Treeing Walker Coonhound.jpg
Breed Group Group 7: Scenthounds and Related Breeds
Sub-group 7-A: Large Scenthounds
Origin Country United States
Weight Males: 50-70 pounds. Females: 50-70 pounds.
Height Males: 22-27 inches. Females: 20-25 inches.
Other Name(s) Treeing Walker, Walker Coonhound, Walker Hound
Breed Type Pure
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Treeing Walker Coonhound

Breed Group Group 7: Scenthounds and Related Breeds
Sub-group 7-A: Large Scenthounds
Origin Country United States
Weight Males: 50-70 pounds. Females: 50-70 pounds.
Height Males: 22-27 inches. Females: 20-25 inches.
Other Name(s) Treeing Walker, Walker Coonhound, Walker Hound
Breed Type Pure
click here for FULL BREED STANDARD

Origins

Hound-type dogs historically accompanied immigrants to the United States from Europe. Many of these dogs were imports from England, Ireland, and Germany. Hunting was a way of life throughout the south, and these dogs were essential in putting food on tables, putting clothes on backs, and bringing in money for furs, as well as ridding farms, homesteads, and properties of animals that would threaten a family’s livelihood They hunted an array of quarry, including squirrels, raccoons, foxes, coyotes, deer, and bears.

The development of the breed took a different direction thanks in part to a dog-thieving horse drover by the name of Tom Harris. Harris stole a hard-hunting hound off of a deer track just outside of Albany, Kentucky, and then sold the dog to George Washington Maupin of Madison County, Kentucky. It was there that two gentlemen, George Washington Maupin and John W. Walker, are credited with the start of the “walker dog” breeds, as well as several other strains and breeds of hound, including the Trigg Hound and Goodman Hounds.

Both Maupin and Walker were avid sportsmen, and both had regularly used English imported foxhounds for hunting and developing their breeding program. These dogs were crossed with some of the local hounds, with the resulting offspring being known as “Virginia Hounds.” The stolen dog that Maupin bought off of Harris was not like the hounds of English origin. He was described as being rat-tailed, tight-coated, and black-and-tan; a description more apt to the progenitors of the Black-and-Tan Coonhounds or curs, but no one knows of his lineage for sure. Maupin called him Tennessee Lead, and he quickly picked up on Lead’s speed, drive, and game sense. He crossed Lead to some of his English dogs and to some of his local hounds. The resulting get were used to start the Running Walker Foxhound strain, which was further developed into the Treeing Walker Coonhound. Lead was heavily used as a stud dog in many other coon and foxhounds breeds, showing up many times in the pedigrees of breeds like Black and Tan Coonhounds.

Until the mid-1900s, these dogs were often considered part of the older more popular Coonhound and Foxhound breeds, but they eventually split into their own breeds at the request of breeders and owners. Today, they are some of the most popular hunting hounds used extensively on multiple game and quarry.

The difference between Treeing Walker Coonhounds and Running Walker Foxhounds is not easily detected through the dog’s phenotype, but through the dog’s hunting behavior. Coonhounds, in general, will instinctually “check” trees for scents while hunting, while the Foxhounds will generally not stop to check trees, but will stay on a ground track. However, there are exceptions to the rule, with both being used interchangeable and even interbred to produce excellent hunting “grade hounds.”

