Breed Information Centre

Portuguese Podengo


Illustration of Portuguese Podengo

The breed bears some common ancestry with the Pharaoh hounds, brought into the Mediterranean by Phoenician sailors. Podengo means 'rabbit hunter' or 'warren hound' and this hunting ability, along with his skill in controlling vermin around the house made him very popular in Portugal from the 16th century. Nowadays he retains that popularity but mostly as a family companion where his friendly temperament, character and intelligence make him a great personality.

The breed has three sizes – small, medium and large and two coats – the smooth haired variety – developed in the wetter climate of northern Portugal and the wire coated in drier areas where the wire coat could often protect against the sun. Only the smallest variety is seen in the UK.

Breed Group
Vulnerable Native Breed
How much exercise?
Up to 30 minutes per day
Length of coat
How much grooming?
Once a week
Supposedly sheds? *
Town or Country
Type of home
Small House
Minimum Garden Size
Over 10 Years

* If you are asthmatic or have an allergy, you should consult your medical advisor before considering obtaining a dog. More information can also be found on the Kennel Club website.

The Hound Breed Group

Breeds originally used for hunting either by scent or by sight. The scent hounds include the Beagle and Bloodhound and the sight hounds such breeds as the Whippet and Greyhound. Many of them enjoy a significant amount of exercise and can be described as dignified, aloof but trustworthy companions.

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