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9 Basset Hound Pros & Cons: What You Should Know

Written by: Kristin Hitchcock

Last Updated on April 10, 2024 by Dogster Team

shy basset hound poking head out of its dog door

9 Basset Hound Pros & Cons: What You Should Know

Basset Hounds are adorably popular dogs with big, floppy ears and puppy-dog eyes. They’re low-energy canines that work well in more laid-back families. Despite being hunting dogs, they work surprisingly well in apartments and smaller homes.

However, not everything about Basset Hounds is perfect. While these dogs work well for many homes, they don’t work well for every family.

Below, we’ll take a look at some of the pros and cons of Basset Hounds.


The 5 Pros of Basset Hounds

1. Affectionate and Friendly

Basset Hounds are best known for their affectionate and friendly nature. They’re friends with just about everyone, even strangers, especially when socialized. They aren’t aggressive or territorial.

Basset Hounds are super people-oriented, and they are affectionate and loving. They enjoy cuddling and playing with their owners. Therefore, they often work well in families with children, as they’re hardy little dogs with big hearts.

Image By: siberian spring, Shutterstock

2. Good with Children

Surprisingly, there are very few small dogs that work well with children. Many smaller dogs are prone to anxiety and are easily stressed by the noise and activity level of children. Therefore, smaller dogs are much more likely to bite children, as they’re often scared of them.

However, Basset Hounds are the exception. They’re very laid-back and sturdier than other small dogs. Therefore, they work well with children when other small dogs do not. Of course, socialization is important, too.

It’s important to introduce any Basset Hound to children at a young age. Otherwise, they may be fearful, which leads to aggression.

3. Calm

Basset Hounds are much calmer than other dogs. They spend much of their time lying around and cuddling. They do need some exercise. However, they’re much less excitable than other dogs out there.

For those that aren’t interested in the usual yappy small dog, Basset Hounds are a great option. If your family is laid back in general, then Basset Hounds may fit in well.

basset hound sitting in grass
Image By: Sebastian Molina Bullrich, Pixabay

4. Scent-Tracking Abilities

Basset Hounds have an amazing sense of smell. If you’re looking for a tracking dog, it’s important to do your research. However, Basset Hounds are often a great choice for hunting and tracking nearly anything. They were originally bred to hunt small game. However, they are able to track other things if trained—sometimes even people.

These dogs are still driven by their nose. Even as pets, they will attempt to track things, which is one reason they cannot be let loose off-leash. They will track a rabbit through the woods until they are far from home.

5. Unique Appearance

Let’s admit it—Basset Hounds are cute. While their cuteness isn’t necessarily practical, it does make them lovable companions. If you’re just looking for a cute dog, the Basset Hound fits well.

Many people find these canines absolutely adorable, and that’s a pro if we’ve ever heard one.

Image By: Mary Swift, Shutterstock

The 4 Cons of Basset Hounds

6. Stubbornness

Basset Hounds were made to track. They do this automatically and they don’t need to be trained for it. Therefore, obedience wasn’t something that early breeders really cared about. They were more concerned with their innate tracking abilities.

For this reason, Basset Hounds aren’t particularly trainable and often seem stubborn. They’re much more likely to listen to their instincts instead of you.

Luckily, these dogs are rather laidback and don’t need tons of training, anyway. Whatever training you do set out to do, plan to be particularly patient.

7. Health Problems

Basset Hounds have a unique body. They have very short legs and super long ears. For this reason, they are particularly prone to several health problems. They’re prone to ear infections, for instance, as dirt often gets stuck in their ears. They may also develop back problems due to their short legs.

Getting your puppy from a quality breeder can help reduce some of these problems, like hip dysplasia. However, all Basset Hounds will stay prone to problems like ear infections.

There are a few things you can do to prevent health problems, too. For instance, diet can prevent obesity and joint problems.

Doctor examining Basset Hound dog at veterinary clinic
Image By: sirtravelalot, Shutterstock

8. Drooling

Basset Hounds aren’t particularly prone to drooling compared to other slobbering dogs. However, they can droll from time to time. You likely won’t need to carry around a towel or anything of that sort (like you might with a Saint Bernard). But, for those that absolutely can’t handle drool, Basset Hounds may not be a solid option.

If you don’t mind some drool, then a Basset Hound may still be a good option. You may have to do a bit more maintenance and cleanup, though.

9. High Shedding

Basset Hounds do shed, and sometimes they’re considered “high shedding.” They have short, sleek coats that shed year-round, leaving a fine layer of fur all over your furniture. They aren’t going to shed as much as a German Shepherd or similar breed, though.

Most dog lovers won’t mind their level of shedding, especially since their hair is rather short. However, those who cannot deal with any shedding likely won’t find a Basset Hound a good option.

Female Basset Hound
Image By: Ewa Studio, Shutterstock



Basset Hounds can be a great option for laidback families that are looking for a smaller dog. These canines are calm and not nearly as hyperactive as other small dogs, but they still work well in small apartments and similar areas.

However, these dogs do shed considerably, and they can drool. Therefore, not every dog owner will find a perfect breed in a Basset Hound. Be sure to look at the potential negatives of this breed as well as the positives before adopting one.

See Also:

Featured Image Credit: Dmussman, Shutterstock

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