The Artois Hound is a fairly old and rare breed. These dogs date all the way back to the 1400s when they were popular hunting dogs. The Bloodhound is an ancestor to the Artois Hound, and the Artois Hound inherited the Bloodhound’s excellent tracking skills.
21 – 23 inches
55 – 65 pounds
12 – 14 years
Tri-color – fawn, white, and black
Active families, experienced dog owners
Independent, affectionate, loving
In addition to being good hunters, Artois Hounds are also very intelligent and even-tempered dogs, making them excellent companions. If you are interested in learning more about this lesser-known hound dog breed, keep reading and we will answer all of your questions about the Artois Hound.
Artois Hound Characteristics
Artois Hound Puppies
The Artois Hound is a rare breed, meaning it could be difficult to find a puppy. You may find yourself on waiting lists for a while before you are able to find a dog. Once you do find the Artois Hound puppy you would like to take home, be ready to have puppy food, water bowls, a comfy bed, and plenty of toys and treats to make your puppy feel welcome.
The Artois Hound is not recognized by the American Kennel Club, so it is likely that these dogs will not come with any official pedigree paperwork. Be sure to do your homework when choosing a breeder so that you can ensure that your dog is coming from a reputable seller. A reputable breeder will hopefully be able to provide as much information as possible about your dog’s parentage, including any health conditions your pup’s parents may have.
Temperament & Intelligence of the Artois Hound
The Artois Hound is a very intelligent dog. Between his excellent sense of smell and his intelligence, he is a very adept hunter who is an expert at outmaneuvering small animals. Despite the Artois Hound’s history as a hunting dog, these dogs are very calm and even-tempered when they are raised indoors. Artois Hounds are very social and don’t like to be left alone for long periods of time. Although they can be stubborn, Artois Hounds are ultimately very loyal dogs who will bond very closely with their owners.
Are These Dogs Good for Families? 👪
Artois Hounds are great dogs for families as long as they have been properly socialized. These dogs can make great playmates for your children, though they are also very independent dogs and will stop playing when they feel that they have had enough. Since these are larger, high-energy dogs, it’s always a good idea to supervise your children while they are playing with an Artois Hound, especially if you have very young children; these dogs could easily knock your child over if they get excited.
Does This Breed Get Along with Other Pets?
For the most part, Artois Hounds tend to get along with other dogs. Males may try to dominate any other male dogs you may have, but if you socialize them properly, you can mitigate this issue. Generally speaking, your Artois Hound is also likely to get along with other pets that live in your home—even cats. However, his hunting instinct will kick in as soon as he sees a small animal he doesn’t know, such as a squirrel or rabbit.
Things to Know When Owning an Artois Hound:
Food & Diet Requirements 🦴
The type of food you should be giving your dog depends on his size and activity level. Artois Hounds are medium to large dogs, so the food you select for your pup should be formulated for dogs of his size. If you are going to be using your Artois Hound for hunting purposes, you may also want to think about purchasing dog food that is formulated for working breeds. Like some other hound breeds, Artois Hounds can be prone to obesity, so make sure that you take care to measure your dog’s food and avoid free eating when possible.
Since the Artois Hound is a hunting breed, these dogs need a lot of exercise. You should make sure your dog gets at least an hour of moderate to vigorous exercise each day. If you have a fenced-in yard, your Artois Hound will enjoy running around in it. If you like to walk or run, these dogs could be great companions for you. However, if you and your family aren’t very active or don’t have a lot of time to take your dog out, Artois Hounds may not be the best fit.
Although these dogs are very intelligent, they can sometimes be difficult to train due to their independent and sometimes stubborn nature. For this reason, Artois Hounds may not be the best choice for inexperienced dog owners who are not very confident in their ability to train their pets. These dogs are used following the leader of the pack and will respond best to confident and consistent training. Once you develop a bond with your dog and he understands his place in the pack, he will be much more willing to follow your lead.
Due to their short coats, Artois Hounds don’t need to be groomed too frequently. You should brush their coat about once a week with a stiff brush, but you don’t need to bathe them unless they are smelly or dirty. You should also clean their droopy ears on a regular basis.
Health and Conditions 🏥
With a lifespan of 12-14 years, Artois Hounds are generally healthy dogs that tend to live longer than your average breed. However, like all dogs, they are prone to certain health conditions. You may notice similar health problems between the Artois Hound and more common hound dog breeds, such as ear infections. These dogs may be more susceptible to ear infections because of their floppy ears. It’s important that you maintain a routine of cleaning your dog’s ears to prevent infection.
Male vs Female
If you’re wondering whether it’s better to purchase a male or female Artois Hound, it is important for you to know that it is impossible to predict an individual dog’s character based on its sex. At the end of the day, dogs are individuals just like humans. Any differences noted between the sexes are based on generalizations.
That being said, Artois Hound owners report some differences between male and female dogs. The biggest difference comes down to dominance. Both male and female Artois Hounds tend to be strong-willed and independent dogs, but you will find this to be especially true with males. Male Artois Hounds are more likely than their female counterparts to try and establish their dominance in your household—with both you and other dogs. As discussed, you can mitigate this issue with confident and firm training.
3 Little-Known Facts About the Artois Hound
1. Artois Hounds Were a Favorite of French Nobility in the 1500s and 1600s
The Artois Hound, also known as the Chien d’Artois in French, is a superb hunting dog gifted at tracking animals such as foxes, boar, and hares. They were particularly popular with the French nobility, who would give them as gifts to other upper-class members of society as hunting dogs. Thanks to their special place in high society, they were very popular dogs during this era.
2. The Breed Was Nearly Wiped Out Entirely Following the World Wars
Before the wars, the breed had become less popular and was being crossed with other breeds such as the Normandy Hound in order to prevent extinction. In the 1970s, breeder M. Audrechy took it upon himself to hunt down any purebred Artois Hounds he could find in order to create a new breeding program that would recreate the breed’s original look.
3. The Artois Hound Is Thought to Be An Ancestor of the Beagle
Because the Artois Hound was developed in Northern France, it is thought that it was crossed with English hound breeds over time. Though unconfirmed, it is speculated that the Artois Hound was used in the creation of the Beagle.
Overall, the Artois Hound is an excellent companion. This breed will keep you on your toes between its active lifestyle and its high level of intelligence. If your family isn’t very active or if you are a first-time dog owner, you may want to reconsider this breed. However, if you are confident in your ability to properly train and exercise your dog, the Artois Hound could be the dog for you.
Featured Image Credit: slowmotiongli, Shutterstock