!Let's Talk! Button

The Catahoula Leopard Dog

April 15, 2021

Have you ever met a Catahoula Leopard Dog? This cute pooch is the Louisiana state dog, and is a much-beloved member of the AKC herding category. A local veterinarian discusses the Catahoula below.

H  istory

The Catahoula breed originated in Louisiana, or, more specifically, around the Catahoula Lake area. The word ‘Catahoula’ is a Choctaw Indian word for ‘sacred lake.’ Although no one knows for sure, these pups seem to be the result of interbreeding between local pups and the dogs French and Spanish explorers brought over to the area. Either way, we do know that Fido’s first job was tracking and herding wild pigs. (This earned him the nickname ‘Hog Dog.’) In the 1800’s, breeders began to focus their efforts on developing a pooch that was a great work dog, hunter, and guardian, but was also really good with children. Mission accomplished!


Catahoulas are extremely loving and loyal. They can make absolutely wonderful family pets. They can get along well with cats, though it’s always best if Fido grows up with Fluffy. However, they do have a strong prey drive, and don’t always get along with strange dogs. They can also be reactive, especially when youngsters are being loud or rough. We recommend erring on the side of caution here. Be sure to supervise all interactions between Fido and his tiny humans, and don’t let your canine pal run around off-leash.


These lovable pooches are very active, and need lots of exercise. Fido can get destructive if he feels confined, bored, or lonely. Daily walks and play sessions are definitely musts!


Like any other pet, Catahoulas need regular veterinary care to thrive. They are usually healthy, but, as is common with purebreds, can be prone to a few specific problems. For instance, deafness is fairly common in Catahoulas, as is hip dysplasia. Ask your vet for specific advice.


The Catahoula is very intelligent and loyal, but he does need guidance, and he must be taught how to be a ‘good boy.’ Training should start the day you bring little Fido home! Be firm and consistent, and focus on positive reinforcement.


Catahoulas come in many different patterns, tones, and colors. This cute pup is pretty low maintenance on grooming: he’ll only need to be brushed every week, and bathed a few times a year. As with any other dog, you’ll need to keep your furry friend’s ears clean, and keep up with his nail trims and dental care.

Do you have questions about the Catahoula? Contact us, your local veterinary clinic!

  • All
  • Cat Care
  • Dog Care
  • General Care
  • Uncategorized

Feline Hyperesthesia Syndrome

Feline hyperesthesia syndrome—which is also called rolling skin syndrome and twitchy cat disease—is a rather…
Read More

National Pet Cancer Awareness Month

November is National Pet Cancer Awareness Month, and you guessed it -just like humans, pets…
Read More

What Dog Is Best for an Apartment?

We know what you’re thinking: “I love dogs, but I live in an apartment. How…
Read More

Cognitive Decline in Senior Cats

Did you know that, just like people, cats can experience a decline in cognitive abilities…
Read More

The Queen’s Corgis

All eyes are on Britain this week, with the passing of Queen Elizabeth II, who…
Read More

Eye Problems In Cats

Our feline buddies have strikingly beautiful eyes. Cats’ eyes can be many different colors, from…
Read More

Spotlight On The St. Bernard

August 20th is a special day for some of our largest canine pals: it’s St.…
Read More

Cat Care Tips for the Summer Heat

The summer is heating up, and so are our pets. But how do cats keep…
Read More

Caring For A Super Senior Pet

Is your pet entering—or already into—their golden years? Pets age the way many people do…slowly…
Read More
1 2 3 15