dogs. They were not originally all red though selective breeding has led to the majority of the modern Redbone Coonhounds being solid red in color. By combining the breed traits of foxhounds and bloodhounds, many believed that the perfect hunting would be the result. Today, there are many that agree with the assessment and feel that the Redbone Coonhound may very well be the perfect hunting companion for many types of prey.
The Redbone Coonhound is one dog that is very mellow and even-tempered. This is an almost ideal family dog because of its love of playing, its pack mentality, and its love of children (more importantly playing with children). The Redbone Coonhound however, does not like to be left alone and has a tendency to bay when left alone or shut out of a room it wants to go into.
They do not need to be busy at all times, which is also great for less active families, and will be content to be in the room with the family rather than constantly needing to be engaged by members of the family (though they will, when needed, invite the family to play with them). If they do not get enough exercise or attention their natural tendency to chew may result in acting out and chewing on things.
You will want to keep them on a leash when walking them as they are prone to taking off after smaller animals even if they haven’t been formally trained as hunting dogs. This is a breed trait and something that is natural to them. When hunting or chasing it is very common for these dogs to ignore your existence all together and focus completely and totally on the hunt. In other words, they are not likely to respond to verbal commands when hunting unless very well trained.
This particular breed of dog is typically very healthy though there are some that may be prone to hip dysplasia. You can have them checked out thoroughly with a vet to see if this is a likely outcome for your Redbone Coonhound and research their pedigree for hints of a family history of hip dysplasia. Arthritis is another condition that often afflicts elderly Redbone Coonhounds. Regular yearly checkups can help you prevent many conditions or learn about them quickly enough to begin proper treatment or preventative care.
Because this is a hunting dog, the biggest part of the grooming process is often going to be checking for fleas and ticks before bringing them into the home—especially after they’ve been hunting. Otherwise you will want to bathe them regularly, particularly when they’ve been romping and running in the great outdoors. Make sure the ears are clean and dry regularly, this is necessary to prevent potential ear infections. If your Redbone Coonhound hunts in wet weather it is a good idea to make sure his ears are cleaned and dried after returning.
Making sure your Redbone Coonhound gets plenty of exercise is important not only for its health but also for its happiness. This breed of dog is often content to enjoy sitting around the house as long as there are people nearby but this is not the healthiest lifestyle for your puppy or your family to lead. Take it outside and play a game of toss and catch or put it on a leash and walk it around the neighborhood. Getting plenty of exercise will also help reduce some of the chewing that these puppies are known for.
Housebreaking the Redbone Coonhound isn’t as easy as it is with many other breeds but they are trainable. They are just a tad slower to mature than other dogs making it more difficult for them to “hold it”. They are hunting dogs by nature and can be trained. It just takes a little longer to train these and some find that the results are better if they wait until these puppies are a little bit older to begin the training process.