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Alternative names
Country of origin
Great Britain
Common nicknames
Classification and breed standards
FCI: Group 6 Section 2 #294  
AKC: Hound  
ANKC: Group 4 (Hounds)  
CKC: Group 2 - Hounds  
KC (UK): Hound  
NZKC: Hounds  
UKC: Scenthound Breeds  
Not recognized by any major kennel club
This breed of dog is extinct

The Otterhound is an old British dog breed, with Bloodhound ancestors, and who is in turn one of the ancestors of the Airedale Terrier.


The Otterhound is a large, rough-coated hound with an imposing head showing great strength and dignity, and the strong body and long striding action fit for a long day's work. They generally weigh between 80 and 120 pounds (36 to 54 kg). It has an extremely sensitive nose, and is inquisitive and perseverant in investigating scents. The Otterhound hunts its quarry on land and it has a combination of characteristics unique among hounds; most notably a rough, double coat and substantial webbed feet.


They are basically big, friendly dogs with a unique bass voice that they sometimes use to excess. Because Otterhounds were originally bred for hunting, their most important characteristic is their ultrasensitive nose. As a result, new owners of Otterhounds often find that their new dog gets into everything and that the dog needs to be supervised or confined when unsupervised. The Otterhound's hunting background means that it has energy and endurance, requiring more energetic exercise than simply walking around the block. This is a good breed for active people who have a lively sense of humor!


The breed lives to between 10 and 13 years old, although some have reportedly lived to be 15 or older.


There are only an estimated 1,000 or so Otterhounds in the world and somewhere between 350 and 400 in the US. Even in the early 20th century, when otter hunting was most popular as a sport, Otterhounds were not numerous. But they can be good family dogs that simply demand a bit more training than some other breeds.

External links

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