The Basset Hound moves in a smooth, powerful and effortless manner. Being a scenting dog with short legs, it holds its nose low to the ground. Its gait is absolutely true with perfect co-ordination between the front and hind legs, and it moves in a straight line with hind feet following in line with the front feet, the hocks well bent with no stiffness of action. The front legs do not paddle, weave, or overlap, and the elbows must lie close to the body. Going away, the hind legs are parallel.
WHAT TO LOOK FOR:
A Basset Hound who moves freely and effortlessly. The gait is true, with front and rear movement perfectly coordinated. The hocks are to remain parallel while the dog is in motion. The movement should be deliberate, determined, full of drive, and give evidence of exceptional endurance. The forelegs should reach well out and straight ahead. The hind legs should bend well at the hock, permitting the foot to come well under the body, and thrust back powerfully. He should be able to have the endurance and stamina to hunt day after day in widely varying terrain, often with dense undergrowth and in all weather conditions.
WHAT TO AVOID:
Clumsy or labored movement. Front legs that weave, paddle, or cross over. A stiff, stilted or choppy movement. I keep hearing talk about the "Basset Hound Stumble" being allowed and expected in the Basset Hound. NOT! There is no excuse for a dog not being able to get around a show ring without tripping every few steps. Again, as I said in the previous paragraph: He should be able to have the endurance and stamina to hunt day after day in widely varying terrain, often with dense undergrowth and in all weather conditions." This breed was ostensibly developed to trail small game, SLOWLY and DELIBERATELY. Do not reward this racing around the ring that seems to have became the fashion. Many of our very good specials will move out at a very brisk pace, which is fine if the dog is doing this himself, but do not allow the handler to run around the ring.
See Gait in the Illustrated Standard