You bet he was! Not only that, he created, out of his love for fox hunting, a new and Americanized breed. The future first President of the United States received several French Foxhounds, as gifts, from friends and members of the French aristocracy. Washington, an avid and passionate fox hunter on his plantation in Virginia, bred his Brooke hunting dogs with these French Foxhounds. Thus, a new breed was established, the Black and Tan Virginia Foxhound. A few years later, to increase their stamina and speed, this American breed was bred with Irish Foxhounds.
The Black and Tan Virginia Foxhound is one of four foxhound breeds. It was later also bred Bloodhounds, which gave us the Black and Tan Coonhound. The Back and Tan Virginia Foxhound is similar to the English Foxhound, only the American breed has been bred to be lighter, taller, and more agile.
Washington's love for his foxhounds is evident in their given names: Sweet Lips, Venus, and Truelove. They shared a kennel with other dogs named Taster, Tippler, and Drunkard. These are testament to one of his other hobbies and business interests. He owned and operated, on his plantation, one the first distilleries in America of Scotch Whiskey.
Black and Tan Virginia Foxhound
The State Dog of Virginia
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