The Segugio Italiano is an ancient breed dating back thousands of years. It was used by farmers to locate and hunt rabbits and hare and is known for ignoring other animals. Originally it was used in packs to hunt wild boar, but once these disappeared it turned it's attention to hare. They have a strong sense of smell. The breed is quite common in it's home country but not very well known outside Italy. They come in smooth and wire haired varieties and are one of the top ten breeds in Italy. They are kept mainly as working dogs and less commonly as pets.
Having spent years working with human, the Segugio likes to be around people and is well suited to family life. They are quiet indoors and like children, other pets and dogs if socialised from an early age. They will warn you when someone is at the door but are usually welcoming to strangers. They make good watch dogs, but are affectionate to nearly everyone they meet. They dislike being left for too long and will want to know what is going on around them. They are not happy with family arguments and can be very sensitive if there is friction in the air. Segugios dislike being separated from people and this can lead to destructive behaviour and barking. Leave them alone for short periods from a young age to get them used to their own company. Crate training is often useful as it gives them somewhere safe to be when you are out.
Training should be started from a young age and they have a natural ability to learn and to want to please you. They can be stubborn at times, but this is mainly down to boredom with learning repetitive things. Keeping training short and fun will help them get to grips with what you are trying to teach them. Using play, praise and positive reinforcement is the best way to help them learn. Consistency and high praise, never harsh correction should be used.
The Segugio Italiano is very high energy and will need long daily walks. They have immense stamina and make excellent jogging partners. Their sense of smell is similar to that of a Bloodhound, so when out walking, they can suddenly dash off in search of prey. Best walked in a secure area or on a long lead to prevent them escaping from you. They love to run but have little road sense, especially when they get on to a scent. Once walked they are content within the home and just happy to sleep and be around their owners, but are probably best suited to living in the country.
Segugio Italianos have no known health problems.
The coat requires occasional brushing to remove dead hair and nails should be kept short.
- Status: Common
- Life Expectancy: 11 - 14 years
- Weight: 18 - 27kg
- Height: 19 - 23"
- Rare: No
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