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Ins and Outs of the Plott Hound Temperament: What Every Newbie Owner Must Know

Plott The Plott Hound temperament makes this dog a stoic, loyal and brave companion. The Plott Hound is a distinctive-looking dog with a fascinating story. Bred to hunt bears in the mountains of the Carolinas, these powerful brindle hounds are terrific hunters, athletes, and watchdogs.

Photo of Plott Hound Potrait

A Plott Hound is not the best option for a novice dog owner. Instead, a Plott Hound would make an ideal choice for an experienced handler who seeks an intelligent and devoted partner.

Plott Hound Temperament and Personality

Plott Hounds make terrific pets under the right conditions, but they are not the right dogs for everyone. Be sure to spend a lot of time researching the Plott Hound to understand its temperament before making a commitment.

Visit dog shows, sporting events, and speak with breeders about Plott Hound temperament and behavior to make sure you are ready for this hound.

Here are the most important characteristics of Plott Hound temperament to consider while researching this breed:


Plott Hounds are incredibly brave. They were bred to hunt massive animals such as bears, so they will not back down from any person or dog no matter the size.

Plott Hounds will defend their owners from perceived threats. And early socialization is imperative to prevent this trait from getting out of hand. This breed is also fantastic watchdogs.

Cunning Plott Hound Temperament

Plott Hounds are very smart. They can be independent thinkers and do not always heed their master’s commands. However, they are extremely shrewd and clever.

As a Plott Hound owner, you must keep your dog’s mind active and focused on constructive activities. Failure to do so may result in nuisance behaviors such as destructive chewing, digging, and/or barking.

Activities such as playing with enrichment toys and food puzzles provide great mental stimulation for Plott Hounds.


Plott Hounds are muscular hunting dogs. They can work in the fields all day long.

If you are not planning to go hunting with your Plott Hound, you will need to provide other outlets for his natural energy and drive.

For example, Plott Hounds love to go for long hikes in the great outdoors.

They also excel at nosework, tracking, search and rescue, and obedience training. Plott Hounds need space to run. This is not a breed for a city apartment.


Like many scent hounds, Plott Hounds have a beautiful, musical “baying” bark.

Many owners love the sound of their Plott Hound baying. However, if you do not care for vocal dogs or if you have neighbors who will complain about noise, this breed may not be right for you.

The Plott Hound bark is a distinctive characteristic of this breed.

Devoted Temperament

Plott Hounds are extremely loving and loyal to their families. Socialize and properly supervise them and they can coexist peacefully with children and other pets.

A Brief History of the Plott Hound Breed

Unlike most other scent hounds, Plott Hounds descend from German stock rather than English hounds.

Plott Hounds trace their lineage to 1750 when a German immigrant arrived in North Carolina with five Hanover Hounds (a German breed).

The man’s name was Johannes Plott.

He bred his Hanover Hounds with local dogs to create the hunting dog known today as the modern Plott Hound dog.

Plott Hound Size and Appearance

The average Plott Hound weight is between 50 and 60 pounds for males and 40 to 55 pounds for females. The average height is around 20 to 25 inches.

Photo of Plott Hound River Min

Plott Hound colors are very distinctive. They are nearly always brindle (striped) with a black saddle marking on their back.

The Plott Hound brindle coloration can be a rainbow of different shades ranging from very light to very dark brindle.

Other coat colorations such as solid black or buckskin are also permissible but are rare.

Plott Hound Training

It is important to start training and socializing your Plott Hound as soon as possible.

Look for a positive reinforcement puppy class in your area.

Plott Hounds are food-motivated and they respond very well to positive reinforcement training.

They are intelligent, but they are independent. Training this breed takes time, patience and a good sense of humor.

Resource Guarding

Plott Hounds can be prone to a behavior issue called resource guarding (aggression over high-value resources such as food, toys, beds, even people). Resource guarding can be prevented from puppyhood by “trading” a delicious treat for any item that you take away from your Plott Hound puppy.

If resource guarding or any other behavior issue develops, seek assistance from a professional positive reinforcement trainer immediately.

Never punish your Plott Hound for this behavior because that will actually make the behavior worse.

Do not work with any trainer that advocates for “dominance-based” training methods or uses aversive techniques such as shock collars, alpha rolls or pinch collars.

