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  • Temperament: Loyal, Alert, Intelligent
  • AKC Breed Popularity: Ranks 158 of 194
  • Height: 20-25 inches (male), 20-23 inches (female)
  • Weight: 50-60 pounds (male), 40-55 pounds (female)
  • Life Expectancy: 12-14 years
  • Group: Hound Group

    The AKC has grouped all of the breeds that it registers into seven categories, or groups, roughly based on function and heritage. Breeds are grouped together because they share traits of form and function or a common heritage.

Plott standing sideways outdoors on gravel facing left
Plott lying in grass near gravel facing forward
Plott sitting in grass facing forward, head turned slightly left
Plott standing sideways in grass facing left
Plott

Find a Puppy: Plott

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GENERAL APPEARANCE

A hunting hound of striking color that traditionally brings big game to bay or tree, the Plott is intelligent, alert and confident. Noted for stamina, endurance, agility, determination and aggressiveness when hunting, the powerful, well muscled, yet streamlined Plott combines courage with athletic ability.

HEAD

Head is carried well up with skin fitting moderately tight. Faults – Folds, dewlap, skin stretched too tightly.
Skull is moderately flat. Rounded at the crown with sufficient width between and above the eyes. Faults: Narrow-headed, square, oval or excessively domed.

BODY

Neck – Medium length and muscular. Clean and free of ponderous dewlap. Fault: Loose, wrinkled or folded skin. Topline – Gently sloping, slightly higher at the withers than at the hips. Fault: Roached. Body – Chest – Deep. Ribs – Deep, moderately wide, well sprung. Back – Well muscled, strong, level. Loin – Slightly arched. Tail – Root is slightly below level of topline. Rather long, carried free, well up, saber-like. Moderately heavy in appearance and strongly tapered. Sometimes typified by a slight brush.

FOREQUARTERS

Shoulders – Clean, muscular and sloping, indicating speed and strength. Elbow – Squarely set. Forelegs – Straight, smooth, well muscled. Pasterns – Strong and erect. Feet – Firm, tight, well-padded and knuckled, with strong toes. Set directly under the leg. Disqualification – Splayed feet. Nails – Usually black, although shades of reddish brown matching the brindle body color are permissible and buckskin colored dogs have light red nails. May be white when portions of the feet are white.

COAT

Smooth, fine, glossy, but thick enough to provide protection from wind and water. Rare specimens are double coated, with a short, soft, thick inner coat concealed by a longer, smoother and stiffer outer coat.

HINDQUARTERS

Angulation – Well bent at stifles and at the hocks. Hips – Smooth, round, and proportionally wide, indicating efficient propulsion. Legs – Long and muscular from hip to hock. From hock to pad short, strong and at right angles to the ground. Upper and second thigh – Powerful and well-muscled. Feet – Set back from under the body. Firm and tight. Toes – Strong.

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About the Plott

The hound with the curious name (we’ll get to that) and unique history (we’ll get to that, too) is a streamlined, long-tailed, light-footed hunter standing as high as 25 inches at the shoulder. The flashy coat comes in an array of brindle-stripe patterns, from black flecked with gold to flaming orange and russet, in addition to some solid colors. The medium-length ears hang gracefully, and the leather of the nose, lips, and eye rims are black, setting off an inquisitive and confident expression.

Breed Clubs and Rescue

Want to connect with other people who love the same breed as much as you do? We have plenty of opportunities to get involved in your local community, thanks to AKC Breed Clubs located in every state, and more than 450 AKC Rescue Network groups across the country.
Plott

Find a Puppy: Plott

AKC Marketplace | PuppyFinder

AKC Marketplace is the only site to exclusively list 100% AKC puppies from AKC-Registered litters and the breeders who have cared for and raised these puppies are required to follow rules and regulations established by the AKC.
Find Plott Puppies

Care

NUTRITION

The Plott should do well on a high-quality dog food, whether commercially manufactured or home-prepared with your veterinarian’s supervision and approval. Any diet should be appropriate to the dog’s age (puppy, adult, or senior). Some dogs are prone to getting overweight, so watch your dog’s calorie consumption and weight level. Treats can be an important aid in training, but giving too many can cause obesity. Learn about which human foods are safe for dogs, and which are not. Check with your vet if you have any concerns about your dog’s weight or diet. Clean, fresh water should be available at all times.

GROOMING

The Plott’s smooth, fine, glossy coat can be any shade of brindle (a streaked or striped pattern of dark hair imposed on a lighter background), solid black, or have a saddle or markings. It requires minimal maintenance, with just a weekly brushing with a soft-bristle brush or a hound glove to remove dirt and loose hair. An occasional bath can help keep him from having a doggy odor. The Plott’s ears should be regularly inspected for debris or excess wax and cleaned if needed with soft gauze and an ear-cleaning solution—the dog’s breeder or the veterinarian can recommend a good brand to use. The nails should be trimmed often if not worn down naturally.

Grooming Frequency

Occasional Bath/Brush
Specialty/Professional
Occasional Bath/Brush

Shedding

Infrequent
Frequent
Occasional

EXERCISE

Plotts are tough, relentless athletes requiring lots of exercise and outdoor time. The breed’s standard says: “Noted for stamina, endurance, agility, determination, and aggressiveness when hunting, the powerful, well muscled, yet streamlined Plott combines courage with athletic ability.” Daily vigorous exercise such as long walks or runs or play sessions with his owner will help to keep the Plott mentally and physically healthy. Because the Plott is extremely prey driven, he should always be walked on leash.

