Facts and Information on the Catahoula Leopard Dog

The Catahoula Leopard Dog breed is distinguished by its remarkable looks and its tenacious work ethic. They need a leader who is forceful and constant and who has time to keep them active because they are a hardy breed of dog meant to work in swamps and woodlands.

Even though purebred dogs are rare, you might find them in the hands of rescue groups or shelters. These puppies love to cuddle with their owners and are highly devoted if cared for well. These dogs also require a lot of exercise, so if you have a spacious home and an open backyard, you can bring these fluffy dogs at home. 

Catahoula Leopard Dog Profile: IMAGE

Breed Name Catahoula Leopard Dog
Other NameCatahoula curs, Catahoula leopard curs, Catahoula hounds
Dog Breed TypeHerding Dogs 
Origin  United States 
Parent Breeds  Bloodhound, mastiffs and greyhounds 
Height20 – 24 inches
Weight 50 – 90 pounds 
Life Expectancy10 – 14 years
Coat TypeShort and smooth 
Common ColorsBlack, blue, blue merle, brindle, chocolate, red, yellow, red merle, white merle, or yellow merle with/without tan markings and/or white trim
Grooming NeedsEasy to groom 
TemperamentEnergetic, protective, independent
Apartment LivingNo
Pet FriendlyMedium 
Health ConcernsHip dysplasia, eye issues, deafness
Overall HealthGood
Intelligence LevelMedium
Energy LevelHigh 
Litter Size5 to 12 puppies

Breed Characteristics

Adaptability  2 stars

Adapts Well To Apartment Living : 1 star

Good For Novice Owners : 1 star

Sensitivity Level : 2 stars

Tolerates Being Alone : 2 stars

Tolerates Cold Weather : 3 stars

Tolerates Hot Weather : 3 stars

All Around Friendliness 3 stars

Affectionate With Family : 5 stars

Kid-Friendly : 3 stars

Dog Friendly : 1 stars

Friendly Toward Strangers :  1 star

Health And Grooming Needs   3 stars

Amount Of Shedding : 3 stars

Drooling Potential : 1 stars

Easy To Groom : 5 stars

General Health : 3 stars

Potential For Weight Gain : 3 stars

Size : 4 stars

Trainability 3 stars

Easy To Train : 2 star

Intelligence : 3 stars

Potential For Mouthiness : 3 stars

Prey Drive : 1 stars

Tendency To Bark Or Howl : 3 stars

Wanderlust Potential : 3 stars

Physical Needs  4 stars

Energy Level : 4 stars

Intensity : 3 stars

Exercise Needs : 5 stars

Potential for Playfulness : 2 stars

Vital Statistics


HEIGHT : 20 to 26 INCHES

WEIGHT :  50 to 90 POUNDS

LIFE SPAN : 10 to 14 YEARS


You shouldn’t let the Catahoula live outside alone. They perform poorly in isolation because they are companion dogs. Also, try to put a leash around their neck always while walking with your dog outside, as they can be violent towards other pets. Catahoula requires strict, regular training because they are exceptionally intelligent animals.

Due to their high energy levels, Catahoula requires at least one hour of intense exercise each day.

All year long, Catahoula shed gently to moderately. These dogs need grooming once a week to remove dead hair and to maintain a glossy and soft coat. If you want your Catahoula dog to socialize among other pets and humans, try to train them as early as possible. You can also invite your friends and neighbors to your home to make your dog easily socialize with them.

The Catahoula is not advised for a nervous or novice owner. This breed requires a self-assured trainer who is firm, consistent, yet caring at the same time. Catahoula puppies want toys that are robust and long-lasting.

A gated yard and an opportunity for the dog to engage in its natural tasks of tracking and herding are necessary for the ideal home for a Catahoula. While Catahoula is protective of the youngsters in their family, they are not animal nannies.


The Catahoula developed in northern Louisiana close to Catahoula Lake and was given its name after a Choctaw Indian word for “holy lake.” They most likely resulted from crossbreeding between native canines and the Bloodhounds, Mastiffs, and Greyhounds that Spanish explorers introduced to the region. When they were chosen to represent Louisiana as the state dog, their previous names—Catahoula curs, Catahoula leopard curs, and Catahoula hounds—were legally changed to Louisiana Catahoula Leopard Dog. These dogs have an interesting breed history and impressive working ability, which makes them unique from other dog breeds. Although it is not appropriate for life with every family, when you commit to one and develop a relationship with them, you have a dependable guardian and friend for life.