Helpful Dog Training Guide:

The Online Dog Trainer by Doggy Dan a world-class Dog Trainer from New Zealand is worth taking a look at. This online resource has hundreds of fun informative dog training videos that can help you learn the basics and more.

Plott Hound Shedding and Grooming

Plott Hounds have beautiful, sleek coats. Their fur is very low-maintenance in terms of grooming.

Occasional brushing and bathing will suffice.

The Plott Hound’s short fur does shed, but not excessively. However, this breed is not considered to be hypoallergenic. Therefore, it may not be the ideal pet for someone who suffers from allergies or dog dander.

Staying Healthy

With good care, the Plott Hound life expectancy is between 12 and 14 years.

Plott Hounds tend to be a hardy and healthy breed, but they are prone to a few health concerns. Be sure to discuss these with your veterinarian:

Like all dogs, Plott Hounds should visit the vet once a year for a checkup and vaccinations. It is crucial to give your Plott Hound a monthly preventative for fleas, ticks, and heartworms.

Spaying and neutering are highly recommended for health reasons as well as to avoid adding to the pet overpopulation crisis.

Helpful Dog Health Guide:

Note: if you agree that your health and your dog's health should be a top priority then get a copy of The Ultimate Guide to Dog Health. Your Spitz friend will love you for it. This guide will help save you money, time and most of all help you keep your dog healthy.

Plott Hound Rescue

Adoption is a wonderful way to add a Plott Hound to your family because there are many adoptable Plott Hounds looking for homes in this country.


Plott Hounds are prevalent in American animal shelters, especially in southern states. Most of the Plott Hounds for adoption through shelters are adults and adolescents, but puppies are sometimes available, too.

Visit your local animal shelter and let them know that you are looking for a Plott Hound for adoption or a Plott Hound mix. Leave your name and number and ask to be contacted when the next one comes in.

Internet Resources:

Also, be sure to visit Petfinder.com and Adoptapet.com. You can set up notifications that will alert you when new Plott Hounds become available for adoption in your area.

Getyourpet.com is another great resource for connecting with a Plott Hound that is in need of a new home.

There are also rescue groups that specialize in helping Plott Hounds. Wayward Plotts is a very active rescue organization that helps rehome Plotts that lose their original homes due to financial struggles, housing issues, family crisis, etc.

Hound Networking Group and All Hounds Rescue Network are two facebook groups that post pictures of Plott Hounds and other hounds that are located in overcrowded animal shelters across the United States.

Many of these sweet and beautiful dogs are in dire need of immediate rescue to avoid euthanasia.

With so many gorgeous Plott Hounds in need of loving homes, please make adoption your first option.

Adoption Cost vs Breeder:

Adoption makes financial sense as well. The Plott Hound cost at an animal shelter or rescue group is generally between $75 and $150.

In addition to saving a life, these dogs are generally already spayed/neutered, vaccinated and microchipped.

On the other hand, the Plott Hound price through a breeder is usually $300-$500 or even higher for certain bloodlines.

Finding Reputable Plott Hound Breeders

If you decide to look for Plott puppies for sale, a good starting point is the National Plott Hound Association. You can contact the club for referrals of responsible breeders in your region.

Once you identify a potential Plott Hound breeder, make an appointment to visit the Plott Hound kennels or facility in person.

Always visit the breeder's property to make sure that your Plott Hound puppy comes from clean, safe and humane conditions.

Ask to meet the parents of the litter to make sure that they are healthy and friendly. Ask to view their medical records and the results of their genetic testing.

It's best to never buy a Plott dog for sale through an internet website or from a pet store. You could get scammed and you could inadvertently support a questionable breeder or a puppy mill.

If you find a Plott Hound for sale that is a good fit for your family, you will be asked to sign a contract with your breeder. The contract states that you will get your pet spayed/neutered at the appropriate age and you will return the puppy to the breeder if you cannot keep it for any reason.

Responsible breeders never want their puppies to end up in animal shelters or rescue groups.

If your breeder does not want you to visit and/or does not ask you to sign a written contract, this is a worrisome sign. Keep looking for a different place to acquire your Plott Hound.

Conclusion: Why the Plott Hound?

The Plott Hound is a fabulous pet for dog savvy owners.

The Plott Hound temperament makes it a challenging choice for beginners, but if you are an experienced guardian and you are looking for a fiercely loyal companion, the Plott Hound might be the dog for you.