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Catahoula-Leopard-DogBreed Group: Herding

Height: 20 to 26 inches at the shoulder

Weight: 50 to 95 pounds

Life Span: 10 to 12 years

The hard-working Catahoula Leopard Dog, the official canine of Louisiana, was developed to catch and drive wild hogs and cattle to market. When he’s off-duty, the Catahoula Leopard Dog is an excellent family dog who’s both protective and affectionate.

Did You Know the Catahoula-Leopard-Dog is a Clown at Heart?

The Louisiana-bred Catahoula Leopard Dog sports webbed feet — so he can swamp crawl.

The Catahoula Leopard Dog, short for Louisiana Catahoula Leopard Dog, is believed to have originated in northern Louisiana. The job of these rugged but beautiful “hog dogs” was to drive livestock to slaughter. Today, he’s still more of a working dog than a pet, but he’s undoubtedly versatile. If you don’t have hogs for him to boss around, he’s eligible to compete in American Kennel Club companion events, such as agility, obedience, and rally. Considering his smarts and athleticism, he’ll likely beat out all the competition.

You can also count on the Catahoula Leopard Dog to watch over you and your home. Although he’s aloof toward people he doesn’t know, the Catahoula Leopard Dog should never be shy or aggressive. When he’s around his family, he is gentle, loyal, always affectionate—not to mention a clown at heart.

The Catahoula Leopard Dog is a strong, independent canine who requires firm leadership. The breed’s activity level varies from individual to individual, but it’s wise to assume that he’s going to demand a great deal of exercise. Always walk him on a leash, so he doesn’t practice his aggressive driving skills on other animals. The Catahoula Leopard Dog can adapt to living indoors or outdoors, but he needs a securely fenced yard—along with plenty of human companionship.

Other Quick Facts About the Catahoula-Leopard-Dog

The Catahoula Leopard Dog has a striking, short- to medium-length coat that can be spotted, brindle, patched or solid.

Catahoula Leopard Dogs have distinctive eyes colored blue, green, brown or amber. Some of them come with odd eyes—each one is a different color—or two-colored “cracked” eyes.

Legend has it that the name Catahoula was derived from the Muskogee word for Choctaw.

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