Black Mouth Cur: Complete Breed Information to The Southern Cur Dog

A strong and energetic dog by most standards, the Black Mouth Cur is a fearless working dog that farmers have used for centuries to protect their homestead. Also used to track game, the Black Mouth Cur is also a skilled hunter when the situation demands it.

These spirited dogs are also rather sensitive despite their lively behavior, in the sense that they don’t really respond well to punishment. Combine that with a demanding energy level and you begin to understand why these dogs aren’t all that common.

Despite their rarity, those who own Black Mouth Curs swear by their lovable characters and reliability. They say that Curs are sensitive despite their strength and that they are very family-friendly as far as strong dogs go.

What Is A Black Mouth Cur?

This is a purebred dog hailing from the southeastern United States, a dog whose history goes back to the 18th century. It is said that these dogs were brought to the Americas by European migrants along with European and Asian Cur Dogs, breeds that share a genetic commonality.

Now, it needs to be said that these dogs have been interbred with other breeds over the years to create the modern Black Mouth, which is why the American Kennel Club does not recognize it as a stand-alone breed. Even so, their rich and well-known history ensures their uniqueness and explains why so many people continue to raise them to this day.

These dogs are known for their loyalty, courage, and strength, despite their sensitive side. Highly intuitive, they tend to pick up on human emotions better than other dogs, children included. This makes them a prised breed for any family that lives in a remote area or with a lot of spare room for the dog to exploit.


As the name would suggest, Black Mouth Curs have a dark-colored muzzle. Most of them also have a predominantly black or brown coat, a coat that can also be red or yellow in rare cases. They are also fairly strong dogs with agile, long legs that enable them to accelerate very fast when chasing something.

You will also notice that these dogs have ears that hang down, ears that are otherwise positioned high on their heads. In regards to eye color, there is little variation, with most Black Mouth Curs having either brown or green eyes, sometimes even yellow but in rare cases.

They are also very hardy dogs, resilient and willing to withstand any adversity, be it bad weather or extreme temperatures. This is owed to a very strong physique and to their athletic build, an imposing presence that also recommends them as guard dogs.


Height & Weight

The Black Mouth Cur is a fairly big dog by international standards, one that can range from 50 to 100 lbs in weight. This can, of course, vary depending on the upbringing, diet, and exercise levels, but even a neglected Cur can grow to be impressive in size.

In regards to height, most Black Mouth Curs grow up to about 25 inches tall, with males being taller and heavier than the females on average. Given their size, these dogs require a lot of roaming space and the capacity to explore, albeit in a controlled environment.

Coat & Colors

Most Black Mouth Curs have short and either fine or coarse coats that make their grooming fairly easy. By most accounts, they require just a small amount of grooming on a weekly basis and are very easy to wash on account of their short fur that rarely gets tangled or knotted.

As for the colors, you can expect most Black Mouth Curs to either be black, brown, red, brindle, and in some cases, even yellow. The black fur around their muzzle is a very distinctive trait, one that also gives them their name. This dark fur can sometimes extend up to the eyes, creating a mask pattern of sorts.

Black Mouth Cur Personality & Temperament

You need to understand that historically, the Black Mouth Cur was bred for farm work and all-around tasks that revolve around life at a farm. It is for these reasons that they are commonly courageous and willing to work because traditionally they were tasked with protecting the homestead.

Because early settlers also wanted a dog that was intelligent and easy to train, they also bred the sharpest of the lot. This resulted in today’s Black Mouth Cur, a dog that is both strong and versatile, a dog that obliges any task entrusted to him.

As you would imagine, these dogs were also bred to possess high energy levels that would help them accomplish the tasks they were asked to perform. Nowadays, the tasks may be less demanding of course, but the dog retains a willingness to spend a lot of energy, thus the constant need for exercise.

Black Mouth Cur Behavior

Seeing how these dogs are both intelligent and resourceful, they are unlikely to exhibit too many behavioral problems. Fast learners and always willing to please, these dogs are confident, protective, and very loyal to their family.

They also develop strong bonds with people on account of their protective and loyal nature, which explains why people have kept them around for so long. Being high-energy dogs, they always want to have something to do, so it’s best that you figure out a way yo keep them occupied.

The dog also requires a lot of space for roaming and exercising, thus why many of those who own Black Mouth Cur live remotely or in households with a lot of surrounding real estate. Failure to provide the dog with enough room to roam will result in the dog misbehaving or becoming depressed.


Black Mouth Cur Temperament

Bear in mind that these dogs are very protective by nature, sometimes a bit overprotective in fact. This can lead them to exhibit aggressive fits around strangers or against those who they consider to be trespassing or posing certain risks.

Seeing how this is a hunting dog by breed, it is recommended that you keep an eye on them whenever they are around smaller pets or smaller dogs in general. If properly socialized, they absolutely love to interact with other dogs regardless of size.

One thing to mention is that they have been known to resort to destructive behavior and anxiety fits if they aren’t allowed to burn through their high energy drive. So as long as you understand the dog’s need for space and exercise, you shouldn’t have any issues with the dog in the long run.

Is The Black Mouth Cur A Good Family Dog?

All things considered, the dog makes an excellent family bond on account of how protective and loyal it is. These dogs tend to form strong bonds with family members and love to play around, especially with children of all ages.

It needs to be said, however, that they need to be properly and thoroughly socialized with small children from an early age in order to avoid any potential issues later on. Not to say that they are particularly aggressive or anything, but small children have a way of annoying dogs one way or another.


