The Russian hound is a domestic breed of dogs of a black, purple or gray-tan color. Has increased stamina and a strong musical voice. It is most often involved in hunting small wild animals.
- Brief information
- Breed characteristics
- History of the Russian Hound breed
- Appearance of the Russian hound
- The character of the Russian hound
- Education, training, scolding
- Hunting with a Russian hound
- Maintenance and care
- Health and diseases of Russian hounds
- How to choose a puppy
- The price of the Russian hound
- Breed name: Russian Hound
- Country of Origin: Russia
- Weight: 25-35 kg
- Height (height at the withers): males 58-68 cm, females 55-65 cm
- Life expectancy: 12-16 years old
- Despite the fact that in Russia it is the most popular breed of hounds, its representatives have not been recognized by the FCI.
- Increased activity, unwillingness to put up with the lack of free space and the need to share territory with other animals turn Russian hounds into pets that are not the most suitable for urban conditions.
- The Russian hound is easily trained, but has pronounced leadership qualities, which can only be controlled by an experienced, experienced hunting owner.
- The ideal prey for a dog is a fox and a hare. Representatives of this breed are very persistent in the search, so they do not lose interest even in the most confusing trail.
- Unlike their relatives – russian piebald hounds , RGS are easier to lift and faster-footed.
- Outside of hunting, the Russian hound is a calm and reasonable creature. However, provided that the dog is systematically and intensively walked, and this is at least 2.5-3 hours a day.
- The voice for Russian hounds is the most important working tool. By changing its timbre and pitch, the animal conveys to the owner information about what kind of prey has been detected.
The Russian hound is a devoted friend and the "right hand" of any gambling hunter. Energetic, vociferous and fantastically sensitive, this hardworking breadwinner will try to do everything so that your forays into the forest bring not just moral satisfaction, but also quite real trophies. The only thing is that we will have to take for granted the highly specialized nature of the breed and not strain its representatives with boring everyday tasks like housing protection or looking after other animals. Russian hounds will definitely not condescend to such an ordinary and risk-free job.
History of the Russian Hound breed
Exactly when and how the hounds got to Russia is not clear, although researchers tend to believe that the breed was brought with them by the Tatar-Mongols. There is also a second version put forward by A.V. Kamernitsky, according to which the Russian hound is the result of mating imported cops with aboriginal huskies. One way or another, domestic breeders began to fully hunt with the ancestors of today's dogs in the XII century, and in the middle of the XIX century, dogs were already being demonstrated at exhibitions, where they appeared under the name "eastern hound".
By the beginning of the XX century, the phenotype of the breed was almost formed, but the civil war intervened in the course of breeding research, after which work on restoring the number of animals and improving their hunting characteristics had to be started anew. In addition, the case was greatly hampered by the excessive diversity of domestic livestock: in tsarist Russia there were a huge number of lines of hounds, partially preserved after the revolution. Nevertheless, in 1925, at the All-Union Congress of Dog Handlers, a separate standard was adopted for the breed, which distinguished its representatives from among the relatives of the group. Russian Russian and Anglo-Russian (later renamed to Russian Piebald) were officially banned from breeding any type of hounds, but the year 1939 was truly fateful for dogs. ).
As for checking the working qualities of the breed, the first tests to identify the hunting capabilities of Russian hounds were compiled in 1901. However, only the dog's ability to work in a pack could be checked in this way. It became possible to select hounds according to individual indicators only after 1925, when a special set of tasks was developed that allowed evaluating the initiative and hunting talents of each individual.
Video: Russian Hound
Appearance of the Russian hound
The Russian hound is a dog of impressive size and strong constitution with somewhat bestial habits. It is impossible not to note the external similarity of the representatives of this breed with wolves, especially clearly traced during hunting. For example, it is typical for a working hound to chase prey while keeping its head down, which resembles the tactics of a forest predator. They are related to the wolves of the RG and the features of the physique – in particular, the conspicuous highness.
The distinctive features of the head of the Russian hound are the general dryness of the contours and the wedge–shaped outline. The dog's skull is flattened, the eyebrows and the transition to the back of the head are faintly outlined.