Breed Characteristics

Head: Mesaticephalic skull type, moderate in size, and in proportion to the rest of the body. The top skull is fairly broad and full, it may be flat or slightly arched in profile or from the front. The occiput is somewhat prominent. The head is clean-cut without excess skin or wrinkle.
Eyes: Moderately large in size, oval, almond, or diamond in shape, and hazel, amber, or medium to dark brown in color. The eye rims are well-fitted and well-pigmented. The eyes are never bulging. There should be sufficient bone in the surrounding orbital sockets to protect the eyes. Any signs of entropion or ectropion are incorrect for this breed.
Ears: The ears are medium to somewhat longer in length, but never overly pendulous. They are set low on the skull, approximately level with the eye when in repose, capable of being lifted some when alert. They are hound-type, gracefully hanging close to the head, and the outer edges may roll or turn.
Muzzle: The muzzle is full, deep, and broad. The plane, or bridge of the muzzle, is straight. The muzzle may remain deep throughout, appearing as an elongated rectangle, or it may taper just slightly toward the end. Upper and lower jaws are well-developed, approximately equal in length, and have good bone substance, never appearing snipy or weak.
Nose: The nose is large, well-pigmented and black, or self-colored according to the coat. Slight butterfly nose is permissible. The nostrils are well-opened.
Neck: Moderate length allows for good head carriage, it is strongly muscled with a slight arch. The neck is powerful, yet graceful, tapering smoothly from the deeper and broader body toward the head. The neck is clean-cut and without excess skin, throatiness, or dewlap. Some loose skin where the throat and jaw meets is acceptable, so long as it does not form a pendulous dewlap.
Chest: Deep and broad, but never wider than deep. The brisket extends to the point of the elbows.
Body: Deep, solid, and of good substance. The body is never overly racy and refined, or heavy and cloddy. Width at forequarters is approximately equal to the width at the hindquarters.
Feet: Oval to round and compact, with well-arched toes and tough pads.
Tail: Set fairly high, as a natural extension of the topline. It is thick at the base and tapering toward the tip. The tail is carried in accordance with the dog’s mood and energy level, but never tucked. The tail is of a moderately long length, with the tip of the last vertebrae extending to the hock joints when held down. The tail may be straight, sabered, or gently curved.
Movement: Strong, effortless, efficient, energetic, and enduring, the characteristics of healthy structure are evident: when moving away, the forelegs and rear pasterns should remain parallel to one another. When viewing movement from the front, the forelegs should remain parallel, with elbows and paws moving neither in nor out. From the rear, the back pads should be visible when the rear legs are extended. As speed increases, the forelimbs and hindlimbs will converge to the centerline of gravity. From the side, the topline should remain firm and level. Good reach of movement in the front allows the forepaw to extend out in a line with the nose. The width between the forefeet when extended should be approximately equal to the width between the hindfeet when extended, indicating balance, good reach, and good drive. Dogs that exhibit any sign of breathing or locomotive difficulty shall be disqualified from the show ring.
Temperament: Although wonderful around people, these dogs are highly driven and exceptionally instinctual. Most are still bred for the sole purpose of hunting throughout much of the United States, with many dogs from working lines being a little too “hot” for a general companion dog. However, occasionally some dogs are the exception to the rule, and fortunately, the traits that make for a poor hunting dog make for an excellent companion dog, and therefore, calmer dogs less-inclined to hunt are a great family addition. When paired with a well-suited home and active owner, they are reported to be even-tempered, intelligent, friendly, eager, and people-oriented (so long as there isn’t anything around to catch the attention of their noses). One breed behavior that serves them well in the woods is standing up to alert to treed game. They have a tendency to carry this behavior over in non-hunting settings as well, and jumping up on people, vehicles, and furniture is not uncommon in the breed, but it is easily corrected with gentle and patient training. Although bred for trailing and treeing, they are also great at crossing over into scenting events, such as tracking, article search, and scent discrimination. When on a scent, they will bay with melodic, clear, and steady long chops. Upon treeing, they will voice with increased excitement. Any unprovoked aggressive or fearful behavior toward people is incorrect for this breed.
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Breed Standard

BREED GROUP 7: Scenthounds and Related Breeds

Proportions: Off-square to slightly rectangular with length of the body, measured from the point of the forechest to the point of the rump, being just slightly greater than the height at the withers. The length-to-height ratio is between 5:4 and 10:9. Distance from point of the shoulder to the point of the rump may be equal to, or just slightly greater than, the height at the withers. The body is well-put together, with sturdy substance and moderate bone. It is capable of speed, endurance, stamina, and agility.

