Hamiltonstovare Breed Information and Buying advice


Are You Looking to Buy or Adopt a Hamiltonstovare?

Quick Hamiltonstovare Facts

Average Size of Adult
Medium (3/5)
Puppy Puppy Puppy Puppy Puppy
Grooming Requirement
Low (1/3)
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High (3/3)
Puppy Puppy Puppy
Average Life Span
10-12 years (4/8)
Exercise Requirements
High (3/3)
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Medium (2/3)
Puppy Puppy Puppy
Low (1/3)
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Child friendly
Yes (1/2)
High (3/3)
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Breed Group
Hound (2/8)
No (2/2)

Hamiltonstovare (Swedish Foxhound, Hamilton Hound)


Originating from Sweden, the Hamiltonstovare is a scent hound that was developed by crossing German Hounds with the English Foxhound. The Hamiltonstovare hunts alone rather than in a pack and was traditionally used for hunting deer, boar, fox and hare. As a working hound the Hamiltonstovare has lots of energy and is best suited to an active family that enjoys being outdoors. Hamiltonstovare make great family pets but need experienced owners to handle these typical hounds. These charming dogs look similar to the English Foxhound with short, tricolour coats and large drop ears. 

Physical Appearance 

The Hamiltonstovare is easy to recognise thanks to their distinctive hound appearance with a slender frame, tricolour coat and large drop ears. There is a clear resemblance between the Hamiltonstovare  and English Foxhounds. This breed has a long head, a broad skull and a long, rectangular muzzle. Hamiltons have well formed jowls, a black nose and large nostrils. The breed's eyes are always dark in colour and hold an intelligent expression. 


Hamiltonstovares have muscular shoulders, deep chests and straight backs. They are powerful dogs that are well suited to covering a lot of ground. The Hamiltonstovares have short feet with strong nails and firm pads. Their tails are low, thick and held slightly curved or straight. 

The Hamiltonstovare has a short double coat that is weather resistant and perfect for colder weather. The coat of the Hamiltonstovare is always tricolour. Hamiltons also have lots of hair between their paw pads and they shed minimally.

How big do Hamiltonstovare dogs get?

  • Height - Males: 53 - 61cm, Females: 49 - 57cm

  • Weight - Males: 23 - 27kg, Females: 23 - 27kg

Character Traits

Hamiltonstovare are well-rounded, intelligent dogs that love being in a family environment. They have a gentle and affectionate nature but they need to be kept busy. The Hamiltonstovare is a high energy scenthound that is best suited to living with active owners that enjoy being outside going for long walks. As the Hamiltonstovare is highly intelligent they respond well to training but it needs to be consistent, firm and positive.

Are Hamiltonstovare dogs intelligent? Yes

Are Hamiltonstovare dogs affectionate? Yes

Do Hamiltonstovare dogs have high or low energy levels? High energy levels

Are Hamiltonstovare dogs loyal? Yes

Are Hamiltonstovare dogs playful? Yes

Are Hamiltonstovare dogs aggressive? No

Are Hamiltonstovare dogs easy to train? Yes, as long as training starts early and is consistent

Are Hamiltonstovare dogs good guard dogs? No, they are not natural guard dogs

Ability to Socialise 

Hamiltonstovare were originally bred to work alongside other dogs so they are naturally friendly and get along with other dogs. The high prey drive of the Hamiltonstovare means they aren’t good around other pets and smaller animals but they can get along with a family cat if they have grown up together. When it comes to kids, the Hamiltonstovare is an affectionate family dog that is calm and gentle around children. This breed may keep their distance from strangers at first but overall Hamiltonstovares are trusting and friendly. 

Do Hamiltonstovare dogs get along with other pets? No, the Hamiltonstovare breed has a high prey drive so they should be kept away from smaller animals.

Do Hamiltonstovare dogs get along with other dogs? Yes, these dogs have a social nature and were bred to work with other dogs so are friendly.

Are Hamiltonstovare dogs good with kids? Yes, they are gentle and patient around children

Are Hamiltonstovare dogs good with strangers? Yes, although they may initially keep their distance

Lifestyle Suitability

Hamiltonstovare dogs need lots of space so are best suited to living with experienced owners in a rural environment. These scent hounds enjoy being outdoors so need to have access to a secure garden where they can roam freely. Hamiltons have specific training, socialisation and handling needs and have to know their place in the pack meaning they are not a good breed choice for first-time owners. Hamiltonstovares are sensitive dogs that bond strongly with their family and don't like to be left alone. Hamiltons also have a reputation for barking and this is something they will do excessively if they are left alone for long periods. 

Are Hamiltonstovare dogs good for first-time owners? No, they are best suited to experienced owners

Are Hamiltonstovare dogs hypoallergenic? No

Are Hamiltonstovare dogs prone to drooling? No

Are Hamiltonstovare dogs a good breed for apartment living? No, these high energy dogs need plenty of space and a secure garden to enjoy

Do  Hamiltonstovare dogs shed a lot? No, they are low - moderate shedders

Do  Hamiltonstovare dogs bark a lot? Yes, although this can be stopped with early training

Can Hamiltonstovare dogs be left alone at home? No

Can Hamiltonstovare dogs handle the heat? No

Can Hamiltonstovare dogs handle cold temperatures? Yes

Are Hamiltonstovare dogs sensitive to loud noises? Yes

General Health & Health Issues

Hamiltonstovare dogs have an average life expectancy of 10 - 12 years. They are healthy, robust dogs that seem to have very few health issues. In fact, they are one of the healthier hounds. However, they can suffer from the following conditions:


  • Hip dysplasia - this is a painful condition that is often seen in larger dog breeds. It is caused by abnormal development of the hip joint which causes pain, discomfort and eventually arthritis. Hip dysplasia can be treated with medicine and lifestyle changes and surgery is an option if needed. 

