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Cirneco dell'Etna an Ancient Hunting Breed

The Cirneco dell'Etna is a lively, driven, and family oriented. This ancient hunting breed originates from Sicily, and will be able to make you an offer you can't refuse!

 

Cirneco dell'Etna

Photo Credit - http://sic.fi

Introducing - The Cirneco dell'Etna

The Easter Bunny would dare not step into the home of a Cirneco dell'Etna (pronounced 'cheer-NAY-co'), as this breed still retains its famous hunting instinct from its ancient heritage. Though a hunter at heart, the Cirneco dell'Etna puts family first and is well known to get along well with other pets and children.

History

Cirneco dell'Etna

Photo Credit - http://chininas.com/cirneco_eng.html

Originating on the island of Sicily 2500 years ago, particularly in the surrounding areas of Mount Etna, this breed was used to hunt rabbits - though not often accompanied by Elmer Fudd. It's mission - to follow the rabbit to its den, then bark and dig at the opening. Traditionally, a ferret would be used to go in after the prey.

Cirneco dell'Etna

Photo Credit - http://chininas.com/cirneco_eng.html

The Cirneco dell'Etna is believed to have descended from similar prick-eared, hound dogs of ancient Egypt. Unlike other breeds, they have undergone very little manipulation by man. They're quite hardy and are known to work for hours in the heat without food or water. A celebrity of their time, this breed was depicted on 5th to 3rd century B.C coins from Segesta in Sicily.

Cirneco dell'Etna

Photo Credit - http://chininas.com/cirneco_eng.html

Cirneco dell'Etna

Photo Credit - http://chininas.com/cirneco_eng.html

Legend has it that the Cirneco dell'Etna was the guardian of an ancient temple dedicated to Adranos, the fire god, who lived under the active volcano - Mount Etna. They were said to have helped guide pilgrims to the temple, and would attack any wandering thieves and non-believers.

The Cirneco dell'Etna was virtually unknown outside of Sicily until 1932, when a visiting veterinarian published an article in an Italian hunting journal, noting the poor outlook for the breed. The Baroness Agata Paterno' Castello, a sicilian aristocrat, headed a group to revive the breed for the next 26 years. Through careful, extensive breeding she was positive that she had recovered type and conformation. In 1939, the Italian Kennel Club adopted a standard and recognized the breed. In 1996, they made their way to America and attracted more attention after arrival by competing in lure coursing in the late 1990's. In 2015, they were finally admitted into the AKC Hound Group where they are now considered sight hounds.

Temperament

Cirneco dell'Etna

Photo Credit - curiositysip.com

Those looking for an active breed that is great with kids, other dogs and pets will find that in the Cirneco dell'Etna. This pint-sized hunter makes a great watchdog and prefers the creature comforts of home. They are not as independent as their primitive counterparts  and prefer the company of their family. Still, Cirnechi (plural form) tend to be busy dogs, always getting their paws in some sort of project. It's rarely deterred by obstacles when seeing something it wants, and will often take off on rabbit trails and fleeing wildlife.

Appearance

Cirneco dell'Etna

Photo Credit - http://nextpup.com/

Height: Male - 18-19.5"  Female - 17.5 - 19"

Weight: 18-26 lbs

Coat: Tan to dark chestnut

Health

Major Concerns: None

Minor Concerns: None

Life Span: 10-14 Years

Grooming

The Cirneco dell'Etna is a very clean breed, it's short and sleek coat only requires a weekly brushing.

Exercise

Cirneco dell'Etna

Photo Credit - www.enci.it

Cirnechi need a moderate amount of exercise and proper nutrition to help keep its strong, elegant physique. Dog sports such as agility, obedience and rally are a great way to challenge this ancient hunter. Exciting games at home such as hide and seek, fetch and learning new tricks also help keep this breed happy and stimulated.

Tips


Cirneco dell'Etna

Photo Credit - http://petguide.com.vsassets.com/

The Cirneco dell'Etna will be the first to work on their tan lines in the summertime, but it does not do well in the cold. Most likely, they may borrow your credit card to purchase a robe and space heater for the winter. They are known to be quite healthy, but as with all canines, they need to be physically and mentally stimulated. They are easier to train than their sighthound cousins, making indoor and outdoor activities with Cirnechi a breeze.

Disclaimer: Before adding a new member to your family, speak with reputable breeders and spend time researching the breed thoroughly.

- http://www.akc.org/dog-breeds/cirneco-delletna/
- http://chininas.com/cirneco_eng.html
- Encyclopedia of Dog Breeds - D. Caroline Coile, Ph.D

Here are some great suggestions of accessories for the breed: https://www.olicollars.com/collections/sight-hound