The Bloodhound is a large breed of dog that was bred originally to hunt deer and wild boar, later specifically to track human beings by scent. It is famed for its ability to follow scents hours or even days old over great distances. Its extraordinarily keen nose is combined with a strong and tenacious tracking instinct, producing the ideal scenthound, and it is used by police and law enforcement the world over to track escaped prisoners, missing persons, and even missing pets.
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This breed is a gentle dog which is nonetheless tireless in following a scent. Because of its strong tracking instinct, it can be willful and somewhat difficult to obedience train. Bloodhounds have an affectionate, gentle, and even-tempered nature, so they make excellent family pets. However, like any large breed, they require supervision when around small children.
A common misconception is that Bloodhounds are employed in packs; while this is sometimes the case in Britain, in North America bloodhounds are used as solitary trackers. When they are on a trail, they are usually silent and do not give voice as other scenthounds. The original use of the Bloodhound as a leash-hound, to find but not disturb animals, would require silent trailing.