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You Ain’t Nothin’ but a Hound Dog

Consider this a public service announcement…

Ya’ll… I can’t even. I CAN NOT even describe to you the frustrations of owning a hound dog. Particularly a bloodhound.

We were still living in Colorado and on our way home to Missouri for a visit when we found him on Craigslist. After searching high and low for a reasonably priced pup for my husband (even those at the shelters were $300), we resorted to checking in Missouri while we were there. When I scrolled down to those floppy ears and all those wrinkles, we called the number listed and set up a date to meet the puppies immediately. Who knew something so cute could be SO much trouble! Our clearance puppy definitely had a catch… or two… or more.

Due to being bred as a working dog, he was not very attached to us at first and preferred to roam about on his own. It took 6 months to make him lovey and cuddly… and even then it was only with us! Discipline stuck about the same, seeing as he could care less if he pleased us or not.

Then the chewing started.

When he was bored… he chewed. When he was upset… he chewed. He chewed because he was teething and even when he wasn’t teething any more. He chewed anything and everything and didn’t discriminate! I bought that dog more chew toys than ALL of the many dogs I’d previously owned combined. He even chewed on a full grown tree once. I mean… come on!

Of note: I did not actually let him chew the stick. That is very bad for doggie bellies.


Then, at one point I suspected that part of the destruction was vindictive. I’d come home from work and moved him indoors due to a huge change in weather. I made sure there was nothing he could chew and opened the doggie door… he saw me leave again. My husband came home to find our wall photos scattered in pieces across our living room. I KNEW when Doc repeatedly went directly to our visitor’s belongings to chew after being chastised by said visitor. Multiple times

Oh the shedding and the slobber! I have hair and slobber EVERYWHERE. The slobber sticks to the wall like stucco and his hair clogs the vacuum. There’s hair mixed with dust, hair in the lint trap and hair in the air every time he shakes. There is no escaping the hair and the slobber requires significant elbow grease to remove. Though the hair is not as bad as a bulldog, it’s about as bad as a lab. That with the slobber is bad enough.

Did I mention that he still thinks he is the 25 lbs he was when he first came home with us? He turns around and backs up to sits on my lap like a child. Regularly. He weights 110 lbs now folks, and he doesn’t all fit. Oh but he tries too! Not to mention he still thinks he can play with the 10 year old Miniature Schnauzer we have. Not a good idea.

He likes to perch on unlikely objects. Objects he should not be, let along, stand on in fact. The arms of couches and chairs, the backs of couches and chairs, his igloo dog house, benches, plastic storage containers… the dog doesn’t care. If it fits he sits… sometimes even if it doesn’t fit.

Water is one of his favorite things. Which is fantastic… I love having a water dog. Until he decided that it would be a fantastic idea to climb in the shower with me. But climbing into the tub willingly at bath time? Forget it. It’s like wrestling a walrus. That’s become my husband’s job because I find it ridiculous that it is so difficult to bathe a dog that loves the water.

Doc is also a very possessive being. He will push other dogs away that are being petted by us (eve the mini schnauzer that was there long before he was). He will squeeze between our legs when my husband and I are hugging. And food. Lord don’t mess with that dog’s food. Even if it’s your food he’s covetous.

The worst of it all? That nose. It has a brain of it’s own. Forget trying to get his attention when it’s elsewhere, especially if that nose is involved. Listening is not his strong suit. It also takes him on “adventures” if he’s not closely monitored. He can be gone for hours as my husband frantically searches for him. Not our favorite pastime.

I would be remiss if I did not mention all the things I love about Doc after listing all the hardships, though. Though off to a curt start, that dog is now one of the cuddliest you will meet. He leans in when he’s rubbed and wants to fit his entire self in my lap (which I did list as a fault but darn it’s so cute). He knows when we are hurt or sick and is so gentle with us in those moments. He loves smelling flowers and carrying around new toys for hours. He has a distinct “happy tail” (as I call it), a “meh” tail and a sad tail. Most of all he provides endless humor.

We love him. We would never trade him for anything in the world. We fret on the occasion he does get away from us and enjoy his presence immensely. Our homestead wouldn’t be the same without him.

But goodness, I know a lot of people who would have given up on him by now.

So… just please know what you’re actually getting before you get a hound dog.

5 thoughts on “You Ain’t Nothin’ but a Hound Dog”

  1. I have lived with 3 beagles, each one adopted when they were middle-aged or older. I know what you’re talking about! The best dogs, and also very frustrating dogs since humans really can’t ever understand what it’s like to have that amazing ability to smell. It must be like being an artist surrounded by colors. I miss my beagles so much now that they’ve passed away.

  2. We’ve got a red and a black and tan Bloodhound, and, while what you said is 100% accurate, we wouldn’t trade them for anything. They are on a whole different level of creatures. But don’t tell anyone was amazing dogs they are.

  3. We have a wonderful female Black and Tan Bloodhound named Boone! She’s a rock star! Everyone loves her:). Wouldn’t trade her for the world even though it isn’t the easiest breed to own. She brings us such joy!

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