Plott Hound Native to Haywood County

A man and Plott hound on a bear hunt in western North Carolina. Image from the State Archives.On August 12, 1989, the Plott Hound was officially designated as the State Dog.

One of only four dog breeds native to the United States, the breed was developed in Haywood County by the Plott family. The foundation stock for the dogs that became Plott Hounds came to America with Johannes George Plott in 1750.

The Plotts bred hard-working, tenacious and loyal dogs that would hunt bears and wild boars with boundless courage. Plott enthusiasts describe the breed as bold and energetic hunting dogs, gentle with people and loyal to their owners. The breed was popular across the region as early as the mid 1800s; people from near and far would travel to Haywood County to get puppies from the Plott family.


Plott hounds on the Plott family farm in Haywood County. Image the State Archives.The dogs, once black, brown or brindle, are now usually brindle—meaning stripes of varying color. They stand 20 to 25 inches at the shoulder, weigh about 45 to 55 pounds and are strong and fast. The Plott Hound has a distinctive high-pitched bark that is effective in alerting hunters to treed prey.

The American Kennel Club recognized the Plott hound as a distinctive breed in 1998.

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