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|Basset Hound general features, temperament, health|
Breed: There are several different theories and hypotheses of the Basset Hound appearance. The name of the breed is formed from two words: the French "bas" - (which means "low") and the English "hound". Most of the researchers believe the version that the short-legged Basset came from Norman Artesian Basset: "... They are very beautiful, have a cheerful appearance of French and the mind of an English dogs and generally bring a great pleasure."
By the middle of XIV century, the short legs and long bodies of Bassets were fixed and became hereditary.
Snapshot in his writings about the Basset Hound, says: "... They differ on the bow-legged, and half-bow-legged, and straight-legged ... thoroughbred are only the bow-legged Bassets, that require more careful selection, as the impurity is immediately effecting the legs. When such a Basset Hound runs, he literally drags his long ears along the ground. The short-legged Bassets prefer more the autonomy in the search, and if one of them found the mark, others do not rush after him. In general, each Basset works on his own and is chasing his beast, not paying attention to the other dogs ... "
"... Today's Basset Hound can hardly be called the child of the same breed of dogs from the time of du Fulyu and Selinkur (XIV century) and occurred relatively recently from the common hound, who had an ugly extremities due to the English disease. Shortening of the hind limbs and curvature of the front in young dogs, today are not particularly rare ... "
Before the 60-ies of the last century, Basset Hounds were rare and did not have established grounds. Count Lekute and Mr. Lan paid them their attention. The types of dogs, which they managed to create, are now called "Basset of Lekute" and "Basset of Lan". Count Lekute preferred small dogs with straight or slightly curved legs, and Mr. Lan - massive, large, bow-legged with big heads and long ears.
Officially the import of French representatives of this breed to England is mentioned in 1866 when Lord Geluey was presented with a splendid pair - Belly and Bassett. From this couple was born the legendary Basset Hound Bellman. Around 1874, Sir Ivereyt received from the French kennel "Conte de Couter" a perfect male named Model, who became the ancestor of one of the oldest British lines of Basset Hounds. From him came the champions - Faino, Termino, Proctor and others.
"... But the British, following their custom to strengthen the typical signs of breed, did not limit themselves to just mixing the two breeds (Basset of Lekute and Basset of Lan), and began to add to the French Basset the blood of British Bloodhounds..." In his report on the Kennel Club exhibition in 1894, Millays is directly talking about Bassets - descendants (grandchildren) of a Champion Bloodhound, called Cromwell. Thus, the British had developed their own, special, peculiar type of Basset Hound ...Based in England, a specialized "Basset-Club" in 1883, developed the breed standard for Basset Hound. Familiarity with this standard proves that in fact English Basset - is a Bloodhound on short legs, with his typical head, long ears and wrinkled skin, and he has a rather vague resemblance to his relative - Basset of Lekure. The amount of Basset of Lan's blood in English Basset is so insignificant, that there is almost no reason even to mention this. Tracing the Basset Hound's development, we can conclude that the breed owes it's appearance to the English breeders and may be called an English breed. No wonder that the public interest is very much attracted to the achievements of the English breeders.
General Features: Basset Hound has such an unusual appearance, that it is not possible to pass by without noticing him.
His powerful, heavy, extended body has a very short thick legs. Skin is given to him in abundance, and, going as an "accordion" on his short legs, on the neck and on his head before long, low-set ears, it is forming a solid fold, which gives Basset's muzzle some sort of sweetly melancholic expression. In the homeland of the breed , in England, there is a joke comparing the Basset Hound with an elderly gentleman, who have forgotten to pull his pants up.
A complete mismatch of the appearance and temperament. Basset seems to be an "interior" dog, free to fit into any environment. Basset Hound loves comfort. He seems wistful, lazy fatso. For his strong, powerful body and his addiction to the comfortable life English nicknamed him a "sofa athlete." Basset is getting used to the comfort very quickly and hardly alters the established habits.
Temperament: At first glance it seems that, because of his short legs, Basset Hound is doomed to a sedentary lifestyle, yet he is very agile and strong. On walks in the woods Basset loves to wade through the thickets, to climb the steep slopes. Basset does not like to jump, although he is quite able for that, and if it is possible to bypass the obstruction, he will do it. Basset Hound is a strong hunting dog and he does not need any "doggie clothes".
By his nature, Basset Hound is quite intelligent, but his self-restraint is in equal measure combined with gusto. And it is not surprising, because Basset is a real hound, which was - by breeding and selection - given the original decorative appearance. That fact that Basset belongs to the glorious tribe of hunting dogs explains some of the difficult and interesting sides of his character. Even though these dogs are - in the majority - not used for hunting anymore, they are studying tracks with the great interest and chase with the a surprisingly powerful voice.
Basset Hound is intelligent and resourceful, cunning enough, you can say "canny", also he is able to perform a great sense of humor. Of course, he tend to analyze and understand the situation. He is stubborn in achieving his goals. It seems that the dog does not do anything to harm himself, always is caring about his interests and trying to get what he wants this or another way. This is how his ancestors were living, those, who tracked down the beast following him sometimes for a very long time, relying solely on their natural intelligence, courage and endurance.
Basset Hound is proud and dignified. Sometimes, when unjustified, as it seems to him, able to be "nasty". Meanwhile, the aggression is not typical for Basset Hound. He is cheerful, good-natured and gets along with all kinds of pets. Extremely curious, Basset will never disregard any - even the slightest - event. Basset rules everywhere in the house and selects several observation posts: if he can not participate, then at least he has to watch, what is happening.
Basset Hound is, certainly, a personality, but he is still very much attached to the man. He selflessly loves the one who (by the Basset's believes) is his master or someone, who Basset patronizes (for example, children). This dog is surprisingly sociable and contact, vulnerable and touchingly gentle.The most terrible punishment for this breed is the deprivation of human contact. Basset, who is loved and understood, and Basset, feeling as a furniture in the house - are two completely different dogs. For his best friend Basset Hound is ready for anything. He can be easily trained for obedience course and receive a diploma, successfully develops agility, and some Bassets are still hunting.
Health problems: Because of their long ears Bassets may have some ear diseases, which can cause the eye issues as well. Bassets should never be overfed, because overweighting may become a reason for paralysis - extra weight put allot of stress on the Basset's spine.