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Top 10 Dog Breeds With Long Floppy Ears

basset hound

Have you ever wondered what purpose, if any, did long, floppy ears serve? As it turns out, they are a remarkable design of nature, other than making the dog 10x cuter. 

Holly is one of the best detectives at the Massachusetts State Police Force. She is an expert at tracking down missing persons and searching for clues. She is also a Bloodhound with long floppy ears. While we all know that the nose of a Bloodhound is intricate and at least 40 times more potent than humans, we often neglect the role that their ears play in their tracking abilities. 

How Do Long Ears Help in Tracking?

All dogs, despite their breed, are excellent at sniffing out trails. Compared to humans, a dog’s nose is more sensitive to smell. In addition, their higher olfactory receptor count allows Bloodhounds and other scenthounds to be exceptionally efficient at sniffing, identifying, and remembering a scent. These traits, combined with their trainable personality, make for great trackers. 

Most scent hounds have long ears, droopy skin, and long necks. Each of these features compliments their proficiency in tracking. The long neck helps in getting as close to the ground as possible. The ears act as a scoop, sweeping the scent particles on the trail toward the nose. Any scent sent into the nostril creates a detailed image that the dog then uses as a reference during the route. The hanging ears also inhibit the noises around them, allowing the dog to focus on the trail. Lastly, the droopy skin collects the scent particles in the pockets of its skin. 

Breeds With Long Ears

We will now look into some breeds with long ears. Remember that this list is not exhaustive, and many notable breeds haven’t been mentioned. 

1. Bloodhound

A Bloodhound Standing on a Snow Covered Ground
  • Group: Hound (AKC)
  • Height: 23 to 27 inches
  • Weight: 80 to 110 pounds
  • Coat: Smooth and short
  • Color: Black, liver, and red
  • Life Expectancy: 10 to 12 years
  • Temperament: Independent, easygoing, inquisitive
  • Hypoallergenic: No
  • Price: Average $450 – $1200 USD
  • Origin: Mediterranean 

Bloodhounds are not nicknamed ‘Sleuth Hounds’ for no reason. As we’ve already seen, they have an incredible sense of smell. They are exceptionally talented at finding people who are lost or in hiding. With their sizeable build, they can travel miles to reach the end of their trail.

While they have serious responsibilities, their personalities are pretty easygoing. This breed is social, enjoying the company of other dogs and children. Regular grooming must take place to maintain their well-being. Obedience training must begin early in life as they tend to get stuck in their ways. Bloodhounds are prone to ear and skin infections, thanks to the folds on their skin, thus requiring special attention and care.

2. Basset Hound

brown and white short coated dog on green grass field during daytime
  • Group: Hound (AKC)
  • Height: up to 15 inches
  • Weight: 40 to 65 pounds
  • Coat: Smooth and short
  • Color: Black, brown, red
  • Life Expectancy: 12 to 13 years
  • Temperament: Mellow, intelligent, charming
  • Hypoallergenic: No
  • Price: Average $600 – $1200 USD
  • Origin: France and Belgium

Basset Hounds are among the most endearing and hence, popular breeds among dog lovers across the globe. These dogs are built for endurance. However, its petite size must not mislead you into believing this Hound is not strong. On the contrary, their massive paws, heavy bone structure, and powerful legs carry their weight and allow them to perform duties comparable to those of a larger build. 

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A Basset Hound’s nose is only second to that of a Bloodhound. Similar to the Bloodhound, a Basset Hound will not relent until the source of its scent is found. They might not display affection as quickly, but they make up for it with their undying loyalty.

3. Black and Tan Coonhound

Black and tan Coonhound sitting on the grass during day time
  • Group: Hound (AKC)
  • Height: 23 to 27 inches
  • Weight: 65 to 110 pounds
  • Coat: Smooth and short
  • Color: Black and tan
  • Life Expectancy: 10 to 12 years
  • Temperament: Brave, friendly, and calm
  • Hypoallergenic: No
  • Price: Average $400 – $800 USD
  • Origin: America

Specially bred to hunt raccoons and other animals who climb trees, an American Black and Tan Coonhound is pretty much like every other Hound we’ve seen. As a natural hunter, the prey drive for this breed can be easily triggered. It can become overwhelming for a novice dog owner. You would want to invest in solid leashes and fences, as is applicable for any hound. 

