Fédération Cynologique Internationale

The Kennel Club

United Kennel Club

Otterhound

Otterhound

Otterhound


ORIGIN

:
FCI
Great Britain.

PUBLISHED

:
FCI
13.10.2010.
KC
July 2009

UTILISATION

:
FCI
Big, strong hound primarily built for long day’s work in water, but able to gallop on land.

CLASSIFICATION

:
FCI
Group 6Scent hounds and related breeds
Section 1.1Scenthounds, Large-sized Hounds
Without working trial

KC
Hound
UKC
Scenthound

BRIEF HISTORICAL SUMMARY

:
FCI
It is generally felt that the Otterhounds ancestry includes a French influence combined with original English hound strains.
He is a kindly fellow with a typical loud baying call which he can use to good effect when he needs to indicate that he has found a prey that interests him, though today his primary purpose of hunting otters is banned. The breed has keen scenting ability. When following the scent of an otter on land the scent is called a drag and in water a wash. An Otterhound can follow a drag for up to twelve hours and when following a wash may swim for five hours. In addition to his oily coat he has webbed feet.
UKC
As the breed name suggests, Otterhounds were developed to hunt the large European otters, which are considered predators as they decimate fish. The Otterhound was recognized by the United Kennel Club in 1985.

GENERAL APPEARANCE

:
FCI
Large, straight limbed and sound, rough-coated with majestic head, strong body and loose, long striding action. Rough double coat and large feet essential. Free moving.
KC
Large, straight limbed and sound, rough-coated with majestic head, strong body and loose, long striding action. Rough double coat and large feet essential. Free moving.
UKC
This large, rough-coated hound has an imposing head that shows great strength and dignity. Their strong body and long-striding action make them fit for a long day's work in the water or on land. The Otterhound is a dog of good substance and has strongly-boned legs and broad muscles, while not being coarse.

IMPORTANT PROPORTIONS

:
FCI
Distance from nose end to stop slightly shorter than from stop to occiput.
KC
Big, strong hound primarily built for long day’s work in water but able to gallop on land.

BEHAVIOUR / TEMPERAMENT

:
FCI
Amiable and even tempered. Signs of aggression or nervousness should be heavily penalized.
KC
Amiable and even-tempered. Signs of aggression or nervousness should be heavily penalised.
UKC
They have an open and amiable expression. Their temperament is amiable, boisterous and even tempered. The Otterhound has an extremely sensitive nose, and is inquisitive and persevering in investigating scents. Since the Otterhound hunts on both land and water, it requires a combination of characteristics that is unique among hounds. These include a rough, double coat and substantial, webbed feet. The Otterhound should never be penalized when shown in working condition. Any departure from the breed standard is to be penalized according to the degree of deviation.

HEAD

:
FCI
Clean, very imposing, deep rather than wide, expression being open and amiable. Whole head except for nose well covered with rough hair, ending in slight moustache and beard.
KC
Clean, very imposing, deep rather than wide, clean cheekbones, skull nicely domed, neither coarse nor overdone, rising from distinct though not exaggerated stop to slight peak at occiput. No trace of scowl or bulge on forehead, expression being open and amiable. Muzzle strong, deep; with good wide nose, wide nostrils. Distance from nose end to stop slightly shorter than from stop to occiput. Plenty of lip and flew, but not exaggerated. Whole head except for nose well covered with rough hair, ending in slight moustache and beard.
UKC
The large head is deep rather than wide, and is well covered with hair. A hound that is 26 inches in height measures from 11 to 12 inches from the tip of the nose to the occiput.

CRANIAL REGION

:

Skull

:
FCI
Nicely domed, neither coarse nor overdone, rising from stop to slight peak at occiput. No trace of scowl or bulge on forehead.
UKC
The skull is not coarse or overdone. It is slightly domed and rises from the stop to a slight peak at the occiput. The cheekbones are clean.

Stop

:
FCI
Distinct, though not exaggerated.

FACIAL REGION

:

Nose

:
FCI
Good wide nose, wide nostrils.
UKC
Nose pigment matches that of the eye rims. The large, dark nose is completely pigmented. The nostrils are large.

Muzzle

:
FCI
Strong, deep.
KC
Jaws strong, large, well placed teeth with perfect, regular scissor bite, i.e. upper teeth closely overlapping lower teeth and set square to the jaws.
UKC
The muzzle is strong, deep and slightly shorter than the skull. There is plenty of lip and flew, but it is not exaggerated.

Lips

:
FCI
Plenty of lip and flew, but not exaggerated.

Jaws/Teeth

:
FCI
Jaws strong, large, well placed teeth with perfect, regular scissor bite, i.e. the upper teeth closely overlapping the lower teeth and set square to the jaws.
UKC
A full complement of strong, white teeth meet in a scissors bite, which is preferred.

Cheeks

:
FCI
Clean cheekbones.

