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The Treeing Walker Coonhound, or Treeing Walker for short, is so-named because it’s a hunting dog that chases game into trees. We’ll break down that long name further in just a moment. Take a look at these Treeing Walker Coonhound fun facts to learn more about this breed.

They’re a Truly Southern Breed

The Treeing Walker Coonhound is as Southern as biscuits and gravy, magnolia trees, and William Faulkner. The Treeing Walker was born when a dog of unknown origin named “Tennessee Lead” was crossed with a Walker Foxhound, which was named for Thomas Walker, a Virginia breeder who played a key role in the breed’s development in the mid-1700s.

They Were Bred to Hunt Raccoons

The Treeing Walker was originally bred to track raccoons—that’s where the name “Coonhound” comes from—and chase them up into trees. The Treeing Walker’s keen nose and superior speed and endurance make them an excellent hunter, even at night, when raccoons are active.

Treeing Walker Coonhound exploring near a pond in winter.
©valentyne -

They’re Very Vocal

Similar to the Beagle, the Treeing Walker vocalizes in different ways to communicate while on the hunt. They make a bugle-like sound while tracking, so their master can easily follow them. When they trap an animal in a tree, they switch to a short, choppy bark.

They’re Known as “the People’s Choice”

There are many different coonhound breeds, but the Treeing Walker has been referred to as “the people’s choice” among coonhounds. Many hunters think these dogs are the best for competitions because they are more “hot-nosed,” meaning they will abandon an older scent trail for a fresher one, resulting in more catches.

Treeing Walker Coonhound head portrait in profile outdoors.
Blue Tick Sugar Images

Treeing Walkers Are Versatile Hunters

Treeing Walker Coonhounds are versatile, in that they can hunt by themselves or cooperate with a pack. They can also be used to hunt larger prey that hide in trees, such as bobcats, cougars, and even small bears.

They Are One of Five Coonhound Breeds

The American Kennel Club recognizes five Coonhound breeds, including the Treeing Walker. Others include the American English, Black-and-Tan, Bluetick, and Redbone Coonhounds.

They’re ‘Treeing’ Experts

The term “Treeing” in their name comes from the hunting method where dogs chase animals up trees. Dogs don’t climb the trees – they force animals to climb them. This allows their hunters to take a better look at their game and inevitably, catch them. Sometimes these were raccoons, but sometimes also bigger game.

They Became an FSS Breed in 1995

On the road to AKC breed recognition, many breeds are categorized as FSS (Foundation Stock Service) breeds first. The Treeing Walker Coonhound became an FSS breed in 1995, and they became an AKC recognized breed 17 years later.

Best of Breed: GCH CH CCH Stackem Up The Business Breed, Treeing Walker Coonhound; Hound Group judging at the 2016 AKC National Championship presented by Royal Canin in Orlando, FL.
Photo by HOTdog

They Were Recently Recognized

The Treeing Walker Coonhound actually became a registered breed in 2012. Despite being around for generations, the Treeing Walker has only been AKC-recognized for a little over a decade.

They’re People Dogs

Treeing Walker Coonhounds are great with humans! They are very affectionate and close with their owners, and are even good with children. They’re a bit weary of strangers, but if they warm up to you, they won’t leave your side. But it doesn’t stop there: most Treeing Walkers are good with other dogs too.

Related article: What Were Hound Group Dogs Bred to Do?
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