Welcome to the BarkPost guide to dog breeds where we belly flop straight into the depths of dog breed origin, evolution, and purpose. Follow along each week as we publish new guides that highlight the strangest, most interesting, and most surprising stuff about these creatures who have been our best buds the last 30,000 years.
Intro / Overview
(All dogs are individuals, which means any single dog from any breed can be any number of ways, both good and not so good. Keep that in mind as we discuss breed generalities!)
Meet the Redbone Coonhound, an all American breed! This breed was developed during America’s expansion into the south and west. This patriotic pup is adorned with a coat so strikingly red that it’s in the breed’s name! The Redbone Coonhound is mild-mannered, friendly, and athletic. The American Kennel Club describes the breed as “kindly at home but a tiger on the trail.”
Unsurprisingly, Redbone Coonhounds are members the Hound group. They carry hallmark hound features, such as dangly, flat ears, a houndlike head, and a gorgeous short coat. The American Kennel Club boasts that the Redbone Coonhound appears as if a “master sculptor carved them from blocks of the finest mahogany.” Read on to learn more about this handsome hound!
Also Known As…
Redbone. Coonhound. “The reddest, boniest Coonhound there ever was!”
Redbone Coonhounds inherited their stunning red coats from their red foxhound ancestors. The Scottish immigrants introduced their foxhounds to America in the late 1700s while the Red Irish Foxhounds were brought prior to the Civil War. According to the AKC, Redbone breeders spent several years on developing a “solid-colored, flashy, red dog.” These efforts resulted in the stunning Redbone Coonhounds we know today. However, these hounds are more than their hair!
This all American breed is one of six hounds created by American settlers during the nation’s expansion to the west and south. Settlers developed this breed in hopes of obtaining a reliable source of raccoon meat and fur during the expansion. They were bred to be agile, hot-nosed, fast, and excellent at treeing game (forcing prey to run up a tree).
Female Redbone Coonhounds typically stand 21 to 26 inches at the withers while male Redbone Coonhounds typically stand 22-27 inches at the withers.
This breed is considered medium-to-large in size.
Redbone Coonhounds weigh 45 to 70 pounds on average.
Redbone Coonhounds are not coons! They have mastered the art of balance. Redbones are very mellow, yet very active. This breed is loved for their sweet, even-tempered personality. Inside the home, Redbone Coonhounds are laid back and easygoing. They are devoted, affectionate and eager-to-please, making them very loyal companions.
Their indoor gentleness is offset by the breed’s impressive stamina and energy. During playtime and outdoor activities, this breed is highly energetic, athletic, and alert. Once a Redbone Coonhound’s nose gets a whiff of something intriguing, she’s off to track it! Redbone Coonhounds love engaging in vigorous activities, such as hiking and swimming, just as much as they love lounging on the couch with you.
Intelligence / Trainability
Redbone Coonhounds are moderately intelligent. These devoted dogs are eager to please. This makes them good candidates for training! However, many struggle with “canine attention deficit disorder.” Thus, plenty of patience and rewards are required for successful training. Capture your Redbone’s attention with savory treats and loads of affection after she performs the desired behavior. Harsh training techniques should be avoided.
Fun fact: Redbones are versatile, known to excel in a range of activities such as coonhound trials and agility courses.
Redbone Coonhounds thrive in homes with sprawling, fenced yards. However, you can create a home fit for a Redbone Coonhound even if your outdoor space is limited. This breed can adapt to apartment living if sufficiently exercised daily. However, the breed’s barking may pose a barrier to apartment living (further discussed below). Their hardy, all-weather coat can withstand outdoor living. However, this devoted breed prefers to be surrounded by family, chilling on a couch indoors.
Like most hounds, Redbone Coonhounds are easily swayed by their noses. Their hunting origins instilled in them a drive to follow scents and pursue prey. Because of this, Redbone Coonhounds should only be off leash in a securely fenced area. Securely fenced yards are necessary to keep your Redbone Coonhound safe and contained. Once their noses tell them to go somewhere, there is little that will stop them!
Also like a typical hound, Redbone Coonhounds love to sing and howl. Though their bark is quite lovely, your neighbor may not agree at 2 AM. Pup parents who live in close quarters should be mindful of this breed’s barking tendency.
Good For Families And Kids
Are Redbones good for families? Um, are cars good for driving? The answer is an undoubtable yes! Redbone Coonhounds are incredibly family oriented.
This breed loves people and loves to please! They are affectionate, gentle, and easygoing. Because of this, they are excellent companions for children. Clearly, the loving and loyal Redbone Coonhound makes a fantastic addition to any family.
Typically, Redbone Coonhounds live 12 to 15 years.
Good news Redbone Coonhound groupies, this breed is very healthy! There have been some occurrences of hip dysplasia in this breed, yet it is not reported to be common.
