In our last Basset Hound discovery series, we are going to help you decide if a Basset will fit into your life. I’ve had several comments from readers that would like to add a Basset Hound to their family. As I have previously stated, I am prejudice in my opinion of this lovable breed. Bentley and I are a perfect match for each other. I’ve wanted a Basset for as long as I can remember, but they aren’t a breed that is very prevalent where we live. Years ago, I bought a Basset Hound statue from Home Interiors. That was the closest I had come to getting one and he was a breeze to take care of since he was ceramic!
We have had a variety of breeds and I loved each one of them completely. Our first puppy was a female German Shepherd. We added a retired police K-9 German Shepherd a few years later. Madison had two puppies and we kept them both. Our fifth dog was a miniature Schnauzer. Grady is a story all by himself and I’ll share it one day. Then, I was blessed with Tucker, our Golden Retriever. Bentley came to live with us when Tucker was about seven years old. Those two were the very best of friends. You can see that I have experienced quite a variety of breeds before Bentley joined us. All but one of them has been extremely intelligent, easy to train, with awesome personalities.
What is about Bentley that has captured my heart? That’s a great question! Unfortunately, I don’t have an exact answer. He is truly my "soul dog."
A Basset Hound is certainly not the ideal dog for everyone.
They are extremely friendly to everyone and rarely meet a stranger. This makes them a poor choice for a guard dog. For a handful of treats, they will lead a burglar to your Grandmother’s silverware.
If you have the patience, they can be trained and do quite well in conformation, obedience, tracking, field trialing and pack hunting. However, they are considered slow learners and if they decide what you want them to do is not in their best interest; forget about it. This is especially true in reacting to the command “come.” They can hear you peel a banana when they are sound asleep, however if they are on a scent trail or in a barking frenzy no amount of calling will divert their attention. A Basset should never be allowed to roam free. A fenced yard or a leash is an absolute must have to ensure the safety of your dog. Of course, hunting or field trials would be an exception.
A Basset does not like to be left alone. If you work full-time and have to leave your dog alonefor long periods, they won’t be happy. When they aren’t happy, everyone will know about it. Their deep voice can turn into a mournful howl, which is very loud. Having another dog to keep them company can alleviate this problem. Still, they enjoy being with their human.
If you are looking for a low maintenance dog, a Basset Hound won’t take an extensive amount of grooming. They need a lot of brushing, because they are major shedders. Ear cleaning is at minimum a weekly routine. Bentley gets a bath usually once a week. They tend to get a hound dog smell that can be unpleasant. I wipe Bentley’s armpits and face with a disposable wipe between baths. *K9 Kelp shampoo has been an incredible help in completely eliminating any odor.
Most dogs with sagging jowls will drool. Bassets are no exception. Whenever we go out in public where he will be meeting people, I bring a “drool rag.” My Golden Retriever was also a "drooler,” so I’m used to tucking a rag in my pocket. This is not something that grosses me out at all. If you are bothered by it, do not get a Basset.
Does snoring drive you crazy? You can see many YouTube videos of Bassets snoring. They are notorious for it and can get very loud. Bentley’s bed is next to ours and he can fall asleep in less than one minute. We can hear a slight snore almost immediately. After a couple of minutes, it sounds like our boy needs a Cpap mask! Fortunately, we think it’s hilarious and lie there laughing until he changes position and stops.
Basset Hounds have begging down to a fine art. If you are eating something, they feel certain that you should share it with them. We usually have carrots or a dog treat broken into smaller pieces to give Bentley as a trade-off, but we aren’t fooling him. I can honestly say that lettuce is the one thing he doesn’t eat. His very favorite things to eat are almonds. I know that he shouldn’t eat them very often, so we have had to quit buying them for ourselves. You can’t sneak a single nut without him running into the kitchen. In fact, a bag of almonds is about the only thing I can show him that will get him inside if he is having a bark-a-thon. Watch this quick clip of him enjoying his almond.
Several articles mention that Bassets can be flatulent. Bentley doesn’t really have this problem. He has been known to let one rip when he is climbing on the couch. I have had dogs before that will clear a room with a silent fart, and then act as if it wasn’t them! This is not the case with him, but apparently, it can be a problem with some.
If you can deal with these characteristics, a Basset Hound could be a wonderful addition to your family. Be sure that you do your research. Find a reputable breeder or rescue organization. Make sure that your home is puppy/dog proof. If you decide a Basset is perfect fit, you’ll find yourself head over heels in love with one of the sweetest, cutest, friendliest, and easiest going dog around.
I hope that you have enjoyed my Basset Hounds 101 series! Thank you for following along.
If you missed the previous Basset Hounds 101, you can read them today.
Basset Hounds 101 ~ Part 1 is a history of the breed. Click here.
Basset Hounds 101 ~ Part 2 covers the breed standard. Click here.
Basset Hounds 101 ~ Part 3 discusses their wonderful temperament. Click here.
Basset Hounds 101 ~ Part 4 Basset Hound illnesses and diseases. Click here.
**Congratulations to our winner of two bags of Natural Balance L.I.T. treats! **
Reilly and Denny from The Cowspot Dogs!
I appreciate everyone who entered and another giveaway will be starting soon!