If you are planning to hunt bears, you need a strong and agile dog that can track, chase, and even restrain a bear. While any dog can theoretically hunt bears, some breeds have been specifically bred for this task and have a better chance of success. In this article, we’ll introduce you to the top 10 dog breeds bred for hunting bears, their characteristics, and their history.
Top 10 dogs bred for hunting bears
Here is the list of the top 10 dogs bred for hunting bears. The list is rated upside down.
- Karelian Bear Dog
Originating from Finland, the Karelian Bear Dog is a medium-sized spitz-type dog that has been used for centuries to hunt bears and other large game. These dogs are fearless, tenacious, and highly trainable. They have a sharp sense of smell and hearing, and they can work independently or in a team. Karelian Bear Dogs are also loyal and protective of their owners and make great family pets if properly socialized.
This is why the Karelian Bear dog is listed at the top of the list when it comes to the top 10 dogs bred for hunting bears.
- Black Russian Terrier
Bred in the former Soviet Union, the Black Russian Terrier was created as a multipurpose working dog, including bear hunting. These large and powerful dogs have a thick coat and muscular bodies that can withstand harsh weather and rough terrain. They are intelligent, brave, and have a strong prey drive. However, they also need a lot of exercises and mental stimulation to thrive.
- American Black and Tan Coonhound
Originally developed in the southern United States, the American Black and Tan Coonhound is a scent hound that was used to track and tree raccoons, but also bears. These dogs have a keen sense of smell, a loud bark, and a persistent nature that makes them great at their job. They are also friendly and affectionate with their families, although they may be too noisy for some people.
- Plott Hound
Another American breed, the Plott Hound was created by German immigrant Johannes Plott to hunt bears and wild boars in the Appalachian Mountains. These dogs are muscular and athletic, with a short coat that comes in various shades of brindle. They have a strong nose and an intense prey drive, but they also need a firm and consistent training to avoid aggression or independence.
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- Russian Caucasian Mountain Dog
Also known as the Caucasian Shepherd Dog, this massive and protective breed was originally bred to guard livestock and property from predators, including bears. These dogs can weigh up to 200 pounds and have a thick coat and a strong will. They are loyal to their owners but wary of strangers, and they need early socialization and training to prevent aggression or territorial behavior.
- Alaskan Malamute
Although primarily known as a sled dog, the Alaskan Malamute was also used for hunting bears by the Inuit people. These dogs have a dense coat and a sturdy build that can withstand cold weather and heavy loads. They are loyal, intelligent, and friendly with their families, but they can be stubborn or dominant if not properly trained or exercised.
- Canadian Eskimo Dog
Another Arctic breed, the Canadian Eskimo Dog is a rare and hardy dog that has been used for hunting polar bears and other game by the Inuit and other indigenous people. They are also included in the top 10 dogs bred for hunting bears. These dogs are large and muscular, with a thick coat and a wolf-like appearance. They are also independent, intelligent, and adaptable to harsh environments. However, they are not for everyone, as they require a lot of space, exercise, and attention.
- Treeing Walker Coonhound
A descendant of the English Foxhound, the Treeing Walker Coonhound is a fast and agile dog that was originally used to hunt raccoons, but also bears. These dogs have a keen sense of smell and sight, and they love to chase prey.
- Russian Bear Dog
Also known as the Caucasian Shepherd Dog, this breed is a massive and powerful working dog that was bred for hunting and guarding. They are highly skilled in tracking and taking down large game, including bears. These dogs have a protective and loyal nature and are known for their courage and fearlessness. However, they require a firm and experienced handler who can provide them with proper socialization and training. Russian Bear Dogs are not recommended for first-time dog owners or households with small children.
Due to this Russian Bear dog is enlisted in the top 10 dogs bred for hunting bears list.
- Dogo Argentino
Originally bred in Argentina for big game hunting, the Dogo Argentino is a powerful and muscular breed that is well-suited for hunting bears. These dogs are known for their high energy levels and fearless nature and require an experienced handler who can provide them with proper training and socialization. While not as well-known as some of the other breeds on this list, the Dogo Argentino is a force to be reckoned with in the hunting world.
Factors affecting dogs bred for hunting bears
If you are considering getting a dog bred for hunting bears, there are some important factors to keep in mind. These dogs are typically large and powerful and require experienced handlers who can properly train and manage them. It’s also important to note that hunting bears are not legal in all areas, so be sure to check local laws and regulations before pursuing this activity with your dog. Moreover, also check whether the dog breeds bred for hunting bears are allowed and legal in your area or not.
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Overall, if you are an experienced hunter and are interested in pursuing bear hunting with a dog, one of these breeds may be right for you. However, it’s important to remember that these dogs require a lot of training, exercise, and attention in order to thrive, and may not be the best fit for all households. As with any dog, it’s important to do your research and choose a breed that fits your lifestyle and needs.
In conclusion, the top 10 dog breeds bred for hunting bears is a diverse group of powerful and skilled canines. From the speedy and agile Plott Hound to the sturdy and reliable Karelian Bear Dog, each breed brings its own unique set of strengths and abilities to the table. Whether you are a seasoned hunter or simply a dog enthusiast, learning more about these impressive breeds is sure to be a fascinating and rewarding experience.