The Pharaoh Hound
Following a visit to Crufts, the Buddies team highlighted those breeds at ‘Discover Dogs’ which were new to them. There are so many weird and wonderful breeds which are often under the radar. We decided to reach out to the club secretaries for each of these breeds to find out a little more about them.
The first breed we decided to focus on is the Pharaoh Hound. We spoke to Honorable Secretary of the Pharaoh Hound Club to find out more about this magnificent breed.
How long have you been involved with the breed?
‘I first showed them for a friend back in 2007. I had admired them for a long time and jumped at the opportunity of handling my friend Graham’s beautiful girl, Kurti. When he asked if we would like to take her son Kermit on, I was over the moon. Kermit joined our family in 2011. We now also have his grandson, Qazar, who was born in 2013.’
What is the best thing about the breed?
‘They are such clowns. You never have a dull day when you own a Pharaoh Hound. They always manage to do something to make you laugh. They are very loving with their family and expect to sleep in the bed with you. This is great during the winter, as they are fantastic hot water bottles, but in the summer is not so good.’
What is the history of the breed?
‘Believed to date back some 5,000 years, the Pharaoh Hound is probably one of the oldest breeds of domesticated dog known to man. He has come down to us, through the mists of time, virtually unchanged from the hound that was used for hunting by the Pharaohs of ancient Egypt.
The people of ancient Egypt held the Egyptian hound in such high regard.
It is thought that the Phoenician traders sailing around the Mediterranean some 2,000 years ago, left some of the hounds that they had acquired in Egypt on the various islands. Those left on Malta and Gozo developed into the Pharaoh Hound. There has been much discussion about the origins of the breed, and a small number of people consider that it is possible it was developed on Malta thousands of years ago and exported to Egypt in a reversal of what is commonly accepted as the probable route. There is however a compelling argument for ancient Egypt as the cradle of this beautiful and enchanting breed. Perhaps someday DNA testing will prove beyond doubt that ancient Egypt is the birthplace of the Pharaoh Hound.’
If you could have any other breed, what would it be?
‘It would be the other breed that I also have – the Cirneco Del Etna. People often mistake this breed as “miniature Pharaoh Hounds”. They do look like smaller versions of the Pharaoh Hound but are very different. They are also easier to train and much quieter.’
Do you have any achievements to share?
‘I started showing dogs over 25 years ago having also ridden and shown horses for around 20 years.
I co-bred 2 litters of Otterhounds with a friend and from these litters I kept a boy from each litter. I made both into Champions but Donut (from the second litter) was my ultimate show dog. He became a champion at Crufts 2007 at the age of just 17 months, having taken his first Best in Show a month earlier.
He went on to become the breeds first Irish Champion and first Otterhound to gain his Show Certificate of Merit. In his show career he won over 100 certificates in the UK, Ireland and Europe as well as many groups and groups placements in the UK, Ireland and Europe. As well as winning Best of Breed at Crufts twice he was Irish Annual Champion twice and Amsterdam Winner 2008. I have also owned and shown Rotties, Italian Spinone GWP and Otterhounds as well has handing many other breeds. I also judge regularly.’
A huge thankyou to Jacqui for sharing her love of this interesting breed. If you have a rare or interesting breed you would like to feature, do contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.