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Scottish Deerhound

Information and Pictures

Side view - The right side of a wiry looking black with gray and white Scottish Deerhound that is laying across grass and it is looking to the right.

Photo courtesy of WildWood Scottish Deerhounds

Other Names

Deerhound

Pronunciation

SKAH-tish DEER-hound

Description

The Scottish Deerhound is tall and slim, appearing to be a rough-coated Greyhound, but larger and bigger boned. The head is flat and broad between the ears, with a muzzle that tapers to a point at the nose. The nose is black and sometimes blue on blue-fawn dogs. The teeth meet in a level bite. The eyes are dark, either brown or hazel, with black eye rims. The ears are high set, folded back like a Greyhound. When the dog gets excited the ears are half-perked. The chest is deep, not broad but not too narrow. The front legs are straight. The tail is long, carried low, almost touching the ground. The wiry coat is 3-4 inches (7-10 cm), and longer and harsher on the body, neck, beard, mustache and mane, and is shorter and softer on the head, chest and belly. Coat colors include shades of blue gray, gray, brindle and black, yellow and sandy red or red fawn, sometimes with black ears and muzzle. There is sometimes a little white on the chest, feet and tail.

Temperament

The Scottish Deerhound is a gentle, well-mannered dog. It is polite and affectionate. Loving, friendly and excellent with children. Very courageous and dignified, devoted and loyal, but it is not a watch or guard dog, for it just loves everyone. These dogs need a firm, consistent, confident pack leader who knows how to display calm, but stern authority over the dog or they will be willful at times and slow to obey commands. Although friendly with other dogs, they should not be trusted with non-canine pets. Scottish Deerhounds are quiet and rarely ever bark.

Height, Weight

Height: 28 - 32 inches (71 - 81 cm)
Weight: 75 - 110 pounds (34 - 50 kg)

Health Problems

Scottish Deerhounds are prone to bloat. It is wise to feed them 2 or 3 small meals a day rather than one big one. Avoid vigorous exercise right after the dog has eaten a big meal.

Living conditions

Scottish Deerhounds can do okay in an in apartment if they are sufficiently exercised. They are relatively inactive indoors. If they are taken for walks they can live without a yard, but they do best with a large, fenced yard.

Exercise

This is a very active breed that needs to be taken on a daily, long walk or jog, making an excellent jogging companion. Always keep in mind that they have an instinct to chase. Do not let them off lead in an unsafe area.

Life Expectancy

An average of under 10 years.

Litter Size

About 4 to 7 puppies

Grooming

The harsh, wiry coat needs extensive grooming. Some trimming and stripping is required, but little skill is needed. This breed is an average shedder.

Origin

Closely related to the Greyhound, the Scottish Deerhound was once known as the Scotch Greyhound, Rough Greyhound and Highland Deerhound. In Scotland it became a district breed in the 16th and 17th centuries and was given the name Scottish Deerhound, and the rough coat was bred in to adapt to the rough climate. They were used as deer hunting dogs for Scottish tribes in the Middle Ages. They became known as the royal dog of Scotland and no one ranking below earl was permitted to own one. Queen Victoria and Sir Walter Scott owned Scottish Deerhounds. With their strict ownership rules the dogs were not very populous in number and took an even harder hit almost to extinction when man invented the gun and the dogs were no longer needed to bring down deer. Two brothers by the name of Archibald and Duncan McNeill saved the breed in the 1800s when they started a breeding program. Once again in Britain during World War II, like many breeds, the dogs fell very low in numbers. It was very difficult to feed the large dogs, and many people destroyed them for food. Along with their great sight, the Scottish Deerhound also has a very fine sense of smell. Some of the Deerhound’s talents include: hunting, sighting, tracking, racing, agility and lure coursing.

Group

Southern, AKC Hound

Recognition

ACA = American Canine Association Inc.

ACR = American Canine Registry

AKC = American Kennel Club

ANKC = Australian National Kennel Club

APRI = American Pet Registry, Inc.

CKC = Canadian Kennel Club

CKC = Continental Kennel Club

DRA = Dog Registry of America, Inc.

FCI = Fédération Cynologique Internationale

KCGB = Kennel Club of Great Britain

NAPR = North American Purebred Registry, Inc.

NKC = National Kennel Club

NZKC = New Zealand Kennel Club

UKC = United Kennel Club

A black with grey Scottish Deerhound is standing up against a person in a white shirt. The dogs mouth is open and tongue is out. They are standing in a field. The dog is taller than the man.

Zippo the Scottish Deerhound demonstrating how tall he is

Close up head shot - A large black with grey Scottish Deerhound is laying in grass and it is looking to the left. Its mouth is open and tongue is out.

Zippo the Scottish Deerhound

Close up - A large, poiny nosed black with grey Scottish Deerhound is laying in a field with its mouth open and tongue out. Across from it is a small black and white puppy that is panting.

Zippo the Scottish Deerhound with his little friend

Close up front view - A long nosed black with grey Scottish Deerhound is sitting in grass and it is looking forward. Its mouth is slightly open and it looks like it is smiling.

Adult Scottish Deerhound

Right Profile - A black Scottish Deerhound is standing across grass with a small amount of leaves on it. Its mouth is open and it looks like it is smiling. It has a high arch.

Photo courtesy of WildWood Scottish Deerhounds

The left side of a wiry looking black with white Scottish Deerhound that is laying in grass and looking forward.

Photo courtesy of WildWood Scottish Deerhounds

Front view - A wiry grey Scottish Deerhound is laying down on a hardwood porch and it is looking forward. Its mouth is open and its tongue is out.

This is Nero. Photo courtesy of Nero - Born to be Wild!

Close up head shot - A grey Scottish Deerhound is standing on a wooden porch, it is looking down and to the right.

This is Nero. Photo courtesy of Nero - Born to be Wild!

The left side of a grey Scottish Deerhound is standing in snow and it is looking forward. There is a person to the right of the dog looking down at it. The dog has long legs.

This is Nero. Photo courtesy of Nero - Born to be Wild!

The right side of a tall, wiry grey Scottish Deerhound that is laying down on a blanket. It is looking forward and up.

Cloud the Scottish Deerhound