Basset hounds are one of the most popular dog breeds out there. They look so adorable and make the perfect portrait pet. Most Americans will recognize this breed from the 1980s hit TV series The Dukes of Hazzard, which featured Flash, the most famous Basset Hound ever. Another fun fact about basset hounds is that Elvis Presley sang a song to a basset hound on TV in 1956. Needless to say, basset hounds are widely loved by people. If you also want to adopt this breed but have questions regarding the personality, care requirements, and basset hound lifespan, then this detailed guide is for you.

Lifespan of Basset Hound

What Are Basset Hounds? A Brief Ancestry

Basset hounds, as the name suggests, are part of the hound family. Allegedly, their ancestry is traced all the way back to the 6th century in France, where they were bred as hunting dogs. Although their characteristic feature is their short legs, they still make for excellent hunting dogs due to their super strong sense of smell. Their olfactory sense is only 2nd to Bloodhounds. The first official illustration of a basset hound doesn’t appear until 1585. It is described in a hunting text by Jacques du Fouilloux that basset hounds are excellent for hunting foxes and hares.

Physical Traits of a Basset Hound

According to the American Kennel Club, the average size for a basset hound is up to 15 inches for males and between 11 – 14 inches for females. In addition, full-grown basset hounds weigh about 40-60 lbs, both male and female. As said earlier, they are recognized by their short stature and short legs, caused by a genetic condition called Dwarfism. Other than that, their coat is short and smooth. Plus, they come in a variety of colors. Most bassets have bicolored or tricolored coats.

Basset Hound Lifespan

The average lifespan of a basset hound is around 12 to 13 years. It is considered the median life expectancy for purebred dogs.

What’s their personality like? Basset Hound with Babies

Basset hounds are one of the best family guard dog breeds out there. They are super affectionate with family and gentle with children, even babies. Furthermore, bassets are also good with other pets. So, if you have a cat and want to keep a dog also, this breed might be the best option. They are also very social and enjoy playing. Especially, Basset hound puppies are very hyper. They are full of energy and run around the house nonstop and demand that you play with them. Generally, they calm down after one to three years of age.

What are common health conditions they Suffer from?

Generally, basset hounds have droopy skin. They have long large ears and droopy eyes which are susceptible to infections. Dog owners need to be extremely careful and thorough while cleaning their basset hounds to prevent dirt collection in skin folds and prevent infections and bacteria growth. They are also prone to weight gain and other conditions associated with it such as arthritis, bone, and joint injuries, etc. Moreover, the risk of epilepsy and hip dysplasia is also high in this breed. That’s why only people who can afford these treatments should get a basset hound.

How to Take Care of Basset Hounds – Diet and Exercise

It is crucial for the health and well-being of your dog that you take care of their diet and physical needs. As described earlier, bassets require plenty of exercises. On average, your dog should at least be getting 40 to 60 minutes of outdoor activity such as walks and plays in the parks. As far as diet is concerned, experts recommend about 80% of raw bones and meat, with 20% of fresh fruits and vegetables. And yes, dogs can eat raw chicken bones without any problem. Feeding them a raw diet is better for your pet’s health than processed food.

Basset Hound Diet

How much do Basset hounds Shed?

Since they have a very short and smooth coat, basset hounds are known to shed very little. This is good news for people who are usually busy and cannot groom their dogs daily. However, it’s a good idea to groom your basset hound once a week.


Bassets are pretty easy to train as well, though maybe not as much as some other breeds out there like a Cavapoo dog. Nevertheless, they are not difficult to work with. They are neither too self-willed nor too eager to please. So, it mostly depends on the trainer and how good they are. New dog owners should know appropriate dog terminology and commands to control their pets better. Otherwise, they might suffer from a case of puppy blues.

Basset Hound vs. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel– which is a better family dog?

Cavalier King Charles spaniel is another dog breed that is ideal for families and apartment life. Often, it is compared with the basset hound. In terms of physical traits, they are somewhat similar, with the life expectancy of Cavalier King Charles being more at up to 15 years. Both are sociable and adapt well to strangers. However, the basset hound is slightly more challenging for novice owners than the cavalier King Charles spaniel. Moreover, both are affectionate with kids. King Charles spaniel requires more grooming than basset hounds and is easier to train.

Basset Hound vs. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

Other things to consider – Drooling and Barking

Prospective buyers should know that basset hounds tend to drool a lot. Since they have droopy skin around the mouth, they might drool excessively so you might need to wipe them away frequently. Another thing to consider is their barking level. They have a pretty loud voice and tend to bark a lot.

Final Words

There is no doubt that having a pet is beneficial for people, especially families. Kids who grow up around pets are more compassionate and considerate than others. But there are a lot of things you should consider before getting a dog. Namely, the temperament and care requirements of a dog breed like basset hounds. Moreover, knowing the basset hound’s lifespan is also a plus because then, this dog can stay with your family for a long time.