Spanish Greyhound, Galgo Greyhound
This faithful, hardy and robust dog deserves to share the daily life of a master who can learn to respect and love him for his beautiful qualities. Too long mistreated in his own country, the Spanish Galgo is an excellent dog that can make all kinds of owners happy. The master must learn to respect his dog's particular aptitudes and different physiology in order to provide him with a living and environment favorable to his development. Even if his physiology is different, the Spanish Galgo is no different from other dogs, he only asks to be respected in order to become man's best friend, loved and protected as he should be.
Quick Overview of the Spanish Galgo
- Quiet and reserved
- Loyal and loving
- Devoted to his master
- Two characters
- Superb muscles, beautiful silhouette
- Extended and very thin head
- Smooth and very fine short coat
- Small oblique almond-shaped eyes
- Resistant and robust
- No particular pathology
Temperament of the Spanish Galgo
More inclined to show affection than other greyhounds, the Spanish Galgo is nonetheless a greyhound.
He is calm and reserved at home but totally explosive during exercise. Faithful, affectionate and devoted to his master once he is conquered by the latter, he always comes back home.
His dual character requires a firm education. Even if he is calm, gentle and quiet in family, he is not the most docile and has a slight tendency to stubbornness with repetitive exercises.
He is an excellent hunting dog that leaves at the slightest glimpse of game, but he also has great abilities as companion dog.
The beautiful elegant silhouette of the Spanish Galgo is accompanied by a superb musculature and underlined by an elongated and very fine head. The Spanish Galgo has a very particular gait, typical to his breed.
His big, compact frame with a large chest leaves an impression of great nobility and elegance.
Between 62 and 70 cm (24.41 to 27.56 inches) for the male
Between 60 and 68 cm (23.62 to 26.77 inches) for the female
Between 25 and 30 kg (55.12 to 66.14 pounds) for the male
Between 25 and 30 kg (55.12 to 66.14 pounds) for the female
His coat can be of any color, but preference is often given to red and brindle, black, cinnamon, red, yellow, white and light or dark black spots.
His short coat is smooth, very fine and compact.
It can also be hard and semi-long with a slight tendency to form a beard, eyebrows and sometimes even a moustache.
The elongated and very fine head of the Spanish Galgo is wide but his stop is not very accentuated.
His small almond-shaped eyes are oblique and a beautiful hazelnut color.
His large triangular ears are generally semi-erect when on the lookout. His nose is black.
His long tail is flexible and extends well beyond the hock.
According to the FCI breeds nomenclature, this breed belongs to group 10, section 3 and is #285
Characteristics of the Spanish Galgo
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Every dog breed has its own characteristics. However, the actual character of a dog can vary from one to another within the same breed.
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This superb specimen is a fast runner and excellent hunter with a strong character typical of his category.
Appreciated for his sincere affection and great discretion, the Spanish Galgo shows great aptitudes as a companion.
He is patient with children even if he doesn't really enjoy their games. He is nevertheless gentle and very calm in their presence and can be with them without any problem.
The Spanish Galgo is very attached to his entire family, but he is not easy to educate.
Despite his beautiful qualities, he is endowed with a slightly capricious temperament. His education must be started very early, and the master must show great firmness, as he has a tendency to stubbornness with repetitive commands.
He's very suspicious of strangers and can make an excellent guard.
The Spanish Galgo can adapt to any situation because at home he is very calm and quiet.
However, his dual personality means that he must be able to run and spend his energy.
He is a perfect house dog because his need for space is minimal, but outside, he becomes a completely different dog and must be able to express the other side of his personality on a daily basis.
Therefore, he can live anywhere but under certain conditions.
Health of the Spanish Galgo
Resistant and very robust despite his apparent fragility, the Spanish Galgo does not suffer from any particular pathology.
He is a solid dog that generally enjoys excellent health and life expectancy.
A good regular brushing is the only maintenance required.
His coat, whether short or medium-long, is very easy to care for and requires only a few minutes every week.
History of this breed
This very old greyhound with controversial origins would most likely come from a distant era, when he arrived in Spain with the Celts around the 6th century BC.
Although the Galgo has been known since Roman times, it is likely that he existed for much longer. Probably descended from Asian greyhounds, he was exported during the 16, 17 and 18th centuries to countries such as England and Ireland, to be used for hare hunting.
The etymology of Galgo comes from the name canis gallicus (Celtic greyhound) given by the Romans to identify the Celts' companion.
From gallicus, which later became Galgo, this dog is said to be an extension of the Asian Greyhound brought to the West by the Celts at the time.
In Spain in the Middle Ages, the Galgo was popular among the nobility and bourgeoisie as well as among peasants. Contrary to England and France where certain races were specific to the nobility, the Galgo was shared by all the inhabitants of the country.
However, he remained the favourite of the Spanish nobility.
During the 19 and 20th centuries, the Spaniards decided to cross the Galgo with the Greyhound in order to increase the speed of the Galgo.
Later on, breeders brought back the breed closer to the original selection, but the Spanish Galgo still kept the particular look of the Greyhound.
He is an excellent hunting dog that was first used to hunt hare, but also appreciated for hunting fox, rabbit and even wild boar.
He is also greatly appreciated for his fine qualities as companion dog, but he is often treated very badly in his country of origin, where he does not benefit from any protection, unlike other companion dogs.
Although most births are registered in Spain, a good number of these dogs are regularly adopted outside the country, mainly in France, Switzerland and Belgium, where they are increasingly protected to prevent them from being mistreated in their country of origin.