The Redbone Coonhound is a rare breed with soulful eyes and a rich, glossy red coat. Prepare to answer the question 'what kind of dog is that?' over and over when you welcome this striking breed into your family. Redbone Coonhounds were developed in the US with the skills needed to hunt raccoon and larger North American prey, such as deer, bear, and cougar. They are versatile, tenacious hunting dogs, with strong scenting abilities, a sharp eye, and great speed. On the trail, hunters follow the breed's distinctive, drawn-out bay to find their quarry. When they've 'treed' a raccoon (driven the nocturnal critter up a tree until the hunter arrives), Reds are ferocious and focused. After the hunt, they are affectionate and playful. Reds are at their happiest when keeping their beloved family members company.
Redbone Coonhounds are also called Reds.
Redbone Coonhounds have a short, smooth coat, that is coarse to the touch and provides a measure of protection from inclement weather and rough terrain. The coat color should be a solid, deep red or mahogany. They may have a darker muzzle, and small white markings on the chest and feet.
Average Height: 21-27 inches
Average Weight: 45-75 pounds
Breed Standard & History
Reds have a sleek, well-muscled body, from the chest and front legs to the hindquarters. The neck is medium in length and carries the sculpted head proudly. The dark brown or hazel eyes are described as 'pleading.' Large, pendant ears are silky and reach the nose when the head is to the ground. The Redbone Coonhound's gait is steady and confident. While aggressive on the hunt, they have a loving and amiable disposition at home.
AKC Breed Category
Redbone Coonhounds have a fierce focus on the trail, but when they get home they are mellow and warmhearted. Throughout the day, Reds go back and forth from rambunctious and playful to snoozing on the couch. They are easygoing companions when they get plenty of structure and exercise.
Are Redbone Coonhounds Good with Kids? Redbone Coonhounds have a rollicking good time with the kids in their family. They are not, however, suited to homes with very young children, whom this rambunctions hound can knock down.
(Note: Every dog has a unique personality and distinct life experiences that affect his disposition. As a rule, adults should always supervise playdates between kids and their four-legged friends.)
Are Redbone Coonhounds Good with Other Pets? This sociable breed considers other dogs packmates and playmates, while viewing cats and small animals as prey.
Redbone Coonhounds are not protective sorts because they don't perceive people or other dogs as a threat.
Are Redbone Coonhounds Good Guard Dogs? While alert for prey in the field, Reds are not vigilant watchdogs at home. They'll know guests have arrived when the doorbell rings, same as you.
Redbone Coonhounds have the stamina for long days spent hunting, training, and playing.
- Require frequent exercise
- Prone to nuisance barking
- Require confident owners
- Distinctive hound smell
- Will dash off after squirrels, raccoons, and other furry critters
Redbone Coonhounds are devoted to their families and should live indoors with them—even if you wanted to keep your Red outdoors, you'd probably struggle. They are light shedders and generally neat dogs who don't require excessive cleanup.
Redbone Coonhounds should spend most of their day outdoors, hunting, playing, or hiking with you. Because they will dash after small animals, always walk them on leash and don't leave them alone in the yard.
A healthy, adult Redbone Coonhound requires one to two hours of vigorous physical activity each day. Hunting is their favorite activity, but they excel in most dog sports and agility training.
Redbone Coonhounds have the stamina for several daily play sessions and walks, between which they'll probably hit the dog bed.
Activity distance rating
- Running Miles: Healthy, adult Redbone Coonhounds make excellent jogging partners. They will run with you for five miles and more, at an easy, steady pace.
- Hiking Miles: Half- to full-day hikes are effortless for Redbone Coonhounds.
The activity level of Redbone Coonhounds varies widely, depending upon whether they hunt, and how much exercise they get. Consult your veterinarian about the optimal dog food type and quantity for your Red.
Redbone Coonhounds prefer spending time with their people but will tolerate an hour or two on their own if they must. Crate training can prevent them from resorting to unwanted behaviors, such as chewing and howling when they become bored. Because of their strong need for exercise and attention, Reds are best suited to homes where a family member is home most of the time.
Health and Grooming
The Redbone Coonhound's rich coat requires a weekly brushing to keep it clean and shiny. Bath your Red about once a month, or whenever he gets dirty and muddy from hunting or playing. Brush his teeth several times a week, and trim his nails every month or so to prevent painful cracking. Wash your Red's ears weekly with a gentle, vet-approved cleanser to prevent infection caused when wax, moisture, and dirt build up.
Common Health Issues
Redbone Coonhounds are generally healthy, but should be watched for the following breed-specific issues:
- Hip dysplasia
- Injuries from rough terrain and underbrush on the hunt
- Injuries caused by prey, such as raccoon, on the hunt
- Ticks beneath their ears
- Ear infections
You can minimize serious health concerns in your Redbone Coonhound by purchasing your dog from a reputable breeder who engages in responsible breeding practices, and through screening for common diseases and conditions.
While Redbone Coonhounds are eager to please, they have a short attention span. Keep training sessions brief and incorporate play so they don't know they are in dog school. Food and praise are strong incentives for this breed. Attentive, early training is important for Reds, because it's difficult to train them out of bad habits once they form.
Reds who are not used for hunting should definitely participate in agility training, advanced obedience classes, and dog sports. These activities give them a sense of purpose and the undivided attention of their owners, which the breed relishes.
Sporting Dog Training
Redbone Coonhounds make excellent tracking dogs. They are adept at hunting raccoons, deer, and bear.
No. Redbone Coonhounds shed and, as a result, release pet dander in your home. Dander is the primary cause of pet-related allergies.
Yes. The Red's webbed feet help them navigate the marshes and swamps where they often hunt.
Most Redbone Coonhounds love swimming and, with their webbed feet, they are naturals in the water. Even though Reds are strong swimmers, always watch them closely in or near the water.