The Portuguese Podengo (Warren Hound)
The Portuguese PodengoThe Portuguese Podengo is the National Breed of Portugal. Podengos come in three sizes (small, medium and large) and each has two coat types, wirehaired and smooth haired, giving six varieties. At the moment, only the small Podengo is recognised by the Kennel Club in the UK, but the other sizes are gaining some popularity.
It is thought that the breed is a descendant of the Pharoah Hound, dispersed from Egypt and Asia to North Africa and the Mediterranean coast. It is possible that Phoenician traders introduced the Podengo to Portugal, where they quickly established themselves as great rabbit hunters. The Portuguese word ‘podengo’ means rabbit hunter or warren hound and it is in this field that the Podengo gained his reputation as a hunter who could bring home food for the table as well as control vermin around the house. The smooth haired varieties became more popular in the rainier northern territory because they dry quickly, whilst the wire-coated varieties were used in the drier areas because they have the coat to protect them against the sun and heat.
Well established in Portugal from the sixteenth century, the small Podengo is hugely popular today, still used for hunting by sight, scent and sound, but greatly valued as a companion, too, because of his loving and obedient nature. He is a friendly, lively, intelligent and alert dog, who has quickly gained popularity in the UK since his introduction. His handy size, general health and hardiness, and great personality make him an ideal dog for town or country.
© The Kennel Club
Portuguese Podengo Breed Standard
A Breed Standard is the guideline which describes the ideal characteristics, temperament and appearance of a breed and ensures that the breed is fit for function.
Visit the Kennel Club website for the Breed Standard of the Portuguese Podengo – Portuguese Podengo Breed Standard
Portuguese Podengo Clubs in the West Country
There are no Clubs specific to the West Country. The National Club is:
The Portuguese Podengo Club of Great Britain – www.podengos.org