As the name implies, the Bavarian Mountain Hound (also known as Bayrischer Gebirgsschweisshund) is a breed of blood hound originally used in the state of Bavaria in southern Germany to track game wounded in the hunt. It is a cross between the larger Hanovarian Bloodhound and the smaller Tyrolean Scent hound, initially bred by Baron Karg-Bebenburg in the 1870s. This medium-sized breed was developed for the purpose of tracking down a hot or a cold blood trail from a wounded game in the rugged mountainous regions of Bavaria. Because some countries require all hunters to find all shot game, wounded or dead, hunters needed a dog breed which could easily follow the trail of a game, even from a few drops of blood. The skills of the Bavarian Mountain Hound ensured that the quarry is found and secured even on heavy cover and rough terrain. Today, this breed is still widely popular to European game wardens, trackers and hunters, but is still uncommon as a pet dog.
The Bavarian Mountain Hound is a calm, level-headed, and quiet dog, who does not bark very often. It is a very loyal breed, very attached to its master and family. It is courageous, energetic, and a quick-learner which is responsive to commands from a respected handler, traits descended from bloodhounds with powerful hunting instinct. However, this same highly specialized trait requires a very patient, experienced trainer to bring out the best in the breed, and typically is not suited for the casual owner. It is a scent hound who is used to working with a single handler where the breed's loyalty is greatest but will show loyalty to all members of the family provided that it is treated as a valued member.
This breed loves nothing more than his home comforts, but needs a firm hand along with training before he can settle in fully. At the beginning stage of training this breed will need to be worked into the breed that he was bred for. Training for this breed is best down with an award led regime.
Basic obedience training should start from an early age. This is also true with regards to the process of socializing the dog with various people and other animals so that it will be motivated to become a good member of the society.
Grooming requirement is very little. Brushing the coat with a soft-bristled comb every week and cleaning the ears, teeth, and trimming the claws is enough.
No hereditary health problems are documented for this breed. However, there are some cases in Europe where certain Bavarian Mountain Hounds suffer from hip dysplasia.
Since its main purpose is to track wounded game, one of the major requirements of a Bavarian Mountain Hound is a regular and extensive exercise regime. A large yard with a secured fence will allow the dog to run and explore, which will keep it mentally alert. In the absence of a large garden, a considerable amount of daily lead walking should meet the daily physical needs. However, it is not advisable to allow the Bavarian Mountain Hound to roam off-lead as it can easily get lost, especially if it picks up a scent and follows it.
Although it is a working dog, the Bavarian Mountain Hound can be relied upon with children if it is well-socialized since puppy hood and was able to grow up with them. Its independent nature allows it to be moderately reserved with other canines, but typically not aggressive.