They are an intelligent breed that could trail the scent even on challenging terrain. But, at the same time, they make for lovely pets at home, ready to snuggle at a moment’s notice. It means they don’t prefer to be lonely and are sociable.

4. Afghan Hound

cream afghan hound sitting on grass during day time
  • Group: Hound (AKC)
  • Height: 25 to 27 inches
  • Weight: 50 to 60 pounds
  • Coat: Silky and long
  • Color: Black, blue, red, silver, white, and cream
  • Life Expectancy: 12 to 18 years
  • Temperament: Sweet and independent
  • Hypoallergenic: Yes
  • Price: Average $600 – $1000 USD
  • Origin: Afghanistan, India, and Pakistan

One of the oldest breeds, the Afghan Hound, was built for the strenuous terrain in what is now Afghanistan, India, and Pakistan. Their beautiful lustrous mane served the purpose of protection from harsh climates. The breed is one of the eye-catching breeds at any dog show, owing to its regal stature and unique long flowing hair. 

Unlike other hounds on this list, the Afghans are sighthounds. Their hunting strategy is to track by sight using their panoramic vision and move with agility. Although it has been said that Afghan Hounds are only for some owners, they require dedicated time and attention for their care.

5. Weimaraner

adult greyhound on forest during daytime
  • Group: Sporting (AKC)
  • Height: 23 to 27 inches
  • Weight: 55 to 90 pounds
  • Coat: Smooth and short
  • Color: blue, grey, silver, grey
  • Life Expectancy: 10 to 13 years
  • Temperament: Fearless, obedient, sociable
  • Hypoallergenic: No
  • Price: Average $500 – $1800 USD
  • Origin: Germany

The elegant Weimaraner is a lovely blend of high energy, friendliness, and obedience. Initially bred in Germany to be the perfect hunting dog, they share some Bloodhound genetics. The sleek grey coat is distinctive, and their deep amber or blue-grey eyes are unmistakable. Stating that this breed requires physical stimulation is an understatement. They are active and need challenges to keep them happy and avoid problematic behaviors. 

Weimaraners yearn to be a part of the family and can be easily trained. In addition, their size does not deter them from having excellent relationships with kids. Overall, they would be ideal for an active family.  

6. Dachshund

black and white dachshund
  • Group: Hound (AKC)
  • Height (standard): 8 to 9 inches 
  • Weight (standard): 16 to 32 pounds
  • Height (miniature): 5 to 6 inches 
  • Weight (miniature): 11 and under pounds
  • Coat: Smooth, wirehaired, longhaired
  • Color: black and tan, chocolate, fawn, red, cream
  • Life Expectancy: 12 to 16 years
  • Temperament: Inquisitive, friendly, chirpy
  • Hypoallergenic: No
  • Price: Average $1,200 – $1,400 USD
  • Origin: Germany
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The infamously ‘sausage dog’ also belongs to the type of hounds bred for specific prey. There are two variants – the standard and the miniature. The former was built to scurry into the burrows of badgers and dislodge its occupants, while the latter was bred to chase and catch rabbits. This small dog has a loud bark that can scare away any predators. Their strong personality allows them to confidently face any challenge while being loving dogs to their owner. 

Dachshunds need to exercise to strengthen the muscles to support their backs. Remember, these dogs are not meant to perform strenuous jumping, long-distance running, or swimming. But, unfortunately, their personality is wilful to the extent that they could attempt to do it all.  

7. Poodle

dog sitting on sofa inside room
  • Group: Non-sporting (AKC)
  • Height: over 15 inches
  • Weight: 40 to 70 pounds
  • Coat: Long and curly
  • Color: Apricot, black, blue, cream, gray, silver, white
  • Life Expectancy: 10 to 18 years
  • Temperament: Smart, proud, active
  • Hypoallergenic: Yes
  • Price: Average $500 – $2000 USD
  • Origin: Germany

Poodles come in three different sizes and are thus categorized into Standard, Miniature, and Toy. The Standard Poodle began as a retrieving water dog with exceptional intelligence and swimming ability. The poofy hair is to protect itself from the cold environments it belongs in. To provide them the free range of motion required of a working dog, the breeders shaved off their legs, neck, and tail but left a round tuft of fur on their legs, tails, and hips. This look compliments their aristocratic nature. 

As one of the most intelligent breeds, they need mental and physical stimulation. In addition, their obedient and trainable nature makes them excellent companions. Though they are not guard dogs, they are incredibly protective. 

