Great Gascony Blue – Complete breed profile

The dignified expression and majestic demeanor of the Great Blue of Gascony dogs impress from the very first moment. Developed in the French countryside to accompany royalty on hunting expeditions, these dogs are perfect for families with an active lifestyle and a predilection for outdoor walks.

At home they are affectionate, loyal and devoted to their own, with a very sociable personality, especially with other animals with whom they share the household. But that’s not all. Let’s take a look at all the details of this impressive canine breed.

Physical characteristics of the Great Gascony Blue

This kind of dog stands out for its noble appearance and intimidating size. Their build is slender and elongated, with large bones and well-developed musculature. They have well boned legs and great endurance. The forelegs are thick and straight, while the hind legs stand out for their athletic ability and strength. The tail is sabre-shaped.

Great Gascony Blue

On the other hand, the Great Gascony Blue has a dome-shaped skull and a medium-sized muzzle with drooping lips and cheeks. The eyes are round and dark-colored, with a calm, knowing expression. The ears, long and drooping, are set on each side of the head.

Their most characteristic feature is the bluish coat, due to the visual effect caused by the black spots scattered on the white fur of the back. It is also common for them to have an oval spot on top of the head and tan markings over the eyes and cheeks.

  • Height between 65 to 72 cm in males and 62 to 68 cm in females.
  • Weight between 35 and 55 kg in males and females.
  • Short, rough and very dense hair all over the body.
  • Icon-character Affectionate, docile, friendly with other dogs.
  • Strong health although they are prone to dysplasia.
  • Estimated life expectancy of 10 years
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What is the character of the Great Blue of Gascony like?

Despite their imposing appearance, these dogs are usually extremely affectionate and very docile with the people they share their lives with. They get along wonderfully with children, although due to their large size you should closely control their play sessions. They will establish positive relationships with other animals in the home, as they feel more comfortable as part of a pack.

Great Gascony Blue

They do not adapt so well to a city environment and even less to living in small apartments. They are too large dogs to feel comfortable in cramped quarters and, in addition, they have a very intense and deep howl that will surely disgust both friends and strangers.

A Large Gascony Blue will be happy in the country, either on a farm or in a suburban cottage where he has plenty of room to move around. People who enjoy hiking or trekking will find in these dogs an ideal companion.

Their hunting instinct remains latent, so you should always take them out on a leash, especially if you are likely to come across small animals such as cats, rabbits or birds, which they will chase like prey. In some places they are still used to stalk deer and wild boar.

Recommended care for the breed

The Great Blue Gascony needs at least 2 hours of physical activity per day. It is recommended that these outings be in open spaces, so that they can move freely. Hunting exercises are also a good option, as this helps them to stay balanced.

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Great Gascony Blue

Dogs of this breed take time to complete their maturation, so they will continue to behave like puppies until they are two years old. For this reason, their muscles and joints should not be strained until their growth is complete. In the meantime, keep them from climbing too many stairs or climbing furniture when they are small.

Coat care is simple and no more than one brushing a week is needed. Baths are necessary once a month, unless they come back very dirty from an outing. Also, after each outing you should check their paws to make sure they have not picked up any thorns.

Their ears should also be checked frequently, as they tend to accumulate humidity, which can lead to fungus. Finally, it is advisable to look at their thighs and abdomen for parasites or ticks when they return from areas with dense vegetation.

History of the Greater Gascony Blue

The Great Blue of Gascony is believed to have originated in the Middle Ages and to have arisen from the crossing of a St. Hubert breed with native varieties in what is now French Gascony. For centuries they were a favorite of the aristocratic classes, helping the nobles in the hunting of wolves, bears and wild boars.

Great Gascony Blue

Unfortunately, this linkage meant that after the French Revolution they ceased to be bred and their numbers dropped drastically in France. The breed would find in North America a suitable place to continue its development. In fact, there is a very popular variety of hounds in the USA, the Bluetick Conhound, which is directly descended from these dogs. Bluetick Conhounds are excellent raccoon tracking and chasing dogs and have inherited the great sense of smell of their European ancestors.

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Curiosities of the Great Gascony Bluetick

Some lovers of the breed claim that the Great Gascony Bluetick packs had a stamina and nose of such sensitivity that they could track their prey for weeks. Because they worked in packs of five or more, they had the ability to account for a bear without trouble or to immobilize it until the hunter arrived.

Paradoxically, these dogs that were synonymous with the absolutist monarchy in France became a symbol of the struggle for freedom of the English colonies in North America. Legend has it that it was the Marquis de Lafayatte, a French aristocrat, who took the first specimens of Big Blue to North America.

This nobleman joined the American struggle for Independence and, in 1785, when he met George Washington, he gave him seven magnificent hounds, which accompanied the hero throughout his liberation campaign. According to many accounts, the Great Blue of Gascony and Washington became inseparable.

Great Gascony Blue – Complete breed profile
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