The Bloodhound is a large and very old breed, originating from Belgium. It is considered an important ancestor of today's driving dogs. The breed is also known as St. Hubertshund.

The name Bloodhound originates from the breed's capability to track blood, not the English expression "blooded hound". The name comes from the 1300s, but the breed is even older.

The Bloodhound's origin is from the Ardennes in Belgium, in the 900s, where a monk names Hubertus was involved in breeding great hunting dogs, based on local dogs that had existed in the area since the 600s. Hubertus was later the first bishop of Li├Ęge, and was appointed a saint after his death. Eventually, these dogs were spread throughout Europe, and crossed with other dogs to get the types that fit the different needs people have for hunting dogs.

The Bloodhound was brought to England by William the Conqueror in the 1000s, and it was frequently used as a hunting dog in France until Ludvig the Saint's time (1226-1270).

The breed's reputation as a good tracking dog probably stems from the U.S. It was especially popular in southern states, where it was used to track down the escaped slaves. Later it was used to also track down escaped prisoners.

In modern times, breeders in Belgia, the U.S. and Britain have been important for the breed's development and existence. Today it is considered as the most important ancestor of the bracken breed.

The Bloodhound is a long, large and massive dog with lots of loose skin. The head is large, but not wide, and is full of wrinkles and creases. Distinct occiput, long, broad cheeks and a chin with loose lips. The ears are low and long, drooping towards his jaw. Muscular elongated neck. The body is broad and elongated. The chest is deep and broad with the abdominal line slightly tucked up. Broad and powerful back, and massive loins. Muscular legs and strong bone that ends up in the round, strong paws. The tail is carried in an elegant curve over the back line, without touching the back.

The coat is short and relatively rough on the body, but soft and silky on the head and ears. Black and brown (tan) is preferred, but uniform brown and brown with yellow markings are also permitted.

At shoulder height, males are about 64-72 cm, and should weigh about 46-54 kg. Females are about 58-66 cm at shoulder height, and should weigh about 40-48 kg. Ideal height is respectively 68 and 62 cm.


The Bloodhound is a large breed of dog which, while originally bred to hunt deer and wild boar, was later bred specifically to track human beings. It is a scenthound, tracking by smell, as opposed to a sighthound, which tracks using vision. It is famed for its ability to discern human odors even days later, over great distances, even across water. Its extraordinarily keen sense of smell is combined with a strong and tenacious tracking instinct, producing the ideal scent hound, and it is used by police and law enforcement all over the world to track escaped prisoners, missing people, lost children and lost pets.

Temperament and behavior

The Bloodhound is a large, steady and courageous dog, ideal as a family dog in an active family. It is friendly, calm, loyal and faithful, and is considered very good with children. It is reserved with strangers, but usually not aggressive. The Bloodhound requires patience and friendly, but rigorous training. It needs a lot of exercise and should get plenty of challenges.


The coat must be brushed regularly. The dog needs routinely inspection and cleaning, due to skin folds, long ears and the eyes.

Bob and Babe on a road trip, 2008