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Encyclopedia > Irish Wolfhound
Irish Wolfhound
An Irish Wolfhound
Country of origin
Classification and breed standards
FCI: Group 10 Section 2 #160 Stds
AKC: Hound Stds
ANKC: Group 4 (Hound) Stds
CKC: Group 2 (Hound) Stds
KC (UK): Hound Stds
NZKC: Hound Stds
UKC: Sighthounds and Pariahs Stds

The Irish Wolfhound is a breed of dog (a sighthound) bred to hunt. The name originates from its purpose (wolf hunting) rather than from its appearance. These dogs are accepted as the tallest breed of dog in the world, although the Great Dane and Mastiff are of equivalent weight, if not heavier. The arguments as to whether the "largest" dog should refer to the height or the weight of the breed have their basis in these points of contention.[1] Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI) (English, World Canine Organization), is an international Kennel Club based in Thuin, Belgium. ... © The American Kennel Club (or AKC) is the largest registry of purebred dog pedigrees in the United States. ... The Australian National Kennel Council (ANKC) is the peak body in Australia responsible for promoting excellence in breeding, showing, trialling, obedience, and other canine-related activities and the ownership of temperamentally and physically sound purebred dogs by responsible individuals across Australia. ... The Canadian Kennel Club (or C.K.C.) is the primary registry body for purebred dog pedigrees in Canada. ... The Kennel Club in the United Kingdom is a club aiming to improve the relationships between dogs and their owners. ... The New Zealand Kennel Club is an organisation responsible for dog pedigree registration services in New Zealand. ... The United Kennel Club (or UKC) is the second oldest all-breed registry of purebred dog pedigrees in the United States and the second largest in the world. ... This Chihuahua mix and Great Dane show the wide range of dog breed sizes. ... Trinomial name Canis lupus familiaris The dog (Canis lupus familiaris) is a domestic subspecies of the wolf, a mammal of the Canidae family of the order Carnivora. ... The Whippet shows the characteristic long legs, deep chest, and narrow waist of a sighthound. ... Main article: Gray Wolf Wolf hunting is the practice of hunting wolves, especially the Gray Wolf (Canis lupus). ... The Great Dane is a breed of dog known for its giant size and gentle personality. ... The English Mastiff, often called simply Mastiff, is a large breed of dog of the general mastiff or Molosser type. ...



These dogs are the tallest breed. They have a swift pace and very keen eyesight and a rough coat (grey, wheaten, brindle, red, black, pure white, brown, or fawn, though wheaten and grey are the most common colors), a large box-shaped head, and a long, muscular neck. They have a somewhat greyhound shaped body, but larger. They average up to 90 cm (34 inches) at the withers, a fact that sometimes is its biggest disadvantage when attracting owners who have no concern for its special needs. As with all breeds, the ideal and accepted measurements vary somewhat from one standard to another, and there will always be individuals whose size falls outside these standards. However, generally breeders aim for a height averaging 85 to 90 centimeters (33 to 36 inches) in males, 5 to 10 centimeters (2 to 4 inches) less for females. Acceptable weight minimums range from 76 kg (150 lb.) for males and 55 kg (120lb.) for females. Though the pups may look adult at the age of 7 months, they are not considered even amature until the age of 18-22 months depending the breeder. Trinomial name Canis lupus familiaris The dog (Canis lupus familiaris) is a domestic subspecies of the wolf, a mammal of the Canidae family of the order Carnivora. ... This Chihuahua mix and Great Dane show the wide range of dog breed sizes. ... The withers is the highest point on an animals back, on the ridge between its shoulder blades. ...

Irish Guards mascot in parade dress
Irish Guards mascot in parade dress

Irish Wolfhound, mascot to the Irish Guards Taken by Elf | Talk, July 17, 2004 File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Irish Wolfhound, mascot to the Irish Guards Taken by Elf | Talk, July 17, 2004 File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ...


Wolfhounds should not receive additional supplements when a good dog food is used. It is generally accepted that they should be fed a large breed puppy food until 18 months old and then change to a large breed adult food. Most breeders today recommend that they not be supplemented in order to slow their rapid growth. They will eventually reach the same height, but at a slower, and safer, rate.[citation needed]. Wolfhound puppies around 14 weeks old grow approximately one inch a week and put on one pound a day.

By the age of 8 months, the dogs appear adult, and many owners start stressing them too much. Outstretched limbs and irreparable damage are the result. Wolfhounds need at least 18 months to be ready for lure coursing, running as a sport, and other strenuous activities. Lure coursing is a sport for dogs that involves chasing a mechanically operated lure. ...

Dilated cardiomyopathy and bone cancer are the leading cause of death and like all deep-chested dogs, gastric torsion (bloat) is also common, as well as hereditary portosystemic shunt. Dilated cardiomyopathy or DCM (also known as congestive cardiomyopathy), is a disease of the myocardium (the muscle of the heart) in which a portion of the myocardium is dilated, often without any obvious cause. ... Osteosarcoma is the most common type of malignant bone cancer, accounting for 35% of primary bone malignancies. ... Bloat, also known as torsion, gastric torsion, and gastric dilatation-volvulus (GDV) is a medical condition in which the stomach becomes overstretched by excessive gas content. ... A portosystemic shunt (PSS), also known as a liver shunt, is a bypass of the liver by the bodys circulatory system. ...


The breed is very old, possibly from the 1st century BC or earlier, bred as war dogs by the ancient Celts, who called them Cú Faoil. The Irish continued to breed them for this purpose, as well as to guard their homes and protect their stock. Regular references of Irish Wolfhounds being used in dog fights are found in many historical sagas - Cuchulain's favourite, Luath was slain by a southern chief's hound, Phorp. (2nd millennium BC - 1st millennium BC - 1st millennium) The 1st century BC started on January 1, 100 BC and ended on December 31, 1 BC. An alternative name for this century is the last century BC. The AD/BC notation does not use a year zero. ... A Celtic cross. ... In Irish mythology Cúchulainn (also spelled Cú Chulainn) is the pre-eminent hero of Ulster in the Ulster Cycle. ...

