The American Staghound is not a recognized breed. It is a hybrid created by crossing Greyhounds, Scottish Deerhounds, and other races. Genetically hunting dogs will find them chasing rabbits and squirrels if they spy them while on a walk.
|Calm, Courageous, Affectionate, Tenacious
|Blue, Black, Brindle, Brown, White, Yellow
|26-32 inches (66-81 cm)
|24-29 inches (61-74 cm)
|55-90 pounds (25-41kg)
|45-85 pounds (20-39kg)
These dogs were bred in the 1660s by the early settlers in America. They are the product of crossbreeding of Scottish Deerhounds with Greyhounds and other dogs. Since this crossbreeding continues, they are not recognized as a separate breed even today. The early settlers used them to store food and fur because of their inherent hunting instincts. They were also used for coyote coursing as entertainment.
Large dogs weighing 40-100 pounds, these come in various colors like Blue, Black, Brown, Brindle, White or Yellow. They have three types of coats, the short-haired shag, the silky haired slick or broken, which is a cross between the two. The shaggy varieties enjoy the cold while the slick coated ones are more comfortable in the heat. These dogs have long legs, stiff muscles, and a deep chest. They have folded ears, although one can be erect while the other wrapped. They have dark eyes, a black nose, and a long, narrow muzzle tapered at the tip. They are agile and graceful. They also have a sharp sense of sight and smell.
For a pet quality staghound puppy from a good breeder, you may have to shell out USD 1000. Top breeders may quote an even higher price. It would be much cheaper for you to look at rescue homes. You will possibly get a perfect pet American Staghound for as little as USD 50 – 400.
Be prepared when you bring your pet home. Keep a crate, a leash, collar, bowls, and a carrier ready. Take it to a vet for a thorough check-up. Work out your finances before you adopt the dog because they will surely add to your monthly budget.
- Staghounds are affectionate dogs and are excellent companions for humans. By nature, they are calm, courageous, and tenacious.
- They crave attention from humans and are devoted to their masters. They are kid-friendly, but you have to keep an eye on them when they are around small children.
- They sometimes mistake them for prey like squirrels or rabbits because of their inherent hunting instincts and will chase them around the house. They really dislike being left alone for long periods.
- They are wary of strangers and do not like to be petted until they become familiar and comfortable with them. They are wonderful watch-dogs because of their visual acuity but are not particularly useful as guard dogs.
- American Staghounds are active animals and require a lot of exercises, both physical and mental. While training it, you need to reinforce the fact that you are the master. This will get you better results since hounds are basically pack-dogs. Positive training methods work best with them.
- They understand encouragement, treats, appreciation. Adverse treatments may make them aggressive and defiant. Start their training early, exposing them to different people, sounds, and situations so that they get used to becoming sociable.
- These hounds are rural dogs and enjoy the openness there. They do adjust to city apartments living too, on condition they are taken for long walks or allowed to run around in the yard.
- You have to be careful about their exercise when they are below one year in age because of their still-developing leg bones, which may get injured if pushed too far.
- They are not aggressive by nature, and you rarely hear of them biting humans.
Care and Grooming of Staghounds
These dogs are easy to look after. Apart from a few brush downs every week and a bath; sometimes, they do not require much grooming. Remember not to give them a bath, too often since their skin tends to dry out and only use dog shampoo.
Use a dog tooth kit(toothbrush and toothpaste) at least three times a week, if not daily, for their oral hygiene. Their ears tend to develop a bad odor, irritation, and redness, so watch for any of those symptoms. But do not insert earbuds to clean the inside of the ear. Use a soft damp cloth or an ear cleanser instead.
Since these are active dogs, their nails usually get worn down. Occasionally they might require clipping, but be careful not to clip them too close to the nerve ends.
Staghounds can eat three to six cups of good quality dry dog food. The quantity will depend on the amount of exercise they have. Split the food into two meals to prevent bloating. At all times, keep clean, fresh water available to your pet.
Staghounds are easy to look after since they do not have any genetic disease. The only problem is that they are prone to bloating and are very sensitive to anesthesia.
Staghounds are not the first choice of those seeking a good looking dog. They make excellent pets to families or individuals who are sporty, like going cycling or trekking and looking for affectionate companions.
Think before you act
A pet is not just a friend but also a serious responsibility. An American Staghound requires a license, and insurance, regular visits to a vet, proper training, and regular exercise. These are attention-seeking dogs, so you must be committed to your pet and make time for it, or else you both will be unhappy.