The Deerhound is one of the oldest breed of dogs, best described with this sentence: “Throughout the day it hunts for deer and in the evening decorate the banquet hall of its owner's castle”. The first records mentioning the breed, dated from the 16th century. This hound was grown for centuries in Scotland, and as already mentioned, was used mainly for hunting deer. It is believed that the Deerhound is a close relative to the Greyhound. By mid 19th century the breed has virtually disappeared, but a few enthusiasts managed to save it. Today the so called "Royal Dog of Scotland" can be found mainly in the UK. The breed was officially recognized in 1892.
In Australia, these hounds have been used to hunt wild boar and kangaroo. According to the book "Hunting the Grisly and Other Sketches" by Teddy Roosevelt, some American and Canadian wolf hunters used them as well.
The Deerhound has high and thin body covered with shaggy and rough fur. Coloration occurs in gray, blue-gray or brindle. The height of the representatives ranges from 71 to 81 cm and their weight - from 34 to 50 kg. The head is tilted with an elongated snout, characteristic mustache and beard, and black cape. The eyes are small and round, dark, dark brown or hazel in color, the ears are flat. The teeth should form a scissor bite. The tail is long and worn down.
Character and behavior
This dog has great instincts and lightning-fast reactions. They are extremely durable and could withstand hours of hard work. Representatives of the breed are very active, love to be in constant motion and need to maintain their good physical shape and health. The Deerhound has a very balanced character, rarely show aggression and never barks. They are attached to the family and are very sensitive to the mood of their owners. They are kind and trusting to strangers, so using them as guards is not a good idea.
Training and education
The Deerhound is quite intelligent breed with an incredible memory. In the beginning, it would be good to walk your dog on a leash, because it will take time to train him not to pursue any running creature. With more perseverance you could teach your pet to many different commands, as well as to help you in your everyday activities.
It is good to remember that the Deerhound is afraid of high temperatures and feels quite uncomfortable in heat.
The average life expectancy of the breed is about 10 years. Some dogs are prone to obesity, heart issues, thyroid cancerous growths and allergies. Other dangerous health problems are: stomach or splenic torsion, called Gastric dilatation volvulus; bloat and cystinuria.
Make sure that both parents of all the puppies for sale have certificates OFA and CERF.
Grooming and care
The main problem in growing a Dirhaund is his constant need of large spaces. Try to replace the halls in medieval fortresses and castles with spacious house and a big yard with a fenced area. Enclosed space like an apartment, no matter how large, will always be too small for your pet. Maintenance of the coat is easy - you only need to comb it from time to time.
Children and other pets
These dogs love children and are constantly trying to take care of them. They get along well with other dogs and small animals. They love to play with everyone until they get really tired.
This dog can reach speed up to of 60 km/h when running.
The breed was highly appreciated in the past. There is a legend which says that if a nobleman is condemned to death, he can postpone his sentence if he owns a Deerhound.
In the Middle ages and the Renaissance, no one of rank lower than an earl could own a Deerhound. The breed was almost extinct because of this.