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Otterhound Information & Dog Breed Facts

Collection of all the general dog breed info about Otterhound so you can get to know the breed more.

Group Hunting Dogs
Popularity Rank186
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Other Names
What other names does the Otterhound have? The dog breed also known as...
Otter Dog
Breed Type
What type of dog breed is it?
AKC Group
Is Otterhound recognized by the American Kennel Club?
Recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1909 as a Hound breed.
FCI Group
Is Otterhound recognized by the Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI)?
Recognized by FCI in the Scent hounds and related breeds group, in the Scent hounds section.
Breed Recognition
What kennel clubs and organizations recognize or register the Otterhound breed?
American Kennel ClubAustralian National Kennel CouncilCanadian Kennel ClubContinental Kennel ClubFederation Cynologique InternationaleKennel Club of Great BritainNational Kennel ClubNew Zealand Kennel ClubUnited Kennel Club
How much does the Otterhound puppy cost? What is the price range of this puppy? What is the average price of this dog in the United States? Is this puppy expensive? How much should I pay for it? Otterhound price:
If you choose to purchase the Otterhound, you should know that the mentioned amount of money is an average of the collected data from breeders’ sites and puppy finder places. If you have a Otterhound for sale, please advertise it on a reliable website to make sure the Otterhound gets to a happy place.


According to researchers the Otterhound, one of the most ancient of the British breeds, was developed in England to hunt otters. The references to this breed date back to the 12th century and at the time it was greatly loved by the nobility and also by several British Kings such as King John (1199-1216), Richard III, Charles II, Henry VI, and Queen Elizabeth who was also known as the first “Lady Master of Otterhounds”.

However, the origin of the breed is still unknown. We know that the breed reached its current form in the late 18th century and that many different breeds and combinations of breeds have been suggested as the foundation of the true Otterhound. For example; the Old Southern Hound, the Griffon Nivemais from France, the Bloodhound, the rough-coated Welsh Harrier or Foxhound, and Griffon Vendeen. On the other hand, some people believe that the breed is originated from France as some of the early writers such as Marples states that “it is almost the exact duplicate of the Vendeen Hound of France”.

As the breed’s name suggests, the otter was the dog’s preferred prey. Otterhounds were used in packs in order to protect food sources and control the otter population since otters competed with fishermen for the natural trout supply in rivers and lakes. The breed has a sense of smells so acute that it could smell, in the morning, if an otter passed through the water at the night before. The Otterhound also had great swimming ability by nature and would hardly stop even after hours and hours of swimming. Its naturally protective coat also helped to dive into the water and seek its prey even if it was cold. Furthermore, the breed was also used to hunt raccoons, bears, and mink. Besides the practical reasons, otter hunting also became one of the most famous sports found in England. In the late 1800s, there were more than a dozen packs operating in Britain during every hunting season. Not so much later, otter hunting reached its peak of popularity in the years preceding World War I. At the time there were more than 500 hounds in 24 packs which hunted otter, though most of these dogs were not purebred Otterhounds. Moreover, these hunt packs continued to cross-breed their hounds well into the 20th century to improve their hunting abilities. One of the results is that all current purebred Otterhound pedigrees go back to a Bloodhound/Griffon Nivernais cross done in 1958. 

In the early 1970s, a drastic drop in the otter population occurred because of water pollution. It was decided that otter hunting has to be banned in England in 1978 and also in Scotland two years later. As a result, the Otterhound’s existence was severely threatened. To ensure the survival of the breed, the two remaining packs, The Dumfriesshire Otter Hunt of Scotland and The Kendal and District Otter Hunt of England worked together and also with several other breeders and the UK Kennel Club to register the remaining purebred hounds. Most of them were dispersed to private owners, with some going to the mink hunting packs.

The ‘purebred’ Otterhound we have today, was standardized sometime during the 19th century. Many generations of breeding for different purposes have strengthened the characteristics of the breed. The Otterhounds make a strong family companion as they are very attentive, loyal, affectionate, and enjoy an active lifestyle. Today there are fewer than 800 Otterhound's worldwide, with the largest numbers in the UK and US ( the Otterhound Club of America was founded in 1960) and with smaller numbers in Scandinavia, Germany, Canada, and the Netherlands.

