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Scottish Deerhound

Quick facts

Scottish Deerhound AKC Group: Hound
Height: Male: 30-32 in., Female: 28-30 in.
Weight: Male: 80-110 lbs., Female: 75-95 lbs.
Colors: dark blue-gray is the most preferred although other variations are also acceptable
AKC recognized in: 1886

The Scottish Deerhound is also simply known as a Deerhound. It is a close relative to the Greyhound and was previously called a Rough Greyhound and Highland Deerhound among others. It traces its origins to Scotland during the 16th and 17th centuries hence its present name. The breed is well-adapted to the regions climate and terrain thanks to its rough coat.

They were used as hunting dogs by Scottish tribes in the middle ages. Eventually, this breed was restricted to the Scottish nobility with no one holding a rank below Earl owning one. Thus, it gained a favored and privileged status in the country.

As the deer population ad their habitat dwindled, the Scottish Deerhound’s existence was threatened. This same threat happened again during World War II in Britain where the dogs were destroyed for food. Fortunately, efforts were made to preserve this breed in both instances which allow it to survive to this day.

This breed bears a slight resemblance to its cousin, the Greyhound. What distinguishes is its larger size and bigger bones. It has a flat head which is broad between the ears and a tapered muzzle. This breed is one of the tallest among the sight hounds. Its chest is deep with broad and flat legs.


Scottish Deerhound Summary
Affection five paws
Cold Tolerance four paws
Ease of Training three paws
Energy level three paws
Exercise Requirements four paws
Friendliness : Children four paws
Friendliness: Other Animals three paws
Friendliness: Other Pets three paws
Grooming Requirements two paws
Heat Tolerance four paws
Playfulness four paws
Protection Ability two paws
Watchdog Ability three paws

The Scottish Deerhound is a well-mannered dog with a polite and affectionate personality. They are very friendly making them a good companion for children. This dog cannot take the mantle of watch or guard dog though. They may be brave but they seem to be too friendly, even to strangers.

They may be gentle but Scottish Deerhounds still need a strong pack leader who can dominate over them. Aggression is still not advisable. Instead, owners of this breed should exercise leadership by being assertive without being too strict. Failure to do so will only encourage them to act and obey commands slowly.

These dogs should get along well with other dog breeds. On the other hand, non-canine creatures especially the smaller ones are in danger because of its hunter instincts. People who value peace and quiet will find this breed their ideal pets since they rarely bark.

Health and Exercise

Under normal circumstances, Scottish Deerhounds can live between 9 to 11 years. Serious health issues encountered by this breed include cardiomyopathy, bone cancer and torsion. Bloat can be avoided by spreading out their meals into smaller servings in 2 to 3 servings a day. Exercise should also be avoided after meals.

Being an active breed, these dogs need regular exercise. This may be in the form of long walks and jogs around the park. Keep in mind though that they will often give chase so make sure that there is nothing to provoke this action.

Open areas are preferable but not a necessity. They can live in apartments but owners should make it a point to take them out for a walk every once and a while.

Visitor Comments

This is your chance to add your feedback. Do you have a Scottish Deerhound in your family, or know one in someone elses? Do you have a story to tell related to that Scottish Deerhound? Or maybe you have more questions that either or another of our visitors might be able to help you with? Feel free to add your comment or question below.


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