Lobe of black color, large, clearly protruding forward. The transition from the back of the nose to the muzzle is smooth.
Teeth and bite
Only the scissor bite type is allowed. The teeth should be massive, white and in full quantity.
The Russian hound has dark brown eyes with expressive black edging of the eyelids and an elegant oblique slit.
The reference representative of the breed has a thin hanging ear cloth planted above the eye line. The ear itself should be triangular in shape and fit snugly to the head.
The length of the neck of the Russian hound is equal to the length of its head. In general, this part of the dog's body looks dry and muscular at the same time.
Representatives of this breed are real sturdy men with harmoniously developed bones and dense dry muscles. The chest of the Russian hound is wide, strongly lowered downwards. The back is massive with a short, slightly convex, but strong enough loin. The croup is elongated and sloping, the belly line is well chosen.
The legs of the Russian hound are characterized by muscularity and moderate bony. In a healthy purebred individual, the front and hind limbs are placed parallel to each other and have good articulation angles. The elbows of the animal look back, the pasterns and metatarsals are placed almost vertically. The angles of the shoulder joints (100-110°) and hock joints are also well expressed.
The shape of the paws of the Russian hound is oval. The fingers are arched, gathered into a large ball.
The correct rut (tail) should be thickened at the base, and its thin tip reaches the hock joint or is located a centimeter or two higher (the latter feature is characteristic of males). In an excited animal, the tail can rise to the back line, but not higher.
The coat on the dog's body is double, but heterogeneous. For example, on the ears, head and legs of an animal, the hair is short and less dense. Around the neck and on the hips, the dogskin is noticeably richer and more magnificent. The base and middle of the tail of the Russian hound are covered with medium–length hair, the tip is short.
A typical Russian hound is a dog of a black, purple or grayish color with a tan. The traditional color of the tan is pale yellow or whitish. Sometimes there may be small white marks on the neck and legs, which is allowed by the standard.
Defects and disqualifying vices
In order not to be admitted to exhibition competitions, it is enough for a Russian hound to have a mouse-colored or coffee-colored coat, suffer from heterochromia or have a depigmented iris. The absence of a canine or molar M1, M2, as well as any deviations from the scissor bite, also lead to disqualification.
Serious malformations that do not exclude an animal from the ranks of the contestants, but reduce its chances of a good score to zero, include:
- short-legged or long-legged;
- stretched or shortened body;
- dry or damp constitution;
- color with bright red tan, speckles, as well as large white or dark spots on the ears, forehead and under the eyes;
- shaggy, wavy hair without undercoat;
- overgrown muzzle;
- pronounced snub nose;
- ears that are too big, shaggy, on cartilage or rolled up into a tube;
- long neck with chin;
- absence of incisor or four or more premolars.
Quite common and serious disadvantages are considered: narrow, underdeveloped chest, turned-out hocks, small angles of articulation, as well as a tail that is too short or too short or with a suspension.
The character of the Russian hound
The Russian hound is a hardworking dog with a fairly calm and at the same time strong character. These gambling trackers clearly distinguish between hunting and everyday life, and therefore demonstrate two diametrically opposite lines of behavior. For example, in a home environment, a Russian hound transforms into a calm, balanced pet, which cannot be penetrated even by the most harmful childish pranks. As a result: the animal can be safely left to look after the little ones, if it is necessary to leave urgently to turn down the fire on the stove.
The relations of Russian hounds are not glued only with cats, decorative dogs and other small animals. Like any hunting breed, it is common for the RG to see prey in every four-legged creature. Hence - the race for homeless purrs during walks, as well as constant conflicts with Pekingese, toy terriers and other midgets of the dog world.
By and large, Russian hounds are unsuitable for watchdog activity, although they are able to give a harmless "Woof!" to the insolent attacker. However, if we recall the dimensions of the breed, such a sluggish attack can also be effective. And yet, to acquire a Russian hound in order to get a devoted watchman is pointless. The only activity to which the dog is given entirely and without a trace is hunting. All other duties that any mongrel barbos is capable of performing are stubbornly ignored by the hound.
