Otterhounds have a deep bay, a lovely
melodious sound, which carries amazingly well. Some OHs are fairly quiet, and
some seem to like the sound of their own voice. It's probably
indicative of something that there are a large number of paintings and
drawings of Otterhounds with their heads thrown back and their mouths
open, caught giving voice. Many Otterhounds seem to be "mutterers"; they
grunt, groan, sigh, etc. Otterhounds are also talented "singers" and
will happily vocalize with other hounds or with people.
Listening to the "music" made by a large
pack of Otterhounds was considered one of the pleasures of the
hunt. Unfortunately, it's quite possible that your neighbors will not
like hearing your hound. Citronella bark collars are effective at
stopping some hounds from excessive vocalizing, and have the added benefit
of giving the dog a pleasant lemony smell.
As a large dog with an impressively deep voice, an Otterhound can make a good watchdog, but their friendly nature makes them poor candidates as guard dogs. They'll "woof" or bay at an unusual noise, but you'd have a hard time training most for protection work.
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