Foxhounds are said to have originated from a cross of the Bloodhound and the Greyhound. The English breed is very old, records showing that it has been systematically bred in Great Britain for a period of 400 years.
In America, Foxhound breeding dates back to the mid 1700’s, with two distinct types of hounds produced, the English and the American. The English type is the largest of the two dogs, and individual animals of this class are generally more uniform in color, markings, size, and conformation than the American hound. This fixing of type is said to have destroyed much of the speed, endurance, and trailing ability of the English dog. The American type however, has been developed strictly for utility and though it lacks much of the size and uniformity shown in the English hound, it’s faster in the chase, a keener and harder tracker, and possesses greater endurance and more ” fox sense.”
Any color is acceptable with the American standard but combinations of tan, black, and white are most common. The English preference is for one of the following color combinations: Brown and black with white markings, black and white with tan markings on the head and stifles (knees), badger pied (grey and white); lemon pied (light yellow and white), or hare pied (darker yellow and white).
The American standard calls for dogs between 22″ and 25″ in height and females 21″ to 24″ tall. The English hound varies from 22″ to 24″, with dogs between 23 1/2″ and 24″ and females 22″ and 22 1/2″. There’s really no set weight standard for either type, but English dogs scale about 60 lbs to 80 lbs and the American class 50 lbs to 60 lbs.
Foxhounds, as their name implies, are kept chiefly for their sporting abilities and therefore find their greatest uses in chasing the prey. In general appearance such dogs should present indications of speed, endurance, and tracking ability and should show their hound characteristics in every aspect and movement.