Education, training, scolding
Russian hounds have high intellectual indicators: they are quick-witted, understanding and do not need numerous repetitions of the same command. Moreover, the performance of the breed and its spiritual unity with the owner during the hunt managed to become a legend. On the other hand, inside each dog, a cunning dominant sleeps sensitively, ready at any moment to change the requirements of his own educator. The breed's innate workaholism also slows down learning somewhat – in order to feel in good shape, the Russian hound needs to give everything physically. Before you start training, take your pet outside and let him practice detective work and catch up. There is no point in engaging with a Russian hound that sleeps and sees when it is taken out for a walk. The dog will persistently shirk from work until he begs for a workout in the fresh air.
Prepare the Russian hound for hunting begins in 3-4 months. At this age, the puppy is instilled with correct manners and accustomed to the sound of a hunting horn. It is advisable to lock the baby before each meal and blow the bugle. Gradually, the Russian hound will catch the connection between the sound of the horn and the bowl of food, which will help her to respond to the signal at lightning speed on the hunt. It is equally important to restrain the natural instincts of the dog, training her endurance and politeness. In particular, you should not allow the puppy to immediately rush to the bowl with food: a well-mannered baby should start eating only with the permission of the owner. Of course, it is fundamentally wrong to drive an animal away from treats by caressing it with an oar, as it was done in the old days, but it is still necessary to slow down the impatience of a scamp. Otherwise, when the puppy starts to hunt fully, you will have to be content with salted hares and leaky fox skins.
As for the overtaking of the breed, standard methods for the entire hound group are used here. By the way, you can take the puppy to the forest no earlier than he turns 10 months old. Up to this age, Russian hounds can do little. It is more reasonable to conduct the first hunting lessons on the blacktrope, early in the morning, while the animal trail has not cooled down and still has a strong smell. If you plan to work with a pack of hounds in the future, the puppy must be trained in advance to work in a bow (in a paired collar). It will be easier to do this if an adult experienced hound already lives at home. In this case, just take the dogs for walks on the same leash. An adult animal will take over the control function and will correct the behavior of a younger and gambling relative.
Important: before comprehending the subtleties of scolding, the pet must learn to perfectly execute commands such as "You can't!", "Drop it!" and "Stand!". The dog has the right to break off in pursuit of the beast only at the signal of the owner. A Russian hound that does not obey the requirements and independently decides when and whom to pursue, will not become a good hunter and will most likely get lost in the forest in one of the first outings.
Be sure to consider the breed's innate craving for animal husbandry. Ideally, a dog should not consider domestic animals as a substitute for forest prey, but such indifference to poultry and cattle is always the result of upbringing. To teach the Russian hound to react calmly to domestic animals is possible only in one way: by settling it in a peasant farmstead, in close proximity to a stable and a chicken coop. However, the method does not always work, especially if the pet has already tasted a homemade goose or duck before.
Hunting with a Russian hound
The task of a dog on a hunt is to smell an animal, scare it away and drive it closer to the owner so that he can make a well–aimed shot. In addition, the Russian hound must "inform" the hunter by voice about what kind of prey it has found and how the rut process is going. To do this, the breed skillfully changes the tone and intensity of barking, which its representatives have a special purity and musicality.
The obligatory working qualities of the Russian hound are callousness (instant reaction to the call of the owner), climbing (ability to work in shrubby thickets and forest thickets) and restlessness (endurance). In particular, a well-trained Russian hound can chase a hare throughout the daylight hours, only occasionally leaving for short breaks. An important feature of the breed is considered to be its viciousness to the beast. This is sitting at home, in an aviary, the Russian hound is all meekness and obedience. On the hunt, the dog transforms into a cruel and merciless hunter, who sees nothing in front of him but a "living target". Extremes, however, are also undesirable, so even during a gambling chase, the Russian hound should not lose his mind and get overexcited. Fussiness in movements, nervousness – all this suggests that the animal inherited from its ancestors not the best working qualities.
