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The nose knows, and there may not be a better nose than that of the Bloodhound!

The Bloodhound is historically known as a hunting breed with unprecedented skill in detecting human scent even after the humans are long gone. 

The Bloodhound originated in Belgium in the 7th century and were used throughout Europe, primarily as a scent hound for hunting deer and boar. In the 16th century, bloodhounds began to be used for the purpose of tracking humans. They are still used today in police operations to track missing persons or criminals.

Ranging from 55 to 65cm in height, and 36 to 50kgs in weight, the bloodhound is a large dog breed. Their breed colours predominantly include black and tan, liver and tan, and red. Their life expectancy is 7 to 12 years.


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Dog Breed Facts & Characteristics



Also known as 

Chien de St. Hubert, St. Hubert Hound, Sleuth-hound

Bred for

Hunting by scent 


Large dog ranging from 55 to 65cm in height, and 36 to 50kgs in weight

Weight Range

36 to 50kgs


Red, black and tan, liver and tan

Life expectancy

7 to 12 years


Short dense coat


Gentle, affectionate, stubborn

Exercise requirements


Best suited for 

Active family with fully fenced backyard

Apartment Friendly

Better suited to larger properties


Bloodhounds are easy-going and gentle dogs, making them suitable for families. Like many scent hounds, they can be independent and easily distracted once they’ve found an interesting smell, which can make them a challenge to train. 

Bloodhounds require daily exercise. Given their instinct to follow a scent for extensive periods, they have good endurance and will enjoy long walks with their nose to the ground. The breed is moderately active, with occasional bursts of high activity. They may adapt to apartment living with daily walks or access to a backyard, but ultimately as large dogs with a penchant for exploration, are much better suited to larger properties. The Bloodhound enjoys quality time with their families, whether it be couch-time or play. Early socialisation and training with other dogs, people and animals is very important to ensure good manners later in life in the Bloodhound. 


They have a short, dense coat that requires weekly brushing. The skin of a bloodhound is in excess with loose folds over the face and body which may benefit from regular cleaning and checks for signs of infection or inflammation. Ear cleaning should also be a part of the regular grooming schedule to help keep the ears clean and free from debris to help prevent ear infections. Teeth cleaning should also be a part of the maintenance routine. Prevent parasites by ensuring your Bloodhound is on flea control all year round and tick prevention if you are in a paralysis tick area.


When choosing a food for your Bloodhound, select a premium food appropriate to your dog’s age and life stage. Make sure your pup always has a supply of fresh, clean water available.

Common health concerns 

Between 2016-2020, Bloodhounds visited the vet for ear infections, skin allergies or infections, cancer, seizures, and gastrointestinal problems including Canine Haemorrhagic Gastroenteritis (HGE). 

Table: The five most common reasons for a Bloodhound to visit the vet (excluding routine care visits) according to PetSure data from 2016 to 2020. 



Average cost for single treatment
(average pet insurance claim amount)

Highest cost for single treatment (highest pet insurance claim seen for this condition)


Ear infections




Skin conditions including allergies and infection




Cancer & tumours








Gastrointestinal conditions, including gastroenteritis and Canine Haemorrhagic Gastroenteritis (HGE)



Disclaimer: Reimbursement for these claims would be subject to limits, such as annual benefit limits or sub-limits, benefit percentage, applicable waiting periods and any applicable excess. Cover is subject to the policy terms and conditions. You should consider the relevant Product Disclosure Statement or policy wording available from the relevant provider.

Most popular Bloodhound names (PetSure data, 2020)

Most popular names

  1. Bella
  2. Daisy
  3. Frankie
  4. Louie
  5. Lulu
  6. Luna
  7. Millie
  8. Bear
  9. Bertie
  10. Bindi

Most popular female names  

  1. Bella
  2. Daisy
  3. Frankie
  4. Lulu
  5. Luna
  6. Millie
  7. Bindi
  8. Lily
  9. Bambi
  10. Bonnie 

Most popular male names

  1. Louie
  2. Bear
  3. Bertie
  4. Casper
  5. Charlie
  6. Finn
  7. Louis
  8. Milo
  9. Teddy
  10. Archie 

Did you know?

The bloodhound is the oldest known hound breed, with literature that suggests they existed from as early as the 3rd century AD. 

Where can I get a Bloodhound?

Bloodhounds are not especially common in Australia. But it may be possible to find one via a breed specific rescue organisation. You may also find a perfect large for you and your family at your local rescue organisation or shelter who needs a loving home. 


  1. American Kennel Club, Bloodhound, Accessed on 29/03/2021
  2. The Association of Bloodhound Breeders, Breeds and Health, Accessed on 29/03/2021
  3. Wikipedia, Bloodhound, Accessed on 08/04/2021

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Kylie Mitchell is a veterinarian with over 17 years experience in animal health and welfare, including in the veterinary and pet insurance industries

She has three rescue cats (Noah, Bei Bei and Meeka), four very old cockatiels and a pond-full of fish.

Kylie's pets

Bei Bei
Bei Bei