by Doris Donnerman
(last updated April 3, 2009)
When the sport of chasing the hare was very popular the Harrier was usually the first dog that the hunter would choose and continued as a favorite even to the sport of foxhunting. Harriers are used primarily in packs with other dogs for hunting. Their friendly and outgoing temperament makes working with others ideal. Despite his favorable temperament, he has not reached or maintained much popularity
Many contend that the Harrier is but a small edition of the Foxhound, but some authorities have written that the breed came from a cross between the Beagle and St. Hubert Hounds. Stonehenge advanced the theory that the Harrier came from the Southern Hound, with an infusion of a little Greyhound blood. The West Country Harriers, which are colored white, white-and-lemon, badger-pie, and hare-pie, are said to have descended from the heavy, light-colored Staghounds of the Exmoor section. The rough-coated Beagle is also said to have had a part in the foundation of the breed. Foxhound blood has been introduced into many English packs.
The points of the modern Harrier are very similar to those of the English foxhound. The Harrier, however, is smaller than the English foxhound and the most popular size is nineteen to twenty-one inches. The males usually weigh from 65 to seventy pounds, while the females weigh between sixty to 65 pounds.
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