1) Bred to hunt
Basset Hounds were bred by french aristocrats from the Bloodhound. The common ancestor of both – Bloodhound and Basset is the St. Huberts dog. The reason, why they bred Bassets was, that they wanted the best rabbit and hare hunter. They were finding the prey and scaring it away, so the hunters could catch the prey. Bassets were excellent at it, because they were not running away from the hunters and they had extraordianry sense of smell.
2) Sense of smell
The sense of smell of basset hound is incredibly good. It is believed, that they have to second best nose in the dog world. The number one is the Bloodhound. Using their complex noses, they can take in a big range of smells simultaneously and zone in on just one. Thanks to that, they can smell the prey for very long distances.
3) Floppy ears
The most distinct feautre of every basset are their floppy ears. And guess what? They serve a purpose. They help lift scents off the ground right into the nose of these super smell-sensitive Basset hounds. Plus, they are extremely cute!
4) Short dogs
Their small size have the same purpose as their ears. Their short legs keep them low to the ground, which keeps them close to the scents. They can just run and sniff without cringing. As you can see, Bassets were bred to be the ultimate sniffer.
You might be wondering, why this breed is called the Basset Hound. This is a dog from France and their name comes from the french as well. The word bas menas low or short in the french language.
Bassets are bad swimmers and you should not throw them into the water. If they want go into the water by themselves, than it is okay, but dont push it. Because of their short legs and thick body, bassets are not doing very well while swimming. But they do not hate water, many bassets enjoy it on the shore.
7) Vocal dogs
Bassets are very talkative and they are known as one of the most melodious dog breeds around. They have very loud barks and howls. It seems, that they like to bark and howl especially when they are left home alone.
Bassets are not low maintance dogs, they require grooming and regular bathing. It is because they are so low to the ground they get messy easily. Their ears require special attention. Because of the ears size, there is not a lot of air circulation going on, so they are prone to infections. Look out for lots of scratching and rubbing, which is a sign, that someting is not okay. You should also check their eyes regularly.
Nowadays, Bassets are mostly used as family companions and they are good at it. They are affectionate, loving and loyal and they are pretty patient with kids as well. On the other hand, they are hunting dogs, which means they are independent and they definitely know how to be stubborn.
Basset Hounds have loose skin around their mouths which is causing a lot of drooling, especially after eating and drinking. If you're a fastidious housekeeper who can't stand drool, a Basset Hound is not the best choice for you.