Males range in height from 22 to 26 inches and weigh between 65 and 90 pounds, while females weigh between 20 and 24 inches and 50 and 65 pounds. Personality

The right kind of Catahoula is not hostile to people. They are cautious around strangers but never timid. They are dedicated and attentive when it comes to their family. Male Catahoula can be hostile towards other males and work fiercely in general, which is essential when corralling savage animals like wild hogs or cattle. Their natural instinct is to hunt and herd prey; therefore, if they are unable to do so, they require another way to release their energy. Catahoula makes good watchdogs and will bark at approaching visitors to warn them off or otherwise become alert. Be strong with them, yet fair. They reject physical or verbal abuse as unacceptable. Early socialization and interactions with other people, sites, sounds, and experiences are necessary for Catahoulas. At the same time, they are young, and it should continue throughout their lives, just like any other dog. In order to ensure that your Catahoula puppy develops into a well-rounded canine, socialization is important. It’s a good idea to put them in a kindergarten class for puppies. You can also develop their social skills by hosting small parties at your home, taking them to parks, or taking them to dog-friendly shops, etc. 


Basically, Catahoula dogs maintain good health but like other breeds, they can get some health problems. It’s vital to be aware of these ailments if you’re thinking about getting a Catahoula, even though not all of them will affect this breed.

The breed is susceptible to the following issues:

  • Hearing Impairment
  • Canine Hip Dysplasia (CHD) 


The Catahoula is not a breed of dog that is suitable for being chained up and left outside. They should be as comfortable inside your house as they are out in the yard. They also require companionship and exercise. For this breed, underground electric barriers are inappropriate. The absence of a good fence prevents other dogs from entering the yard, which can result in a major battle between the dogs. A Catahoula will overlook the shock if they perceive another dog approaching its domain.

The day when you bring your new Catahoula puppy home, start training him. They are quick learners and bright, but they require a strong leader. To achieve the finest outcomes and create the strongest link possible with your Catahoula, be persistent, firm, and patient. Inform them of your expectations before allowing them to go to work. Always search for positive habits to praise rather than negative behaviors to correct. The dog’s personality and self-confidence might be harmed by harsh reprimand. You can live together happily if you engage in social interaction and regular training. A Catahoula who is lonely or bored will resort to harmful amusement. 

Feeding and Diet

The suggested daily intake is 3 3/8 to 5 1/8 cups of premium dog food divided into two meals each day. To avoid stomach dilatation volvulus, also referred to as bloat, wait at least an hour before eating or drinking anything after indulging in strenuous activity. Your adult dog’s size, age, height, metabolism, and level of exercise all affect how much food they need. Every dog is different, just like every person; thus, they don’t all need the same amount of food. It should almost go without saying that a dog that is very active will need more than a dog that is a couch potato. It is also important what kind of dog food you buy; the better the food, the more it will nourish your dog and require less shaking into their bowls.

Coat Color and Grooming

The single, short- to medium-length coat of the Catahoula is close to the body. Its texture can be anything from fine to gritty.

Catahoula comes with a variety of coat patterns and hues. The Catahoula leopard design has contrasting dots of one or more additional colors on a base color. The color of a solid’s coat is uniform. Patchwork-coated Catahoula may or may not have a dominating solid color with one or more patches of various sizes and hues dispersed throughout the body. No coat color or design is more desirable than another, yet rich, deep hues are preferred to lighter ones.


Exercise is essential for Catahoula leopard dogs to be happy and well-behaved at home. If they don’t channel their energy in a positive way, they have a tendency to become destructive. Strive to engage in vigorous playing, walking, jogging, cycling, swimming, and other forms of exercise for at least two hours each day. A Catahoula can be intellectually and physically pushed to its limits by participating in dog sports like agility and rally, and puzzle toys can keep your dog busy when you need a break.

FAQ on the breed

  • Are Catahoula Dogs Tree Climbers?

Yes, Catahoula is an excellent tree climber. In order to pursue their prey, Catahoula acquired the skill of climbing trees.

  • How long is the life span of a Catahoula leopard?

The typical lifespan of a Catahoula leopard is 12 to 14 years.

  • Are Catahoula good dogs for families?

Although they work best with older kids, Catahoula makes terrific family dogs and does well in busy households.

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