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Is the Harrier right for you?

Species group:

Other name(s): Beagle Harrier

The basics:
A rare breed in America, the Harrier is popular in its native England where it is recognized as a fine hunter. Developed from the 13th century to hunt hares in packs, the Harrier displayed such enthusiasm and stamina that it was ultimately bred to pursue fox as well. Indeed, the AKC describes it as "a smaller version of the English Foxhound." Like other pack-hunting hounds, its cooperative nature and high intelligence can make this dog a fine family pet-- even if you never intend to go hunting.

Appearance / health:
The muzzle is square, of good length, with a well-developed nose and open nostrils. The eyes are of medium size and set well apart, and range from light hazel to dark brown. The ears are set on low and lie close to the cheeks. The nose is wide with well-opened nostrils. The neck is long and strong with not trace of throatiness. The chest is deep. The feet are round and catlike. The long tail is set on high and does not curl over the back.

They are average shedders. Weekly brushing and trimming of nails is sufficient.

Harriers love athletic activities such as hiking, biking, and jogging. They require moderate to high amounts of daily exercise. Long walks and jogs keep them active and healthy.

The most common health issue in Harriers is hip dysplasia, which refers to the abnormal formation of the hip joint. This inherited disorder can cause lameness. Eye and thyroid problems are relatively rarer in these dogs.

Behavior / temperament:
Kenneling and chaining this breed for long periods will lead to a bored dog that may indulge in destructive behavior, as they find ways to entertain themselves. Harriers love to dig. They require constant human company. They have good problem-solving abilities. An interesting scent is bound to attract the typical Harrier who may ignore all calls from the owner to come back. Hence, fencing of the yard is extremely important. Harriers express themselves through a variety of grunts, sighs, and moans. They are alert dogs that bark at the sight of anything unusual. Harriers have a pack mentality, treating their family as the "pack" and the owner as the "alpha". With a weak owner, they are likely to take charge and become more dominant.

Early obedience training is necessary for this independent-minded dog. Harriers are very intelligent and can be trained quite easily. Without adequate training and socialization, they are bound to become unruly and difficult to handle.

Most Harriers have a singing bark that they use when they are excited. Howling is also common in these dogs. Well-trained dogs are not noisy.

From shelters/rescues

Buster 5038



Rogers, AR





Boaz, AL


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