Bloodhounds are described as being gentle, docile, and friendly, but don’t let this deceive you into thinking that they are simple to train. They are big, smart, and energetic as well! You are constantly in competition with whatever they can detect in the surroundings because of their keen sense of smell and innate desire to hunt.
Because of their size, you face the risk of being pulled around if something goes wrong, and their independence might turn into stubbornness, which makes them disregard you. Don’t give up! This breed responds well to a wide range of practical tactics. What you need to know to train your bloodhound is outlined below.
Top Tips for Training a Bloodhound
Since bloodhounds are delicate canines, only positive, reward-based training should be used.
Your bloodhound should have a lot of activities because they are energetic canines who dislike being alone. It is best to stop boredom before it starts because it might result in undesirable behaviours that require time and effort to correct.
You can’t rely on your bloodhound to stay put! These guys will be drawn to scents because they were bred for tracking. If you are not paying close attention to them, a scent trail is likely to entirely divert their attention. Until this breed’s recall is flawless, they must be kept on a leash!
When exercising a young bloodhound, avoid overdoing it since this can harm their joints and lead to health issues down the road.
Exude confidence and maintain consistency. When your dog is doing correctly, acknowledge them with praise, treats, and awards.
Make training sessions brief. Excessive training is a common mistake when working with this breed. It will be impossible for these puppy pups to concentrate for longer than ten minutes at a time. Following that, they become sidetracked and lose attention, which can be upsetting for both of you.
Bloodhounds require a great deal of patience and persistence because they can be obstinate and headstrong. Yelling at them never works well with them! Seek advice from a qualified trainer with bloodhound training experience if you are having trouble.
Timeline Schedule for Bloodhound Training 8-16 weeks
It’s crucial to begin teaching bloodhound puppies as soon as you get them home. This is an important age for exposure to a wide range of environmental stimuli and socialisation. At this age, puppies are naturally curious and want to know what they see. Given that bloodhounds can be sensitive, you may end up with a scared and possibly reactive dog if you miss this crucial window. But in a regulated manner, expose them to people, other dogs, traffic, and public transportation. Your dog needs to learn how to properly meet other dogs; it’s not about letting them do as they please.
At this point, you can also begin teaching basic instructions like “sit” and impulse control. Before you play your dog’s favourite game, get them to sit. This teaches them that patient dogs get their want!
For these puppies, potty training is an additional crucial stage. Reward them when they urinate and poop in the designated areas, but never discipline them for “accidents.” Remember that it may require some time for them to become proficient. As these are necessary for later in their training, they also need to get used to wearing a leash and collar/harness.
6 months – 1 year
This is a crucial phase in the training of bloodhounds. The foundations you established throughout their first six months will be the base upon which you will build. Now that they know what courteous play is, they ought to be steered towards toys instead of your hands when they bite.
At this age, your dog also learns to manage his impulses and becomes adept at spending brief amounts of time alone himself. While you can continue practicing other verbal instructions, the recall command is perhaps the most important. Until you get this down pat, keep your bloodhound on a long lead.
1 year and over
There is never a finish to training. Dogs can learn new abilities and tricks and even develop undesirable behaviours that need to be corrected after a year of age. Your dog should be able to obey simple directions like “sit,” “down,” “stay,” “leave it,” and “heel” at this point with ease.
How to Train a Bloodhound to Track
Since bloodhounds were bred to track and identify scents, this is what makes them happiest. Your dog will likely be happier and more content if you can find a method to give in to their urge for this. So how do you teach tracking to your bloodhound? The short answer is no, you are not required to! All you have to do is set up the conditions for them to work in.
Your dog must first get used to wearing a lead, collar, and harness. After that, a bloodhound puppy trail can be established. Get a helper to wave an object (such as a rag, scent bag, or probe with a small amount of essential oils on it) around for the dog to sniff. They ought to rouse the dog by calling its name. You are keeping your dog motionless in the interim. After dropping the object, your assistance flees for around fifteen yards in a straight path. After leading the dog over to the scent piece, you give the order to trail. Your assistant will call the dog’s name and signal for them to arrive right away. The dog receives praise and treats when they get to the assistance.
Repeating this teaches the dog that following the smell trail will result in a reward, so they learn to obey this order. You can increase the difficulty by adding longer distances and more tough terrain once they have mastered the fundamentals.
Are Bloodhounds Hard to Train?
Bloodhounds are among the harder breeds to train, therefore novice dog owners should avoid getting one of these. That being said, they are affectionate canines that react favourably to consistent, patient, positive training techniques. You may both enjoy yourself if you work with your dog’s innate curiosity to sniff and follow trails!