American Foxhounds are a breed of dog originally bred for hunting foxes. Are American Foxhounds Rare? They are known for their speed, endurance, and intelligence, making them popular among hunters and dog enthusiasts alike. However, despite their impressive qualities, many people are unsure about just how rare American Foxhounds are.

The rarity of this breed can vary regionally, with concentrations in areas where hunting traditions persist. While not as ubiquitous as some popular breeds, their unique combination of traits, including athleticism and a friendly nature, adds to their appeal for those seeking a distinctive and versatile canine companion.

When it comes to dog breeds, rarity can be a tricky thing to measure. While some breeds are more common than others, the number of dogs of any given breed can vary widely depending on several factors. In the case of American Foxhounds, it's safe to say that they are not the most common breed out there, but they are also not so rare that they can't be found with a little bit of effort.

Are American Foxhounds Rare?

Breed Overview

The American Foxhound is a breed of hounds that originated in the United States. These hounds are known for their hunting abilities and are often used in packs to hunt foxes, as well as other small game.

History and Origin

The American Foxhound has a rich history that dates back to the colonial times of the United States. It is said that George Washington played a significant role in the development of the breed. He was an avid hunter and had a passion for foxhunting. He imported some English Foxhounds and bred them with French hounds to create a new breed that was better suited to the American terrain.

The American Foxhound was first recognized as a breed by the American Kennel Club in 1886. Today, the breed is still popular in Virginia, where it is used for foxhunting.

Physical Characteristics

The American Foxhound is a large breed of hound that has a muscular and athletic build. They have a short, dense coat that comes in a variety of colors, including black, white, tan, and brown. They have long, floppy ears and a long, narrow snout.

These hounds have a keen sense of smell and are known for their excellent tracking abilities. They are also known for their endurance and can run for hours without getting tired.

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Temperament and Personality

The American Foxhound is a friendly and outgoing breed that gets along well with people and other dogs. They are intelligent and trainable but can be stubborn at times. They require regular exercise and mental stimulation to keep them happy and healthy.

These hounds have a strong prey drive and are not recommended for households with small pets. They are also known for their loud baying, which can be a problem for neighbors.

Overall, the American Foxhound is a rare breed that is well-suited for hunting and outdoor activities. They are friendly, intelligent, and have a strong prey drive. If you are considering adding an American Foxhound to your family, be prepared to provide them with plenty of exercise and mental stimulation.

Health and Care

Common Health Issues

American Foxhounds are generally healthy dogs with a lifespan of 10-12 years. However, like all breeds, they are prone to certain health issues. One common issue is hip dysplasia, a condition where the hip joint doesn't develop properly and can lead to arthritis and lameness. To minimize the risk of hip dysplasia, it's important to keep the dog at a healthy weight and avoid excessive exercise at a young age. Other health issues that may affect American Foxhounds include ear infections, pledger-huet anomaly, and thrombocytopathy.

Exercise Needs

American Foxhounds were bred for hunting and have a lot of energy. They require regular exercise to stay healthy and happy. A daily walk or run is recommended, as well as opportunities to run and play in a secure, fenced-in area. Foxhounds also enjoy scent work and tracking exercises, which can be mentally stimulating and provide a good workout.

Grooming and Maintenance

American Foxhounds have short, dense coats that are easy to maintain. Brushing once a week will help remove loose hair and keep the coat shiny. It's important to check the ears regularly and clean them as needed to prevent infections. Like all dogs, American Foxhounds require regular dental care, including brushing and professional cleanings as recommended by a veterinarian. It's also important to keep up with vaccinations and preventative care, such as heartworm and flea and tick prevention.

Are American Foxhounds Rare?

Training and Behavior

Training Techniques

American Foxhounds are intelligent dogs that are eager to please their owners. They respond well to positive reinforcement training techniques, which involve rewarding good behavior rather than punishing bad behavior. These dogs are known to be stubborn, so it is important to be patient and consistent when training them.

One effective training technique is clicker training, which involves using a clicker to mark the desired behavior and reward the dog with a treat. This technique can be used to teach the American Foxhound basic commands such as sit, stay, and come.

Behavioral Traits

The American Foxhound is a social and energetic breed that thrives on human interaction and exercise. They are known for their friendly and outgoing personalities, making them great pets for families with children. However, they do have a high prey drive and may not be suitable for families with small pets.

These dogs require a lot of exercise and mental stimulation to prevent boredom and destructive behavior. They are also known to be vocal and may bark or howl if left alone for long periods.

