The Black And Tan Virginia Foxhound is an American dog breed; one of four foxhound breeds. In the 18th century it was crossbred with the Bloodhound, and gave rise to the Black and Tan Coonhound. It is also good for fox hunting.
History The Black and Tan Virginia Foxhound is an American foxhound breed. It resulted of a cross breed with Bloodhounds in the 1700s. The breed was developed by the landed gentry in order to get a dog suitable for fox hunting, so most American foxhounds were born. Besides the Black and Tan there are the Walker, Calhoun, Penn-Marydel, Goodman, July and Trigg. The Black and Tan is believed to descend form hunting dogs imported to America by Robert Brooke in 1650. These hunting dogs were the ancestors of several varieties of American hounds and stayed with the Brooke family for more than 300 years. Afterwards French Foxhounds were bred in after George Washington received them as gifts from the Marquis de Lafayette. Much later, the breed's speed and stamina were improved introducing Irish Foxhounds.
Characteristics The American foxhounds are lighter, taller and more agile than the English ones. They can grow to a height of 21-25 inches and can weigh between 65 and 75 pounds. These dogs have a keen sense of smell and are faster than other hounds. They are large dogs with long, straight-boned front legs and a large skull with pendant ears which frame the face. They are wide and flat to the head. The eyes are wide set and large with a friendly and intelligent expression. The tail is set moderately high with a slight upward curve and the coat is hard and short, and as the name suggests, a combination of black and tan on a white base. These dogs are not suitable to apartment living because they need a lot of exercise and also tend to put on weight easily. Otherwise, they are fairly healthy and not plagued by genetic disorders involving the hip and bones. Their life span is about 10–12 years. This breed has a friendly, pleasant, loyal and reliable temperament.
Care Due to their energetic temperament they require a lot of exercise and room, if this is not provided they could become destructive in order to entertain themselves. This can also be prevented by a careful, patient training. They also need socialization outside. They are not suitable for apartment living because they are too energetic and need a lot of exercise to stay in shape.