  • Epilepsy - this is a common cause of seizures and is often inherited. Although epilepsy cannot be cured, dogs with epilepsy can be given medication to stabilise the condition. 

  • Cancer - there are many different types of cancers and the symptoms can include a mass, reduced appetite, low energy and weight loss. Sampling, diagnostic imaging and blood tests are often used to diagnose cancer and the treatment will depend on the individual situation but can include surgery, chemotherapy, radiotherapy and other medication. 

  • Bloat - this condition needs urgent veterinary attention. Bloat is when the dog’s belly becomes swollen and is a medical emergency so a vet should be contacted immediately. 

How long do Hamiltonstovare dogs live? 10 - 12 years

Exercise & Play Time

Hamiltonstovares are high energy dogs that thrive when they have something to do. They need at least 2 hours of exercise per day and this should ideally be off lead as much as possible. Due to the high prey drive of the Hamiltonstovare, it is important to only let them off lead in a safe, secure area and take extra precaution when there is livestock or wildlife around. As Hamiltonstovares are social dogs they are more than happy to go to local parks where there’s other dogs around but equally they love long, calm countryside walks too. A great way to keep a Hamiltonstovare busy and happy is by getting involved in canine sports and training such as agility. 

How much exercise does a Hamiltonstovare dog need? At least 2 hours per day

Do Hamiltonstovare dogs like water play? Yes, particularly when the weather is hot

Nutrition & Feeding

Hamiltonstovare dogs love food and are known for being very food-orientated. As Hamiltons have been known to suffer from bloat it is best to feed them a couple of times a day with smaller portions rather than offering one big meal. A Hamiltonstovare puppy needs to eat between 230 - 470g of good quality dry food each day, this should be split into 3 - 4 meals and offered throughout the day. The actual amount will depend on the puppy’s age and build. This is only an estimate and every dog is unique so it is important to have a personal dietary plan made to suit your dog.  

Are Hamiltonstovare dogs prone to weight gain? Yes, they love food so care must be taken to ensure they get the right amount of food each day

How much should I feed a Hamiltonstovare puppy? Between 230 - 470g of high-quality food per day depending on the puppy’s age and build

How much should I feed an adult Hamiltonstovare dog? Between 245 - 380g of high-quality food per day depending on the dog’s weight and activity level

Care & Maintenance

Grooming: The Hamiltonstovare is a low maintenance breed, they have a short but dense double coat that needs to be brushed each week. Regular brushing helps to remove any loose hair and get rid of any dirt caught in the Hamiltons coat. In addition to this, the Hamiltonstovare’s ears need to be checked and cleaned regularly to help prevent ear infections. Their teeth and nails should also be checked periodically to ensure they are in good condition. 

Emotional Care: Hamiltons are happiest when they have something to do. This is not a breed that is happy to spend the day inside lazing on the sofa, Hamiltonstovares want to be outside with their family keeping busy. If a Hamiltonstovare doesn’t get enough mental and physical stimulation they can quickly beecome bored and destructive which often involves chewing things up and digging. 

History of the Hamiltonstovare

The Hamiltonstovare is a highly prized scent hound that was developed by crossing German Hounds with English Foxhounds in the late 19th century. Hamiltonstovares are one of the healthiest hound breeds and have a highly prized hunting instinct. This has made the Hamilton Hound one of the most popular hound breeds in Sweden. 

Although the Hamiltonstovare can happily live and work in a pack, they were used either individually or in pairs to flush out game for hunting. Hamiltonstovare dogs are still relatively rare but do have a number of breed enthusiasts ensuring this special hound is not lost. Although there are Hamiltonstovare dogs in the UK they are rare. 

Interesting Facts About Hamiltonstovare Dogs

  • The Hamiltonstovare breed is the most popular hound in Sweden 

  • Hamiltonstovares were named after Count Hamilton (the man who developed the breed and was a founder of the Swedish Kennel Club)

  • Hamiltonstovares traditionally work individually or in pairs rather than in packs

  • 1886 was when the breed was exhibited in Sweden for the first time

Getting a Hamiltonstovare Puppy

Buying a puppy is a big commitment so take a look at our buying guide for advice on taking this exciting step. As many puppies are now bought online it is important you are aware of scams and bad practices. All breeders on Puppies have been vetted to ensure they are responsible. Take a look at our Hamiltonstovare puppy page to find available dogs in your area. 

How much does a Hamiltonstovare cost to buy?  £700 - £1500

How much does a Hamiltonstovare cost to feed?  £50 per month

How much does insurance for a Hamiltonstovare cost?  £70 per month

As there are very few Hamiltonstovare dogs in the UK, it may be a long wait for a puppy. However, an alternative option is adoption. Speak to your local dog rescue centre or contact the associations below:

Rehome a Hamiltonstovare with the Dogs Trust 

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