Cirneco dell’ Etna

September 25, 2020 // 6 minute read

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The Cirneco dell’ Etna is a small to medium-sized dog that stands at a height of 19.5 inches. They look like a smaller version of Pharaoh Hounds, have large, upright ears, and alert eyes. Their coats are low maintenance and come in shades of chestnut or tan.

Cirneco dell’ Etnas are athletic and highly energetic dogs perfect for active families. They can adapt well to an apartment living because of their size, but you should ensure that you meet his exercise requirements.

These are indoor dogs, and they love the company of people. So unless you can provide him the time and attention he needs, they’ll be excellent family companions.

Cirneco dell' Etna

Cirneco dell’ Etna Statistics

Dog Breed GroupHound
Breed SizeSmall to Medium
Height18-19.5 inches (male); 16.5-18 inches (female)
Weight22-26 pounds (male); 17-22 pounds (female)
Lifespan12-14 years

Cirneco dell’ Etna Breed Ratings

Energy level
Exercise needs
Requires attention
Friendly with family
Friendly with kids
Friendly with strangers
Friendly with other dogs
Prey Drive

Cirneco dell’ Etna History

Cirneco dell’ Etnas originated from Sicily; hence they are also known as Sicilian Greyhounds. They closely resemble the Pharaoh Hounds, but only with smaller bodies.

They are believed to be one of the oldest dog breeds with a history that goes way back to 500 BC, as depicted from old Sicilian coins. These dogs were used for hunting small games and are believed to have been developed from dogs that traveled on Phoenician merchant ships.

Cirneco dogs were only found on Sicily’s island until 1932 when a veterinarian who visited the island wrote an article about the decline of the dog’s population. Baroness Agata Paterno then read the article and made it her goal to increase the population of Cirneco.

Her efforts succeeded as Italy’s national kennel Club finally recognized the breed. However, it wasn’t until 2015 when the American Kennel Club fully recognized the breed. Today, the dogs rank 183rd in popularity in the US and are considered rare. Only owners

Cirneco dell' Etna2

Cirneco dell’ Etnas are affectionate, friendly, and independent dogs. They love people, and they most especially love spending time with their owners. They are also very gentle with children and can be great playmates for your other pets.

Let these dogs stay indoors as much as possible. They can’t handle extreme weather conditions and would certainly love to cuddle with you for warmth during the cold season.

Although these dogs are great family companions now, you should remember that they are hunters. They need exercise and must be put on a leash when taken out for walks. Play sessions should be in a large and securely fenced yard to prevent him from chasing smaller animals.

These dogs have a great memory. You can expect them to bark upon seeing someone new, but they are calm once introduced.

Early socialization is crucial for these dogs as it will help them become more well-rounded and confident. Training should also start early, and you won’t even find it hard as Cirneco dell’ Etnas are smart dogs.

Providing consistent and firm training is important. You should also encourage them through positive reinforcements, and not through harsh treatment.

Care Requirements

  • Nutrition: Cirneco dell’ Etnas don’t have any special dietary requirements. What’s important is that you’ll be able to provide them with high-quality and well-balanced meals that contain the essential nutrients for their growth – proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. Breeds of this size are easy to overweight, so ensure that you watch the number of calories you feed them in a day. An overweight dog will suffer more from diseases, and you don’t want that. When choosing your dog’s food, whether it’s home-cooked or commercially manufactured, always choose high-quality ones. Fruits and vegetables are always great to add to provide vitamins to your dog. Take note of particular ingredients your dog is allergic to and stay away from those. If you don’t know how to create the right meals for them, don’t hesitate to ask your vet for advice. He’ll be able to create a food guide specific to your dog’s needs.
  • Grooming: Cirneco dell’ Etnas are short-haired dogs with smooth coats. They shed very infrequently and would only require very minimal maintenance. Weekly brushing should suffice in keeping their coat in excellent condition. Baths can be given occasionally, depending on how dirty, messy, or smelly your dog gets. But ears should be cleaned out regularly to prevent ear infection. Nails should be trimmed regularly, too, to not cause pain and discomfort to your dog.
  • Exercise: Cirneco dell’ Etnas are energetic dogs that need regular exercise to stimulate them mentally and physically. However, nothing too strenuous is needed. About 30 minutes of exercise each time should suffice. He’s the happiest when given something to do. You can take him on show rings, canine sports, or when you’re doing activities with him in the form of long walks and play sessions. These dogs have a strong prey drive, so he should always be kept on a leash when taken out on walks. A large, securely fenced yard is also very important if you want to let him loose. But don’t leave him to play on his own as this will make him very unhappy.
  • Health: Cirneco dell’ Etnas are generally healthy dogs with very little health problems. Your main concern is obesity for these dogs, so you need to be very careful with the number of calories you feed them in a day. Some minor concerns are toe and muscle injuries. Keep close supervision during exercises, and always remember that activities don’t have to be strenuous. There may be hereditary concerns other than these, but you can check this with your dog’s parents to be aware. Closely monitor your dog’s behavior and take him immediately to the vet if you notice any changes.
  • Lifespan: The life expectancy of Cirneco dell’ Etnas is 12-14 years.

Fun Facts about Cirneco dell’ Etnas

  • Cirneco dell’ Etnas are ancient dogs from Sicily over a thousand years ago.
  • They are one of the dog breeds that evolved through natural selection and not through human breeding.
  • They were a poor man’s dog.
  • Unlike other dogs, Cirneco dell’ Etnas hunt by sight and speed instead of scent.
  • They were named after Mount Etna, Europe’s highest active volcano.
  • These dogs used to guard a temple at the volcano.
  • They were fully recognized by the American Kennel Club in 2015.

Check Out Other Hound Dog Breeds:
Afghan Hound, American English Coonhounds, American Foxhound, Basenjis, Basset Hound, Beagle, Black and Tan Coonhound, Bloodhound, Bluetick Coonhound, Borzois, Dachshund, English Foxhound, Grand Basset Griffon Vendeens, Greyhound, Harrier, Ibizan Hound, Icelandic Sheepdogs, Irish Wolfhound, Norwegian Elkhound, Otterhound, Petit Basset Griffon Vendéen, Pharaoh Hounds, Plotts, Portuguese Podengo, Redbone Coonhound, Rhodesian Ridgeback, Salukis, Scottish Deerhounds, Sloughis, Treeing Walker Coonhound, Whippet

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