American English Coonhound: History, Temperament, Care, Training & more

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American English Coonhound Breed
aka English Coonhound or Redtick Coonhound

American English Coonhound
Level of Energy   
Exercise Needs  
Level of Affection    
Climate Tolerance    
Good With Children  
Tolerance of Animals  
Suitable as Watch Dog    

American English Coonhound – Just The Facts

  • AKC Popularity:  146
  • AKC Breed Group:  Hound
  • Size of Male:  40-65 lbs., 24-26 in.
  • Size of Female:  40-65 lbs., 23-25 in.
  • Color:  Blue and White ticked, White and Black, Red and White ticked, Red and White, Tri-Colored with ticking
  • Average Lifespan:  11-12 years
  • Breed Origin:  USA
  • Purpose:  Hunting dog (specifically fox and raccoons)

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General Description

The American English Coonhound, also known as the Redtick Coonhound or English Coonhound, is famous for his stamina and speed. He has the elegance, stance and power of a well-trained athlete.

His hunting abilities naturally display his strength, stamina and speed. But, despite his remarkable hunting skills, he can also be gentle and relaxed. This is especially true when he’s inside the house.

This hunting dog breed loves playing with children. He is very patient with children and even strangers. Nevertheless, the American English Coonhound is also watchful and alert. With proper socialization and training, English Coonhounds are sociable and well-behaved pets.

Origin and History

Origins of this hound breed can be traced back to the 17th and 18th centuries when European settlers brought Foxhounds to the US. During that time, Foxhounds were named Virginia Hounds.

These dogs were bred to to track tree-climbing prey and negotiate the bumpy terrain of the American South. The result of breeding were Hound dogs that hunt fox during the day and raccoons, cougars, boars, bear, deer and bobcats during the night.

Today, the American English Coonhound is a hardworking, loud and fast hound dog. They are famous for their athleticism, stamina, speed and cleverness. They love to hunt not only in competitions but also in the field.

In 1905, the breed was first acknowledged by the United Kennel Club as the Coonhound and English Fox. In 1995, the Foundation Stock Service of the American Kennel Club accepted the breed as the American English Coonhound. The breed was transferred to the Miscellaneous Class in 2010 and officially recognized as the AKC’s 171st hound breed on June 30, 2011.

Since then, the American English Coonhound also qualified to compete in dog shows, such as the National Dog Show, AKC/Eukanuba National Championship and the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show.

American English Coonhound Temperament

These dogs are famous for being sociable, alert and pleasant not just to humans but also to other dogs. They make good watchdogs because of their loud hound voice that can easily alert owners.

Because they love hunting more than anything else in the world, they are remarkable working dogs. However, the English Coonhound’s love for humans also makes them great companion dogs.

The breed’s soaring drive to hunt makes them go after any small prey or animals, including squirrels and cats. They usually bawl when they are in pursuit, which is they are not recommended for people living in suburban areas.

Care, Grooming, Diet & Exercise

Living Environment: English Coonhounds are very adaptive to their environment. They are persistent nesters and can get very comfortable in their owner’s bed. Although English Coonhounds like staying at the house, they are more accustomed to outdoor living. They can survive and adapt in a suburban lifestyle, but they are more suited to rural living.

Grooming: American English Coonhounds are considered average shedders. They are not recommended to people with allergies. Their grooming requirements are minimal, with occasional brushing and shampooing only when required, read: mud puddles, rolling on dead animals, etc.

Diet and Exercise: Although quiet and relax when inside the house, English Coonhounds need a lot of exercise, both mental and physical, to stay fit. This breed loves running, long walks or jogs and other types of exercise. But, because of their strong hunting instincts, they may run after almost anything that interests them. It is generally not advisable to let them loose in unsafe areas.

English Coonhounds must be fed 2 to 3 small servings each day. They also need lots of water to avoid dehydration from various activities.

Health: English Coonhounds are vulnerable to overheating. This is particularly true when hunting during summer. They are also prone to canine hip dysplasia, like other big dogs.

American English Coonhound Trainability

The learning rate of English Coonhounds is high. Because of their intelligence, they can easily learn when properly trained.

Lack of proper dog training can lead to aggressiveness and other dog behavior problems. This is mainly due to their stubborn and confident personality. Establishing trust and dominance before training is important.

This breed needs an experienced, firm and patient handler. While they are still young, it is also recommended to socialize English Coonhounds to prevent them from having a reserved personality towards strangers.