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Irish Wolfhound

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Training Needs
Grooming Needs
Size: Large (60 to 100+ lbs.)
Lifespan: Medium (8 to 12 years)
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Irish Wolfhounds are a giant, gentle sighthound breed generally accepted as one of the tallest dogs in the world. Full-grown males can reach the size of a small pony--up to 7 feet tall standing on their hind legs! Because they are such a giant breed, you must have ample space in your home, car, yard, and life for an Irish Wolfhound. These are true "gentle giants"; great with children, protective of and loyal to their families, and good with strangers. Irish Wolfhounds, like all sighthound breeds, are dogs that give back tenfold in love what they take in time and attention.

General Care

Irish Wolfhounds, like all sighthound breeds, require lots of daily exercise--including lots of off-leash exercise. Irish Wolfhounds need a daily brushing of their long, rough and shaggy coats, and do shed. Their only other grooming requirements, however, are monthly bathing, brushing, nail clipping, and teeth cleaning. Wolfhounds do best with positive reinforcement in training and, due to their intelligence, will get bored easily with anything but short training sessions. Wolfies also need lots of exercise and attention daily or will become destructive, which, in a breed this large, will cause major household issues. Irish Wolfhounds also do best in homes with older, considerate kids--these are huge and heavy dogs that can easily knock over a smaller, unsuspecting child, and because they are gentle and tolerant, will be easily hurt by a child without letting you know. Wolfhounds should not be trusted around small, fuzzy animals unless they are raised around them, and even then, be cautious: sighthound breeds are instinctive small-game hunters. Common health problems in Irish Wolfhounds are hip and shoulder dysplasia, bloat and torsion, osteo-arthritis, cardiac and eye disorders. Sighthound breeds cannot metabolize barbiturate-based anesthetics, so please work with your veterinarian closely if your dog requires surgery.

For more information on Irish Wolfhound ownership and care, check out the Irish Wolfhound Club of America.

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