Irish Wolfhound | Facts, Diet, Habitat & Pictures

Irish Wolfhound | Facts, Diet, Habitat & Pictures

Irish Wolfhound Overview


The Irish Wolfhound is an impressive and giant breed known for its commanding presence. These dogs are exceptionally tall and have a robust, muscular build. Their long, coarse coat comes in various colors, including shades of gray, brindle, and black.

Origins And Evolution

The Irish Wolfhound is an ancient breed with a history spanning over 2,000 years. Large, wolf-hunting hounds brought to Ireland by the Celts likely included their ancestors. The Celts prized these dogs for their ability to hunt and guard against wolves, boars, and other large game.

Selective breeding over centuries honed the breed's size, strength, and courage. Revered as the "Cú Faoil" in Irish, meaning "wolfhound," they became associated with Irish nobility.

Behavior and Lifestyle

Irish Wolfhounds are known for their gentle and friendly behavior. Despite their imposing size, they are often described as "gentle giants." They are affectionate and devoted to their families, making them excellent companions.

Due to their history as hunting dogs, they retain a strong prey drive, so socialization with other pets is crucial. These dogs require moderate exercise to stay healthy and happy but are content with lounging indoors when not active.

Irish Wolfhound Scientific Classification

  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Chordata
  • Class: Mammalia
  • Order: Carnivora
  • Family: Canidae
  • Genus: Canis
  • Species: Canis lupus
  • Subspecies: Canis lupus familiaris

Irish Wolfhound Locations

  • Ireland
  • United States
  • United Kingdom
  • Europe (multiple countries)
  • Australia
  • Canada
  • New Zealand
  • South Africa

Fast Facts

  • Name: Irish Wolfhound
  • Scientific Name: Canis lupus familiaris
  • Habitat: Domestic Homes
  • Diet: Canine Nutrition
  • Physical Features: Giant Breed
  • Nocturnal: Diurnal Behavior
  • Solitary: Social Nature
  • Unique Order: Carnivora Order
  • Lifespan: 6-8 Years
  • Conservation Status: Not Applicable
  • Fun Facts: Tallest Dog

Physical Characteristics

  • Color: Varied Coat
  • Skin Type: Short Fur
  • Top Speed: Moderate Pace
  • Lifespan: 6-8 Years
  • Weight: Massive Build
  • Length: Giant Stature
  • Age of Sexual Maturity: 1-2 Years
  • Age of Weaning: 6-8 Weeks

Irish Wolfhound FAQs

What is an Irish Wolfhound?

It is a giant breed of dog known for its imposing size and gentle disposition.

Are Irish Wolfhounds good with children?

Yes, they are generally good with children due to their gentle nature, but supervision is recommended due to their size.

How big do Irish Wolfhounds get?

Irish Wolfhounds are one of the tallest dog breeds, with males typically standing 32 inches or more at the shoulder.

Do they require a lot of exercise?

Yes, they need regular exercise but should not be over-exerted when young to protect their growing joints.

Are Irish Wolfhounds good guard dogs?

They are not known for aggressive guarding but can be protective due to their size and alertness.


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