The exact ancestry of the Otterhound is uncertain, but there is a number of theories suggesting it is descended from various bloodhounds, mastiffs, foxhounds, bearded shepherds, harriers, terriers, griffons and water spaniels. This powerful working breed has been used for hunting otters since the 1100's, but it also makes a capable large game hunter, watchdog and rural companion.
The Otterhound is a tall and massive dog, with a muscular body, sturdy legs, powerful neck and a large head. Even though the Otterhound is devoted to its master and loving of children, it is only moderately popular as a family pet. Kept primarily as working hunters, Otterhounds are excellent swimmers and are healthy, resilient and strong dogs, perfectly suited for both the outside and indoor life. However, they can be quite strong-willed and territorial, needing proper socialization and training.
The weatherproof double coat is thick and rough, coming in all colours. Average height is around 27 inches.