Hickory the Scottish deerhound took home the "Best in Show" prize at the 2011 Westminster Dog Show. Now, the breed is suddenly on everyone's hot-list.
Considering adopting a Scottish deerhound into your family? Here's what you need to know about the breed before you make a commitment.
If you missed the Westminster Dog Show, then you probably don't know that this breed looks like a long-haired greyhound. Their heads are long and flat with a pointy muzzle.
Scottish greyhounds grow to an average height of 28-32 inches and weigh anywhere from 75-110 lbs., so they're a big dog.
The Scottish deerhound is surprisingly low-maintenance for such a large dog. They can live in apartments if they're sufficiently exercised – and they need plenty of it. A long run or walk is appropriate for them, but it's important to realize that they have chasing tendencies.
The Scottish deerhound is a gentle giant: this breed is very laid-back, gentle and affectionate. They are also very loyal, but make poor guard dogs. They hardly ever bark, but owners must be assert dominance to avoid problems. They should also not be left alone with non-canine animals.
Scottish deerhounds require regular brushing and combing on its wirey and thick coat. Their nails need to be clipped regularly, but they don't shed as much as other animals.
Breeders make big money after the Westminster Dog Show – people see the winners and rush out to buy the animal before properly weighing the decision. This results in a lot of animal abandonment. That's why it's important to consider adopting your Scottish deerhound before buying from a breeder.
To find adoptable Scottish deerhounds, first check out rescues that adopt out large breeds – the California-based Gentle Giants is one. Looking for toy breeds? Hearts United for Animals, located in Auburn, Nebr., specializes in rescuing small dogs from horrific puppy mills and breeding farms.
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