General Appearance

What size is this breed? How big is this dog? Otterhound size:
How much does the Otterhound weigh? Otterhound weight:
66-115 pounds (30-52 kg)
Avg. Weight
What is the average weight of the Otterhound? Otterhound average weight:
90.5 pounds (41 kg)
How tall is the Otterhound? Otterhound height:
24-26 inches (60-65 cm)
Avg. Height
What is the average height of this fido? Otterhound average height:
25 inches (62.5 cm)

Hair & Care

What type of coat does the Otterhound have? What does this canine coat look like?
What color is the breed's coat? What color is a proper Otterhound's coat?
Blue CreamWheatenTanBlack
How to groom the Otterhound and how often?
Advanced: The Otterhound requires a lot of grooming. Cutting the dog's hair by a professional groomer can be helpful sometimes. Regular brushed dog's coat is less likely to shed. Ears and eyes should be cleaned often to avoid infections. Don't skip the seasonal flea treatment too. Occasional dog nail trimming and dog bath is important. Check the local pet store for dog grooming supplies and find the best dog shampoo to keep its coat healthy and to give your Otterhound a pleasant experience of a dog bath. If you don't have the time, skill or money to take care of your Otterhound, search for the best dog groomer or clipping service in your area and book an appointment. Maybe you're lucky to have a dog boarding service that includes grooming or walk in dog bath places nearby.
Shedding Level
How much do Otterhound dogs shed? How to control, reduce and prevent the shedding of the Otter Dog? Otterhound shedding level:
Otterhounds shed above average. It's a natural process of the hair growth cycle. The amount and frequency of hair loss mostly depend on their health status and breed type. If you don't like vacuum cleaning, you might have to reconsider your choice of having a puppy from the Otterhound breed.


What kind of personality does the Otterhound have? What characteristics does the breed have?
Intelligent Rank
How smart is the Otterhound? Are they intelligent?
Average: Otterhound's has average obedience intelligence. Patience is needed for teaching this breed to any tricks and commands though, but it's worth the effort. They understand and memorize new commands in 25-40 repetitions. This breed obeys for the first command 50% of the time or better.
Are Otterhound dogs easy to train? Do they go well on dog training?
Otterhounds are easy to train. They find out the association between commands and actions quite quickly.
How playful is this breed?
The Otterhound is a highly playful breed. Excited barking and sometimes nipping will alert you to play.
Sensitivity Level
How sensitive are they? Otterhound sensitivity:
Otterhounds are less sensitive than other dog breeds. They aren't receptive to their owner's emotions and handle soft punishment quite well. They don't mind an always changing daily routine, a hectic household, young children, noisy or office environment and frequent guest visits.
Affection Level
How affectionate are they?
Otterhounds are average dogs regarding their affection level. Some breeds are forthcoming and friendly, while others are independent and don't bond too closely to their owners.
Social Needs
How much social interaction does the Otter Dog need? Otterhound social needs:
Otterhounds need for social interaction is average. This breed likes being around people or other animals, but they don't mind being left alone for a few hours either.
Do Otterhound dogs bark a lot? Why does my Otter Dog bark?
Average: The Otterhound barks occasionally. They can change their barks depending on their emotional level and what they're trying to say. Different barks could mean the same and same barks could have a different meaning. Top reasons for barking: protection, alarm, fear, boredom, attention seeking, greeting, separation anxiety, compulsive barking.
Watchdog Ability
Is Otterhound good as a watchdog?
Otterhounds are not the best watchdogs. They aren't very territorial and protective about their property, so they probably won't alert you if they sense something different.
Do Otterhound dogs have an aggressive behavior to protect their territory?
Otterhounds can't provide protection for their territory. It's better to leave them out from the duty of protection your valuables and property.
Biting Potential
Do Otterhound bite humans? How likely are you to get bitten from the Otter Dog? What are the odds of getting bitten by a Otterhound? Why do dog bites happen?
The Otterhound has a low chance of biting somebody. Top reasons for dog bite: protection, pain, excitement, herding instinct, being provoked. (Data based on the available online bite statistics.)
How much mouthing/nipping/play biting does the Otterhound do?
Otterhounds have an average tendency to nip, chew, play-bite, or herd people. It's a common habit during puppyhood, not aggressive behavior. These "bites" don't hurt, but Otterhounds need to be taught for a good attitude.
Impulse to Wander or Roam
How likely is the Otterhound to run away? Does this breed explore or wander a lot? Does Otterhound roam?
Otterhounds have high wanderlust potential, which means that this breed has a strong desire for exploring the world. Safer to walk them on a leash unless you teach them how to get back to you on command. This breed is also able to cause damage to your fence.
Prey Drive
Do this canine have a strong prey drive? Does Otterhound have high prey drive?
Otterhounds have a high impulse to chase and catch something. Cats or any other small animals are in danger. It's a natural instinct, doesn't necessarily mean that Otterhound dogs are aggressive. Better to keep this breed on a leash.
Apartment Friendly
Is Otterhound good as an apartment dog? Can they live in a flat?
Otterhounds are not apartment-friendly dogs. If you don't have a garden, you may have to reconsider your choice for having a puppy from this breed.
Are they adaptable and easy-going?
Otterhounds adapt to lifestyle changes and different living environments quite okay usually.
Tolerates Being Left Alone
Can you leave this breed home alone?
Just like every puppy, they are prone to panic, cry, bark, whine when they left alone by their owner. With proper socialization and quality time with the dog can solve this problem.
Fighting Dog
Where Otterhound dogs used as a fighting dog in the history?
Not really
In history, this breed was not really used for combat dog.

