The Otterhound is appropriately named; he is an excellent swimmer, even in cold water. He is also prized for civil defence missions. Despite the fact that he's stubborn, he is highly appreciated by the authorities for his aptitudes and great qualities. Nevertheless, he is still quite rare and the numbers are very low. It is therefore necessary to plan in advance if one wishes to adopt this breed of dog.

Height 67 to 69 cm
Weight 30 to 32 kg
Life expectancy 12 to 13 years
Hair Loss High
Excercise Need High
Home country United Kingdom (UK)

Quick Overview of the Otterhound


  • Friendly and gentle
  • Affectionate and courageous
  • Sociable


  • Solid silhouette
  • Noble look
  • Tenacious and vigorous


  • Robust and not often sick
  • No particular problem

Temperament of the Otterhound

Friendly, gentle, affectionate, courageous and tenacious, this great dog is sociable with everyone, human and animal alike.

Sometimes stubborn, the education of the Otterhound must be firm and rigorous while his socialization generally does not cause any issue because it comes naturally.

This versatile hound is nowadays more often used to hunt big game than otters, as the ban on hunting has forced him to trade his role of otter hunter for other types of hunting.

This large specimen is appreciated by hunters but also by families.

Extremely sociable, he is compatible with all members of the family, large and small, humans and other dogs or animals in the household.

He loves everyone and is never aggressive. He is a very affectionate doggie and very kind to all children.

Breed Appearance

otter dog

The Otterhound has straight, flawless limbs. This large-sized dog has a solid silhouette that moves smoothly.

His noble and majestic gait shows his tenacity and great vigor.

The main characteristics of the Otterhound are his very harsh double coat and his large legs allowing him to easily take long strides.

He can live indoors and outdoors without any problem because his fleece protects him from heat and cold.


Between 67 and 69 cm (26.38 to 27.17 inches) for the male
Between 67 and 69 cm (26.38 to 27.17 inches) for the female


Between 30 and 32 kg (66.14 to 70.55 pounds) for the male
Between 30 and 32 kg (66.14 to 70.55 pounds) for the female


His dress can be of various colors.


His double layer of hair is hard, dense and waterproof.


The color of his eyes generally matches the color of his coat.

His long, beautiful hanging ears are set at eye level and his large nose is black.

His tail is usually carried high. His majestic head is dome-shaped and has a clear stop.

According to the FCI breeds nomenclature, this breed belongs to group 1, section 1 and is #294

Characteristics of the Otterhound

Does this dog suit your lifestyle?

Every dog breed has its own characteristics. However, the actual character of a dog can vary from one to another within the same breed.

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Life in an apartment
Good first dog
Tolerates solitude
Tolerates cold weather
Tolerates hot weather
Friendly with children
Friendly with strangers
Friendly with other animals
Hair loss
Drooling level
Easy to care for
Robust health
Easy to train
Tendency to bark
Tendency to nibble
Instinct to hunt
Adventurous spirit
Energy level
Level of intensity
Need for exercise

Tips About this breed

The Otterhound is passionate about aquatic activities and physical exercise.

Despite his size, he can live anywhere, but he must be able to enjoy several outings a day, and his predilection for water must also be met regularly.

His stubborn temperament requires a good education to match his character.

It must be strict and firm and the master must able to assert himself and be obeyed without any concession.

His education must be adequate but his socialization is natural.

Health of the Otterhound

This large dog is robust and not often sick. He is very resistant to heat and cold and generally in excellent health.

In the absence of any specific pathology related to the breed, he generally enjoys a good life expectancy.


His slightly rough coat requires weekly brushing, and it is best to bathe him as often as necessary.

He does not need any other special care.

History of this breed

Originally from Great Britain, the origins of the otter dog are little known.

It is possible that the first specimens may have come from a cross between the Hound of Saint-Hubert and various French Griffons that were imported to Great Britain well before the 1870s.

Afterwards, he would have received blood from various wirehaired terriers as well as from a Harrier.

The Americans discovered him at the beginning of the 20th century and in 1970 in England, following the ban on otter hunting, numbers grew scarce and the breed became increasingly rare all over the world.

In order to avoid total disappearance of the breed, the Otterhound was then used to hunt other types of game.

Because he was used in riverbank areas, he is efficient on water as well as on land and can even hunt big game, the Otterhound managed to survive.

In addition to being endowed with good hunting qualities, he is also used for company.

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