Traditionally, foxes and hares are hunted with the Russian hound, although some individuals are able to drive a larger animal like a boar or an elk. There are two equivalent types of hunting with Russian hounds: stationary and running. In the first case, the hunter stops at a place convenient for making a shot and waits for the dog to start chasing prey in his direction. In the second, both the hound and the man are constantly moving in search of the beast. By the way, with young individuals who do not have working experience, it is better to practice running hunting in order to be able to control the pet and correct the mistakes made by him.
Despite the name-calling, which the breed is famous for, many Russian hounds have problems with returning, that is, the animal is carried away by the pursuit of prey, does not respond to the horn signal and gets lost in the forest. Later, the dog can return to its original positions, guided by its own trail, so in the first hours after the pet disappears, it is not necessary to leave the hunting place. Collars with built-in GPS can also help in the search for "lost", although even such electronics do not give an absolute guarantee that the rescue operation will be successful.
Maintenance and care
Historically, Russian hounds were kept in very ascetic, if not Spartan conditions. Most of the time the animals spent in the open air, resting in log kennels only in the most extreme frosts. However, even modern breeders are of the opinion that heated rooms negatively affect the temperament and working abilities of dogs, turning indefatigable hunters into pampered and cold-afraid pets. Proceeding from this, the optimal place of residence for the Russian hound remains a booth made of tightly fitted boards, insulated and equipped with a curtain that prevents the penetration of cold air flows into the kennel. Hay or dry leaves are suitable as bedding.
The safest option is a booth installed in an aviary with a canopy. Dogs are placed in such conditions if the fences on the territory of the infield are not strong enough and high enough. Moreover, it is better to make the cage grilles out of wood or tighten the space between the supports with a strong metal mesh, since the teeth of Russian hounds are straightened out in two counts with a classic chain link. An alternative to an aviary can be a log barn-kennel, but this is not the most healthy option from the point of view of health. In dogs that constantly live in a poorly lit room (meaning a lack of sunlight), rickets develops. It is much more reasonable to cut a spacious hole in the wall of the barn and attach an aviary to it, where in good weather the dog will stay most of the day.
For pregnant, nursing bitches, as well as puppies of the Russian hound, it is necessary to build separate enclosures.
It is more expedient to cover the floor in the aviary with sawdust to make it easier to clean. At the same time, you can throw a few shovels of gravel at the entrance: walking on pebbles will help the pads of the hound's paws to roughen, which will reduce their sensitivity. The minimum dimensions of the enclosure for one dog are 3x3 meters.
It is recommended to walk the Russian hound at least three times a day. Moreover, if you take your pet to crowded places, take care of the muzzle – it is not typical for hounds to attack people, but it is better to be safe. In addition, buy long and short leashes to make it easier to control the animal on a walk.
The lush, dense fur of Russian hounds does not need careful combing, but systematic cleaning with a wet mitten and stimulating massage will not hurt the dog. It is not necessary to allocate time for these procedures every day, although the more often you go through the pet's fur with a brush, the more elegant it looks. A full-fledged washing with shampoos and conditioners in the life of the Russian hound should also be given a place. Bathe the dog in the warm season (the hound will have to dry on the street) and when its fur really looks dirty. In winter, the back and sides of the pet can simply be rubbed with snow, which "pulls out" dead hairs and dust quite well. Well, in summer it is better to swim with a hound in a river or lake. The main thing is not to forget to rinse the animal with running water afterwards.
Regularly check the cleanliness of the dog's ears by removing excess sulfur from the ear canal with a napkin – both veterinary lotions and folk remedies like boiled and cooled vegetable oil are suitable. After hunting, be sure to examine the surface of the hound's paw pads. If splinters are found – which happens quite often – they should be removed, and wounds and cracks should be treated with any antiseptic and lubricated with cream. Examination of the oral cavity and interdental spaces, in which fragments of bones and wood get stuck, is also a mandatory item in the care of the Russian hound. And of course, we vigilantly monitor the eyes, removing debris and mucous lumps from them with a cloth soaked in strong tea or chamomile decoction.
