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Is the Rottweiler or the Black & Tan Coonhound Right for You?

Finding the perfect breed of dog for you

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The Rottweiler The Watchman

Those Rottweiler eyes. Big, dark, expressive. Watchful. Taking everything in. Protecting hearth and home.

Records of the Rottie stretch back almost 2,000 years, when Roman legions on the march used mastiff-type dogs to control and protect livestock. In the German town of Rottweil, the breed was fine-tuned into an all-around helper for tradesmen, pulling small carts, carrying the owner’s purse around his neck for safekeeping, working stock, and guarding family and property. The breed became known as the Rottweiler Metzerhund—the butchers’ dog of Rottweil.

Today’s Rottweiler retains almost all of the characteristics prized in the old Metzerhund. Weighing in at 90 pounds plus, he is a large, muscular dog with immense strength and surprising agility. He is calm but bold, usually aloof with strangers, and can still be called upon to herd livestock or do draft work when required.

As the AKC notes, the Rottweiler, an inherent protector, is self-confident and assertive. A Rottie will determine what is under his protection, stake out a territory, and defend it. Leadership is vital when dealing with this breed, due to this breed’s size, strength, and temperament. The Rottweiler with a job to do and guidance in how to do it is a happy dog. Almost all Rotties will enjoy obedience, agility, carting, herding, or some other purposeful training.

Could the Rottweiler be the breed for you? Read more at

The Black & Tan Coonhound Southern Gentleman

In a shady meadow in northwest Alabama, you can walk among the gravestones and read the names: Smokey, Ranger, Preacher, Bear Creek Sue. Some stretch back decades, others are recent. All mark the resting places of dogs so beloved their owners laid them to rest in the Key Underwood Coon Dog Memorial Graveyard, a cemetery dedicated solely to coonhounds. Such is the passion engendered by the long-eared, long-running, deep-voiced hounds of the Deep South.

All coonhound breeds, including the Black and Tan, were developed in America, bred to track and tree raccoons. Coonhounds are nocturnal specialists, with instinct honed to trail game methodically until it seeks refuge in a tree; the dogs then remain below, baying loudly to lead the hunters to their location.

But does a breed created to hunt prey through woods in the dark of night and chase it up a tree, all the time baying loudly enough to be heard from miles off, have a place in our modern, largely urban world? The answer is: most certainly. The charming, goofy Black and Tan has great social skills with people, children, and other dogs. Though there is that “rebel yell.” If you’ve never heard a coonhound baying, surf on over to YouTube-—appreciation of this dog’s “music” is essential.

Could the Black & Tan Coonhound be the breed for you? Read more at

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