Portuguese Podengo

Last updated February 2009

A breed standard is the guideline which describes the ideal characteristics, temperament and appearance including the correct colour of a breed and ensures that the breed is fit for function. Absolute soundness is essential. Breeders and judges should at all times be careful to avoid obvious conditions or exaggerations which would be detrimental in any way to the health, welfare or soundness of this breed.

From time to time certain conditions or exaggerations may be considered to have the potential to affect dogs in some breeds adversely, and judges and breeders are requested to refer to the Breed Watch information related to this breed for details of any such current issues. If a feature or quality is desirable it should only be present in the right measure. However, if a dog possesses a feature, characteristic or colour described as highly undesirable, it must not be rewarded in the show ring.

General appearance

Small, sturdy, slightly longer than high.


A primitive dog used primarily for hunting rabbits. A keen, alert and agile dog who hunts by scent, sight and hearing.


Sociable, intelligent and lively.

Head and skull

Lean, fine, seen as a broad based wedge when viewed from above and in profile. Flat or slightly arched skull. Occipital bone slightly prominent. Stop moderately defined. Muzzle shorter than the skull, appears as a blunt wedge when in profile, with a slightly protruding nose. Lips thin, black and tight fitting.


Expressive, moderate in size, not prominent, set obliquely. Colour varies according to coat colour, from light to dark brown.


Triangular, large and thin. Broad at the base tapering to a fine point. Set on medium high and obliquely. Very mobile, carried erect and forward when alert. Length of ear greater than width at base.


Jaws strong with a perfect, regular and complete scissor bite, i.e. upper teeth closely overlapping lower teeth and set square to the jaw.


Straight and of medium length. Strong, well muscled. Free from throatiness.


Forelegs straight and parallel. Well-laid, muscular shoulders. Pasterns short, strong and slightly sloping.


Length of body from point of shoulder to point of buttock greater than height at withers. Topline level, slight rise over loin. Moderate forechest. Chest fairly deep, not too wide. Ribs moderately well sprung and carried well back. Underline rising slightly.


Strong and muscular. Moderately angulated with firm hocks and moderate length of rear pasterns. Legs parallel when viewed from behind.


Strong and round, toes tight and well arched. Nails strong, short and preferably dark. Firm pads.


Medium length, high set. Thick at the base tapering to a fine point. Curved over the back when moving. Never curled.


Swift and light footed. Sound.


Smooth or wire coated. Never trimmed. Skin thin and close fitting.

Smooth coated: Short and very dense.

Wire coated: Rough and harsh, but not as dense as the smooth coat and without undercoat. Distinct beard.


Yellow, fawn (in all shades from light to dark), black (diluted or faded), with or without white markings. White only if accompanied by markings of one of the listed colours.


Height 20-30 cms (8-12 ins). Weight 4-5 kgs (9-11 lbs).


Any departure from the foregoing points should be considered a fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree and its effect upon the health and welfare of the dog and on the dog’s ability to perform its traditional work.


Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.

*Note for prospective puppy buyers

Size – The Kennel Club breed standard is a guide and description of the ideal for the breed; the size as described does not imply that a dog will match the measurements given (height or weight). A dog might be larger or smaller than the size measurements stated in the breed standard.