Redbone Coonhound

The Redbone Coonhound, or Redbone for short, is a dog with many different faces. At home they are a mellow and affectionate companion, but on the hunt they turn into a vigilant and tireless powerhouse. This double identity makes them an adaptable dog for many different people.

Those looking for the quintessential houndy attribute like long soft ears, a melodic howl, and hooded eyes will not be disappointed in this beautiful and loyal breed. Read on to learn more about the Redbone Coonhound.

Description of the Redbone Coonhound

The sinewy body of the Redbone Coonhound looks as though it has been carved from red marble. Their thin skin and short fur hang close to the body, and highlight the streamlined and lean figure of this beautiful dog.

This breed’s hound head is framed by incredibly long and soft ears, and don’t forget about those soulful eyes that so often have a pleading expression. The Redbone Coonhound is a good medium sized dog, but their lean and tall body makes them appear to have a larger and more distinguished presence.

One of six hound breeds, this dog’s breeding ensures a capable raccoon hunter to ride alongside American settlers. They may seem like sleepy couch potatoes when at home, but as soon as they are on the hunt they turn into fearless and tenacious trackers.

The signature coat of the Redbone Coonhound is short and coarse and is colored a deep red. Their color was more for style originally, and there is no denying these dogs are a beautiful sight.

Life Expectancy and Size

The Redbone Coonhound is a robust dog that lives an average of 12 – 15 years. This is a respectable lifespan for a dog on the larger end of medium, and working with a reputable breeder is a great first step to maximizing the life of your dog.

These lanky dogs are a good balance in size among the various hounds. Males stand 22 – 27 inches tall and females 21 – 26 inches and they weigh 45 – 70 pounds.

Protective Ability

This loyal breed is a tough trail companion, but tends to be very mild and gentle at home. They love to sing and you will constantly hear their howl, especially when strangers are at the door. But this breed is better served as a friendly and watchful greeter than a guard dog.


As hounds go, the Redbone Coonhound is a versatile and easy to train dog. While he can have a streak of that typical hound independence, he is often eager to learn and a willing dog to train. Getting him properly motivated is the best way to make training a breeze.

Treats are one of the best options for motivating this breed. They possess the bottomless stomachs of many hounds and will be very interested in learning when there is such a tasty reward waiting for them. Just be sure to feed in moderation as they can become overweight.

Using canine sports is also a great way to train this breed and get them moving at the same time. The Redbone Coonhound is an intelligent dog and getting them mentally stimulated and engaged will help them learn quickly.

Energy Level

The energy of the Redbone Coonhound tends to come in spurts. In between long naps on the porch they will be very active and want to move. Running, swimming, hunting, or playing games with you are all great ways your dog can be active.

But given their even temperament and relaxed nature at home, as long as they receive adequate daily exercise this breed will be happy to hang around with his family.

What Living with a Redbone Coonhound is Like

This is an all around kind breed.

The Redbone Coonhound loves his family and does especially well with children and other dogs. His easy-going and mellow nature means he is even-tempered enough to put up with just about anything.

He can succeed in more sedentary families as long as they give him adequate daily exercise. While he is a powerhouse in the field, he is also a love bug and enjoys relaxing with his family at home.

Care of the Redbone Coonhound

The Redbone Coonhound can adapt to pretty much any living situation as long as he gets enough daily exercise and family time. He is a low maintenance breed and requires little to be happy.

Environmental Needs

The Redbone Coonhound tends to do better in milder climates. While they are accustomed to punishing weather while on the hunt, their thin fur doesn’t protect them from the cold. Consider getting your dog a jacket and limiting time outside in extreme temperatures.

Exercise Needs

This breed is a mix between high energy and really relaxed. They love their snooze sessions, but also love to be active and are very energetic when they want to be.  Multiple long walks, swimming, hunting, and backyard playtimes are all great ways to exercise your dog.

Canine sports are also a great option for this breed. They have the brains and brawns to do well in many different types of activities and this provides them a good outlet for energy and the mental stimulation they need. Daily walks are usually enough to keep these dogs happy and healthy. Ideally, you will supplement these with time playing in the yard.

The Redbone Coonhound loves to chase so always keep him fenced in or on leash when not hunting.

Shedding and Grooming

The Redbone Coonhound has an easy coat to maintain. A weekly brush through will remove loose hairs and help distribute body oils that keep his coat healthy.

This breed sheds some, but not heavily.

Regularly clean his ears and trim his nails to prevent infections or discomfort.

Ideal Home Environment

The Redbone is a popular choice for families and hunters alike. Their sweet and gentle personality at home makes them a great choice for children and they can do well with other dogs. As long as they receive plenty of exercise and love they will do well.

They can make a good watchdog and are always eager to howl in alert of an approaching stranger, but they are just too darn relaxed to make good guard dogs.

Health Concerns

While usually healthy, the Redbone Coonhound can suffer from health problems. Working with a reputable breeder who tests his or her stock will help ensure you have the healthiest puppy possible. Ear and tooth infections are common so be sure to keep their ears clean and regularly brush their teeth.

Behavior Problems

These dogs take their job of chasing seriously, and will be quick to follow their nose after prey. Be sure to keep them fenced in or on leash to prevent them from wandering off.

Like many hounds, the Redbone Coonhound loves to howl and bark. While this is natural, you can start training your dog early to try and keep their barking to a minimum.