The Treeing Tennessee Brindle is a recently developed breed that originates from the Ozarks and Appalachian Mountain region of the United States. A man named Rev. Earl Phillips is credited with creating the Treeing Tennessee Brindle Breeders Association in 1967. He not only worked to develop this breed, but to promote it as well. The Treeing Tennessee Brindle was developed from many different breeds around Tennessee, including the Old Brindle Cur Dog. The Treeing Tennessee Brindle was created to be a more versatile hunting dog, with excellent treeing abilities as well as an ability to be compatible with humans as well as other dogs. These dogs have an excellent sense of smell and are able to track prey very effectively. They are mostly used to tree raccoons and other small prey. The Treeing Tennessee Brindle is not yet officially recognized by the AKC, but they have been recorded in the Foundation Stock Service since 1995. This service is a preliminary step to AKC recognition and its purpose is to keep records and information on breeds that are either rare or still being developed.
The Treeing Tennessee Brindle is a medium sized and athletic breed. They stand at about 16 to 24 inches tall at the withers and they should weigh between 35 and 50 pounds. The head is slightly domed with a strong muzzle that has a well defined stop. The nose is black and the small eyes should be dark brown in color. The pendant ears are triangular and rest alongside the dog’s cheeks. The long tail reaches the hock and is strong at the base, tapering to a point. The Treeing Tennessee Brindle has a short smooth coat, and what differentiates this breed from similar dogs is their unique brindle look. The coat is either solid brindle, or black with brindle trim. Some dogs may have small white markings on the chest or feet. Grooming this breed is relatively simple. They will need regular brushing to remove loose and dead hair. The nails should be kept trimmed and the ears will need to be checked regularly as well, especially if the dog has been out hunting.
Treeing Tennessee Brindles are a generally easy going breed. They are both loyal and affectionate with their families, as well as passionate hunters. These dogs do best in families with older children that can understand how to interact with and command the dog. They get along very well with other dogs, but are not reccomended for households with non-canine pets because of their strong hunting instincts. These dogs also have a tendency to bark at anything they think is suspicious, which makes them excellent watch dogs. These dogs need thorough obedience training while they are still young. They will learn very quickly with the proper techniques. The owner of this breed should be a firm and consistent pack leader towards the dog, but not too harsh. These dogs are sensitive to tone of voice and heavy-handed training techniques will frighten the dog and not be effective. Early socialization is also extremely important for these dogs. This means taking them out to expose them to new people, places, and situations. Doing this will help them to grow into a well rounded adult dog that doesn’t feel timid when facing something new.
As a hunting breed the Treeing Tennessee Brindle is a highly active dog that is not recommended for apartment life. They do best in a rural setting where they will have a lot of room to run and hone their hunting skills. These dogs can do alright in a house as long as they have a large yard and are being taken out for a long walk or run every day. They enjoy being around their family and will make a good jogging companion. If they are not getting enough exercise, this dog will become frustrated and unhappy, often finding a destructive outlet for their pent up energy.
Treeing Tennessee Brindles are thought to be a relatively healthy breed, but because they have been around only a short time and are still being developed, their genetic health issues are still mostly unknown. It is always important to check with the breeder and ask about any health issues the parents may have had before adopting a dog. Make sure to keep the ears clean and dry in order to prevent infections. Ear infections are caused by moisture that harbors bacteria and are characterized by “hot spots,” when the inner ear is warm and red.
Overall the Treeing Tennessee Brindle is a breed that is best suited to a hunter or a very active owner. They need lots of exercise and especially love to hunt. As a companion these dogs will get along well with older children and other canines. Training and socializing is very important, but must be done in a gentle manner.