A tri-color Harrier
|Country of origin
||Group 6 Section 1 #295
||Group 4 (Hounds)
||Group 2 (Hounds)
The Harrier is a small
of the hound
class, used for hunting
("hares"). It resembles a
but is smaller.
The Harrier is similar to the
English Foxhound, but smaller. It is a muscular hunting hound with a short,
hard coat. It has large bones for stamina and strength. The Harrier is slightly
longer than tall, with a level topline. The tail is medium-length, carried high,
but is not curled over the back. The skull is broad with a strong square muzzle.
The rounded ears are pendant, and the eyes are either brown or hazel. The wide
nose is black. The expression is mellow when the dog is relaxed and alert when
he is excited. The teeth should meet in a scissors or level bite. The feet are
tight and cat-like, and the front toes may turn inward.
The Harrier is more playful and outgoing than the Foxhound, but not as much
as the Beagle.
Cheerful, sweet-tempered, and tolerant, it is excellent with children. This pack
dog is good with other dogs, but should be supervised with noncanine pets unless
it is raised with them from puppyhood. It prefers life in a pack with people,
dogs, or both. This active dog likes to go exploring, sniffing, and trailing, so
be sure to keep it on a leash or in a safe enclosed area. Some Harriers like to
This breed's lifespan is generally 10-12 years.
Sources have widely conflicting stories about the origins of this breed.
According to one, the earliest Harrier types were crossed with
Talbot Hound, and even the
Hound. According to another, the breed was probably developed from crosses
English Foxhound with
And yet another, the Harrier is said to be simply a bred-down version of the
In any case, today's Harrier is between the
English Foxhound in size and was developed primarily to hunt hare, though the
breed has also been used in fox hunting. The name, Harrier, reveals the breed's
specialty. Neither hare nor fox can escape its exceptional sense of smell, its
cunning, and its unequaled boldness. Prey chased by the inexhaustible Harrier
have been known to collapse from sheer exhaustion. The Harrier is still fairly
rare in the United States, but has a long history of popularity as a working
pack dog in England.
The Harrier is a very energetic breed. It needs plenty of exercise.
Harrier Club of America
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