With the number 164, the FCI recognizes the standard as an independent British dog breed. Documents from the early Middle Ages already describe dogs that seem to correspond to the Deerhound.
The year is 1886. The British Deerhound Club was founded in the autumn of which the Statue of Liberty was officially dedicated. The members of the club set a breed standard that still stands today. This describes the Deerhound. The big dogs are probably among the oldest sighthounds to walk on British soil. The original home of the Deerhound is the Scottish Highlands. There the four-legged friends live in the spacious parks of the manorial country estates.
The Scottish Deerhound’s ancestors were African greyhounds. However, it is not exactly clear when these arrived in the British Isles. On the one hand, it is possible that they existed as early as 1000 BC. Chr. with Phoenician traders came into the country, on the other hand, it could also have been the Celts who brought these dogs with them since they had conquered areas of the Middle East before they immigrated to the British Isles and there was a high probability of acquiring dogs of this type.
Some experts, therefore, regard the Scottish Deerhound as the purest descendant of the Celtic Greyhounds. What is certain is that large greyhounds existed in Great Britain even before the Romans conquered it.
Given that the African greyhounds, with their short and silky coats, may have struggled with the harsh climate of Scotland, it is only likely that they were crossed with shaggy native breeds to achieve a weatherproof coat. The classic slim sighthound line was clearly preserved under the wiry coat.
A famous ancient monument dating from the 8th century AD called the ‘Hilton of Cadboll-Stone’ shows two hounds attacking a stag, and early English literature also tells of gray ‘highlands. Hounds” with a rough and long-haired coat. Originally, the Scottish Deerhound was bred by the various clans for hunting big game and wolves in the highlands.
However, since in the feudal Middle Ages the Scottish nobles let the others work for them, they had enough time to indulge in their hobby of deer hunting. For this purpose, they got large packs of these dogs, which pursued the deer and, having caught them, tore them down. Appropriate laws were even enacted which allowed only noblemen of the rank of Earl (Earl) and above to own Scottish Deerhounds.
On the one hand, this exclusivity meant that there was always a sufficient number of deer available for the dogs when hunting, and on the other hand, of course, there were only very few of these dogs. The Scottish nobles use their financial and time freedom to drive with the help of the impressive four-legged deer (stag, English: deer). Before the introduction of firearms, the clans let these swift dogs rush in a pack and tear down big game in the open country.
The Scottish Deerhound is a sensitive dog in a rough shell. He is tender and obedient, but never pushy. He is quiet in the house, quietly rolling himself to sleep or tiptoeing around the house. Outside, on the other hand, he can live out his temperament and his hound legacy. As a hardy long-distance runner, he needs at least an hour a day to alternately trot and canter, otherwise, his physical and mental condition could suffer. The Scottish Deerhound has the friendly and calm disposition of the greyhound.
Unfortunately, the rearing of these large dogs is very expensive and time-consuming, but keeping an adult animal is quite simple, provided you can offer the dog sufficient space, exercise, and proximity to its master.
It should be given the opportunity to compete in greyhound racing so that it can do what it was originally bred to do: chase a target at full speed. At the same time, you have the opportunity to test the hunting instinct of the breed. Otherwise, he should be offered long walks or horseback rides.
The Scottish Deerhound is very loyal, almost worshiping his family. If you can offer him the right habitat, he is the ideal house dog. The soft expression of the Deerhound’s brown eyes is not deceptive. You belong to a clingy, child-loving four-legged friend who is compatible with other animals.
He needs close proximity to the family, and is quiet and reserved in the house. He likes to take care of children while playing and cuddling. They awaken his protective instinct. Less experienced dog owners will appreciate the dog’s even temperament and willingness to please.
The big Scot is easy to handle. With love and consistency, man achieves everything with his companion. The Deerhound acknowledges harshness and unfair treatment with disregard for a short time. According to its stature, the four-legged friend needs a lot of space. In the house, in the garden, as well as in the vehicle – on the way to coursing.
Pursuing artificial rabbits is a fantastic proposition when it comes to species-appropriate activity. Hunting on a course modeled on the wild meets his hunting instinct. After appropriate training, the Deerhound can even be used as a hunting assistant. Unwanted hunting behavior away from the terrain provided for this purpose must be countered from an early age with appropriate anti-hunting training. Trained in this way, walks at a good pace and horseback riding with the big one are seen as enriching by everyone involved.