The Treeing Walker Coonhound is a sturdy, sleek, well-balanced and symmetrical breed of the coonhound type, and is perfectly suited for the job he was bred to do ~ tracking and treeing wild raccoons in their natural habitat of varying terrain.
The head is handsome and with medium length ears set moderately low, reaching or nearly reaching the tip of the nose, and oval or round at the tip and hanging gracefully towards the muzzle. The eyes are large and set well apart with a soft, hound-like expression, dark in color. The muzzle is of medium length and rather square with a medium stop; neither Roman-nosed nor dish faced. The nostrils are large and black.
The neck is of medium length, rising from the shoulders cleanly. The shoulder blades present a laid back appearance, providing great freedom of movement and strength. The depth of the chest is more important than the width and descends approximately to the point of the elbows. The ribs are well-sprung, never flat. The back is strong and muscular with a nearly level topline, and the tail is set on moderately high and carried up and saber-like. The legs are straight and parallel from elbow to pastern, with pasterns strong and slightly slanting but standing almost perpendicular to the ground. The hind quarters are muscular and powerful with well muscled thighs of considerable length. The stifles are well bent and the hocks clean, denoting endurance and power.
The coat of the Treeing Walker Coonhound is short and glossy, but dense enough for protection. Tri-colored (white, black and tan) is the preferred coloring of the breed. Often there is a saddle back or blanket back marking. White with tan or black spotting is acceptable. The average height is 20 to 27 inches and the average weight is 50 to 70 pounds, but dogs in good working condition may be a little lighter.
Two Kentuckians, George Washington Maupin and John W. Walker, are credited with the development of the Treeing Walker Coonhound. Prior to that, credit is given to importations of English Foxhounds in 1742 who became the foundation sires of the “Virginia Hounds,” which were later developed into the Walker Hound. Today the Treeing Walker maintains the same color and similar conformation to the Walker Foxhound. They were originally classified as English Coonhounds, but breeders broke away from the English Coonhound ranks in 1945 to preserve certain preferred qualities.
The Treeing Walker is described as a fast, hot-nosed, sensible hunter with a clear, ringing bugle voice or a steady clear chop with changeover at the tree. It is known for locating its prey quickly and shows great endurance and treeing ability. The breed is currently a member of the American Kennel Club’s Foundation Stock Service and has been recently advanced to the Miscellaneous Group.
Like most other Coonhound breeds, the Treeing Walker is good with children and other dogs, and their training can be done easily. While they are primarily a hunting and working dog of great enthusiasm, they do make good family companions provided they receive plenty of vigorous exercise. They are loving and eager to please, but without sufficient exercise they can become high-strung and difficult. They should be well socialized at an early age.
There is little to no information available on health issues, but they seem to be a relatively healthy breed.
The average life span of the Treeing Walker Coonhound is 12 to 13 years of age.
EXERCISE AND LIVING ACCOMMODATIONS
The Treeing Walker is not recommended for apartment life. These are highly energetic dogs that must have daily vigorous walks and a well-fenced area to run in when off leash. Like most hounds, when they either scent or see something they think is prey, they become tunnel visioned and are unaware of dangers around them, such as traffic. Once again, if these dogs do not receive enough mental and physical exercise, they can become high strung and possibly destructive.
Like so many other short coated hounds, the Treeing Walker is easily maintained by regular combing or brushing to remove dead hair. Ears should be kept clean and checked frequently for signs of infection. They are an average shedder.