Breed Information Centre

Black & Tan Coonhound (Imp)


Illustration of Black & Tan Coonhound (Imp)

The Black and Tan Coonhound is a trail and tree hound – that is, a scent hound developed to hunt racoon (hence the derivative in the breed’s name). He is one of several Coonhound varieties and is distinguished by his black and tan markings. The origin of the breed trace back to the early colonial dogs and probably contain the blood of Foxhounds taken from England to North America in the 17th Century. In fact, until relatively recent times the Coonhounds were regarded as a variety of Foxhound. However, with the infusion of other breeds and types such as the Pointer, Setter, Bloodhound and French Hunting Hounds several varieties of Coonhound developed, often distinguished by colour, such as the Blue Tick Coonhound, the Redbone, the Treeing walker and the Plott. The Black and Tan was the first to be split from the American Foxhound.

The racoon was a source of meat and fur for the early colonist and hence the dogs that could hunt them became much valued. The Coonhound was developed to track the racoon by scent and the scenting prowess of the Coonhound are immense and he gives voice when on the trail, is capable of going through water. Whilst the Black and Tan Coonhound does have the courage to kill, he often ends up “treeing” the racoon - that is holding the racoon at bay when it takes refuge up a tree.

The stamina, strength and courage of the Coonhound also made him useful for hunting bigger prey such as wild boar, bears, deer and mountain lion

Breed Group
Vulnerable Native Breed
How much exercise?
Up to 1 hour per day
Length of coat
How much grooming?
Once a week
Supposedly sheds? *
Town or Country
Type of home
Large House
Minimum Garden Size
Over 10 Years

* If you are asthmatic or have an allergy, you should consult your medical advisor before considering obtaining a dog. More information can also be found on the Kennel Club website.

The Hound Breed Group

Breeds originally used for hunting either by scent or by sight. The scent hounds include the Beagle and Bloodhound and the sight hounds such breeds as the Whippet and Greyhound. Many of them enjoy a significant amount of exercise and can be described as dignified, aloof but trustworthy companions.

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