Red Catahoula Leopard Dog – Profile | Traits | Care | Behavior

red Catahoula leopard dog

Created as a looking and herding dog for the Louisiana bayous, the red Catahoula leopard dog will thrive in a lively, working setting.


Born and bred in Louisiana, the red Catahoula leopard dog dates to the very beginnings of the Louisiana Territory.

Though precise origins are considerably murky, it is typically assumed the breed took place when de Soto and his Spanish conquistadors got here to the city and bred their greyhounds with the dogs owned by the Native American inhabitants.

From that ensuing inventory, dogs had been moreover crossbred by French fur trappers within the 1700s with their Beaucerons, which has resulted within the dogs we all know as we speak.

With an eye fixed in direction of operating over kind, Catahoulas have a remarkably assorted look in coat and eye color, however, all share that sturdy, watchful, working disposition that makes them so useful in herding and looking.

Originally known as the Catahoula leopard cur, the “leopard” descriptor is a reference to the spotted—or merle—pattern the vast majority of the breed has.

That was the name they had been developed below when the Catahoula Leopard Cur Association was created in 1976 to assist standardize breeding practices and develop the breed standard for kennel membership recognition.

The name was formally modified to Catahoula leopard dog in 1979 when the breed was adopted because the official State Dog of Louisiana.

In 1996, the breed was accepted into the American Kennel Club’s (AKC) Foundation Stock Service, however as of 2020 the Catahoula leopard dog has not met the necessities for AKC registration and isn’t eligible for AKC occasions.

The breed was acknowledged by the United Kennel Club in 1995.

Red Catahoula leopard dog Description

Native to the luxurious, damp greenery of Louisiana, Catahoula leopard dogs (generally known as the Catahoula leopard cur) have been developed as remarkably versatile working dogs.

In their residence state, you’ll discover Catahoulas being tasked with herding cattle, performing as watchdogs, retrieving waterfowl, and looking wild hogs.

Aloof towards strangers, Catahoula leopards develop sturdy bonds with their family models and may make great family dogs, supplied they’re dealt with with the correct coaching in thoughts.

Bred with a robust impartial streak, Catahoulas aren’t afraid to face up for themselves and can let you realize once they disagree with one thing.

The red Catahoula leopard dogs are putting. Since the first concern of their breeding inventory is their working and herding skills, the look is commonly a secondary concern, which has allowed for a surprising quantity of variance from dog to dog.

Historically, all of today’s Catahoulas come from three breeding strains, each of which produced dogs of various sizes and colors. Over the years, these three strains have been cross-bred time and again, ensuing within the variation we see as we speak.

Coats range from single colors comparable to black, red, and yellow, to brindle and double-brindle coats. You’ll additionally see coats with the merle or “leopard” pattern that provides the dog its name, in shades of black, blue, and red.

The variation is so high that two solid-colored Catahoulas who’re bred will typically end in a litter of brindle or merle-coated pups.

These dogs usually have a clean, quick coat or a rough, medium one. The quick coat is by far the commonest. These coats are very near the body and shiny, giving the Catahoula a nearly painted look. Though single-coated, the solid red Catahoula sheds commonly.

In addition to their putting coat colorations, Catahoulas are well-known for his or her eyes, which ceaselessly are available in light colors or “glass” and “cracked glass” patterns that may make them seem slate grey, pale blue, or white.

The Catahoula additionally carries the heterochromatic gene, so they’re ceaselessly seen with two completely different eye colors.

Catahoulas stand roughly 2 feet tall and are slender, well-muscled dogs. Their faces characteristic thick, broad muzzles and huge, light eyes that give the Catahoula a watchful, alert expression.

Most Catahoulas have long, skinny tails, nonetheless, some dogs have bobbed tails that cease after the first or second vertebrae; it is a naturally occurring variation and never the results of docking.

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Red Catahoula leopard dog Temperament

Catahoulas are companion dogs, reasonably than family dogs, as a result of they don’t seem to be pleased lounging around. They need to be in a setting the place they’ll indulge in their natural inclinations of looking and herding.

If you don’t occur to reside on a ranch or within the woods, Catahoula red leopard dog will do effectively in homes with massive, fenced yards, or different locations the place they’ll get about an hour’s price of strenuous train day-after-day.

They additionally do effectively in agility, herding, and obedience competitions that assist preserve each their our bodies and minds lively and engaged. So, the perfect owner is patient, assured, and capable of offering the dog loads of workout routines.

Red Catahoula puppies are vivid dogs who decide upon instruction pretty shortly, however, they need to be dealt with in a really particular method.

Naturally willful and impartial, these dogs develop sturdy bonds with the members of their family, however, will completely not tolerate tough or impatient dealing with them. A Catahoula who feels mistreated is prone to get up for himself.

Catahoula leopards do greatest in single-animal households. They may be educated to tolerate different dogs if they’re socialized as puppies, however, even then two male red heelers Catahoula is prone to be aggressive towards each other.

The Catahoula prey drive is actually present, although not essentially overwhelming. This means they are often educated to reside with cats they’re taught are “theirs,” however cats and small animals outdoors or within the yard are in all probability going, to be honest game.

How Catahoulas do with kids will rely largely on how old they’re, and the context they’re in.

Smaller kids will run the danger of being knocked over by the lively Catahoula, and youngsters who stand at eye level with them may be mistaken as presenting a problem to the red Catahoula dog.

Older kids, particularly ones who camp or hunt, will love them as companions.

Catahoula red heeler breeds additionally make stable watchdogs, as they have a naturally suspicious view in direction of strangers. Aware of what property is “theirs” however not significantly aggressive, they may pontificate at any time when somebody new approaches.

However, Catahoulas are additionally effectively considered being glorious judges of character and can heat pretty shortly to people who don’t pose a risk.

Living Needs

The red Catahoula leopard dogs are going to be depressing in a whole lot of city settings. Apartments are significantly unhealthy decisions for them, but something that doesn’t have a good-sized, fenced-in yard goes to imply more oversight from you to make sure their bodily wants are being met.

If you’re a camper, hunter, hiker, or runner, these lively, loyal Catahoula red heeler mix dogs are going to like to associate with you. And, in fact, if you’ve bought a ranch or farm and one thing for them to herd, you’ve discovered your new greatest good friend.

Unlike most herding dogs, who’re educated to work from behind a herd and direct them from one plate to a different, red merle Catahoula leopard dogs are bred to work straight with a human and present a “canine fence” on the head of a herd, conserving them from wandering off whereas they’re labored from throughout the herd by a human handler.

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Red Catahoula leopard dog Care

The red Catahoula leopard dog’s quick, single coats will shed commonly, so brushing them a few instances per week will assist preserve hair off every little thing you personal.

It may act as a great bonding exercise with younger pups, letting them be taught who their family models are, and conserving them from becoming too aloof.

Baths are going to be strictly as-needed, which might make them an exceedingly uncommon prevalence, relying on the place you reside.

Keep red leopard Catahoula ears checked and clear so that they don’t get contaminated, and provides their teeth a regular brushing and you have to be set.


The red merle Catahoula is a reasonably wholesome breed. Hip dysplasia is the frequent spectator for many dog breeds, and the Catahoula isn’t any completely different.

The different concern is genetic deafness. A Catahoula with the predominantly white coloration is roughly 80 % prone to be both completely or unilaterally deaf.

Similarly, puppies born from litters the place each parent red Catahoula are merle-patterned (known as “double merles”) have a 25 % probability of being born blind, deaf, or each.

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