I must say – today is a good day for Hound canines!
Aside from being athletic and sharp in terms of their physical abilities, Hounds also have a unique, deer-like appearance.
But, in order to not spoil the list completely, let’s see what the twelve ultimate deer-looking breeds are that you may already have in your home. Or, you’re about to purchase!
Probably the most famous in the family, the gracious Greyhound has been an object of aristocratic admiration for centuries. That’s why you can easily find this breed at the finest kennels all over the U.S.
Their popular S-shape body and their deer-like, aerodynamic head are the reasons why these dogs are champions of athleticism in the family. Extremely fast, durable, and energetic… Greyhounds make one of the most desirable sporting dogs in the world.
#2 Ibizan Hound
According to Alvarez et al 1, this Ibizan boy is the oldest breed recognized by the Spanish Kennel Club.
Even though it is quite rare in the U.S., the breed was recognized by the AKC in the 20th century. By being loyal, affectionate, and even-tempered dogs that resemble smaller deer, Ibizan canines are not for the faint of heart.
Even though they are highly attached to their family, their way-too-active spirit is the reason why these dogs are sometimes high maintenance.
If you don’t have so much experience in dog ownership – you can easily mistake the Saluki for an Afghan Greyhound. The difference, though, is that the first one is way more trainable and durable on long distances.
Even though they have longer fur – Salukis, indeed, resemble deer in their physical shape. Long legs and a deer-like head make these pooches unbeatable in sports.
On the other hand, their biggest flaw is their character. They can be fantastic pets when socialized from an early age, but the truth is – Salukis belong to the group of least affectionate breeds by nature.
#4 Deer Head Chihuahua
Well, not all Chis have the privilege to go toe to toe with hounds, but today is a lucky day for deer head Chihuahuas. These toy canines are certainly not the most athletic dog in the world, nor do they resemble deer in athleticism.
The only thing that makes them appear deer-like is their skull shape. Unlike apple head Chis, these tiny boys have a triangular head and a longer muzzle.
That still doesn’t change the fact that deer head Chis are quite clingy, demanding, and sensitive dogs. If you’re looking for a breed that has its own independent pace – you should never consider having a Chihuahua.
Yes, they are much smaller than Greyhounds, but you sure cannot whippet the floor with them! Being forty pounds heavy at their best – these athletic canines offer the best of their physique and their temperament.
Most Whippets have a smooth, short coat, but there is a small percentage of canines with the long one, too.
This is an elegant dog breed, perfect for families with kids and those who live in small apartments. Their tendency to not bark frequently is the reason why Whippets are so favorable among dog lovers.
Still, they do require a good portion of exercise during the day or they might get cranky!
#6 Podenco Canario
Gonzales et al. 2 claim that the popular Podenco is primarily an ancient hunting dog. However, the truth is this is one of the most affectionate dogs that you are ever about to meet.
Even though their primary purpose is to hunt in packs, these 50-pound-heavy canines just love having another dog as company or being in large groups of people. For that matter, Podencos are widely used as family dogs.
#7 Spanish Galgo
Here comes another dog from the hound family! The Spanish Galgo, popularly known as the Spanish Greyhound, is another silent boy.
Just like their Podenco Canario counterparts, these even-tempered doggos love having things low-key. That being said, you will not make a mistake by adopting a Galgo for family purposes.
They are loyal, affectionate, and calm dogs that enjoy a simple lifestyle. You, however, don’t want to forget that even though they are calm – they are still Greyhounds!
#8 Pharaoh Hound
You may think for a moment that the list is entirely composed of the same breeds from different places, but you would be wrong. The Pharaoh Hound, despite greatly resembling its Spanish counterparts, is a totally different breed.
These ancient Egyptian boys are more than three thousand years old. They, too, are quite loyal and affectionate towards their owner behavior-wise, and athletic and durable in terms of physical abilities, but there is one thing that is special about Pharaoh Hounds.
Namely, Nouh et al 3 state in their research that these particular dogs, despite being in the large group of sporting dogs that are prone to hip dysplasia, have shown no record whatsoever of suffering from this condition. And yet, they show no record of getting tired!
#9 Italian Hound
This Italian beauty was officially recognized by the AKC in 1886. Comparing it to its aforementioned cousins – I can say with certainty that Italian Hounds are the smallest in the family. Yet, they also irresistibly resemble deer in their body structure.
Even though they have the perfect way with families, I wouldn’t recommend these doggos to families with small children. Considering their miniature size, they can be too fragile and get hurt easily.
Coming all the way from West Africa, the deer-like Azawakh fairly deserves the spot on the list of the best hunting dogs in the world.
Known for their impeccable working ethics, these canines are slightly more independent than their distant hound cousins. Even though they can be well trained, they do have a tendency to have their own way and be a little bit stubborn.
#11 Rampur Greyhound
Due to their bigger size in comparison to other hounds, Rampurs can appear intimidating to inexperienced dog enthusiasts. The truth, however, is that they are the best of the Indian dogs!
Affectionate to owners and kind to children – these Indian boys are highly preferred as family dogs. And yet, they are impeccable when it comes to athleticism.
In comparison to his Italian and Spanish counterparts, Rampurs, due to their size, probably resemble deer the most.
#12 Cirneco dell’ Etna
If a Sphynx cat could be a dog – it would be the Cirneco dell’ Etna! Coming all the way from Sicily, Cirnecos are, for no good reason, a highly neglected breed that you cannot find on the market easily.
Still, their moderate height and surprisingly light weight make them ideal for agility competition. On the other hand, Cirnecos excel in conformation training, too!
Other than that – Cirnecos seek nothing more than the company of their loved ones. Despite their highly active nature, these doggos are not the breed of many outbursts.
Having a deer-like body type and skull is generally a trait of hound canines. Still, there is a small percentage of other dogs that share this characteristic, too.
If you’re not a deer-looking dog owner, I hope the list was entertaining enough to tickle your mind. Or, if you are – I bet you will start looking at your doggo from another perspective from now on!
- Alvarez, L., Marin-Garcia, P.H., Llobat, L. (2022). Immunological and genomic characterization of Ibizan Hound dogs in an endemic Leishmania infantum region. Parasites Vectors.
- Gonzales, A., Luque, M., Rodero, E., Gonzales, C., Aguilera, R., Jimenez, J., Sepulveda, N., Bravo, S., Herrera, M. (2011). Use of Morphometric Variables for Differentiating Spanish Hound Breeds. International Journal of Morphology.