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Harriers are a smaller version of the English
Foxhound. They're muscular, sturdy and most
commonly have a tri-color coat which is short
and firm. These hunting hounds are pack dogs
with a reputation for being swift, having
great stamina and an incredibly keen nose.
The origin of the Harrier breed is disputed,
but in England where these dogs were widely
used and popular, there are detailed records
of the first pack dating back to 1260. Harriers
were bred to primarily hunt hare and they
were also used at times for fox hunting.
It is believed Harriers were brought to America
during Colonial times. The American Kennel
Club recognized the Harrier in the Sporting
Group in 1885. These dogs are considered a
rare breed in the United States.
The height for a Harrier is between 19-21
inches (48-50 cm)
Weight: The weight of a Harrier
is between 40-60 pounds (18-27 kg)
Coat Type: The Harrier's coat
is short, dense, glossy, firm and weatherproof.
The coat requires very little grooming - an
occasional brushing or combing is sufficient
to rid of dead hairs.
Color: Harriers can be of
any colors - this is not regarded as important
in this breed. There are, however, two main
groups of colors: tri colors which is black,
tan and white and red and white. There are
many variations of these colors and patterns.
Temperament: Harriers are
friendly, cheerful, affectionate and very
intelligent. These dogs make an excellent
family pet and are very good with children.
This breed needs to be part of the family
and should not be left alone or outside for
long periods of time. Harriers are pack dogs
and get along very well with other dogs, however,
they need to be supervised with non-canine
animals. These dogs have a very strong hunting
instinct, therefore need to be in a securely
fenced yard or on a lease when out as they
will eagerly follow a scent. Harriers are
easily trained, but sometimes can be stubborn.
Owners must realize time and devotion are
involved when it comes to training. Harriers
love to eat, so food portions must be controlled.
Some Harriers like to dig, and some are very
talkative. These dogs need regular, daily
exercise such as a long walk or run. They
should also be given 'free play' in a large,
Health Problems: Harriers
are generally a very healthy breed and have
very few genetic issues. The most common health
issue is hip dysplasia. Other less common
health issues include allergies and cancer.
The average life span is between 10 - 12 years.
The Harrier is a smaller version of the English
• Harriers have a long
history as a popular, working pack dog in
• Harriers are still rare
in the United States.
AKC: Hound Group
ANKC: Group 4 - Hounds
CKC: Group 2 - Hounds
FCI: Group 6 Section 1 Scenthounds