Head

General Appearance: Mesaticephalic skull type, moderate in size, and in proportion to the rest of the body. The top skull is fairly broad and full, it may be flat or slightly arched in profile or from the front. The occiput is somewhat prominent. The head is clean-cut without excess skin or wrinkle.
Expression: Alert, excited, watchful, merry, and fairly regal.
Stop: The stop is somewhat defined and may range from slight to moderate, never abrupt.
Skull: The ideal muzzle-to-skull ratio is 1:1 to 5:4, with the topskull being equal to or just slightly longer than the muzzle.
The ideal muzzle-to-skull axis is parallel.
Muzzle: The muzzle is full, deep, and broad. The plane, or bridge of the muzzle, is straight. The muzzle may remain deep throughout, appearing as an elongated rectangle, or it may taper just slightly toward the end. Upper and lower jaws are well-developed, approximately equal in length, and have good bone substance, never appearing snipy or weak.
Lips or Flews: Lips are fairly clean and fit rather tightly over the teeth and jaws. They should allow for just enough depth to give the muzzle a squared, rather than tapered, appearance, and should never extend beyond the lower plane of the jaw. They are never pendulous or “wet.”
Nose: The nose is large, well-pigmented and black, or self-colored according to the coat. Slight butterfly nose is permissible. The nostrils are well-opened.
Cheeks: The cheeks are smoothly muscled, appearing neither chiseled nor coarse.
Dentition and Bite: Forty-two strong, clean, white teeth preferred. Bite may be level, scissor, or reverse-scissor. Contact must be made between the top and bottom incisors. Missing or broken teeth as a result of routine work is not to be penalized.
Eyes: Moderately large in size, oval, almond, or diamond in shape, and hazel, amber, or medium to dark brown in color. The eye rims are well-fitted and well-pigmented. The eyes are never bulging. There should be sufficient bone in the surrounding orbital sockets to protect the eyes. Any signs of entropion or ectropion are incorrect for this breed.
Ears: The ears are medium to somewhat longer in length, but never overly pendulous. They are set low on the skull, approximately level with the eye when in repose, capable of being lifted some when alert. They are hound-type, gracefully hanging close to the head, and the outer edges may roll or turn.

Body and Tail

General Description: Deep, solid, and of good substance. The body is never overly racy and refined, or heavy and cloddy. Width at forequarters is approximately equal to the width at the hindquarters.
Neck: Moderate length allows for good head carriage, it is strongly muscled with a slight arch. The neck is powerful, yet graceful, tapering smoothly from the deeper and broader body toward the head. The neck is clean-cut and without excess skin, throatiness, or dewlap. Some loose skin where the throat and jaw meets is acceptable, so long as it does not form a pendulous dewlap.
Chest: Long, well-sprung, well-laid-back, and oval-shaped, never barrel-chested or slab-sided.
Topline: Level or just slightly (almost imperceptibly sloped) from somewhat prominent withers to croup. The back is broad, strongly muscled, and straight, yet supple. The loin is taut, flat and level, or slightly arched, yet supportive. The back is never swayed or roached.
Croup: Broad and gently sloped.
Underline: Slight to moderate tuck-up present. The underline is taut and firm, without any indication of sagging or excess weight.
Tail: Set fairly high, as a natural extension of the topline. It is thick at the base and tapering toward the tip. The tail is carried in accordance with the dog’s mood and energy level, but never tucked. The tail is of a moderately long length, with the tip of the last vertebrae extending to the hock joints when held down. The tail may be straight, sabered, or gently curved.

