The word STÖVARE (pronounced STOVAR...the 'e' is silent), literally translated, means HARRIER, and refers to any hunting hound.
The Hamiltonstövare is the official, and most popular hound of Sweden. Its history goes as far back at the 16th.century. It is named after the founder of the Swedish Kennel Club, Count A.P. Hamilton, the founder of the breed, based on English Foxhounds and German hounds. The breed was first recognised in 1921. Unlike most hounds he works alone or in couple and is used to find and flush game back to the gun, normally fox and hare. The Hamiltonstövare has an excellent nose and when on the trail is hard to distract, and will only return when he is ready. Clearly, a hound who needs a secure garden and who should be exercised with due consideration for roads and livestock.
He has gained great affection in his Swedish homeland and is mentioned in folklore; A small elf called Tomten, accompanied by a Hamiltonstövare named Karo, is said to help Swedish housewives.
Although they are still classed as a rare breed in the UK , which means they are not awarded Challenge Certificates and so cannot earn the title of UK Champion, they have achieved a very high standard and succeed at high levels of competition against other breeds. Challenge Certificates ARE, however awarded throughout Europe and, providing the hound is classed as ‘EXCELLENT’ by the judge, after acquiring the required number of certificates, the hound can eventually become a Champion.
As his Foxhound ancestry would suggest, the Hamiltonstövare does enjoy plenty of exercise and this must be taken into consideration before acquiring one. Do not expect him to return when called. His temperament is good; even-tempered and friendly he makes a fine house dog as long as his exercise requirements are attended to.
The Hamiltonstovare should be rectangularly, proportionally and beautifully built, giving the impression of great strength and stamina without being heavy. It is tricoloured. The ideal size for males is 57 cm (22,5 inches) and for females 53 cm (21 inches).