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Caravan Hound

Kristin Hitchcock

Height: 22-28 inches
Weight: 45-85 pounds
Lifespan: 12-plus years
Colors: Sable, cream, red, fawn, gray, black
Suitable for: Active families, those looking for a watchdog
Temperament: Reserved, loyal, sensitive

The Caravan Hound is also known as the Maratha hound and Mudhol hound. Even official kennel clubs can’t seem to agree on a name, as they all register the dogs differently.

This breed is quite rare in the western part of the world. Few exist in Europe and America, if there are any at all. This breed is native to India, which is where they primarily are today. Their breeding is mostly undertaken by 750 different families, who are attempting to market the puppies. Outside of India, it is difficult to even find information about the animal.

This breed is relatively new, which may explain why they are so rare. They have only been bred since the 1900s, when they were developed by the Mudhol royal family. Before that, they were a completely indigenous breed with an untraceable history.

Today, this canine is largely kept by local families in India for hunting, guarding, and companionship. They are extremely multipurpose animals.

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Caravan Hound Puppies — Before You Buy

Energy
Shedding
Health
Lifespan
Sociability

What’s the Price of Caravan Hound Puppies?

These dogs are rare in Europe and the United States. They aren’t recognized by any major kennel club outside of India. For this reason, most puppies need to be imported. When deciding on a cost, it is essential to take travel into account when determining the price of the puppy. You will also have to meet your country’s requirements for importing a dog, which usually involves the animal receiving certain vaccinations and seeing a vet. Of course, this will also cost money.

Luckily, these dogs are extremely inexpensive. You can expect to pay around $100 for a single dog. A pair may cost as much as $200. This does not include transportation. However, given that some dogs in the U.S. cost thousands of dollars, you probably won’t end up paying that much for this dog.

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3 Little-Known Facts About the Caravan Hound

1. King George V was once given a pair of Caravan Hounds.

This breed was noticed and particularly revived by Shrimant Rajesaheb Malojirao Ghorpade of Mudhol, who was part of the Mudhol royal family. He noticed that local people used the dog for hunting purposes and took to selectively breeding the canine. He then presented King George V with two of the dogs when he came to visit.

2. They are used by the military.

The Indian Army has used this canine for surveillance and border protection duty. Thus far, only six dogs are being used on a trial basis. However, more are likely to come.

3. Breeding these dogs is quite lucrative in India.

Those who breed this canine in India often have higher incomes than others of their same economic class. Of course, some breeders produce higher quality dogs than others and therefore, can sell their dogs for more.

caravan hound
Image Credit: Pixabay

Temperament & Intelligence of the Caravan Hound

The temperament of this dog is often misunderstood. They are commonly mistaken to be aggressive, when this isn’t necessarily the case. These dogs are rather reserved with strangers, but they are extremely loyal to their family. They have been utilized as guard dogs for this reason. However, socialization can help them learn to accommodate strangers and reduce their territorial tendencies.

They are gentle in nature and often quite good with children, as long as they have been socialized properly. Again, they will be most affectionate with their family, not random strangers.

They make great watchdogs and can be quite deterring toward intruders. This is especially true for larger dogs, as they tend to be “scarier” than the smaller ones.

Training the breed is actually quite easy, but it does require a soft hand. These canines are known for being sensitive, especially with tough training techniques. They may become unsocial or even aggressive if they are reprimanded harshly. They are not very forgiving in this regard. They are a much easier dog when they are treated gently.

Are These Dogs Good for Families? 👪

These dogs are extremely loyal to their family and often quite gentle. As long as they are introduced to children at an early age, they tend to be understanding. Their larger size means that children can’t do much to hurt them, which reduces the chance of fear-based biting.

Of course, their sensitive nature means that children should not be allowed to mistreat the dog. The canine will remember this and may hold it against the child as they grow up. It isn’t uncommon for these dogs to remain distant from humans who they believe have harmed them.

