You could earn SmartPoints on this page!SmartPoint Coin

July 12, 2013 at 1:00 PMComments: 2 Faves: 0

Pharaoh Hound

By Victoria Swanson More Blogs by This AuthorFrom the Purebred Star Blog Series

This magnificent breed radiates elegance and beauty! An independent, loyal companion that is easy to train ~ Does the Pharaoh Hound sound like a must have breed?

Considered one of the oldest breeds, today's Pharaoh Hound originated over the past 2,000 years from the Mediterranean island of Malta and, but the breed is depicted in ancient Egyptian art dating back nearly 4,000 years and made its way to the United States in the 1970's. Because they're exceptionally rare, they're are considered one of the most expensive and rarest purebreds out there. Selective professional breeders (with show quality hounds) can charge just a measly $5,000 per pup!

Sighthound and Scenthound

The Pharaoh Hound was bred to hunt rabbit (its nickname is rabbit dog - pronounced Kelb tal-Fenek).

This sighthound is a runner and was bred to hunt rabbit. (It's nickname is rabbit dog - pronounced Kelb tal-Fenek.) Because of this, they won't hesitate to sprint off towards a moving small critter. They use their nose to smell their prey and their sight to catch it. If you want a breed that is easily off-leash trainable, you may need to reconsider the Pharaoh Hound. Also, if you share your household with rabbits, guinea pigs, cats, or other small, non-canine animals, the Pharaoh Hound may not be the right companion to consider because their instinctive nature to hunt may take over.

The Pharaoh Hound will benefit from regular exercise every day. They make a GREAT running partner, and will enjoy long walks or hikes. They will do best with a fenced in-yard that is built high. Lure-coursing is a fantastic sport to consider participating in if you have a Pharaoh Hound, or any other type of sighthound.

Gentle, Loving, Smart

The Pharaoh Hound enjoys being around children, but they can be leery and timid around strangers. Their timidness can be temperament driven or can spawn from a lack of proper socialization. Don't mistake this trait for a guard dog.

Like the Greyhound, they enjoy being active outside but can easily transition into a calm state while inside where they prefer lying around, then playing.

They are very smart and can quickly learn tricks and commands, but they can have a stubborn streak to them as well. Consider signing up for obedience lessons; your kids may benefit from in this as well, as this will help your dog to understand who's in charge and to respect the family.

When the Pharaoh Hound is excited and happy, they will blush! Not the human version of being in the cheeks, but their ears and nose turn a slight pink tint.

Doggy Daycare, Dog Park, Dog Beaches, Doggy Playdates

The Pharaoh Hound is extremely friendly around other dogs! If socialization is done properly at a young age with other dogs, the Pharaoh Hound will enjoy many excursions that include their doggy friends.

Doggy Daycare is a great option for this breed. Consider Doggy Daycare as an option if you are away from home for long periods. The Pharaoh Hound will enjoy visiting dog parks and dog beaches, as well as having playdates with other dogs. Call your dog friends and set time aside for these fun interactions with other dogs.

Grooming Doesn't Get Any Easier!

With their very short fur, they do not fair well in cold climates. They are an average shedder and require a weekly brushing with a rubber brush to keep their coat looking shiny and smooth.

They don't have the normal "doggy odor," making bath time infrequent. Nail trimmings should be done every 6-10 weeks

Various shades of red are the most common color of this breed. Other coat coloring can include tan to dark chestnut. They may have white markings on their chest, toes, tail-tip, forehead, and muzzle.

Health Concerns

The lack of profit breeders earn has helped prevent the Pharaoh Hound from being commercialized into a breeding machine, thus making them a very healthy breed with few genetic issues. Reputable professional breeders test their breeding stock often for any genetic flaws. The average lifespan of a Pharaoh Hound is 12 - 14 years.

Adopt First

Although a rare breed, consider looking for a Pharaoh Hound through rescue organizations first. Every year there are millions of dogs being euthanized - not because they are bad dogs, but because there is no home for them and insufficient resources to care for them at rescue agencies. By adopting a dog, you are truly saving a life!

At the very least, NEVER purchase any dog from a pet store. Unfortunately, those puppies almost always come from puppy mills. Instead, look for a reputable breeder to work with.

On a final note, it is important to spay and neuter your puppy by 6 months old to have a healthy and happy pet for many years to come!


Original Dog Bible, 2nd Edition by Kristin Mehus-Roe

Dog Breed Info

Photo Credit:

More from Health Coach Victoria Swanson Others Are Reading


  • Just coming up to 17 months with our adopted Ibizan Hound and Pharaoh Hound - Juno and Abel (both off the streets of Spain and delivered to the UK with 10 other dogs and 1 cat in the back of a van - all legal despite the image it conjours up) and notwithstanding my now distinctly tattered garden, I don't think we could contemplate being without them. Have now resurrected the blog which gives a bit of an insight (Podenco Diaries) and shows Abel on his 'skinny side'. I would urge those interested to look beyond the success stories at the root cause back in Spain where animals and especially these beautiful dogs are treated in a way that is beyond comprehension to all civilized human beings. And this from someone who two years ago insisted there were only two breeds of proper dogs in the World - Irish terriers and English Bull Terriers.

  • Thanks for sharing Philip! Thrilled that you and your family were able to open up your heart and home to these beautiful yet, uniquely looking breeds!

Comment on the Smart Living Network

Site Feedback