Blackmouth Cur

Infobox Dogbreed

image_caption = Red Alabama Blackmouth of the South
name = Blackmouth Cur
altname = Southern Cur
Yellow Blackmouth Cur
Blackmouth Cur
American Blackmouth Cur
Red Blackmouth Cur
Ladner Blackmouth Cur
Ladner Yellow Blackmouth Cur
Southern Heritage Kennel - Registered Yellow Blackmouth Cur
country = United States
fcigroup =
fcisection =
fcinum =
akcgroup =
ankcgroup =
kcukgroup =
nkcgroup = Scenthound
nzkcgroup =
ukcgroup = Scenthound
ukcstd =

The Blackmouth Cur is a rugged hunting dog that has its origins in the Southern United States of America.



The Blackmouth Cur is a well-muscled rugged hunting dog whose coat comes in a number of colors and shades, generally red, yellow, brindle, fawn or buckskin. Solid black or white Blackmouth Cur do, on rare occasion, appear in a breeding. According to the United Kennel Club Standard, up to ten percent of the coat may be white with the amounts of white on the toes, tail, nose and chest considered acceptable. Ringneck is unacceptable. None of the Cur breeds are currently recognized breeds of the American Kennel Club (AKC) [ [ American Kennel Club - Breeds ] ] .

Blackmouth Curs have short coats, either coarse or fine, and a combination of the two types may appear in the same litter.

The muzzle is square-shaped and may be black or the same color as the coat. The ears are medium-sized and hanging, and may either be black or the same color as the coat. 'Blackmouth' refers to the dark pigmentation around the lips that also extends into the interior roof of the mouth, though not the tongue. The muzzle may or may not be dark, though it is generally the preferred look.

The tail of a Blackmouth Cur is medium length and should not be bobbed, though a bobtail does naturally occur in the Weatherford Ben line.

The feet are webbed.

Weight ranges from 13-41 kilograms(30-90 pounds), with males being larger than females. The wide weight range is due to different lines of Blackmouth Cur.


Blackmouth Curs are known for their loyal temperament. They are protective of their family and property when needed. They hunt well with other dogs when properly socialized. This is an active breed that needs to be well-exercised. They are quick learners and have a burning desire to please their master. Consistent training will generally yield positive results. Harsh tones are used more effectively than corporal punishment with Blackmouth Curs. Some lines will make better family pets than others. [ [ Black Mouth Cur] at Dog Breed Info] ]


Though many health issues affect dogs of all breeds and can affect the Blackmouth Cur, they seem to be a rather hardy breed. Their average life span is 12-16 years of age. As with other similar breeds, entropion (slight turning in of eyelid) is a correctable health issue. Their active nature exposes them to the possibility of torn ligaments and pulled muscles.


Blackmouth Curs are used for herding cattle, baying hogs, hunting squirrel, raccoon, bear and mountain lion. Certain lines are used more for one activity than others, such as Wetherford Ben for herding, Red Alabama for hog baying, and Ladner for treeing ability. However, they are a multipurpose breed, and one dog, if quite talented, may be used for hunting, herding, and baying. Blackmouth Cur have excellent jumping and climbing ability, making them great in the field of treeing and hunting other game; however, this can also mean a fence of six feet high or higher is required to enclose this athletic breed.


Blackmouth Curs have varied historical documentation dependent upon region. Among them are the Ladner Yellow Blackmouth Cur from Mississippi, Red Blackmouth Cur from Alabama, Wetherford Ben Blackmouth Cur from Texas, and the Florida Blackmouth Cur.

The first Blackmouth Curs registered were Ladner Blackmouth Curs through the National Kennel Club in April 1964. Mr L.H. Ladner had such extensive written documentation of his family's breeding that the NKC recognized the breed. These curs are used to tree squirrel, raccoon, bobcat, mountain lion, and bear. They are used for hunting hogs and feral cattle. They also are distinguished by being used by the search and rescue emergency services. [ [ Squirrel Hunting Info] ]

The Red Alabama Blackmouth Cur is believed to have originated in Alabama, though there are Red Blackmouth Cur in Florida and Tennessee. These cur were supposedly registered as property in the courthouses around Howardtown and Tibbie in the 1940s. They were used as multipurpose pioneer dogs that would hunt, protect the home, and gather in the cattle and pigs at slaughter time. Several breeders in Alabama, Mrs Murphy among them, continue to work toward retaining and improving the Red Blackmouth Cur.

Through the efforts of several Blackmouth Cur breeders, the United Kennel Club later recognized the breed, featuring Howard Carnathan's Bruno, a Red Blackmouth Cur, in their standard photograph.

Wetherford Ben Texas Blackmouth Curs come from a line of curs well-documented in the book 'The Big Thicket Legacy'. They are used primarily for herding cattle.

Florida Blackmouth Curs herding cattle are featured in old paintings hanging in local barber shops and homes, so their existence and history in Florida is documented.

Blackmouth Curs now range from the east to the west coast, and as far north as Canada. The Ladner Blackmouth Curs are also known to be in Mexico, Argentina, Haiti, Russia, India, and throughout Europe.

Also very closely related to the Blackmouth Cur is the Mountain Cur. The book "Old Yeller" is about a boy growing up in frontier Texas and adopting a dog of the title name. The eponymous Old Yeller is a typical Mountain Cur (unlike the movie, which starred a Labrador Retriever). In the book, Old Yeller is a short-haired, yellow bobtailed dog that hunts and trees, isn't afraid to fight a full-grown bear when it is threatened, and naturally goes for the nose when he faces a mad bull. The author is very explicit in describing this old-fashioned breed and its use to the pioneer. The name "Mountain Cur" is never mentioned in the book, however in those days, the breed really didn't have a name or an individual identity. The Mountain Cur dogs are slowly being sorted into individual types.See also mixed-breed dogs.

The dog in Old Yeller was actually a Black Mouth Cur.

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