Meet the Breed: The Bluetick Coonhound



  • Height: 20"- 27”
  • Weight: 45-80 pounds
  • Historical function: Treeing Raccoons
  • Modern function: Hunting, companion
  • AKC classification: Hound

Physical Characteristics:

The Bluetick Coonhound is easily identified by their mottled, speckled coat and classic hound appearance with pronounced muzzle, long, low-set ears, and athletic body. The head and ears are typically black. The dark blue coloring stems from black hairs on a white background, which gives off a blue appearance. Can be prone to drooling.

History of the Breed:

The Bluetick Coonhound was developed from the various breeds commonly imported to the south including English Foxhounds, French hounds, and American breeds including the cur dog, the Black and Tan Coonhound, and the American Foxhound. The breed was developed to tree Raccoons for hunting purposes. Fanciers of the bluetick coloration lobbied for a separate breed designation and gained recognition from the UKC in 1946 and the AKC in 2009.


Though the Bluetick Coonhound has been bred to be a hunting dog used for treeing raccoons, a well-socialized one also makes a great family companion. Be aware that the hunting instinct requires supervision with smaller, non-canine pets. Since they are vocal bawlers, they do best in a rural setting where they won't disturb neighbors. Can become stubborn with overly stern leaders but are motivated by food and fun.

  • Best suited for: Active families and hunters.
  • Preferred living conditions: These dogs can adapt to suburban life with plenty of exercise, but love rural living.

Care and Health:

  • Grooming requirements: Easy-care short coat requires occasional brushing.
  • Exercise needs: Daily walk with a lead so they don't wander off after a scent.
  • Life expectancy: 11-12 years.
  • Health concerns: May be prone to hip dysplasia, Krabbes disease, and cataracts.

Breed Club Links: Bluetick Breeders of America Perfect Pairings: Groom Mitt Pet Bath

Have any stories about a Bluetick Coonhound? Please share!

Photo courtesy of Wikipedia creative commons.

This entry was posted by Mary.
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