The coon hounds history can be traced back to 11th century England. Coon hounds were originally bred to be used mostly for trailing and treeing raccoon. Coon hounds are scent hounds and run their game entirely by smell. Once the game, usually a raccon, has been cornered or treed, the coon hound changes his tone of voice to notify his master of his success and location. The coon hound will usually switch over to a ‘chop’ mouth that is very rapid. Some coon hounds have been recorded at over 120 chops or barks per minute when treed.
Coon hounds are first and foremost a working dog, a trail and tree hound, capable of withstanding the rigors of weather and difficult terrain. Coon hounds have been used successfully for hunting game all over the world. The characteristics and courage of the coon hound also make them an excellent choice for hunting for other types of game besides raccoons such as deer, bear, mountain lion and other big game.
Coon hounds are generally even tempered, outgoing and friendly. Despite the tough exterior coonhounds are very sensitive. It is very easy to hurt their feelings. Coon hounds are also very expressive, if you have hurt their feelings they may look absolutely miserable. Coon hounds mature slower than most breeds. Coon hounds do not “grow up” until they are approximately 2 years of age.
Coon hounds have the stereotype of being dumb and hard to train. However, an experienced coonhound trainer can easily train coon hounds to perform multiple tasks. I have owned coon hounds that would hunt from the truck, could be called across creeks or from a tree and even lead out of the woods without a leash. Patience is the key to training coon hounds.
In conclusion, coonhounds are excellent game hounds with outstanding tracking and trailing abilities. If you are considered purchasing a new hunting buddy you should consider a coonhound if you are looking to hunt raccoons, bear, mountain lions, or even squirrels. So now go get ya some coon hounds!