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Podenco Canario: the hunting dog

Podenco Canario: el perro cazador

Lobo Azul |

Of all the dog breeds that we know, some may have a small number of specimens. One of the reasons why this happens is that there are breeds that develop in limited geographical areas. One of these is the Canary Podenco , a hunting dog related to the Ibizan Podenco and Portuguese Podenco.
  • Medium size .
  • Weight : Between 20 and 25kg.
  • Hair type : Short, straight and dense.
  • Character : Nervous, intense and dynamic
  • Health : Healthy
  • Life expectancy : Between 12 and 14 years.
Specimens of this breed are found in the Canary Islands, especially in the largest Gran Canaria and Tenerife.
breed hound
If you are considering adopting a Podenco Canario as part of your family, you must take several aspects into account. This is a faithful dog, with a calm character, it is one of those that feels like a friend to everyone. However, due to its size and characteristics, it is not advisable to raise it in small spaces. If you live in an apartment, you may need to reconsider the breed you can adopt. It stands out mainly for its excellent hearing, precise vision and keen sense of smell.

Origins of the Podenco Canario

Podencos are dogs with particular characteristics, such as their height, thin build and elongated snout. These are classified by the FCI, International Cynological Federation , within group 5 section 7: Primitive dogs – Hunting dogs. The God Anubis “guardian of the dead”, represented in Tutankhamun's tomb, bears an extraordinary resemblance to the Podenco. In fact, it is believed that this dog was brought to the Canary Islands by the Greeks, the Phoenicians or the Egyptians probably 400 years ago, in some commercial exchange. This is considered an ancient race and traces of its existence have been found in the tombs of the pharaohs. Which indicates that the first specimens existed seven thousand years ago.
adopt a hound
These dogs were faithful companions on hunting trips , which is why they were used for this purpose for a long time. Currently, the Podenco Canario keeps this characteristic as part of its character, being a born hunter, which managed to successfully adapt to the conditions of the Islands. This breed was recognized by the Madrid Canine Society in 1984, and it was not until 1987 that it was accepted as a breed by the FCI, International Cynological Federation .

Characteristics of the Podenco Canario

It is primarily a hunting dog that locates its prey by sight and smell. They begin to hunt when they are puppies ; some specimens even show their hunting instinct before they are three months old. When they go after prey, they bark short and repetitive. This particular way of barking is an indication for the hunter, who calls it " beating " or " singing a rabbit ." The Podenco Canario is a large dog , being the largest in the family of Portuguese and Ibizan Podencos. Males can reach between 55 and 64 cm and females between 53 and 60 cm. In adulthood it will have an average of between 20 and 25 kg. As for its coat, it is common for it to be chocolate or reddish, and can be combined with white. His hair is straight and very short, quite close to the skin. Its ears are pointed, large and usually erect, especially if it is alert.
Its long, flat skull with prominent occipital bone is responsible for the elongated appearance of its head. They have rather small eyes, usually almond-colored. Its nose is chocolate-colored, in harmony with its fur. His body is tall, slim and muscular. Their front legs are straight, vertical and parallel, and their hind legs tend to be strong and muscular. Their paws have strong pads and lack dewclaws. Finally, its tail is long, drooping, and the tip is often white.

Temperament of the Podenco Canario

The Canary Podencos are brave, dynamic and very adaptable . They are used to long work days, they know how to hunt in packs. They are very noble and non-aggressive dogs , although they tend to be disobedient, nervous and surly. They develop true loyalty towards their owners . It stands out for being a strong dog, capable of adapting to any environment, which makes its wild origin evident. The sunny and hot climate allowed the Podenco Canario to become independent from man. In fact, 19th century navigators and travelers collected data on these dogs in their logs, which roamed the islands like wild dogs, which is why they were not considered domestic.
canary hound
Despite these characteristics, it cannot be considered a guard dog, as it is actually very friendly. He easily makes friends with humans and other dogs . At times he may seem nervous, this is because he is very restless, which is why he requires the necessary stimulation so that he can burn energy and channel his hunting instinct. That is why the importance of not keeping it in closed spaces is emphasized. It can live with children without problem, however it is necessary that they always be supervised, as its large size can lead to it inadvertently hurting the child, simply while playing.

