Pharaoh Hound

Type: Sighthound and Pariah

Height: 21 - 25 inches.

Weight: 45 - 55 lbs.

Life Span: 11 - 14 years.

Litter Size: 7 - 8 puppies.

Country of Origin: Egypt

Activity: Medium

Watch-dog: High. Pharaoh Hounds are somewhat aloof with strangers.

Guard-dog: Low


Description: The Pharaoh Hound's appearance is of grace, power, elegance and speed. They are medium sized dogs and of noble bearing with hard, clean-cut lines. A sight and scent hound, they are an intelligent and affectionate dog who are playful and enjoy a good run. Unique to the Pharaoh Hound is the characteristic of "blushing" when excited, in which their faces, noses and insides of their ears turn a rosy pink. They greatly resemble the Egyptian god Anubis, in which they have been said to "glow like a god" when they blush. They are lean dogs, leanly muscled and with thin faces and large, pointing, upright ears. The Pharaoh Hound comes in the color of tan with white markings on the chest, toes, and center line of the face. They have slightly wrinkled faces and shoulders. Pharaoh Hounds are as intelligent as they look. They are quick to obey, can move fast and are efficient at their job as rabbit hunters. For this reason, they are not trustworthy with small animals. Pharaoh Hounds take care of themselves, and have been said to be as clean as cats. Some have been reported to lick themselves when it rains, getting the water off. This is thought to be an instinctual drive to get as much water as possible when it is available, as they have developed in the deserts of Egypt.

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Other Names: Kelb-tal Fenek (Rabbit Dog)

Colors: Tan or rich tan with white markings; white tip on tail strongly desirable; white star on chest, white on toes and slim white blaze on center line of face permissible; flecking or white other than above undesirable.

Coat: Short and glossy.

Temperament: Pharaoh Hounds are affectionate, intelligent and obedient. They can be competitive, and are excellent hunters. They get along well with others, including children and other dogs. They are not good with smaller pets, as they have a prey drive. Pharaoh Hounds are playful, friendly and clean. They are an ideal household pet for the owner who will exercise them. They are eager to please, but sometimes picky in their mannerisms. They are sometimes wary with strangers, but usually friendly with all.

With Children: Yes, likes children and loves to play with them.

With Pets: Yes, good with other dogs, but not with smaller animals.

Special Skills: Hunting dog (by sight, hearing and scent) and family pet.

Care and Training: Pharaoh Hounds require minimal grooming. Brush to remove loose hairs with a rubber brush. Pharaoh Hounds require a lot of exercise. Daily walks or romps in an open field are essential. They make a great dog to run beside a bicycle. Use a consistent approach to training a Pharaoh Hound. Positive reinforcement is always best.

Learning Rate: Medium. Obedience - High. Problem Solving - High.

Special Needs: Exercise, fenced yard, leash, socialization and training.

Living Environment: Pharaoh Hounds will not do well in an apartment as they are a very active breed. A house with a high fenced yard is essential. Remember these dogs are high jumpers and scent hounds and would enjoy chasing neighborhood cats and rabbits. The best owner for this breed would be an active owner living in a suburban or rural home with a highly fenced yard.

Health Issues: Allergies, sensitivity to anesthesia, and hip dysplasia. This is a very healthy breed.

History: The Pharaoh Hound is one of the oldest domesticated dogs that can traces its lineage to about 5,000 B.C. in the Middle East alone. After Egypt was invaded by the Romans 2,000 years ago, they were thought to have been taken to Malta, the Balearic Islands and Gozo by the Phoenicians and/or Carthaginians, and then on to Sicily. A famous Egyptian ruler, King Tutankhamen, owned a pharaoh hound named Abuwitiyuw. The breed has a striking resemblance to the Egyptian god Anubis, with its large pointed ears and thin face. There are several skeletal excavations, paintings, carvings and other artistic portraitures of this breed found in Egypt. When they were brought to Malta, Sicily, Gozo and the Balearic Isles they were used for hunting, especially rabbit. Their descendents are thought to be the Cirneco Dell'Etna and the Ibizan Hound found in Sicily. They are excellent hunters, hunting with not only their nose, but their eyes and ears as well. First imported to the United Kingdom in the 1930s, they were not introduced to North America until the 1960s. The first litter of the Pharaoh Hounds in America was born in the 1970s. It was not until 1968 when they gained recognition in England. In Canada, the breed was recognized in 1979.

First Registered by the AKC: 1983

AKC Group: Hound Group

Class: Hound

Registries: AKC, ANKC, CKC, FCI (Group 5), KC (GB), UKC