The Redbone Coonhound is an American breed of hunting dog. It may be used to hunt raccoon, deer, bear, boar, cougar, or other large game. It originated in the Southern United States, and derives from foxhounds brought by immigrants from Scotland. It is characterized by its deep red coat.
|Origin||Southern United States|
|Dog (domestic dog)|
In the early 19th century, Scottish immigrants brought red-colored foxhounds to Georgia, which would later become the foundation stock of today's modern-day Redbone. Around 1840, Irish-bred Foxhound and Bloodhound lines were added. The Redbone name comes from an early breeder, Peter Redbone of Tennessee, though the United Kennel Club credits Redbone's contemporary, George F.L. Birdsong of Georgia, and Dr. Thomas Henry in the 19th century.
Over time, breeders followed a selective program that led to a coonhound that was adept at treeing wild-game, was courageous against larger animals such as bear and mountain lions, agile enough to track in the mountains or in the marsh, and could swim if necessary (one of the few hounds with webbed feet). They are ideal for pack hunting of both small and larger prey. Originally, the Redbone had a black saddleback, but by the beginning of the 20th century, it was replaced by an uninterrupted red tone.
The Redbone Coonhound has a lean, muscular, well proportioned build. The body type is typical to the coonhounds subgroup, with long straight legs, a deep chest, and a head and tail that are held high and proud when hunting or showing. The Redbone Coonhound has brown eyes and a face that is often described as having a pleading expression. The dog's eyes may be dark brown to hazel, but a darker color is preferred. The coat is short and smooth against the body, but coarse enough to provide protection to the skin while hunting through dense underbrush. Their large paws have especially thick pads, with webbed toes, and dewclaws are common. The nose is often black and prominent, with black on the muzzle and around the eyes, called "masking", not uncommon. The ears are floppy and will most likely extend to nearly the end of the nose if stretched out. The coat color is always a rich red, though a small amount of white on the chest, between the legs, or on the feet is sometimes seen. The white chest and feet markings that occasionally appear on Redbone Coonhound puppies today is most likely a throwback to the mixing of Bloodhound and Foxhound bloodlines. 
Males tend to be 22-27 inches (56-68.5 cm) at the shoulder, with females slightly shorter at 21-26 inches (53–66 cm). Weight should be proportional to the size and bone structure of the individual dogs, with a preference towards leaner working dogs rather than heavier dogs. Generally, weights will range from 45 to 70 lb. (20.5 to 31.75 kg).
It is affectionate, gentle, and likes to please its owner.
Notable Redbone CoonhoundsEdit
- Where the Red Fern Grows is a story about two Redbone Coonhounds ("Old Dan" and "Little Ann") and their owner Billy Colman. The book was written by Wilson Rawls in 1961, then turned into a movie in 1974.
- The Hound That Thought He Was a Raccoon is a story about a young coonhound puppy raised by a family of raccoons. The film was made by Walt Disney Productions in 1960.
- The Outlaw Josey Wales picks up a Redbone Coonhound, who accompanies him on his path.
- Arthur Ownby, one of the main characters in Cormac McCarthy's first-ever published novel, The Orchard Keeper, owns a three-legged Redbone Coonhound named Scout. The dog accompanies him as he attempts to escape the authorities after a shootout at his cabin, and is later shot after Arthur is sent to live out the rest of his days in a mental hospital.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Redbone Coonhound.|
- Club, The American Kennel (11 November 2014). "The New Complete Dog Book: Official Breed Standards and All-New Profiles for 200 Breeds". i5 Publishing.
- Club, American Kennel (18 December 2007). "The Complete Dog Book: 20th Edition". Random House Publishing Group.
- "United Kennel Club Standard for the Redbone Coonhound". United Kennel Club. Retrieved 20 August 2016.
- "Redbone Coonhound Dog Breed Informationl". American Kennel Club. Retrieved 17 April 2017.
- "Coonhound Breeds". www.coondawgs.com. Retrieved 18 April 2017.
- Suddath, Claire (18 June 2010). "Where the Red Fern Grows". Time.