Eyes

:
FCI
Intelligent, moderately deep-set eye; haw showing only slightly. Eye colour and rim pigment variable according to coat colour (a blue and tan hound may have hazel eyes). Yellow eye undesirable.
KC
Intelligent, moderately deep-set eye; haw showing only slightly. Eye colour and rim pigment variable according to coat colour (a blue and tan hound may have hazel eyes). Yellow eye undesirable.
UKC
The deeply set eyes are dark, but eye color and eye rim pigment complements the color of the hound. Eye rim pigment matches that of the nose. Dogs with black-pigmented eye rims and noses should have darker eyes. Those with liver or slate pigment may have hazel eyes. The haw shows only slightly. The expression is open and amiable.

Ears

:
FCI
Unique feature of the breed. Long, pendulous, set on level with corner of eye; easily reaching nose when pulled forward, with characteristic fold. Leading edge folding or rolling inwards giving curious draped appearance - an essential point not to be lost. Well covered and fringed with hair.
KC
Unique feature of the breed. Long, pendulous, set on level with corner of eye; easily reaching nose when pulled forward, with characteristic fold. Leading edge folding or rolling inwards giving curious draped appearance – an essential point not to be lost. Well covered and fringed with hair.
UKC
The long, pendulous, folded ears are an essential feature of the Otterhound. Folded means that the leading edge folds or rolls to give a draped appearance. The ears are set low, or below eye level and hang close to the head. The leather reaches at least to the tip of the nose if pulled forward. They are well covered with hair.

NECK

:
FCI
Long, powerful, set smoothly into shoulders. Slight dewlap permissible.
KC
Long, powerful, set smoothly into well laid back, clean shoulders. Slight dewlap permissible.
UKC
The powerful neck blends smoothly into well laid-back, clean shoulders. It is of sufficient length to allow the dog to follow a trail. A slight dewlap is permissible.

BODY

:
FCI
Very strong.
KC
Chest deep with well sprung, fairly deep, oval ribcage. Ribs carried well back allowing plenty of heart and lung room; neither too wide nor too narrow. Body very strong, with level top line and broad back. Loins short and strong.
UKC
Slightly rectangular in body. The length, from the point of the shoulder to the buttocks, is slightly greater than the height, measured at the withers. The backline, from the withers to the base of the tail, is level. The short, broad loin is strong. The croup slopes slightly. The chest, which is deep rather then wide, reaches to the elbows in a mature hound. The well-sprung, oval-shaped rib cage extends well toward the rear of the body.

Topline

:
FCI
Level.

Back

:
FCI
Broad.

Loin

:
FCI
Short and strong.

Chest

:
FCI
Deep with well sprung, fairly deep, oval ribcage. Ribs carried well back allowing plenty of heart and lung room; neither too wide nor too narrow.

TAIL

:
FCI
(Stern) Set high, carried up when alert or moving, never curling over back and may droop when standing. Thick at base, tapering to point; bone reaching to hock and carried straight or in a slight curve. Hair under tail rather longer and more profuse than that on upper surface.
KC
(Stern) Set high, carried up when alert or moving, never curling over back and may droop when standing. Thick at base, tapering to point; bone reaching to hock and carried straight or in a slight curve. Hair under tail rather longer and more profuse than that on upper surface.
UKC
The long tail reaches at least to the hock joint. It is set high on the slightly sloping croup. It is thicker at the base, and tapers to a point. When the dog is moving or alert, it is carried in saber fashion, but never forward over the back. When the dog is at rest, the tail may droop.

LIMBS

:

FOREQUARTERS

:
KC
Well laid shoulders. Forelegs strongly boned, straight from elbow to ground. Pasterns strong and slightly sprung.
UKC
Forequarter angulation must be balanced with the angulation of the hindquarters to allow forward reach and rear drive. The clean, powerful shoulders are well sloped. There is moderate angulation of the shoulders and elbows.

Shoulder

:
FCI
Clean and well laid back.

FORELEGS

:
UKC
The strongly-boned forelegs are straight. The pasterns are slightly sprung. Dewclaws may be removed from the forelegs.

Forearm

:
FCI
Strongly boned, straight from elbow to ground.

Pastern

:
FCI
Strong and slightly sprung.

FEET

:
KC
Large, round, well knuckled, thick padded, turning neither in nor out. Compact but capable of spreading; hind feet only slightly smaller than forefeet. Web must be in evidence.
UKC
Fore and hind feet are large, broad and compact when the dog is standing, but they are capable of spreading. They are web-footed, the membranes connecting the toes allow the foot to spread. The pads are thick and deep. The toes are arched.

Forefeet

:
FCI
Large, round, well knuckled, thick padded, turning neither in nor out. Compact but capable of spreading; Web must be in evidence.

Hind feet

:
FCI
Hind feet only slightly smaller than forefeet. Large, round, well knuckled, thick padded, turning neither in nor out. Compact but capable of spreading; .Web must be in evidence.

HINDQUARTERS

:
FCI
Very strong; well muscled when viewed from any angle, standing neither too wide nor too narrow behind. Hind angulation moderate. In natural stance, hindlegs from hock to ground perpendicular.
KC
Very strong; well muscled when viewed from any angle, standing neither too wide nor too narrow behind. Hind angulation moderate; hocks well let down, turning neither in nor out. Thighs and second thighs heavily muscled. In natural stance, hindlegs from hock to ground perpendicular.
UKC
Rear angulation must be balanced with the angulation of the forequarters to allow forward reach and rear drive. The large, broad upper and lower thighs are well muscled.

