Height: 19 - 23 inches
Weight: 40 - 62 lbs.
Life Span: 10 - 14 years
Country of Origin: Italy
Activity: Long walks every day to keep their minds alert and active. Caution is needed with off-lead exercise in case the drive to hunt should make them wander, but if a safe area can be found the opportunity to gallop around and investigate interesting scents is exciting for them. The canine sport of tracking is an excellent way to provide an outlet for their energy, to engage the mind, and to allow them to use their superb nose. They also enjoy swimming and retrieving.
Description: The Segugio Italiano is medium-sized, lightly built, square in outline. Gentle, affectionate, even tempered, is equally good as a working dog and companion. Ancestry going back to the coursing hounds of the early Egyptians, Mastiff blood was introduced to the Segugio Italiano to give more bulk. With long legs, like those of a sighthound and a head more like that of a scent hound, the beauty of the breed was highly regarded during the Italian Renaissance. This breed has an exceptional sense of smell and shows interest not only in the capture but also in the kill of prey.
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Other Names: Italian Segugio, Segugio, Italian Hound
Colors: Black/tan or any shade from deep red to wheaten. White makings on head, chest, feet and tip of tail permissible.
Coat: Short-haired: smooth, thick, shiny. Coarse-haired: harsh dense, wiry.
Temperament: Sociable and even-tempered fellow who is generally reliable with children and who gets along well with other dogs. As with most hounds he thrives on companionship and he enjoys the comforts of home. He needs to be regarded as one of the family and not shut out in the yard or left alone for long periods of time. If deprived of company and interaction with his people he will become bored and miserable, with consequent behavioral problems such as digging, escape attempts and nuisance barking - and his lovely voice may seem less than harmonious to neighbors.
With Children: Yes
With Pets: Yes
Care and Training: The coat requires only minimal maintenance, a weekly brushing to remove dead coat; the addition of boiled linseed oil to his feed will bring out the lovely gleam of the black and tan coloration.
Learning Rate: High
Special Needs: Fenced yard, leash, socialization and training.
Living Environment: The Segugio Italiano requires a securely fenced yard as he has a strong hunting instinct. Country living environment is suitable.
Health Issues: No known hereditary disorders. May be susceptible to gastric dilitation volvulus (GDV), bloat.
History: The Segugio Italiano is an old breed whose likeness is to be found in ancient sculptures and in Italian Renaissance works of art. Also known as the Italian Hound it is believed to have developed in Italy from Phoenician sight-hounds and the Celtic hounds of southern Gaul. The addition of Mastiff blood to the lithe sight-hound stock produced a dog of more substance with the ability to work quarry by scent as well as sight. Wild boar were the traditional target of the Segugio but the end of the great hunts saw the numbers of pure-bred dogs decline. Interest in the breed was revived in the 20th century. Careful breeding built up the numbers and the Segugio is now extremely popular in Italy both as a hunting partner on a variety of game and as a companion, but it remains rare and relatively unknown outside its native land.
Registries: FCI, KC