While many modern texts state Irish Wolfhounds were used for coursing deer, contemporary pre-revival accounts such as Animated Nature (1796) by Oliver Goldsmith are explicit that the original animal was a very poor coursing dog. Their astonishing size, speed, and intelligence made them ideal hunting animals for both wild boar and wolves, and many were exported for this purpose. They were perhaps too ideal, as the boar and wolf are now extinct in Ireland. The Irish Wolfhound has been recorded as being exhibited in ancient Rome to some excitement, and mention is made that they so amazed and terrified the Romans that it was seen fit to only transport them in cages. There exist stories that in the arena, the original Wolfhound was the equal of a lion. It has also been shown that when hunting animals, the wolfhound would bite the neck and crush the spine, killing the creature. Year 1796 (MDCCXCVI) was a leap year starting on Friday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a leap year starting on Monday of the 11-day slower Julian calendar). ... Ancient Rome was a civilization that grew from a small agricultural community founded on the Italian Peninsula circa the 9th century BC to a massive empire straddling the Mediterranean Sea. ...

During times of conflict with England, it was not uncommon for Wolfhounds to be trained to take armoured knights off of their horses, thus allowing an infantry man to move in and finish the kill if the Wolfhound had not done so already.

Due to a massive export into various countries as a gift for royalty and a ban that allowed only royalty to own such a dog, the breed almost vanished in the middle of the 19th century. Captain Graham rebred the Irish Wolfhound with the Deerhound, Great Dane, Borzoi and other breeds; this saved the breed, but had the inevitable effect of altering its appearance, most noticeably leaving the Irish Wolfhound with alternative colours such as brindle (inherited from the Great Dane) as before they were mainly grey in colour. The ancient breed (often referred to as the Irish Wolfdogge in contemporary accounts) was available in both a smooth and rough coated variety. Descriptions of its appearance and demeanor, as well as the method of its use place it closer to the flock guardians in appearance than the modern breed. It is clear that the dog was not always the giant of today and it has been suggested that the Wolfhound was part of the make up of the Kerry Blue Terrier. The historical variety was famed for its loyalty, discernment, grave nature and aggression. In terms of temperament the modern breed has been greatly mellowed.[citation needed] Wolfhounds are often referred to as "Gentle Giants", and an historic motto of the breed is "Gentle when stroked. Fierce when provoked." Alternative meaning: Nineteenth Century (periodical) (18th century — 19th century — 20th century — more centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 19th century was that century which lasted from 1801-1900 in the sense of the Gregorian calendar. ... Country of origin Scotland Classification Breed standards (external links) FCI, AKC, ANKC KC(UK), NZKC, UKC The Deerhound, also sometimes called a Scottish Deerhound, is a breed of dog, specifically a member of the sighthound family. ... The Great Dane is a breed of dog known for its giant size and gentle personality. ... The Borzoi is a breed of dog also called the Russian Wolfhound. ... This article cites very few or no references or sources. ...

The Wolfhound is sometimes regarded as the national dog breed of Ireland but in fact no breed has ever been officially adopted as such. The Wolfhound was historically a dog that only nobles could own and was taken up by the British during their rule in Ireland. This made it unpopular as a national symbol and the Kerry Blue Terrier was adopted by early Irish Nationalists such as Michael Collins. Today, however, the Irish wolfhound is by some margin the best known Irish breed outside the dog world. Michael Collins is the name of: Michael Collins (Irish leader), the Irish patriot and revolutionary of the 20th century Michael Collins (Limerick politician), a modern-day Irish politician Michael Collins (astronaut), the American astronaut Michael Collins (footballer), an Irish footballer currently playing for Huddersfield Town Michael P. Collins, a Canadian...

Famous Wolfhounds

John Alec Entwistle (October 9, 1944 – June 27, 2002) was an English bass guitarist, songwriter, singer, and horn player, who was best known as the bass guitarist for rock band The Who. ... This article needs additional references or sources for verification. ... Veedon Fleece is the eighth studio album by Northern Irish singer-songwriter Van Morrison, released in February, 1974 (see 1974 in music). ... The term singer-songwriter refers to performers who both write and sing their own material. ... George Ivan Morrison OBE (generally known as Van Morrison) (born August 31, 1945) is a singer-songwriter from Belfast, Northern Ireland. ... Ginga Densetsu Weed (銀牙伝説ウィード Ginga Densetsu Uiido) is a Japanese manga series begun by Yoshihiro Takahashi in 1999. ...

External links

Wikimedia Commons has media related to:
Irish Wolfhound

  Results from FactBites:
The Irish Wolfhound in Books and other publications (1407 words)
Wolfhound Whines, the breed column in the weekly paper "Our Dogs," which was mainly written by Isaac Everett of the Felixstowe Kennels, covering the period 1911 to 1925, plus one from 1938.
The Irish Wolfhound by A.J. Dawson (author of Finn The Wolfhound), c.
Irish Wolfhounds in Tierra del Fuego The Kennel Gazette, March 1916
Irish Wolfhound Information and Pictures, Irish Wolfhounds (693 words)
A massive, muscular dog, the Irish Wolfhound is one of the tallest breeds in the world.
Irish Wolfhounds were often given as royal presents and eventually became such popular gifts that Oliver Cromwell had to stop their export from Britain.
The last wolf was killed in Scotland in the early eighteenth century, and the Wolfhound disappeared from Ireland in 1766.
  More results at FactBites »



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