Forequarters and Hindquarters

Forequarters: Forequarters are always in balance with the hindquarters. Forequarters are well-angulated with well-laid-back shoulder blades. Shoulder blades are long and approximately equal in length to the upper arm and forearm.
Elbows: Elbows are close to the body. The point of the elbows is approximately half the dog’s height at the withers. Elbows should fall in a direct line below the withers.
Forelegs: Frontal View: Straight, of good muscle, of moderate bone, and parallel to one another.
Side View: The forelimbs appear straight with strong pasterns.
Pasterns: Never weak or broken.
Hindquarters: Upper thigh and lower thigh are long, equal in length, strong, sturdy, of moderate bone, and well-muscled.
Rear View: When viewed from the rear, the rear pasterns are parallel to one another.
Side View: Good angulation will allow the rear toes to align with the point of the rump or within one to two paw-lengths behind the point of the rump, with the rear pasterns remaining perpendicular to the ground and parallel to one another.
Stifle Joint: Well-angulated with a good bend to well-let-down rear pasterns.
Angulations: Angulation of hindquarters is always in balance with angulation of forequarters.
Feet: Oval to round and compact, with well-arched toes and tough pads.

Coat

Skin: Well-fitted, yet supple. The skin should never obstruct the outline of the dog.
Coat Type: The coat is short, yet protective. It is smooth and close to the body throughout. The texture is harsh and glossy. The coat may be slightly longer on neck, forming a light ruff, and on the tail, but never flagged. No fringe or feather permissible.
Coat Color or Pattern: CKC recognizes two color varieties of the Treeing Walker Coonhound breed: the standard color and nonstandard color variety.

Standard coat color variety: Black, black saddle with tan, black with tan points, or black with creeping or running tan, “high tan,” cream to red; all with white markings, OR predominantly white with the above listed color and pattern markings (bicolors and tricolors, also called hound-colors).

Nonstandard coat color variety: Liver, blue, gray, silver, or Isabella with tan points, creeping tan, running tan, saddle, or blanket marking. Brindle in any standard or nonstandard color; brindled tan of any standard or non-standard color. All standard or nonstandard colors without white markings (solids); or nonstandards with white markings, or predominantly white with the above listed markings: bicolors, tricolors, and hound-colors.

Movement

Strong, effortless, efficient, energetic, and enduring, the characteristics of healthy structure are evident: when moving away, the forelegs and rear pasterns should remain parallel to one another. When viewing movement from the front, the forelegs should remain parallel, with elbows and paws moving neither in nor out. From the rear, the back pads should be visible when the rear legs are extended. As speed increases, the forelimbs and hindlimbs will converge to the centerline of gravity. From the side, the topline should remain firm and level. Good reach of movement in the front allows the forepaw to extend out in a line with the nose. The width between the forefeet when extended should be approximately equal to the width between the hindfeet when extended, indicating balance, good reach, and good drive. Dogs that exhibit any sign of breathing or locomotive difficulty shall be disqualified from the show ring.

Temperament

Although wonderful around people, these dogs are highly driven and exceptionally instinctual. Most are still bred for the sole purpose of hunting throughout much of the United States, with many dogs from working lines being a little too “hot” for a general companion dog. However, occasionally some dogs are the exception to the rule, and fortunately, the traits that make for a poor hunting dog make for an excellent companion dog, and therefore, calmer dogs less-inclined to hunt are a great family addition. When paired with a well-suited home and active owner, they are reported to be even-tempered, intelligent, friendly, eager, and people-oriented (so long as there isn’t anything around to catch the attention of their noses). One breed behavior that serves them well in the woods is standing up to alert to treed game. They have a tendency to carry this behavior over in non-hunting settings as well, and jumping up on people, vehicles, and furniture is not uncommon in the breed, but it is easily corrected with gentle and patient training. Although bred for trailing and treeing, they are also great at crossing over into scenting events, such as tracking, article search, and scent discrimination. When on a scent, they will bay with melodic, clear, and steady long chops. Upon treeing, they will voice with increased excitement. Any unprovoked aggressive or fearful behavior toward people is incorrect for this breed.

Faults

All dogs should be in proper healthy condition, free from disease or defect. Any departure from this description is considered a fault. Unless altered, all male dogs should have two fully descended testicles.