The Artois Hound is one of the oldest and rare French breeds that developed mainly for hunting purposes. Descending from the blood hounds, they are energetic, medium-sized dogs with a long head, a stout jaw, overlapping lips and a dark muzzle. Their eyes are almond-shaped, while the large ears hang loosely down to their neck. They have a broad chest, robust and well-muscled legs and a long, sickle-shaped tail.
Artois Hound Pictures
|Other Names||French Artois Hound, Picard, Picardy Hound, Chiend’Artois, Briquetd’Artois, Briquet|
|Colors||White, Black, Dark Fawn, Tri-color|
|Type||Sheepdog, Herding Dog, Companion Dog|
|Group (of Breed)||Purebred|
|Weight||55 to 90 pounds|
|Height (Size)||Medium to Large|
58.42 cm approx.
(both male and female)
|Litter Size||8 to 15 puppies|
|Personality Traits||Brave, loyal, playful, independent, willful, affectionate|
|Good with Children||Yes|
|Good with Pets||No (if not trained from young age)|
|Good for New/First-time Owners||Yes|
|Country of Origin||France|
|Competitive Registration/ Qualification Information||FCI|
Video: Artois Hound Following a Scent Trail
History & Development
The Artois Hound, previously known as the Picard or Picardy hound, developed in France primarily for the purpose of hunting foxes, deer, wild boars and hares during the time of French Kings Henry IV and Louis XIII.Some experts presume that they are related to the Bloodhound (St. Hubert Hound), the Normands Hound, the Beagle, as well as the pointers.
Though there is no concrete evidence about the exact time of its origin, some researchers also believe that they have existed in the country since the 16thcentury, which is evident from several paintings and artworks depicting a breed similar to the modern-day Artois.
By the 19th century, the Artois Hound proved to be a big success in the field of hunting and became extremely famous among the hunters of the country. However, with the introduction of crossbreeding with other British hounds, the purity of their bloodline deteriorated. So much so that it took almost two decades for Ernest Levair and his cousin, M. Therouanne, to bring back the original Artois breed.
After the termination of the World War II, the population of the breed saw a significant decline, almost on the verge of being extinct forever, until the stock was reconstructed in the 1970s by one Mr.Audréchyfrom northern France.
At present, these animals continue to remain an excellent hunting dog, though, their numbers are on the decline. To this day, they exist primarily in their native region.
Temperament and Behavior
Artois Hounds are dogs with an overall sweet nature. They are affectionate, kind and loyal, giving back their love to anyone who loves them. This breed is friendly and sociable with everyone they are acquainted with. They are good with children and enjoy playing rough and tumble games with them. However, with their hunting instincts, untrained individuals might not always prove to be good for smaller pets and other dogs.
They are not fit for a confined living (as in an apartment) and needs space. This breed does not make good watchdogs, however, they would immediately alert their family members if they come across anything suspicious.
These hounds are prompt and fast, having an independent nature, along with a strong sense of smell. Thus, the slightest of provocation might land the dog to unfavorable situations, if left untrained. Being born hunters, they would often run after small animals (only to please their masters), unless it is trained to understand that such behavior is not something its master appreciates.
Being an active hunter dog with a lot of endurance, it needs sufficient activities to remain energized. Never skip walking and jogging sessions with your dog for at least 30-45 minutes, twice daily. Since they have loads of energy and an affinity for playing, ask your kids to join them for fun every evening in an open area. But make sure its leash is away, and the area is enclosed.
You need to bathe your dog only when required, else you can use a dry shampoo or wipe it clean with a towel soaked in water. Brush its coat once or twice a week with a hard-bristled comb. Trim its nails when too long, and keep an eye on its long hanging ears to avoid the development of infections.
There are no breed-specific health issues, except for general dog diseases common to all dogs.
- Do not allow your dog to take hold of you.This dog might be independent-minded and hence needs an owner who is consistent. In fact, they were hunter dogs owned by strict owners and followed their feet in the jungle. Let your dog follow your footsteps while you go out for a walk or jog, or even indoors, from one room to the other. ( Add this as an introduction to training, then it should be followed by points)
- Like all scent hounds, it is natural for them to follow the trail of a good scent and might entice them to follow the scents of small animals like cats or rabbits. Such behavior might eventually prove to be dangerous, especially if the cat or the rabbit is your neighbor’s pet! However, even if you discover the development of such behavior in your pup, do not be rude to it. Instead, take to obedience training sessions and teach it the basic commands like come back, halt, sit, or wait. While your dog is following a chipmunk in your garden, take a piece of meat in your hand and approach it. Hide the foodstuff behind you and let your dog get the scent of meat. Call it by its name asking it to come back. While it obeys your command, cuddle it and offer the treat. Keep continuing until your puppy gets used to following
- Leash training is essential to maintain effective control over your pet. Teach your Artois Hound to wear its leash happily when you want it to do so. You should begin this training at a very young age. Do not forget to give it a hug or appreciate them for being obedient, since praises from their masters mean a lot to it.
2-3 cups of dry food, divided into two meals, is enough for this energetic dog.
- The bark of this dog is so high-pitched that it is audible from as far away as 2 km.