Like with every dog, a Redbone’s floppy ears should be inspected regularly for signs of infection. Redbone Coonhounds should also receive routine parasite control, nail trimmings, and teeth brushings.
Bred to be quick and agile hunters, Redbone Coonhounds are quite energetic. Therefore, this breed has substantial activity needs. A Redbone Coonhound needs plenty of exercise and physical activity to stay happy and healthy.
Redbone Coonhounds are excellent companions for active people! They love vigorous activities such as hiking, running, hunting, and swimming. If you’re not an extreme sports fanatic, no worries! A Redbone Coonhound can also receive sufficient exercise with daily walks or jogs.
Despite their high energy needs, Redbone Coonhounds are also very mellow dogs. Between physical activities, Redbones love lounging around! In the home, they are very mellow and laid back. With a Redbone Coonhound, you get the best of both worlds!
Friendly With Dogs? Strangers? Cats/Other Pets?
Redbone Coonhounds are friendly and love people. Because of this, they typically get along well with strangers. Despite the breed’s friendly nature, early socialization is still important in ensuring your Redbone Coonhound is tolerant of strangers and other animals.
This breed is typically friendly towards other dogs, yet this can vary in each Redbone. Because of their history as hunters and their resulting prey drive, use great caution when Redbone Coonhounds are around small pets.
Coat & Grooming
The most striking feature of this breed is in the name. That’s right, the Redbone Coonhound is adorned with an iconic red coat. This stunning feature was no accident; in the late 18th century, breeders spent many years developing the breed’s flashy, solid, red coat.
Their trademark coat consists of short, smooth hair that is very easy to maintain. Can you believe it – all that beauty and low maintenance! Brushing weekly with a shedding tool or grooming mitt can help minimize shedding. This also distributes skin oils throughout the hair to enhance their coat’s striking shine. In addition to regular nail trims and ear checks, Redbones should be bathed every four to six weeks.
Toys Redbone Coonhounds Would Like Best
Given their hunting origins, Redbone Coonhounds naturally love a chase! Toys that can be used in games of long-distance fetch – like the “Lady Liberty Ball” – help ignite that instinct. This will not only entertain your Redbone Coonhound, but also help him be sufficiently exercised.
Redbone Coonhounds also love swimming! Toys that can be used in the water – like Super Chewer Toys – turn swimming into the ultimate playtime. You can even throw Fetch Toys into the pool and see if your pup will test the waters.
Recommended Diet Or Supplements
Redbone Coonhounds should be fed a high-quality dog food that is appropriate to their age (such as puppy, adult, or senior). Serving size is dependent on the dog food and the dog’s size.
While your Redbone Coonhound may execute the classic hound gaze while you’re eating, refrain from feeding human foods. Not all human foods are suitable for canine consumption and can lead to weight gain and health issues. Treats should also be given in moderation, so fight those puppy dog eyes! If you have any questions or concerns about your Redbone Coonhound’s diet, it is best to consult your veterinarian.
Since the Redbone Coonhound is a notably healthy breed, they do not necessitate specific supplements. It’s always important to ensure your dog consumes all the essential nutrients and vitamins. However, this can be difficult to achieve with dog food alone. Any dog can benefit from a daily multivitamin that ensures he or she gets those much-needed nutrients! BarkShop’s Multivitamin Daily is a tasty, all-natural supplement packed with 25 healthy nutrients.
While hip dysplasia is not terribly common in Redbone Coonhounds, prioritizing your dog’s joint and bone health can yield great benefits. A joint and bone supplement can help your curious Redbone Coonhound zoom across trails and follow her nose for years to come. BarkShop’s Hip + Joint Pro is an excellent joint supplement that’s so yummy your Redbone will think it’s a treat!
Running around all day can be exhausting for your Redbone. A comfy dog bed is a top choice for your canine companion, especially ones with hip dysplasia. The right support can help ease your pup’s tired joints and help them relax from a hard day of playing.
This dog bed is great for supporting your pup’s tired body. A high quality combination of ergonomic memory foam and gel foam helps ease body aches, joint pain, hip dysplasia and arthritis. This bed offers the best therapeutic support for your hardworking pal. ($27.99-64.99.)
Notable Rescues To Find The Redbone Coonhound Of Your Dreams
- AKC Coonhounds – Directory of Rescues in Every State
- Rescue Me! Redbone Coonhound Rescue
- Coonhound Rescue
- Coonhound Rescue Network Page
- Northeast Coonhound Rescue
- Pet Adoptions by Overstock
Notable Instagram Redbone Coonhounds
Don Johnson @realdonnyjohnson!
***Looking for a gift to blow your Redbone’s mind? Spoil them with BarkBox! Every month BarkBox delivers 2 original toys, designed in-house, 2 full bags of all-natural treats, and a chew. Sign up here and receive a free extra toy every month. <– This deal is worth up to $120 in value if you sign up for a 12-month subscription! 🙂
Featured image via RealDonnyJohnson/Instagram