Good With

Stranger Friendly
Are they friendly with strangers?
Otterhounds are not the most stranger friendly dogs.
Child Friendly
Are Otterhound dogs kid-friendly? Are they good with young children? Otterhound and children:
Otterhounds are kid-friendly dogs. This breed is a good choice if you have children.
Cat Friendly
How well do Otterhound dogs get along with cats? Are they good with kittens? What is this fido's temperament with cats?
Otterhounds are average friendly towards cats.
Dog Friendly
Is Otterhound good with other dogs? Are they dog-friendly dogs? How well do Otterhound dogs get along with other dogs? What is this canine temperament with other dogs?
Otterhounds are average friendly towards other dogs.
Office Friendly
Are Otterhounds good office dogs? Do Otterhounds make good office friendly dogs? Can Otterhounds be office dogs?
Otterhound is not the best dog breed for office environment.
Senior Citizens Friendly
Are they senior citizens friendly dogs? How well do Otterhound dogs get along with the elderly people? What is the Otter Dog temperament with senior people? Are Otterhound dogs good for elderly owners?
Otterhounds are usually recommended for elderly people.
Pet Friendly
Are they pet-friendly dogs? How well do Otterhound dogs get along with other pets? Are Otterhound dogs good with pets? What is this canine temperament with other pets?
Otterhounds are generally with other pets.
Good For First Time Owners
Is Otterhound breed good for first-time owners? Do they make a good dog for novice owners?
Otterhounds are good for novice owners, due to their easy-going personality.
Service Dog
Are they good as service dogs? Can Otterhound be a service dog?
Not really
This breed generally not used as a service dog. A service dog is a term used in the USA to refer to any type of assistance dog specifically trained to help people who have disabilities, such as visual impairment, hearing impairments, mental disorders, seizures, mobility impairment, and diabetes. Service dogs are protected under the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act). Otterhound is not the best breed for service purposes.
Therapy Dog
Are they good as therapy dogs? Can Otterhound be a therapy dog?
Not really
This breed generally not used as a therapy dog. A therapy dog is a dog that might be trained to provide affection, comfort, and love to people in hospitals, retirement homes, nursing homes, schools, hospices, disaster areas, and to people with anxiety disorders or autism. Otterhound is not the best breed for therapeutic purposes.
Detection Dog or Sniffer Dog
Are they good as detection dogs? Can Otterhound be a sniffer dog?
Not really
A detection dog or sniffer dog is a dog that is trained to use its senses (mostly its smell) to detect substances such as explosives, illegal drugs, wildlife scat, currency, blood, and contraband electronics such as illicit mobile phones. Otterhound is not the best breed for detection purposes.
Search and Rescue Dog (SAR)
Are they good as SAR dogs? Can Otterhound be a search and rescue dog?
Not really
The use of dogs in search and rescue (SAR) is a valuable component in wilderness tracking, natural disasters, mass casualty events, and in locating missing people. The Otterhound is not the best breed for SAR purposes.
Boat Dog
Are they good as boat dogs? Can Otterhound be a boat dog?
Otterhound breed usually likes being on a boat.
Cart Pulling or Drafting Dog
Are they good as cart pulling dogs? Can Otterhound be a drafting dog?
Not really
A drafting dog or draft dog is a dog bred and used for cart pulling. Dogs bred for this work have strong builds and qualities that are needed, strength and determination. Otterhound is not the best breed for drafting purposes.