Thigh

:
FCI
Heavily muscled.

HIND LEGS

:
UKC
When the hound is standing, the legs are parallel when viewed from the rear. The stifles are moderately bent. The well-let-down hocks are well defined, turning neither in nor out. Dewclaws are generally removed from the hind legs.

Lower thigh

:
FCI
Heavily muscled.

Rear pastern

:
FCI
Hocks well let down, turning neither in nor out.

GAIT / MOVEMENT

:
FCI
Very loose and shambling at walk, springing immediately into a loose, very long-striding, sound, active trot. Gallop smooth and exceptionally long striding.
KC
Very loose and shambling at walk, springing immediately into a loose, very long-striding, sound, active trot. Gallop smooth and exceptionally long striding.
UKC
The Otterhound is to be shown on a loose lead. The smooth, effortless gait is one capable of being maintained for many miles. The dog moves freely with forward reach and rear drive. A loose, shambling walk, from which the dog can spring immediately into a very long striding, sound, active trot, with a natural extension of the head, is breed characteristic. They do not lift their feet high off the ground, and may shuffle at a walk and slow trot. The smooth gallop is exceptionally long striding.

COAT

:

HAIR

:
FCI
Long 4-8 cms, dense, rough, harsh and waterproof but not wiry; of broken appearance. Softer hair on head and lower legs natural. Undercoat evident and there may be a slight oily texture in top and undercoat. Not trimmed for exhibition. Presentation should be natural.
KC
Long 4-8 cm (11/2-3 ins), dense, rough, harsh and waterproof but not wiry; of broken appearance. Softer hair on head and lower legs natural. Undercoat evident and there may be a slight oily texture in top and undercoat. Not trimmed for exhibition. Presentation should be natural.
UKC
An essential feature of the breed is its characteristic coat. The Otterhound is double coated. The dense, rough, coarse, crisp outer coat has a broken appearance. It is two to four inches long on the back, and shorter on the extremities. The texture and quality of the coat are more important than coat length. The short, woolly undercoat is slightly oily and water resistant. It is essential, but may be sparse in the summer months, when it may be hard to find except on the shoulders and thighs. A softer hair coat on the head and lower legs is natural. The ears are well covered with hair. The neck has an abundance of hair. The tail is feathered (covered and fringed with hair). The Otterhound is shown in a natural coat that is free of dead hair. There should be no sculpting or shaping of the coat. A working dog may have a naturally stripped coat lacking length and fringes and that is acceptable. This proper hunting coat will still show the hard outer coat and woolly undercoat.

COLOUR

:
FCI

All recognized hound colours permissible whole coloured, grizzle, sandy, red, wheaten, blue; these may have slight white markings on head, chest, feet and tail tip. White hounds may have slight lemon, blue or badger pied markings. Black and tan, blue and tan, black and cream, occasional liver, tan and liver, tan and white.
Colours not permissible Liver and white, a white-bodied hound with black and tan patches distinctly separate. Pigment should harmonize though not necessarily blend with coat colour; for example a tan hound may have a brown nose and eye rims. A slight butterfly nose permissible.
KC
All recognised hound colours permissible: Whole coloured, grizzle, sandy, red, wheaten, blue; these may have slight white markings on head, chest, feet and tail tip. White hounds may have slight lemon, blue or badger pied markings. Black and tan, blue and tan, black and cream, occasional liver, tan and liver, tan and white. Colours not permissible: Liver and white, a white-bodied hound with black and tan patches distinctly separate. Pigment should harmonize though not necessarily blend with coat colour; for example a tan hound may have a brown nose and eye rims. A slight butterfly nose permissible.
UKC
Any color or combination of colors is acceptable. No discrimination is to be made on the basis of color.

SIZE

:
KC
Approximate height at shoulder: dogs: 69 cms (27 ins); bitches: 61 cms (24 ins).
UKC
Height is measured at the withers. Height and weight ranges are as follows: Males, 24 to 27 inches, and weight 75 to 115 pounds; females, 23 to 26 inches, and weight 65 to 100 pounds. Balance, soundness and type are of greater importance than size.

Height at withers

:
FCI

Males approximately 69 cms.
Females approximately 61 cms.

FAULTS

:
FCI
Any departure from the foregoing points should be considered a fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree and its effect upon the health and welfare of the dog.
KC
Any departure from the foregoing points should be considered a fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree and its effect upon the health and welfare of the dog and on the dog’s ability to perform its traditional work.
UKC
Coat: An outer coat much longer than six inches, because it becomes heavy when wet.

SERIOUS FAULTS

:
UKC

Coat: Woolly-textured outer coat. Soft outer coat.
Coat: Lack of undercoat.

DISQUALIFYING FAULTS

:
FCI

  • Aggressive or overly shy.
  • Any dog clearly showing physical or behavioural abnormalities shall be disqualified.
UKC

Unilateral or bilateral cryptorchid. Viciousness or extreme shyness. Albinism.
Color: Albinism.


Anatomical Features of the dog

N.B.:

Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.