8. American Cocker Spaniel

long-coated brown dog lying on brown wooden stairs
  • Group: Sporting (AKC)
  • Height: 13.5 to 15.5 inches
  • Weight: 20 to 30 pounds
  • Coat: Double-coated long, silky coat
  • Color: Black, brown, silver, red
  • Life Expectancy: 10 to 40 years
  • Temperament: Smart, happy, sociable
  • Hypoallergenic: No
  • Price: Average $200 – $300 USD
  • Origin: America

Previously a bird hunting specialist, the Cocker Spaniel would easily steal the win for its pageantry. One of America’s most beloved breeds, they are big enough to be athletic and small enough to be carried around. In addition, their characteristic long, hairy ears and big, dark eyes make them one of the most charming dogs. No doubt that with mandatory regular grooming sessions, your Cocker Spaniel will be the prettiest on the block.

Now seen more at dog shows than on hunting grounds, they are experienced at being trained. However, they don’t handle harsh criticism well. They need a calm, gentle owner who can teach them with compassion. This breed also does not do well when it comes to being alone and is prone to separation anxiety.

9. Beagle

white and brown Beagle
  • Group: Hound (AKC)
  • Height: up to 15 inches
  • Weight: 20 to 30 pounds
  • Coat: Smooth, short coat
  • Color: Black, red, and tan
  • Life Expectancy: 10 to 15 years
  • Temperament: Curious, friendly, cheery
  • Hypoallergenic: No
  • Price: Average $350 – $1000 USD
  • Origin: Unknown

Beagles are not only the most popular hound dog but one of the most popular dog breeds worldwide. Their cute and pleading face is not new to any of us. Renowned as carefree and loving dogs, they can be a lovely inclusion to your family. Much is said about their soft side, but lesser known is their hunting background. 

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Beagle enthusiasts swear by their hare-hunting abilities to date. A part of the hound ancestry, their noses are exquisite machines that can snoop on any trail. Moreover, their hound background dictates that they regularly engage in challenging tasks that test their sense of smell. 

10. Saluki 

Saluki sitting on a white bed on the floor
  • Group: Hound (AKC)
  • Height: 23 to 28 inches
  • Weight: 40 to 65 pounds
  • Coat: Smooth and short
  • Color: Black, brown, silver, red, fawn, cream, golden, white
  • Life Expectancy: 10 to 17 years
  • Temperament: Gentle, independent, dignified
  • Hypoallergenic: No
  • Price: Average $2,500 – $10,000 USD
  • Origin: Middle East, Egypt, Asia

Saluki is a lean, mean hunting machine on the field. Their slim but rugged body allows swift motion that can be helpful in a good chase. A breed used by kings in ancient times, these dogs are a thing of marvel. Supported by their long spindly legs, they are well-balanced hunters. 

They are a calm, dignified, and reserved breed. They can get aloof at times, needing some space to themselves. They are the introverts of dogs. They can also be very gentle with kids and get along with other animals in the house. They are adaptable and can fit into any environment. 

Special Care for Dogs With Long Ears

For any dog owner, cleaning your pet’s ears is part and parcel of the regular grooming routine. It becomes significantly more important for owners with any of the long-eared dogs. 

These dogs are more susceptible to ear infections than regular dogs. The predisposition to ear infections is further catalyzed when they are exposed to water regularly or have other skin allergies. The long ears act like a scarf to the ear canal, not allowing adequate airflow. Like humans, dogs also produce some wax within the ear canals. The wax now caught in the damp and warm ear canal provides a breeding site for infections. 

How to Care for Long Ears

Let’s first establish that your dog will not be comfortable with you probing their ears. You will have to invest some time in slowly building up their confidence with you touching the insides of their ears – treats and patience are essential. Once you establish this level of trust, we can move forward to cleaning the ear with a cleanser. 

This routine may vary with the type of medication. You would have to insert a few drops of the cleanser into the ear canal and massage the area for about 20-30 seconds. Let your dog shake their heads; it will help spread the cleaner and cover more ground. Finally, you can wipe off the excess wax at the edge of the ear canal. You can follow this routine once every month. However, the exact schedule will depend on various factors, including the swimming and bathing frequencies. You must consult a vet to give you a precise cleaning schedule. 

Ensure your dog’s ears are not consistently wet. It would help if you were regularly looking for any unusual bumps on the outer ear, red patches, or weird smells from the ear region. Of course, you must consult a vet as soon as possible if you spot any of these signs.

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