Important: workers who regularly go hunting individuals must be vaccinated against pyroplasmosis and other infections carried by ixodic ticks. The animal should be vaccinated a month or two before the onset of the hunting season. For additional safety, you can also use drops that repel blood-sucking insects, including fleas and ticks.
Russian hounds do not make a cult out of food and calmly absorb everything that appears in their bowl. Of course, no dog will refuse the offered delicacy, but it is not typical for representatives of this breed to constantly think about how to beg for another delicacy.
The basic diet of an average hound should consist of proteins, fats, carbohydrates and contain a sufficient amount of vitamins and minerals. Lean meat, fillets of oceanic fish, offal and chicken eggs (boiled or in the form of an omelet) act as the main nutritious and building material. The body of the Russian hound can get the necessary amount of fats from butter and sour cream. It is also useful to fill dog soup with melted beef fat, which, unlike pork, is easily digested.
The carbohydrate part of the hound's menu consists of porridge – buckwheat, rice, oatmeal, corn. Usually their share in the diet is calculated according to the principle: 15 g of porridge per kilogram of animal weight. From time to time, it is allowed to treat your pet with rye crackers, which can be soaked in meat broth for a change.
The Russian hound can get vitamins necessary for health and a full life from the following products:
- carrots (vitamin A);
- egg yolk (vitamin D);
- liver (vitamins K, B2, B5, B6, B9, A);
- seasonal greens (vitamins K, C);
- fruits and vegetables (vitamin C and others);
In addition to vitamins, the animal's body needs mineral supplements, which include micro- and macroelements such as iodine, sodium, potassium, calcium, phosphorus, sulfur and copper. However, ideally, the vitamin and mineral complex is selected only after the dog is examined by a veterinarian.
Health and diseases of Russian hounds
How healthy a Russian hound will be depends on its pedigree. Unfortunately, many owners of working individuals still continue to experiment with breeding and crossing, which leads to the birth of frail offspring. If we talk about the typical ailments of the breed, then they include degenerative myelopathy, hip dysplasia and malignant hyperthermia (occurs as a response of the body to anesthesia). Individuals may have such a rare disease as myositis. In addition, Russian hounds have sensitive eyes with an innate predisposition to conjunctivitis.
How to choose a puppy
- Try to find out from the seller as much information as possible about the puppy's parents: how old is the puppy (bitch), whether she has working and exhibition diplomas, whether individuals with a penchant for animal husbandry and silent people who do not give voice to hunting are noticed in the pedigree.
- Specify how many births the bitch had. Litters from the second to the fourth are considered the best option. Earlier or later offspring is the probability of getting sickly and weak puppies.
- Try to get the largest and most active baby from the litter – this is a clear leader who will become a good hunter as he grows up.
- Arrange a thorough inspection for a Russian hound puppy: a littered rut (tail), pronounced bulldogness or bridling (when the upper jaw is longer than the lower one) are weighty reasons not to make a purchase.
- If you are afraid to make a mistake and not notice the physical defect of the puppy, buy 5-6-month-old teenagers. At this age, all exterior flaws are already clearly visible. In addition, the individual characteristics of the character of the matured Russian hounds are determined better than those of two-month-old crumbs.
- If there is an opportunity to visit vyzhlovka and her offspring in the first days after childbirth, do not miss the chance to test the puppies for the acuteness of flair. To do this, place the cubs at some distance from the mother and allow them to get to her nipples on their own. The puppy who first smells the smell of milk and crawls to the bitch is considered the owner of the most subtle flair.
The price of the Russian hound
A Russian hound puppy without a pedigree costs about $30-$50. Often such babies are sold by hunters who decided to tie up their own working individuals, but for some reason did not want to deal with the registration of the necessary documents. The price tag for a puppy with a metric and certified parents is usually twice as high: $80 - $100 .
Ads for the sale of adult individuals on the Web are also enough. For example, an experienced Russian hound that has managed to participate in several hunting seasons, but does not have documents confirming its pedigree, will pull $40-$50. At the same time, a dog with a working /champion diploma and an elite pedigree will cost at least $150, or even $300.