Catahoula Leopard Dogs
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Catahoula Leopard Dogs - Excellent at Hunting and Herding
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The Catahoula Leopard Dog, also known as the Catahoula Cur
or the Catahoula Hound (Though it hunts, it is not a hound,
but a herding dog.), is a very old, uniquely American dog
breed from the Catahoula Parish in the southern state of
Louisiana in the United States of America.
This is a working and hunting dog so the standard is not
refined, as dogs are bred for intelligent independence and
fierce herding and hunting ability rather than for
appearance. Individual dogs vary in size from twenty to
twenty-six inches (fifty-one to sixty-six centimeters) and
weigh from fifty to ninety pounds (twenty-two to forty-one
Catahoula Leopard Dogs are famed for being all purpose dogs
that will work both hogs and cows, trail game from bears to
rabbits, guard the farm and the family, and excel as a
companion and pet.
Though their appearance is not as standardized as many other
breeds, the breed does have some very distinctive appearance
characteristics. Most Catahoula Leopard Dogs have short-
haired, single, blue or red merle coats with patches or
speckles of white and black or black and tan.
Acceptable color patterns include black with blue or gray
patches, gray (black that has been diluted by the merle
gene), tri-color, quad-color, and patchwork on a white
background. Coat texture may vary from slick to coarse but
should always be single.
The eyes may be their most distinctive appearance
characteristic, as they may be gray, brown, green, or amber.
And many have "cracked glass" or "marbled glass" eyes, which
means that the eye is blue or blue-white and may have
colored patches in the "glass."
Another fairly unique characteristic that particularly suits
this breed to its rural, swampy origin is that the feet are
extremely webbed, with the web extending almost to the end
of the toes. Consequently they are great swimmers and can
run well through even very marshy spots.
This breed is protective of its family and their property to
the death, owners say that you don't own a Catahoula, it
owns you. They are great alarm dogs, and as long as they are
properly socialized and trained, they are consummate family
dogs as well.
The Catahoula's fame as a brave, intelligent all-around farm
dog has spread worldwide and the breed has become popular in
Australia's Northern Territory and in New Zealand for
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