The Hound, Working & Terrier Groups

Purebred dogs are divided for show purposes into different categories or groups. There is usually a common characteristic running through the group. This does not mean the dogs all fit into a single mode. All members of the group may have a commonality, but they also sport differences. They come in varying sizes, shapes, colors and weights. This article will continue its look at the different breed groups beginning with the Hounds.

The Hound Group

The Hound group contains members who all used to take part in the hunt. These dogs were bred to hunt game by both sight and/or scent. Some had an unusual bark, often called a bay. They frequently exhibit an uncanny obsession to follow a particular scent. These are active dogs. They need to be out there following a trail. At the end of the day, however, they can veg out with the best of us.

Hound dog members include

• Afghan Hound

• Basenji

• Basset Hound

• Beagle

• Bloodhound

• Borzoi

• Irish Wolfhound

• Daschund

• Saluki

• Whippet

The size of these canines is breed specific. The members of the group range wildly in size. In nature, however, many members are known to be very loyal, affectionate and low-maintenance. However, if you decide to purchase a hound there are several things you need to take into consideration. Hounds do bay. Your neighbors may not appreciate the sound. Furthermore, some hounds, because they stick their nose to the scent and keep on following it, may never be let off a leash.

The Working Group

The Working group dogs have a purpose in life. They were bred to guard homes and other property. They were also designed to work in other capacities. Working dogs have pulled sleds and carts. Nowadays, some are still on active duty. Others, however, have evolved into couch potato puppies.

Proud members of the Working group include

• Akita

• Alaskan Malamute

• Bernese Mountain Dog

• Boxer

• Doberman Pinscher

• Great Dane

• Neapolitan Mastiff

• Newfoundland

• Old English Sheepdog

• Portuguese Water Dog

• Rottweiler

• Samoyed

• St. Bernard

The temperament of Working group dogs varies. They may be too aggressive for families with children. Their massive size may be too overwhelming for small children. In some instances, the dog may be sweet, kind and affectionate. This is outweighed by the inability of the owner to keep the canine in hand. The massive size and strength of some members can make walking even a trained Working dog a challenge. It can certainly turn a stroll around the neighborhood with an untrained member into a walking nightmare.

The Terrier Group

Terriers were originally bred to go after vermin. They hunted underground and in dark or tight places. They trapped and killed mice, rats, badgers and other small pests. This is a feisty group full of energy. You need to be active with a capital A to keep up with this group.

Breeds that are placed in the Terrier group include

• Airedale Terrier

• American Staffordshire Terrier

• Bedlington Terrier

• Border Terrier

• Fox Terrier

• Miniature Schnauzer

• Scottish Terrier

• Welsh Terrier

• West Highland White Terrier

Terriers are energetic dogs. They are also feisty. For some reason, many do not seem to realize they are smaller than either their prey or other dogs. They are also argumentative. This can lead to confrontations. Terriers are not usually child-friendly. Many terriers are better off if they find a home with a childless on-the move person or couple.

(Article written by Helen Kelley)