The Lithuanian Hound: All You Need to Know

The Lithuanian Hound is a muscular hunting dog whose ancestry goes back to medieval times and the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. 

In this article, we will explore the history, physical characteristics, personality, health, and lifespan of this unique Lithuanian Hound.

History and Origin of the Lithuanian Hound

Development of the Breed

The Lithuanian Hound is a breed that can trace its roots back to the Middle Ages. The breed originated in Lithuania by local hunters to assist with tracking game.

It is thought that the Lithuanian Hound was developed by mixing local dogs with hounds that were brought over to Lithuania from various countries in the 14th century.

The Breed’s Significance in Lithuania

Over time, the Lithuanian Hound became more refined, and selective breeding helped maintain its unique qualities. The breed was primarily used for hunting foxes, hares, and deer, but it was also for tracking wild boar and elk.

Lithuanian hunters prized the breed for its strong sense of smell, stamina, and courage in the face of danger. The Lithuanian Hound’s popularity continued to grow in Lithuania, and the breed became an integral part of Lithuanian culture. The breed was also celebrated in art and literature.

Recognition and Popularity

The Lithuanian Hound is not recognized by the Fédération Cynologique Internationale and other major kennel clubs around the world. Also, the breed is relatively unknown outside Lithuania, where it is kept as a hunting dog and companion pet. 

Physical Characteristics and Appearance

The Lithuanian Hound is a medium-sized dog breed that is both elegant and athletic in appearance. It is known for its distinctive features and striking coat colors.

Size and Weight

The Lithuanian Hound weighs between 53 and 66 pounds. Male breed members stand 20 to 24 inches tall at the shoulders, and females around 19 to 22 inches. Females are also more slender and elegant, while males are bulkier and more muscular. 

Coat and Colors

The Lithuanian Hound has a short and dense coat that is easy to maintain. The coat has a glossy sheen, which adds to the dog’s overall regal appearance. The standard coat color is black with tan markings. 

Distinctive Features

The Lithuanian Hound is a beautiful and noble-looking breed with a muscular and agile body that is well-proportioned, allowing for great stamina and endurance. A notable feature is the elongated head, which is slightly curved at the nose.

The Lithuanian Hound’s ears are medium-length, drooping, and always hang close to the cheeks. The eyes are dark and soulful, with a calm and attentive expression that makes the breed a favorite among dog lovers.

Personality and Temperament

The Lithuanian Hound is friendly, peaceful, and intelligent. It is well-suited to family life, and it is loyal and affectionate towards its owners. The easy-going personality makes the Lithuanian Hound a joy to be around, and breed members thrive on being part of the family unit.

Kid-Friendly Nature

One of the most endearing traits of the Lithuanian Hound is their love for children. They adore playing and spending time with kids, and they are known for being gentle and patient with them.

In fact, Lithuanian Hounds are often seen as excellent babysitters, and they will happily spend hours entertaining and watching over their young charges.

Interaction with Animals 

But it’s not just children that the Lithuanian Hound gets along with. They are also known for being great with other pets in the family, provided they are introduced to them correctly.

Their friendly and easy-going nature means Lithuanian Hounds are quick to make friends with other animals, and they are happy to share their home with them.

Intelligence & Training

When it comes to trainability and intelligence, the Lithuanian Hound is a breed that excels. They are smart and obedient, and they are quick learners.

Lithuanian Hounds have excellent problem-solving skills, and they are adaptable to a variety of training methods. 

Health and Lifespan

Common Health Issues

The Lithuanian Hound is generally a healthy breed. However, like all dogs, it may be prone to certain conditions, such as: 

  • Hip Dysplasia: A congenital malformation of the hip followed by joint laxity, pain, arthritis, and lameness 
  • Bloating: Life-threatening accumulation of gas and liquid in the stomach which makes it twist around itself
  • Ear Infections: The breed is susceptible to ear infections due to dirt and moisture buildup in the ear canals 
  • Cryptorchidism: A condition in which one or both of the dog’s testicles fail to descend into the scrotal sac 

Preventative Care and Regular Checkups

To keep your Lithuanian Hound healthy, provide it with preventative care, including regular vet checkups, vaccinations, and parasite control.

It’s also important to maintain dental hygiene and ensure the Lithuanian Hound gets enough exercise, mental stimulation, and a balanced diet.

Expected Lifespan

With proper care and attention, the Lithuanian Hound can live a long and healthy life, with a lifespan of around 12 years.


The Lithuanian Hound is a unique and fascinating dog breed that is often overlooked. With its long and noble history, beautiful appearance, and friendly temperament, it’s a breed that is well-suited to family life.

If you’re looking for a loyal companion and a great hunting dog, the Lithuanian Hound may be the perfect breed for you. Research the dog’s needs and find a reputable breeder before making a final decision. 

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