Does This Breed Get Along With Other Pets?

This breed can be good with other dogs as long as they are socialized regularly. This prevents them from developing protective instincts against them. They often get along fine with dogs that they have been raised with. That said, they can be introduced to new dogs as long as it is done slowly and correctly. Don’t just throw a new dog into a Caravan hound’s territory and expect them to get along.

Like most sighthounds, these dogs have a high prey drive. They will chase anything smaller than them that takes off running. This means that they often don’t get along with cats or other small animals. They will chase and may even kill fleeing animals. Socialization and training don’t do much to correct this problem. It is simply the dog’s nature to chase things.

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Things to Know When Owning a Caravan Hound

Food & Diet Requirements 🦴

The Caravan Hound does not have any specific dietary requirements. High-quality food is recommended, as this breed is used to mostly living off of meat. You should look for a formula that includes plenty of and little filler. This may cost more than other options. However, your dog’s improved health will also help you save money in the future.

This dog isn’t prone to any particular health problem that can be prevented by diet, so you likely won’t have to worry about changing their diet for medical reasons.

Exercise 🐕

These dogs have extremely high exercise needs. They require long daily walks and a good run at least a few times a week. Because they are a sighthound, you should avoid letting them off-leash unless they are in an enclosed area. They will chase things and potentially get lost.

They have a great deal of endurance, which means you’ll have to dedicate more to their exercise routine than with other breeds. These canines do enjoy games and activities like lure coursing and agility training. These can be useful for wearing down the dog that doesn’t just involve walks. A fenced-in yard is extremely helpful for keeping these dogs active, as it allows them to play games like fetch without the chance of becoming lost.

Training 🎾

This dog is relatively easy to train and is quite obedient to their family. They will not listen to strangers, though, which is one reason that they are such good guard dogs. Training must be done with a gentle hand, as these dogs can be quite sensitive. Harsh training methods can make the dog untrusting and un-obedient. They may attempt to avoid the person who wronged them and can even become aggressive.

Luckily, these dogs are often food-driven, which can be helpful during training. As long as they are exercised properly, low to moderate treat intake usually won’t lead to obesity.

Grooming ✂️

This canine does not require much of a grooming routine. They do not need to be bathed unless they get physically dirty. Too much bathing can strip their coat of its protective oils, which can cause irritation and even skin infections. These dogs do shed rather heavily, so brushing about twice a week is recommended. You should plan on checking their ears during these grooming sessions as well, since dirt can easily get stuck and potentially cause an infection.

Their nails will also need to be clipped regularly, and their teeth should be kept relatively clean. Besides this usual maintenance, these dogs don’t require much grooming and do a good job of keeping themselves clean.

Health and Conditions 🏥

These dogs are exceedingly healthy. There are no known genetic conditions they are prone to. However, there are few studies on this breed, so there could be something that we just don’t know about yet.

Either way, they are still healthy dogs.

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Male vs. Female

There is no significant difference between males and females of this breed. Their overall size varies so widely that it is impossible to determine an overall difference between the two sexes.

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Final Thoughts

The Caravan Hound is a rare dog outside of India. They are mostly utilized as hunting dogs, though they are also used as guard dogs. They are most popularly used by tea and coffee growers in India to keep rabbit populations in check, which leads to a better harvest.

While they have the reputation of being aggressive, these dogs are actually not that much more aggressive than other breeds. They are aloof with strangers and may not appreciate being pet by someone whom they don’t know. However, early socialization can make them suitable family pets. They are also loyal, which makes them good watchdogs.


Featured Image Credit: kidzandfurr, Shutterstock

Kristin Hitchcock

Kristin is passionate about helping pet parents create a fulfilling life with their pets by informing them on the latest scientific research and helping them choose the best products for their pets. She currently resides in Tennessee with four dogs, three cats, two fish, and a lizard, though she has dreams of owning chickens one-day!