Health Factors

Health Issues
Is it a healthy breed? Do Otterhound dogs have health problems?
Otterhounds tend to have more and frequent health issues than other breeds. Regular vet check-ups are needed.
Health Problems
What health problems does the Otterhound breed have? What are the health issues and concerns of the Otterhound breed? Health risks of Otterhound:
BloatEpilepsyGlanzmann's ThrombastheniaJoint Problems
Life Expectancy
How long do Otterhound dogs live? What is the average lifespan of this breed? How old can a Otterhound be?
10-12 years
Is the Otterhound breed hypoallergenic?
Otterhounds don't do well with allergy sufferers by causing allergic reaction. Some of the dog breeds are even considered to higher the possibility of an allergic response. Coat type isn't necessarily relevant, because most people are allergic to dander (flakes on the dog's skin) or saliva, not actually to dog hair.
Energy Level
How much energy does the Otterhound have?
Otterhounds are high energy dogs. Active lifestyle makes them happy.
Exercise Need
How much exercise does this dog need? How much exercise do Otterhound dogs require per day?
Otterhounds need a lot of exercises. Long walks should be on a daily schedule. If you live an active life, this breed can be a good choice for you.
Sleeping Need
How much sleep does this fido need?
Otterhounds don't need too much sleep. They are energetic and desire to live an active life. If you think naps are overrated, this breed can be the best choice for you.
Avg. daily food consumption
How much food does the Otterhound need? How often should I feed my canine? What dog products should I buy?
3 to 5 cups of a high-quality dog food daily, divided into two meals.
Weight Gain Potential
How easy to gain weight for this dog? Otterhound risk for obesity:
Average. The Otterhound has an average risk for obesity. Daily walks should be on schedule. To make your dog happy and fit, feed him with quality dry dog food and live an active life together. Try to find the happy medium between exercise and feeding. If you notice any weight gain, consult your veterinarian and make a diet plan. Reduce unhealthy food and snacks, and measure the Otterhound's weight regularly.
Weather & Climate
Which weather condition is preferred by this dog? Can they tolerate hot and cold weather & climate?
Prefers average to cold weather conditions
The Otterhound can adapt to well to cold weather conditions, some dogs even can be a good mountain dog.
How stinky is this dog? Why does it smell bad and how to get rid of the smell?
The Otterhound has an average chance of bad smell. Top reasons for dog stinkiness: infection of bad tooth/ear/skin folds, gas attacks.
Drooling tendency
Does the Otterhound drool?
The Otterhound is a perfect example for very low drooling tendency. If you're disgusted by slobber spots on your clothes, the Otterhound could be a perfect choice for you. Drooling is the unintentional saliva flowing outside of the mouth. It can be completely normal or a sign of a health problem. Certain dog breeds drool minimal compared to others, just like the Otterhound. If you notice any change in your dog's drooling habit, you should contact a vet as soon as possible.


Gestation Length
How long does this dog's pregnancy last? How long does this dog pregnant? How long does it take to have puppies?
60-64 days
Reproductive cycle of the female Otterhound: The first period called Proestrus lasts for about 9 days. During this time the females start to attract males. You can notice by swelling vulva and bloody discharge. The second part is the Estrus when the bitch is receptive for the male. It lasts for about 3 to 11 days. The sign of the proestrus part is the soft and enlarged vulva. The discharge decreases and lightens in color. The third part is the Diestrus. Normally, it occurs around day 14. In this period the bitch’s discharge changes for vivid red and coming to its end. The vulva returns to average, and she will no longer permit mating. The fourth part called the Anestrus. The time frame between heat periods normally lasts about six months.
How often can the Otterhound have a litter? Once a year.
More frequent breeding is not healthy. It is very important not to buy a dog from a puppy mill, where the needs of the pups and their mothers are ignored. It's an inhumane high-volume dog breeding facility, where puppies born several times a year.
Litter Size
How many puppies can the Otterhound have? What is the average litter size of this fido?
4-7 puppies

Pros & Cons of Otterhound

  • Trainability: Otterhounds are easy to train.
  • Drooling tendency: The Otterhound is a perfect example for very low drooling tendency.
  • Child Friendly: Otterhounds are kid-friendly dogs.
  • Senior Citizens Friendly: Otterhounds are usually recommended for elderly people.
  • Good For First Time Owners: Otterhounds are good for novice owners, due to their easy-going personality.
  • Boat Dog: Otterhound breed usually likes being on a boat.
  • Health Issues: Otterhounds tend to have more and frequent health issues than other breeds.
  • Hypoallergenic: Otterhounds don't do well with allergy sufferers by causing allergic reaction.
  • Apartment Friendly: Otterhounds are not apartment-friendly dogs.
  • Grooming: Advanced: The Otterhound requires a lot of grooming.
  • Shedding Level: Otterhounds shed above average.
  • Watchdog Ability: Otterhounds are not the best watchdogs.
  • Impulse to Wander or Roam: Otterhounds have high wanderlust potential, which means that this breed has a strong desire for exploring the world.
  • Office Friendly: Otterhound is not the best dog breed for office environment.

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  • zippy

    May 12, 2020, 9:13:10 AM:

    super fun and easy to train