A History of the Hanoverian Scenthound Hannoverscher Schweisshund

In Europe during the Middle Ages (500 A.D.) leashed hunting hounds (liam hounds) were known for their ability to hunt and kill wild game. After firearms were invented, the method of hunting and retrieval of game animals changed. The use of blood tracking hounds (Schweisshunds or Bracken) to locate wounded game was necessary. At that time, the hunting estate of Hanover was known for breeding and handling the blood tracking hound that held it’s name. Not much is known about the breed mixture that was· used in the Hanoverian Scenthound development, however it is thought that Bloodhound and Bracken breeds figured prominently. Since the 1600’s the Hanoverian Scenthound has remained largely unchanged. In 1894 a German breed club was established to preserve and promote the working qualities of the Hanoverian Scenthound.

Hanoverian Scenthounds are classified as a large breed with heavy bone and musculature. Males are heavier and larger than females, averaging over 80 pounds at maturity. This breed is somewhat independent and wary of strangers.

Around 1750 in the United States, the German immigrant Johannes Plott settled in what is now North Carolina. He brought with him 5 Hanoverian Scenthounds from Germany that were skilled in hunting wild boar and tracking wounded game. These Hanoverian Scenthounds were used in developing the Plott Hound seen today.

The Hanoverian Scenthound is recognized by the FCI. In 1946 the United Kennel Club recognized the breed. In 2017 The Hanoverian Scenthound Club of America was formed to promote and protect the qualities of the breed in the United States. In 2017 the breed was introduced to the AKC for inclusion in their Foundation Stock Service.


As with any large dog breed, the possibility exists for hip and elbow dysplasia, patella luxation, and bloat. There have been reports of eye and heart disease, idiopathic epilepsy, and temperament problems. Fortunately, this breed is not known for having a high risk for any of these conditions. It is recommended however that breeding pairs be tested for these prior to mating.

Living with a Hanoverian

The Hanoverian Scenthound is a working breed, and therefore requires regular exercise and mental stimulation to keep it healthy and content. This breed is at it’s best with regular hunting and tracking activity. During the off season it is suggested that physical activity such as jogging, hiking, and ball toss be used to control boredom and pent up energy. This breed would not be suitable for life in an apartment or cramped living quarters. Hanoverians that are kenneled or crated for long periods of time tend to develop neurotic behaviors such as barking, circling, chewing their paws, and emotional withdraw.

This breed matures slowly, remaining very puppy like for several years. Due to their large size, Hanoverian Scethounds might injure snall children or frail adults with their rambunctious play. Properly trained, this breed is capable of co-existing with other dogs and family pets. This dog breed ha a very high prey drive which might create a threat to small animals.

Hanoverians are somewhat independent and wary of strangers, therefore it is important that puppies be socialized to accept handling and attention from non-family members and friends. Like similar dog breeds that have been developed to assist humans with tasks, the Hanoverian Scenthound tends to prefer one person as the owner. The breed is loyal and protective of its owner and home. Care must be exercised that Hanoverians are not allowed to show aggression towards people or other dogs as this is a serious disqualification listed in the breed standard. Breeders should avoid using overly aggressive or shy dogs in their programs.

There are many activities that you can enjoy with your Hanoverian Scenthound. AKC offers competitive tracking, scent detection, and obedience tests. This breed is capable of competing in dock diving, conformation, and rally events. The primary use for this breed has been any task that utilizes their incredible scent detection. Hanoverians have been trained to assist with medical alert, medical therapy, and service tasks. Police and law enforcement are using Hanoverian Scenthounds for search and rescue, bomb detection, man trailing, and cadaver recovery. Hunters enjoy using this breed for its intended use, that of locating wounded or dead game animals for an ethical harvest.

Breed Standards

Click below for more information on the Bavarian Mountain Scent Hound breed standards.

Breeder Directory and Rescue


Breeders listed here are Members in good standing, have signed their commitment to the Code of Ethics, and have performed OFA Health Testing on their breeding stock prior to mating. Our organization is held harmless for any problems that occur from using this list, the transaction is solely between buyer and seller.

Oak Hill Kennel Cynthia Drake Olsie Owens

oakhillkennel-deer.com Oakhilldogs@gmail.com


As dogs and puppies come available for re-homing or rescue they will be added here. Our organization is devoted to protecting the breed by properly placing these animals in the proper home environment. Please check back as this will be updated monthly.