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Friday, August 26, 2016

The Purpose of the Wrinkles on a Bloodhound

The Purpose of the Wrinkles on a Bloodhound

pictured my bloodhound Wrinkledpups Daisy Mayham (RIP) copyright Amber Higgins

Many people are amazed to see a bloodhound's wrinkled skin in person. This breed of dog is definitely a conversation starter while on a walk with its human companions as every bloodhound or wrinkled dog owner knows-everyone who sees your hound and doesn't know will ask, " Is that a bloodhound?" and "Look at all those wrinkles !" 

Did you know there is actually a purpose behind all that loose skin on these dogs? Let's explore why bloodhounds have really loose flexible skin, loads of wrinkles and long long ears, especially as pups.

Mother nature and intentional breeding methods have created dogs in every size and style of coat imaginable. Especially with the popularity of designer dogs or the mixing of purebred dogs. The bloodhound is one of the oldest breeds of purebred dogs bred exclusively to find people not hunt animals. The loose skin and long ears are on these dogs are for a reason and do serve a purpose which helps this breed excel in its work and be a specialists in what they do. 

This dog breed is Not named a Bloodhound because the dogs track blood trails. They smell much more than only blood !

No, the dogs are named bloodhound because the blood lines were recorded and kept by monks for hundreds of years-so the dogs were first known as "blooded-hounds". They are the first recorded pedigreed dog breed thanks to the monks! Look up the Chien de Saint-Hubert and St Hubert hound for more about the history of this wrinkly pup.

The loose skin and wrinkles falling all over the pups face sometimes is not fun for the dog. Imagine looking down a flight of steps and as you bend your head down, all your hair falls in your face, covering your eyes! This happens with loose dog skin too!

Many bloodhounds are very reserved, wary and can appear shy to people who don't know them. The dogs are known to be reactive sometimes, meaning they may react in strange surroundings by bolting away from what has suddenly drawn its attention. 

The dogs will often spook at loud noises and flashes of objects or movement. Not all Bloodhounds do this but many do and it's actually nothing to do with being shy or scared it’s more about not being able to see when the skin is slipping around on the head, also the dog is being smart and savvy trying to get away from what they cannot see.  

I learned this first hand from Incredible Sue, who would not let anybody touch her unless she had found them in work or lived with them and I for at least six months. She would follow and find anybody and proved to be incredible in many ways.

"Rea Valley's Incredible Sue" My first Bloodhound 1996-2006
Born in Indiana, raised and worked in Arkansas, retired in Oregon

Bloodhounds will look afraid to us when most of them are not, the dogs are only getting the bearings on their surroundings and using their senses to figure out what the noise was or flash of movement was from under a ton of wrinkles and loose skin that gets in the way.

Good trailing Bloodhounds can be very wary and shy of new things because they are always ready to work a scent so they pay attention to nothing but the nose.

When the bloodhound nose is down the eyes are covered by wrinkles and folds of skin that capture and trap scent around the dog's face and nose as the dog moves. The long ears have a purpose to flap side to side as the dog is moving, fanning the air up from the ground into the wrinkled face.

The Bloodhound's amazing scenting abilities rely on the nose and not eyesight so having wrinkles fall over their eyes is natural for them but this does lead to a sometimes clumsy dog and puppies who will accidentally walk into a wall. Going up and down steps can be troublesome for young dogs when the skin on their forehead fall over the face and eyes get covered as they look down steps and from high places.

Read more about How a dog uses its nose >>>>click here to go to the page 

Go to Family Disaster Dogs to learn how any dog can rescue owners and family

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 Wrinkledpups Daisy Mayham

Sambo 1999

Author Amber Higgins

Author Amber Higgins
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Welcome UK and Worldwide Visitors

Welcome UK and worldwide visitors and friends to Family Disaster Dogs online! Although I'm an American author and dog professional the worldwide web has given me the opportunity to connect with some wonderful folks who have contributed pictures for my books. The "Start Mantrailing" book features RRI K9 North Scotland trained Search and Rescue Dog "Amber" on the cover and her teammates training in the book, plus American dogs using my training methods. A portion of sales of the Start Mantrailing book or copies were donated to RRI North Scotland. The children's picture book "My Puppy Can Find Me" has my daughter and bloodhound as illustrations by UK cartoonist Scotty King. You can find the books on Amazon UK or use the contact page to order from me. When you click the links will take you to your own county pages of this site.

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