Breed origin: England
Original purpose: Otter hunting.

AKC recognized: 1909
AKC group: Hound

Size: Weight: males around 115 lbs; females around 80 lbs
Size: Height: males around 27 inches; females around 24 inches
Color: Any color or combination of colors.

Life span: 10 to 13 years.

General characteristics/temperament: The Otterhound is amiable, boisterous, even-tempered, dignified, and inquisitive. They have an extremely keen sense of smell, and their webbed feet allow them to work equally well on land and in water. They are persistent in following scents, which often leads them into trouble, and owners must therefore take extra care to keep them safe. Many Otterhounds are capable of jumping over a 5-foot fence. They make good watchhdogs and will alert you to anything unusual with their deep voice. However, they are not guardians because of their friendly nature. Early and consistent socialization and training are very important given their considerable size and strength.

Good watchdog? Yes

Protective? No

Energy/Activity Level: Moderate

Suitable canine sports/activities: tracking, obedience, agility, therapy

Exercise requirement: Long walk or jog daily on leash. Should also have a fenced yard or access to a dog park where they can safely run off-leash.

Grooming requirement: Brush weekly to prevent mats. Some Otterhounds have a softer coat that needs to be brushed thoroughly two to three times a week. Their big, hairy feet tend to track a lot of dirt into the house. But this can be reduced by trimming the hair on the feet between the pads. Their beards need to be kept clean and dry, otherwise they can develop an unpleasant odor, especially in humid climates. Bathe only as needed.

Known health problems: Hip dysplasia, gastric dilatation volvulus, bleeding disorder, epilepsy.

Recommended books for further reading:

Otterhound: A Complete and Reliable Handbook
By Hugh H. Mouat and Elizabeth K. Conway
Published in 1998
93 pages

The Otterhound - The Dog Anthology
By Various Authors
Published in 2007
64 pages

By Juliette Cunliffe
Published in 2003
157 pages

Other websites for additional information:

American Kennel Club breed page
Otterhound Club of America
Wikipedia breed information page
Otterhound Club of America Rescue

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Page Last Updated: February 1, 2018

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