Energy Level

Couch Potato
Needs Lots of Activity
Energetic

TRAINING

The Plott is intelligent, alert, and confident. He can be a tail-wagging, people-loving dog, but may be a bit standoffish, since he is extremely smart and focused. Puppies should be socialized thoroughly with gentle exposure to a wide variety of people and other animals. Prospective owners should plan on an energetic puppy who requires a lot of attention. Because of his intelligence, the Plott needs mental stimulation to keep him occupied, or he will find ways to amuse himself that may be undesirable. Plotts may become food or toy aggressive, and need to be trained to avoid these behaviors. Owners should be prepared to hear the Plott’s “voice” in the home at times.

Trainability

May be Stubborn
Eager to Please
Independent

Temperament/Demeanor

Aloof/Wary
Outgoing
Alert/Responsive

HEALTH

Plotts are generally healthy dogs. A responsible breeder will have had the dog’s parents screened for health concerns such as hip dysplasia. Pendant ears such as the Plott’s can be prone to infection, so the ears should be checked regularly. The teeth should be brushed often, using a toothpaste designed for dogs. Regular visits to the vet for checkups and parasite control help to ensure the Plott a long, healthy life.

Recommended Health Test from the National Breed Club:

  • No recommended health tests
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History

Unique among the six AKC coonhound breeds, Plotts are descended not from English Foxhounds but from German “Hanover hounds.” In 1750, a German immigrant named Johannes Plott arrived in North Carolina. Accompanying him were five Hanover hounds he brought from the old country. Plott settled in the mountains, where he raised a family and hunted bears with his hounds. His son, Henry, bred the family pack to local stock and produced a big-game hunter known as Plott’s hound, then the Plott Hound, and finally the Plott.

Did You Know?

At the May 2006 Board Meeting, the Plott became eligible to compete in the Hound Group, effective January 1, 2007.
The Hanoverian, a brindle or red big game tracker, was developed by crossing an ancient, huge, trailing hound much like the St. Hubert with a lighter and faster hound, and it is still a favorite with German gamekeepers.
The Plott was a mountain breed, raised and trained to hunt animals such as bear and wild boar.
The Hanoverian Schweisshund (Bloodhound), or ancestor of the Plott, in this specific case, is respected for its ability to locate a wounded animal even though the trail is a week or more old.
The Plott is named after a family of German immigrants who moved to America, and the breed was created in America.
Plott "music" is distinguished by a loud, ringing chop on the track and the tree, although bawl or squall trailing mouths are also acceptable.

The Breed Standard

GENERAL APPEARANCE

A hunting hound of striking color that traditionally brings big game to bay or tree, the Plott is intelligent, alert and confident. Noted for stamina, endurance, agility, determination and aggressiveness when hunting, the powerful, well muscled, yet streamlined Plott combines courage with athletic ability.

HEAD

Head is carried well up with skin fitting moderately tight. Faults – Folds, dewlap, skin stretched too tightly.
Skull is moderately flat. Rounded at the crown with sufficient width between and above the eyes. Faults: Narrow-headed, square, oval or excessively domed.

BODY

Neck – Medium length and muscular. Clean and free of ponderous dewlap. Fault: Loose, wrinkled or folded skin. Topline – Gently sloping, slightly higher at the withers than at the hips. Fault: Roached. Body – Chest – Deep. Ribs – Deep, moderately wide, well sprung. Back – Well muscled, strong, level. Loin – Slightly arched. Tail – Root is slightly below level of topline. Rather long, carried free, well up, saber-like. Moderately heavy in appearance and strongly tapered. Sometimes typified by a slight brush.

FOREQUARTERS

Shoulders – Clean, muscular and sloping, indicating speed and strength. Elbow – Squarely set. Forelegs – Straight, smooth, well muscled. Pasterns – Strong and erect. Feet – Firm, tight, well-padded and knuckled, with strong toes. Set directly under the leg. Disqualification – Splayed feet. Nails – Usually black, although shades of reddish brown matching the brindle body color are permissible and buckskin colored dogs have light red nails. May be white when portions of the feet are white.

COAT

Smooth, fine, glossy, but thick enough to provide protection from wind and water. Rare specimens are double coated, with a short, soft, thick inner coat concealed by a longer, smoother and stiffer outer coat.

HINDQUARTERS

Angulation – Well bent at stifles and at the hocks. Hips – Smooth, round, and proportionally wide, indicating efficient propulsion. Legs – Long and muscular from hip to hock. From hock to pad short, strong and at right angles to the ground. Upper and second thigh – Powerful and well-muscled. Feet – Set back from under the body. Firm and tight. Toes – Strong.

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Colors & Markings

Colors

Description Standard Colors Registration Code
BLACK Check Mark For Standard Color 007
BLACK BRINDLE Check Mark For Standard Color 279
BLUE BRINDLE Check Mark For Standard Color 056
BROWN BRINDLE Check Mark For Standard Color 065
BUCKSKIN Check Mark For Standard Color 447
CHOCOLATE BRINDLE Check Mark For Standard Color 342
GRAY BRINDLE Check Mark For Standard Color 107
LIVER BRINDLE Check Mark For Standard Color 332
MALTESE Check Mark For Standard Color 448
ORANGE BRINDLE Check Mark For Standard Color 449
RED BRINDLE Check Mark For Standard Color 148
TAN BRINDLE Check Mark For Standard Color 446
YELLOW BRINDLE Check Mark For Standard Color 368

Markings

Description Standard Markings Registration Code
BLACK SADDLE Check Mark For Standard Mark 065
BRINDLE TRIM Check Mark For Standard Mark 074
GRAYINGS MUZZLE & JAW Check Mark For Standard Mark 112
WHITE CHEST & FEET Check Mark For Standard Mark 111