The Plott is a pack hunter that is a true hound dog. Its keen nose, combined with strong determination, fearlessness, and intelligence makes this dog a relentless hunter. But at home they make a warm, friendly, and loving companion. This dog is a true master of his trade, but also an excellent companion for those looking for a smart and loyal companion. Read on to learn more about the Plott.

Description of the Plott

With a sleek body and short coat, the Plott is a true picture of grace and strength. These dogs are athletic and powerful, yet still agile and quite light-footed. This makes them well-designed for the hunt, making their humans proud still today.

With a strong nose and a relentless attitude, this hound is a force of nature when on the trail of prey. Bred in North Carolina from Hanover hounds and local stock, the Plott remains the state dog of North Carolina. They are still excellent big game hunters.

While his nose may be his prized possession, the Plott still has many other qualities that make him such a special breed. From his long floppy ears, which pick up so sounds, to his lean yet muscled body that can carry him so far, the Plott is a true athlete and hard worker. His eyes are always displaying a keen and determined expression, not the typical “sad hound eyes” that other hounds can be known to display.

The Plott has a short coat that is smooth and shiny. These dogs are most commonly brindles, but occasionally can be all black, or have certain other colors mixed in, but no matter the color they are truly beautiful dogs.

Life Expectancy and Size

The Plott makes a rugged companion, and lives for an average of 12 – 14 years. The males stand 20 – 25 inches tall, and weigh 50 – 60 pounds, while the females stand 20 – 23 inches tall, and weigh 40 – 55 pounds. They are a great medium- to large-sized dog.

Protective Ability

Fearless and bold on the hunt, these dogs know what it means to be vigilant watchdogs and even strong protectors. But while the Plott will always be watching out for his family, he is a typically friendly dog that can be too sweet with strangers to make a good guard dog. However, their imposing appearance can add to their picture of a tough and intrepid hunter and protector.


The Plott is a smart dog that is always eager to learn and work with his owners. Early socialization and consistent training are a must for this breed.

Treats are a great training aid for this breed. The Plott can be very food-motivated, and responds well to this type of rewards. Just be sure to use in moderation as this breed can be prone to becoming overweight.

As such focused and smart dogs, it is important to keep training sessions engaging for your dog. Using games, short sessions, and lots of positive rewards is a great way to make training fun and efficient for you and your Plott.

Energy Level

The Plott is a true athlete, and doesn’t live up to the typical lazy hound image. Rather, these dogs are active, intense, and athletic. Bred for long days on the hunt, they need plenty of exercise to work out all of their energy. This will keep your dog healthy, and keep him from turning to destructive behaviors out of boredom and anxiety.

These dogs are not for the faint of heart, so be sure you are ready to commit to lots of activity with your Plott everyday. While they are loving and affectionate dogs, who love to spend time with their families, and cuddle up after a long day, you have to work that energy out before they can be ready to snuggle up.

What Living with a Plott is Like

This is a true working dog.

Bred for the hunt, the Plott is still excellent at this job today. These dogs’ most common function in most homes is as hunters, but they are also loving and affectionate home dogs. As pack dogs they love the companionship of other dogs. They can do well with kids if raised together, but should always be supervised.

The Plott will not do well in a sedentary home. Their natural drive for a job and working hard makes them a better choice for hunters and outdoor enthusiasts. They love being outside and need to move, so be ready to commit plenty of time to your dog’s physical needs.

Care of the Plott

The Plott needs to move and won’t do well in a small space like an apartment. Bred for the outdoors, these dogs love wide open spaces and being on the move. They do best in a home with a large fenced in backyard or where they will be used as hunting dogs.

Environmental Needs

Bred in North Carolina, these dogs do well in the heat, and do well in the humid and sticky southern climates. Their thin coats keep them cool on warm days, but doesn’t offer much protection against the cold. Limit time outside and provide them with a jacket in cold temperatures.

Exercise Needs

This breed loves to go, go, go! They need plenty of daily exercise. Hunting is a great outlet for this, but if you are not a hunter you can provide your dog with enough exercise through multiple long walks a day, backyard playtime, and canine sports.

The Plott is a natural chaser; keep him fenced in and on leash to make sure he doesn’t hurt himself or the neighborhood cats!

Shedding and Grooming

The soft and glossy coat of the Plott needs a weekly brushing to remove dirt and loose hairs. Bathing only needs to happen occasionally, and is more dependent on the lifestyle of you and your dog. Be sure to check your dog’s ears regularly as they are prone to infection.

This breed sheds some, but not heavily.

Ideal Home Environment

These dogs do best in a home where they can move. Hunting families, or those with active lifestyles are the best choice for this breed. They love the company of other dogs and can enjoy time with kids if raised together.

They can make good watchdogs but are often too kind to be guard dogs.

Health Concerns

The Plott is a hardy breed and is not prone to many health issues. Having your dog screened for hip dysplasia can help ensure you have a healthy puppy and prepare you for potential orthopedic problems. These dogs can also be prone to bloat so always monitor for the symptoms.

The other most common issue for this breed is ear infections. Regularly check and clean their floppy ears to keep them healthy.

Behavior Problems

The Plott loves to bark. While this is natural, training them from an early age can help keep their unwanted barking to a minimum.

These dogs also love to chase, of course! Keep them fenced in or on leash, unless they are trained to hunt, to keep them safe.