Scottish Greyhound: dog breed appearance, character, training, care, health

Also known as the Scottish Greyhound or Deerhound, the Scottish Greyhound is characterized by its calm and balanced character. Gentle in demeanour, it adores its master and gets along very well with children and other dogs. Its tender gaze and its little ears thrown back give them a sweet and very affectionate appearance. At Petlifey, we explain the character and characteristics of the Scottish Greyhound breed .

Character of the Scottish Greyhound breed

The Scottish Greyhound is an affectionate and calm dog. Well, despite being an animal raised mainly for hunting, it has the same desire to enjoy human company as many other breeds of dogs.

In fact, it is a docile animal and eager at all times to please its master, whom it adores; feels a true devotion and loyalty to them without limits, which makes them a magnificent companion animal.

Its temperament is docile and it is never defiant, aggressive, or nervous. It always displays a personality and attitude of calm dignity.

In relation to strangers, its behaviour is usually rather shy, because it does not even bother to give up its nap and start barking if it hears the doorbell.

Therefore, if a guard dog is needed in the house, this giant sighthound is not the best choice, despite what it might seem from its imposing appearance.

  • Energy: High. It is a true athlete who needs to get plenty of exercise on a daily basis.
  • Temperament: Noble, friendly, docile and with a great predisposition to please, it is easy to train. It is calm and has a good character.
  • Adaptability: High. You prefer to live in a rural setting, but adapt well to the city if you exercise a lot.
  • Sociability: High. It is friendly and sociable with the whole family. It is shy around strangers, but tolerates them without problems.
  • Health: Regular. Due to its size, it can suffer from joint problems.
  • Longevity: Medium. Live between 8 and 10 years.
  • Utility: Versatile. It is a good hunting, racing and companion dog.

Can you live in an apartment or in the city?

Due to its large size, this greyhound feels more comfortable in a house than in a flat, but if its owner has the time and desire to dedicate the hours that the animal needs to exercise, it will have no problems adjusting to it. an urban dwelling.

In fact, although Scottish Greyhound puppies are extremely active, somewhat mischievous and, because of their long, rather clumsy legs, as adults they spend most of the day sleeping on the floor or lying on a sofa, rather than running around. home.

How do you behave with children?

With children the Scottish Greyhound is affectionate, calm and balanced. It can be a great companion for games and adventures.

Of course, they should not be left alone without adult supervision. Due to the large size of the Deerhound, it can accidentally “run over” or throw a child to the ground.

How does it behave with other dogs and pets?

As for relationships with the rest of the inhabitants of the house, if they are socialized properly at an early age, they usually get along well with other pets.

But, as happens with other greyhounds, being dogs that hunt using their sight and have a strong instinct, if their owner does not exercise good control over them, they can launch after other pets.

Especially cats and small dogs, trying to hunt them down, with the dangers that this entails, since they are very large and strong animals.

In addition, it must be understood that the character of the greyhound varies greatly depending on whether the dog is in the safety of its home, where the tendency is for them to be docile and calm, or if it is outside, which for them is like an invitation to run and unleash your instincts.

Thus, although the dog willingly accepts the house cat, no one should be surprised that when it goes out it tries to hunt down the neighbor’s.

Characteristics of the Scottish Greyhound

It is an impressive dogvery large and with strong bones. It has a general bearing of dignity and nobility.

The English name of this greyhound, Scottish Deerhound, which means something like “deer hunting dog” already says a lot about this breed.

It is, in effect, an imposing-looking animal created and trained from its origin to hunt deer, wolves and foxes.

How is the Scottish Greyhound physically?


It is a giant-sized dog, with a strong and muscular body structure, with a convex back, a fairly arched dorsal line, and a broad and robust rump.

Under straight and wide legsthe feet are compact, with arched and strong toes. They are covered with abundant and fine hair. The nails are strong.

The tail is long, thicker at the root and ends in a point. It practically reaches the ground. When the specimen is standing, it falls perfectly straight or curved.

When in motion it raises the tail, curved, but never exceeding the line of the back. It is covered with fur, thick and hard at the top and longer at the bottom.


Its head is elongated, with a slightly flattened skull, wide between the ears and narrower between the eyes. It has moustaches and some beard, and the nose is black.

The eyes are always dark in color, be it brown or hazelnut. The edges of the eyelids are pigmented black. Its gaze is sharp, penetrating and distant.

The ears are small, soft to the touch and satin. Similar to the ears of a mouse, black or other dark color and set high.

When the dog is at rest it brings its ears bent back, and when it is active it raises them totally or partially, without losing the fold.


The coat of the Scottish Greyhound is shaggy, but not excessively thick, tight, and uneven. It is kinky and rough to the touch.

The hair on the body, neck and limbs is hard like wire and reaches between 7 and 10 cm in length. The hair on the head, chest and belly is softer.

Presents a slight fringe on the inside of the front and rear limbs.


It is dark blue-gray, with lighter or darker shades of gray, or tawny and yellow, sand-red, or fiery-red with a mask. The ears, the limbs and the tail are black or dark.

Some specimens have a white chest and fingers, as well as a small white spot on the tip of the tail.

