Podenco dogs are a type of hunter breed and are known as one of the oldest. Roman coins are dating from the 5th century BC where images of these dogs appear. However, it is thought that the podencos could have existed long before those dates.
Old paintings are known in which representations of stylized dogs emerge with long snouts and very erect ears, and that perfectly resemble today’s dog podenco.
Some experts in dogs claim that their appearance resembles slightly the image of the Egyptian god Anubis. This makes them believe that the caste of the podencos could have been moved in ships by the Phoenicians some millennia ago.
Their skills to track and hunt have made them the ideal companions of many people who are engaged in this sport. A hound has innate skills to capture small mammals such as hares and stand out in difficult terrain for other dogs.
They also have an enviable tenacity and resistance to follow traces: one of the characteristics that are best known is the acute development of their senses.
How many types of podenco dogs exist?
These beautiful specimens possess such natural elegance that some of their followers classify them as the most sublime breed in the animal world. It is estimated that having been raised in rural environments without being able to mix with podenco dogs from other countries, but with dogs of other breeds, was what gave way to the various types that exist today.
However, all specimens that fall under the characteristics of the hounds share certain traits. The firm musculature, its slenderness, the erect ears, and its fine snout are some genetic coincidences that remain.
Depending on the size of its legs and the color of the coat, an expert could distinguish the type of podenco dogs he observes. Next, we detail the best known:
It has its origins in southern Spain and it is thought that the lineage evolved from its Phoenician ancestors brought across the Mediterranean. This lineage is subdivided in turn according to size and coat, so small, medium and large Andalusian podencos can be identified.
Additionally, from the Andalusian caste the maiden podenco, with slightly shorter legs, and the bell podenco, of imposing size and with strong white fur, has been derived.
This is one of the most recognized and sought after dog breed lines by hunting lovers. They stand out for their agility and intelligence, and the best sense of sight is their best weapon: this specimen can follow the prey in almost any terrain. Some describe their ears as a pair of antennas that nothing escapes.
It is thought that this type of podenco was taken to Gran Canaria and Tenerife by the Phoenicians, as was their Andalusian cousin. However, some versions use the possibility that his transfer to the area was due to the Carthaginians or the Greeks.
This breed has a slightly longer coat than those mentioned above and is usually brown or reddish. It is a medium-sized dog that stands out in the big game.
As the name implies, this lineage reached the northern part of Portugal. It is said to be a mixture of several races and that, for this reason, can be found in a variety of sizes.
His abilities are not only evidenced in small games, but it is feared that in the future they will disappear because less and less of this beautiful canine are raised every day.
Other characteristics of podenco dogs
The hunting instinct of this breed is very strong, so it is not recommended as a companion dog. However, these dogs are very loyal and affectionate. They love to go jogging and tend to become obsessed with following a trail for no apparent reason.
Their intelligence is revealed at the time of training them, although they are easily distracted, so it is reasonable that they are trained by someone experienced. They are also very social pets and, although they are restless, they usually enjoy long and deep naps during the day.