How to raise the Podenco Canario puppy

The Podenco Canario, although it is a hunting dog, must be raised like any other puppy. It must be taken into account that it will be a medium-sized dog, which can weigh approximately 25 kilos. The Podenco Canario's diet should contain high amounts of proteins, vitamins and some type of fiber to help with digestion. Although they are essentially carnivores, they can consume other types of food and this dog can even eat some fruits. As a puppy, they must be accustomed to their own space: bed, bowl and the cage or carrier in which they will be transported. It is not advisable to put him in a vehicle freely because he tends to get nervous. The Podenco Canario will need a lot of exercise . This is why it is equally necessary that it has open spaces where it can run. However, if this is not the case, you will need long daily walks. Grooming will not cause major problems because, as it has short hair, this is easier. It is important to keep in mind that these dogs resist high temperatures and arid climates, but cold weather can be counterproductive, especially if they are puppies. Be sure to protect him by providing him with a warm bed to rest in.

canary hound puppies

Training the Podenco Canario

The training of the Podenco Canario strengthens the ties with its owner. Success depends on the frequency and repetition of the routines, words and actions used, as well as the rewards awarded. Praise is a very important part of training this breed. Punishments when it does not obey are counterproductive and can make it a submissive and fearful animal, which is not advisable for the Canary Podenco's character. Until he gets used to obeying our commands, we must keep him on a leash and harness, as he may try to escape suddenly if he detects any animal that he may consider as prey, such as cats, birds, rabbits or mice.

Hunting skills

Its extraordinary hunting skills are usually used when hunting rabbits, as it is capable of detecting them even inside the cracks or caves where they are found. These dogs do not encounter any major obstacles in different types of terrain, adapting easily. It also withstands a long period of activity, reaching full days of hunting without problems.

Care of the Podenco Canario

The life expectancy of this breed is between approximately 12 and 14 years. The Podenco Canario does not usually present particular health problems, and is considered a healthy dog . However, some specimens may have unilateral or bilateral deafness. Some puppies are deaf and blind when they are born because their auditory and visual canals are closed; normally these open between 12 and 16 days of age. Even so, in the case of some newborns, a group of nerve cells responsible for detecting sounds deteriorate until the puppy is approximately 6 weeks old, which, unfortunately, is not reversible. It is also important to pay attention to regular care of your eyes and ears to avoid any condition. The Podenco Canario is a very resistant dog , however, despite being a healthy dog, it can suffer from diseases common to almost all breeds, such as hip and elbow dysplasia or stomach torsion. First of all, it is advisable to take him as a puppy to the vet for periodic check-ups. This will be in charge of evaluating their health, telling us their vaccination plan and the type of diet recommended for your dog. It is also important not to hesitate to go to the veterinarian if any strange symptoms that the dog presents.
feeding of the canary hound
Other tips to keep Podenco Canario specimens healthy:
  • Make sure you have a healthy weight
The Podenco Canario is thin by nature, however, it is important to take care that domestic life does not lead it to eat more food than it needs, or that it does not exercise enough. These factors can lead your pet to suffer changes in weight that are not favorable for them. Likewise, if you notice that your dog eats too quickly, consult him.
  • Invest in your training
It is important that, before you start training your dog, you are very well informed about how to do it correctly according to the characteristics of its breed. If possible, go to a professional trainer. The training process of any dog ​​is vital, since its behavior and adaptation to the home will depend on it. Always make sure that your pet has clean, fresh water, as its hyperactivity and the hot climate in which the Podenco Canario lives can promote urinary infections and dehydration. You have to change their water and wash their dishes frequently.

Recommendations before buying a Podenco Canario

Buying a Podenco Canario puppy , or any other breed, online represents a considerable risk. It is vital that you check the reputation of the breeder before making the decision to purchase a puppy this way. One way to do this is by reviewing how much knowledge you have about the breed. You can also check with associations specialized in this breed if they know the performance of the breeder.
training of the canary hound
Responsible breeders not only limit themselves to setting a price for a puppy, they thoroughly evaluate whether those interested in it have the necessary requirements for adoption, they will even demonstrate interest in the development of the puppy in its new home. Make sure they give you documentation certifying that the puppy is vaccinated and dewormed, as well as other information of interest. The breeder must also show a willingness to show the place where he keeps the kennel dogs.

To take into account

This noble breed comes from origins that are centuries old. Its main characteristic as a hunter made it the faithful companion of those who went out in search of food, since the Podenco is not only an excellent hunter, but it does not tear its prey, being very convenient for ancestral man. As time went by, it was brought to the Canary Islands. The reason is unknown, as some stories say that they were brought as food. However, it was very well able to adapt to the arid conditions of the islands, even becoming part of their characteristic fauna. Currently this beautiful dog can live in homes , lovingly sharing with its owners. It deserves particular care, although not very extensive, because if something characterizes it, it is its ability to resist harsh climatic conditions and its good health. A large space, enough exercise, good nutrition and basic care will be enough. Of course, never leave aside all the love you can give him. Keep it away from other species as its hunting instinct will come to light. However, it gets along very well with other breeds.
canary hound dog
Man and dog have been closely linked for many centuries. Throughout history, dogs have played various roles: guardian, shepherd, hunter, guide, but to this day they continue to be appreciated for the affection and company they provide. If you want to feel true loyalty and nobility, a Podenco Canario is the perfect choice .
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