Scottish Greyhound breed standard

  • Origin: United Kingdom.
  • Size: Giant.
  • Height at the withers: at least 76 cm for males and 71 cm for females.
  • Weight: up to 45.5 kg for males and up to 36.5 kg for females.
  • FCI Classification: FCI No. 164. Group 10 – Sighthounds. Section 2 – Wirehaired Sighthounds.
  • Use: Hunting, racing and company.
  • Other names: Scottish Deerhound / Lévrier écossais / Schottischer Hirschhund.
  • General appearance: It has many similarities to the English Greyhound, but larger, with stronger bones and coarse hair.
  • Head: It is elongated.
  • Skull: Moderately flat, with a slight protrusion over the eyes. The area between the ears is wider and tapers towards the eyes.
  • Nose-frontal depression (stop): It is non-existent.
  • Muzzle: It gradually becomes thinner in the area of ​​the nose, and can be black in light-coated dogs. It has a thick moustache with silky hair and a small beard.
  • Nose: It is black.
  • Jaws: They are strong and have a perfect, regular and complete scissor bite.
  • Eyes: They are dark, generally brown or hazel in color, with the edges of the eyelids pigmented black. They show a sharp, penetrating and distant gaze.
  • Ears: they are small and soft. They are set high and are black or another color, always dark. When the dog rests it carries them bent and backwards, and when it is active it raises them.
  • Neck: Of great strength and of balanced length, which sometimes the mane does not allow to appreciate. The nape is very prominent. There is no trace of a double chin.
  • Body: Its body structure is large, strong and muscular.
  • Back: It is slightly convex. The back is arched, descending to the base of the tail. The rump is broad, sloping and robust.
  • Chest: Deeper than wide.
  • Tail: The tail is thicker at the base, ends in a point and reaches almost to the ground. It is covered with thick and tough hair. When the dog is at rest, it is carried straight or slightly curved.
  • Forelimbs: They are straight, wide and with flat sides.
  • Shoulders: They are close together, they are light and they are presented oblique.
  • Forearms and arms: Both are quite wide.
  • Hind limbs: They are long, broad-boned and well proportioned.
  • Legs: Long and strong.
  • Knees: Endowed with good angulation.
  • Feet: They are compact and have angled toes and strong nails.
  • Movement: It is loose, agile and with the members acting in parallel. The hind limbs provide good thrust to the forelimbs.
  • Coat: Shaggy, thick, tight and uneven, frizzy or rough to the touch. On the body, neck and limbs it is hard, like wire, and measures between 7 and 10 cm, while on the head, chest and belly it is softer. It can be dark bluish gray in color, or in other shades of gray; tawny, yellow, sand red or fiery red.

Scottish Greyhound education and training

As it is endowed with great intelligence and its treatment is friendly, the truth is that it is a fairly easy dog ​​to train, ready to always obey the orders of its master.

Or almost always, because we must not forget that this is a whippet and as such, it is sometimes a bit stubborn and independent.

Therefore, it is essential that the animal is in the hands of a solid and firm master whom it can consider its clear leader and who does not hesitate to obey blindly.

If its master is able to assert itself with firmness and patience, the Scottish Greyhound is easier to train than other sight hounds and even other dog breeds.

But it must never be forgotten that, however well trained it may be, when taking them out for a run in the open it is important to make sure it is done in a safe area.

Because if this authentic athlete unleashes its powerful gallop in a potentially dangerous area, near a road, for example, it is very easy for its master to lose sight of the impulsive animal in a matter of seconds and that it ends up badly injured under the wheels of some vehicle.

Scottish Greyhound diseases and health

The Scottish Greyhound is a very healthy dog, with an average life expectancy of about 8 or 9 years (in general, females tend to live a little longer than males).

This is a normal longevity in a large dog like this one, although there have been cases of specimens that have lived to be 11 years old.

To ensure that the dog lives as long as possible in good health, the most important thing is that its owner is familiar with the health problems that usually affect the copies of this breed.

Among which the most serious are those related to the skeleton, such as hip dysplasia. In fact, bone conditions are the most common among large breeds like this one.

And another disorder that can affect the Scottish greyhound are cardiomyopathies, that is, diseases of the heart muscle , which are usually much more frequent in males, twice as likely as females.

Finally, it should be known that, like most greyhounds, this breed is hypersensitive to some anesthesia, a fact that should appear in a prominent place in your veterinarian’s medical history.

Ultimately, the veterinarian is the person responsible for ensuring the health and growth of the animal, and also responsible for following the program of vaccinationsdeworming and routine controls that must ensure that the animal is kept in good health.

Therefore, those who have decided to incorporate one of these dogs into their family should only worry about looking for a trusted veterinarian, without fear of the most typical diseases of the breed, since most of them live a full, active, happy life. and long with its master.

And, of course, if the future owner is careful to choose a breeder who has taken care to keep its stallions and females healthy, it will have many numbers to enjoy this active, friendly, affectionate and faithful dog for many years.

Scottish Greyhound diet

Given that the Scottish greyhound grows quickly, it is essential to offer it, especially during its first year of life, when development is faster and more evident, a correct diet and a good dose of exercise to achieve adequate muscles and the characteristic bearing of the race.

In this sense, it is very important to know that these greyhounds, like most breeds of sighthounds , have a tendency to suffer gastric torsion.

For this reason, it is recommended to feed the adult dog three small portions distributed throughout the day instead of one more abundant. It is also preferable to do the digestion calmly before taking it out to exercise.

Finally, as with other large dogs, it is convenient to place the water and food containers at a certain height from the ground so that they are higher and the animal does not have to lower its head so much.

How to care for a Scottish Greyhound

The Scottish greyhound is a dog especially adapted to the difficult climatic conditions of the Scottish Highlands, so, unlike the short-haired sighthounds, which are quite cold, it does not withstand the heat.

For this reason, it is deeply grateful that its master provides them with a cool place to take refuge from the sun and high temperatures if it lives in a hot region, or the summer heat in temperate zones.

Its abundant coat, with not too long hair, rough and slightly shaggy texture, is nevertheless very easy to care for. To keep it in perfect condition, just pass it a carding brush and a good steel comb to give it the last touch.

Also, every once in a while it doesn’t hurt to give her a good bath to remove dust and bring out her shiny hair.

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