In terms of obedience, American Foxhounds may be difficult to train due to their independent nature. However, with patience and positive reinforcement, they can learn to follow basic commands and be well-behaved pets.

Overall, the American Foxhound is a loyal and affectionate breed that requires proper training and socialization to reach their full potential as a companion animal.

Living with an American Foxhound

Compatibility with Families

American Foxhounds make great pets for families. They are friendly, loyal, and love to be around people. They are known to be great with children and can be a perfect addition to a family with kids. However, they may not be the best fit for families with cats or other small pets. As hunting dogs, they have a strong prey drive and may chase after smaller animals.

Adaptability to Environments

American Foxhounds are high-energy dogs and require a lot of exercise. They love to run and play, so they are best suited for families with large yards or who live in areas with plenty of open space. They are not recommended for apartment living as they need ample space to move around and burn off energy. American Foxhounds are also friendly with strangers and other dogs, making them adaptable to social situations.

In summary, American Foxhounds are great pets for families with high energy levels and who enjoy spending time outdoors. They are friendly, loyal, and love to be around people. However, they may not be the best fit for families with cats or small pets due to their strong prey drive. Overall, they are a great addition to any family who is looking for an active and affectionate pet.

Breed Popularity and Availability

Are American Foxhounds Rare

American Foxhounds are not one of the most popular dog breeds in the United States. According to the American Kennel Club (AKC), the American Foxhound ranks 188th out of 195 breeds in popularity. However, the breed has been gaining some attention in recent years, with a 5% increase in registrations from 2019 to 2020.

In some states, the American Foxhound holds a special status. It is the state dog of Virginia and Maryland, where it has a long history as a hunting dog. This may contribute to its popularity in those areas.

Finding a Breeder

Finding a reputable American Foxhound breeder can be challenging, as the breed is not very common. However, there are a few options for those looking to add an American Foxhound to their family.

The AKC provides a list of breeders on its website, which can be a good starting point. It is important to do thorough research on any breeder before purchasing a puppy, to ensure that they are ethical and responsible.

Another option is to look for American Foxhound rescue organizations. These organizations often have dogs available for adoption, and can also provide valuable information on the breed.

Overall, while American Foxhounds are not a very popular breed, they are not necessarily rare either. With some effort and research, it is possible to find a reputable breeder or adopt a rescue dog.

Are American Foxhounds Rare?


In contemplating the question of rarity, American Foxhounds stand out for their unique combination of traits. While not as prevalent as some popular breeds, their occurrence varies regionally, often concentrating in areas with a strong hunting and outdoor culture. The breed's distinctive qualities, such as athleticism, endurance, and a friendly nature, contribute to their allure.

Though they may not be as widespread as some counterparts, American Foxhounds are not categorically rare. Their specific attributes make them a sought-after choice for those seeking a versatile and loyal companion. In essence, the American Foxhound's charm lies not only in its individuality but also in its availability to those who appreciate its distinct qualities.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What factors contribute to the rarity of American Foxhounds?
    • One of the main factors contributing to the rarity of American Foxhounds is their specialized purpose as hunting dogs. They are not commonly kept as pets and are primarily bred and trained for hunting. Additionally, their specific breeding standards and requirements make them more difficult to produce in large numbers.
  • How often do American Foxhounds appear in breed registries?
    • According to the American Kennel Club (AKC), American Foxhounds are ranked as the 188th most popular breed out of 197 recognized breeds. However, they are more commonly registered with the United Kennel Club (UKC), which focuses on hunting and working breeds.
  • What is the typical price range for purchasing an American Foxhound?
    • The price range for purchasing an American Foxhound varies depending on factors such as lineage, breeding standards, and training. On average, prices range from $500 to $1,500.
  • In terms of breed popularity, where do American Foxhounds stand in the United States?
    • American Foxhounds are not one of the most popular breeds in the United States. However, they have a dedicated following among hunting enthusiasts and are well-respected for their hunting abilities.
  • What unique characteristics make American Foxhounds stand out among other breeds?
    • American Foxhounds are known for their distinctive bay, which is a loud, deep howl used to signal prey. They are also recognized for their endurance, speed, and ability to work in packs.
  • How does the availability of American Foxhound puppies compare to other breeds?
    • Due to their specialized breeding requirements, American Foxhounds may be less readily available than other breeds. However, dedicated breeders and hunting enthusiasts do exist, and puppies can be found through reputable breeders and hunting organizations.