Caring For A Black Mouth Cur

These wonderful dogs require not only a spacious environment but plenty of mental and physical stimulation as well. Caring for such a dog may be seen as difficult for those who lack the space or the resources to properly do so, but boy does it pay off if you do.

Despite the fact that they require very little grooming, the necessity to constantly roam about makes them high-maintenance dogs in many ways. Other than that, these dogs love the outdoors and will gladly spend a lot of time outside the house where they may get a bit dirty at times.


Due to its size and high energy levels, the Black Mouth Cur requires a lot of exercise on a daily basis. This is because these dogs were bred as working dogs and thus have a lot of energy to spare. If left to their own devices, they spend most of their time outside just jogging and playing around.

A good way to meet their exercise quotas is to take them for regular walks. If you can do that for at least 90 minutes or so twice a day, you can ensure that the dog will always exhibit a healthy and obedient behavior. Alternatively, you can take them out for an hour or so if you do it three times a day.

Because of their history, these dogs love to be out in nature as often as possible. Keep in mind though, that they used to be hunting dogs at some point, which means that they might kick off running after small animals or birds if they catch their eye.

Grooming & Shedding

Seeing how this is a dog with a fairly short fur and a manageable coat, the grooming requirements aren’t all that excessive. If anything, you are advised to brush them once a week or so, simply to get any dirt from their coat. If they get too dirty, you can always wash them with regular dog shampoo just as you would any other dog.

It should be said that these dogs have certain skin folds and that these folds may get particularly dirty over time. As such, you will need to clean those areas thoroughly every time you bathe the dog. On a related note, you will need to trim their nails on a regular basis.

As for the shedding, rest assured that they shed very slowly all year round and that they do not require any special attention in that regard. Even so, they tend to shed heavier around springtime and winter, but nothing that a regular brushing couldn’t solve.

Feeding & Diet

These dogs require consistent meals on account of their metabolism and high energy levels. Given their history, a raw food diet is advised for Black Mouth Curs, one that should contain a high-calorie level. In this respect, raw diets usually contain more nutrients at a greater variety than regular dry food.

In regards to meals, you should feed a Black Mouth Cur twice a day. The food should be high in protein and should not ideally contain food dyes, rendered fats, or wheat gluten. As we said, dry foods are notoriously bad for high-energy dogs because of their reduced protein variety.


Known Health Problems

The Black Mouth Cur is a very strong and resilient breed, for the most part, so you shouldn’t have any worries in regards to long-term afflictions or weaknesses. Even so, there are a few issues that might affect a Black Mouth Cur, even more if the dog is neglected in any way.

Among them, ear infections are some of the most common, but these issues are usually very easy to address. Like we said, always clean out the dog’s skin folds, especially around the head area. The fact that these dogs will sometimes rub their ears on the ground certainly doesn’t help in that regard.

Some Black Mouth Curs have also been known to develop epilepsy and skeletal problems. Now, these issues are very uncommon but they have been known to happen on rare occasions. Given how they like to explore, these dogs are also very likely to catch ticks and fleas, which is a common issue for many outside dogs.

How To Train A Black Mouth Cur

It should be said straight from the get-go that Black Mouth Curs are very stubborn dogs by nature. As such, you shouldn’t employ any punitive training methods, not unless you want to have a bad relationship with the dog. That said, they do require a firm hand to guide them through, but only to some extent.

If you can, avoid raising your voice in anger or frustration, focus instead on positive reinforcement. These dogs are also very willing to please, so as long as you present your training sessions as challenges that need to be met, the dog is very likely to happily oblige and even strive to improve.

Bear in mind, however, that Black Mouth Curs get easily bored if the training sessions are too long or repetitive, so try to keep their attention on you at all times. If you can, add a touch of entertainment to the sessions, hopefully through playful tasks.

Black Mouth Cur Breed Summary

Breed Information
Size 16 to 25 inches
Weight 50 to 100 lbs
Lifespan 12 to 16 years
Color Brown, tan, black, red, or yellow
Coat Short coat
Shedding & Grooming Year-long minimal shedding
Temperament Intelligent, affectionate, loyal, hard-working
With Other Pets When properly socialized, should not be left alone with smaller
People Skills Great people skills
With Children Very good with children
Exercise Needs At least 2-3 hours a day
Food Raw diet recommended
Known Health Problems Ear infections, epilepsy, skeletal problems

All Things Considered

If you consider getting a Black Mouth Cur, rest assured that you are making an excellent decision. These very courageous and loyal dogs are perfect for any person who lives an active life. At the same time, these dogs are great with children and love to please their owners.

You do have to consider their high energy levels and how tiresome it can be to always look after the dog’s needs. That aside, the sheer love and loyalty a dog like this displays for the owner is enough to put aside any costs and demanding requirements the dog has.

All in all, a Black Mouth Cur can be a great and loyal friend provided that you take the time to socialize the dog properly. They usually interact well enough with people and other dogs and you are bound to enjoy owning such a dog if you have the means for looking after one.

Caroline Jones

Caroline has been a dog lover since she was only 6 years old, when her parents got her a rescue Boxer. Since then her love for dogs has lead her to study Dog Behavior & Welfare. She now educates people on how to properly raise and care for dogs, through her online site, Bark Friend. Now, she's a proud owner of a beautiful German Shepherd.

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