Estonian Hound | Dog Breed Information & Facts – Pictures

Estonian Hound

The breed of dogs in question is from the Baltic States. The Estonian Hound is a hunting gun dog. It is valued for its perfect flair, endurance and poise.

The owner of the hound must be an active person, as he has to provide his pet with a sufficiently high level of physical activity.

With the right upbringing, an Estonian Hound becomes not only an indispensable assistant during the hunt, but also a loyal companion, a cheerful playmate.


Estonian Hound photos

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Physical characteristics

The Estonian Hound is a small to medium sized, muscular hound of lean build with strong, strong bones. His physique is proportional, the length of the body greatly exceeds the height at the withers. Unlike the stocky Beagle, with which the Estonian Hound is often confused, the latter displays elegant and graceful features.

The weight of adult Estonian Hounds is 15-20 kg, the height is about 42-50 cm.


Distinctive features

  • Head: Rounded, medium width. The muzzle is elongated. The nose is wide, fleshy, the shade depends on the color of the animal.
  • Jaws: Strong, scissor bite, no space when closing. The teeth are large. Cheekbones without bulge.
  • Ears: Elongated, pendulous, fine, set low, rounded at the ends.
  • Eyes: Dark brown, almond-shaped, black-rimmed lids
  • Muscled body. The neck is dry, without wrinkles. The back is straight, with a slope.
  • The chest is wide, elongated, ending at the elbows. Sloping croup. The tail is saber-shaped, tapering at the end.
  • Legs: Powerful, straight. Legs and thighs of the same length. Strong joints. The fingers are tightly pressed to each other, the pads are dense.
  • Coat: Hard, smooth, shiny. Thicker on the tail. Almost no undercoat.
  • Color: black – piebald, white – red, tricolor.

Character and behavior

When hunting in the wild, the Estonian hound itself becomes wild, passionate, aggressive. But all this anger is shown only in relation to the prey.

Once at home, the Estonian hound turns into a kind, affectionate, playful creature. In the circle of her family, he does not have a drop of anger and aggression.

The hound is infinitely loyal to its master. With the right upbringing, he unquestioningly listens to him, clearly following all the commands.

He behaves cautiously with strangers, but does not show much anger for no reason. If he sees danger, he will be able to stand up for himself and for the family, but as a guard dog, you should not rely on a hound.

With the children

Tolerant to children. He plays with them with pleasure, but will not allow himself to be offended. So the parents should immediately teach the child to respectfully treat the Estonian hound with care.

With other animals

He gets along well with pets, provided that they lived in the house before the arrival of the Estonian Hound there, and provided there was no dominance on their part. The hound perceives new pets as “invaders”, and as a result, conflicts arise.

Estonian dogs easily converge with other dogs. He is ready to run for hours with them, frolic. He doesn’t like cats. Small pets, rodents can be mistaken for prey, so keeping these animals together with the hound is not recommended.


Being naturally healthy, the Estonian hound, like all living things, sometimes gets sick. Most often, representatives of the breed suffer from the following diseases:

  • Arthritis is an inflammation of the joints characterized by redness, fever, and pain.
  • Dislocations – characterized by an abnormal location of the damaged organ in relation to the physiological norm.
  • Ligament tears – more often occur from too much physical exertion.
  • Otodectosis is a disease caused by the parasitization of microscopic mites Otodectes cynotis in the ear canal and on the inner surface of the auricles.
  • Otitis media is an inflammation of the outer, middle and inner ear.
  • Cataract – pathological changes in the eye, the disease leads to visual impairment.
  • Retinal atrophy is a hereditary disease characterized by the presence of multiple retinal disorders.

Life expectancy

The average lifespan of an Estonian Hound is 11 to 13 years.


Caring for an Estonian hound does not take much time and effort. The owner of such a dog should only do the following on time:

  • Brushing once a week. For this procedure, you need to buy a brush for dogs with a hard coat.
  • During molting, comb out once a day.
  • Bathe your dog 3-4 times a year or in cases of heavy pollution, for example, after hunting.
  • Examine and wipe eyes every day.
  • Ears should be cleaned twice a week, and examined for signs of inflammation or excessive accumulation of ear discharge. The inspection after hiking in nature is especially important.
  • Cut off the claws as they grow, using a special claw cutter.


Regardless of the breeding method (house or apartment), it is necessary to walk the dog in the morning and evening. In general, daytime walks should last at least 2-2.5 hours.

At the same time, it is important to organize regular outings in nature, in the forest. A hunting dog, whether or not he participates in hunting, must be outside the boundaries of settlements. When walking in crowded places, next to highways, you cannot leave the dog without a leash. He may rush after a stray cat, for example, or he may decide to catch up with a cyclist.

Fun facts

  • Purebred Estonian hounds in puppyhood have a dark nose or small pink specks. If the nose is light or the specks are too large, it is not recommended to buy a puppy.
  • During the hunt, the sound of the horn replaces the command “Come to me”.
  • Among all types of hunting dogs, the Estonian hound is rightfully considered one of the smartest.
  • With proper training, the Estonian hound is already at the age of six months able to participate with the owner in the hunt.

History of the breed

The homeland of the Estonian hound is Estonia. The specified hunting breed arose when the Baltic States were part of the USSR. Formation, development took place in the first half of the twentieth century.

The “parent” of the breed is quite rightly considered S.А. Smelkov. This dog handler has been working on the improvement of the Estonian hound for more than two decades. It was necessary to create a dog that met the following requirements: compact, height no higher than 45 cm, loud-voiced, hardy.

Such requirements were explained by the fact that in Estonia a decree was issued prohibiting the use of large, tall hounds during hunting. That is why lovers of hunting with dogs urgently needed hounds that meet the above requirements.

For breeding work on breeding the Estonian hound, the selection of sires was carried out among different types of hounds: Anglo-Russian, Russian, Finnish, Swiss, etc. The main selection criterion is medium-sized dimensions.

Selected hounds were crossed with the following small breeds: Foxhound, Beagle.


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