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Home > Dogs > Dog Breeds > Podenco Canario Dog Breed Guide: Info, Pictures, Care & More!

Podenco Canario Dog Breed Guide: Info, Pictures, Care & More!

Podenco Canario_Marcelino Pozo Ruiz_Shutterstock

The Podenco Canario is a member of the Sighthound family and is commonly found in the Mediterranean and Spain. They nearly resemble the Ibizan Hound and the Pharaoh Hound, making some people believe they share the same lineage.

Podenco is a Spanish word meaning Hound. The Podenco Canario originates from the Canary Islands and is still part of pack hunting today. Like most pack hunters, affection, and the need to be around others is often the norm. The dog loves to be around family.

Breed Overview


21-25 inches


44-55 pounds


11-13 years


Red, white, mixture of red, white, and brown

Suitable for:

Active families, active singles, house with a yard, hunting


Intelligent, playful, gentle, enthusiastic

This breed is highly active, so they will require an owner who loves the outdoors just like them. Podenco Canarios possess the stamina to work for many hours at a time. They are not known to be aggressive, making them ideal for a household with kids.

This ancient dog is brilliant, though it tends to be willful. That means that the dog requires an owner with experience. However, when given early socialization, the dog will excitedly tolerate other people and pets, though most breeds will be shy around strangers.

Podenco Canario Characteristics

High-energy dogs will need a lot of mental and physical stimulation to stay happy and healthy, while low-energy dogs require minimal physical activity. It’s important when choosing a dog to make sure their energy levels match your lifestyle or vice versa.
Easy-to-train dogs are more skilled at learning prompts and actions quickly with minimal training. Dogs that are harder to train will require a bit more patience and practice.
Some dog breeds are prone to certain genetic health problems, and some more than others. This doesn’t mean that every dog will have these issues, but they have an increased risk, so it’s important to understand and prepare for any additional needs they may require.
Some breeds, due to their size or their breeds potential genetic health issues, have shorter lifespans than others. Proper exercise, nutrition, and hygiene also play an important role in the lifespan of your pet.
Some dog breeds are more social than others, both towards humans and other dogs. More social dogs have a tendency to run up to strangers for pets and scratches, while less social dogs shy away and are more cautious, even potentially aggressive. No matter the breed, it’s important to socialize your dog and expose them to lots of different situations.

divider-dog paw Podenco Canario Puppies

A Podenco Canario puppy may be expensive if you’re looking for a dog that can compete in dog shows and sporting events. Bringing your puppy home is essentially the first step, but there are some other things to pay for when the pup is with you. You will need some items such as a crate, food bowls, bedding, leash and collar, and carrier. In addition, there are some health and medical requirements, including physical checkups, deworming, vaccination, neutering or spraying, chipping, and blood tests.

When you welcome a Podenco Canario into your home, you can expect to have a playful, energetic, and smart pup that will be ready for training and for playtime sessions with his family.

divider-multiprint Temperament & Intelligence of the Podenco Canario

Podenco Canario is a calm and quiet breed that, with proper care, is friendly and playful. It rarely barks, but it will do so to alert you of an intruder or stranger, so it makes a good watchdog. It can form a close bond with its family, and it is an intelligent dog, so it requires a lot of activities and mental enrichment.

The dog is more reserved around strangers, and with proper training and socialization, it should not be aggressive. Without stability, training, and socialization, some of these dogs may become nervous, making them act in an aroused manner. It loves to get a role to play or a task and is best suitable for owners who will hunt with it because that is what it was bred to do.

Although they can be domesticated with other animals, their instinct may tempt them to chase the small pets away. So, a Podenco Canario pup should be familiarized with all family pets at their younger age.

It is an affectionate dog with socialization but is perfect with experienced owners, not novice ones. Furthermore, it prefers not to be alone for long periods.

Are These Dogs Good for the Family? 👪

Podenco Canarios are very friendly and bond closely with their family. When it gets the right socialization, the dog is suitable for a family with kids, especially when raised together. Both have great energy and playfulness, and that can make them a perfect match, giving each other a companion to run and play with.

Although Podenco Canario is very gentle in play with kids, it doesn’t like rough play and can bite or retreat depending on their training and socialization if a kid goes too far. Make sure you teach your kids how to approach, touch and play nicely with Podencos and supervise your kids.

Does this Breed Get Along with Other Pets?

Podenco Canario gets along well with other dogs and enjoys their company. With the proper socialization, you don’t have to worry that your dog will become aggressive or not get along well with other pups. However, since it has a high prey drive, it is not the best dog in a household with small prey like pets because it can start chasing them.

divider-paw Things to Know When Owning a Podenco Canario

Food & Diet Requirements 🦴

With your vet’s approval and supervision, the Podenco Canario should be fed with high-quality dog food, whether homemade or commercially manufactured. The daily amount required ranges between two and a half to three and a half cups of dry dog food. The amount can vary depending on the dog’s size, age, activity level, and metabolism rate.

Some dogs are susceptible to getting overweight, so watch your dog’s calorie intake and weight level. Treats can be an essential aid in training but giving too much can lead to obesity. Learn about which human foods are safe for your dog and which are not.

Consult your vet if you have any concerns regarding your dog’s diet and weight. In addition, make sure your dog has access to clean water throughout.

Exercise 🐕

Podenco Canario will require about 1-2 hours of exercise each day. However, their puppies may require a bit longer. Although these dogs are often happy playing interactive games with the family out in the yard, a daily walk will still be necessary.

Remember that this dog was a hunter, so your compound must have high fences. In addition, you need to keep this dog on a leash to prevent them from chasing smaller dogs and creatures. A Podenco Canario should only be allowed off a lead in enclosed areas.

Like most working canines, mental enrichment will be required. If you want to see your Podenco Canario excel, then have them involved in dog sports. Sessions such as agility, racing, and competitive obedience are ideal ways to exercise this dog.

Training 🎾

The Podenco Canario is an intelligent breed, and their hunting skills and working life are where their intelligence shines the most. However, their mischievous side can make training a little tricky.

Positive training is the best way forward. Praise and rewards will help keep this dog engaged.

Be calm with your tone since frustration and round voices will not help you in training. Provided your sessions are short, enjoyable, and different every time, your Podenco will be eager to listen to you. Aim to finish at least two training sessions a day for about 10 minutes each time.

These dogs are active, so if you fail to meet their exercise requirements, all your time spent training will go straight down the drain. Negative behaviors are often developed through boredom. Podenco Canarios are used to being in the park all day, so they require strenuous exercise.

These canines tend to be wary, reserved, and shy in strangers’ presence, so socialization needs to start as soon as possible. Introduce your dog to new people and surroundings. They possess an independent and curious side, so all they need to do is find their confidence.

Housetraining a Podenco is pretty easy, and they will get used to it rather quickly, especially with access to a yard. Podenco Canarios also excels in dog sports, and it is a perfect way to keep them mentally stimulated. It will just take them a few sessions before they become pros.

Grooming ✂️

Podenco Canarios are low maintenance breed, but their short coat does shed hair. That is the primary reason why Podencos are not suitable for people suffering from allergies. To enhance your dog’s natural health and keep them clean, you will need to brush them at least once a week.

The ideal tools to use to keep your dog groomed include gloves, slicker brushes, and rubber. This breed does not require regular baths, thanks to their short, smooth hair, which does not hold dirt and debris. So, you only need to wash your dog once they are dirty.

Continuous washing may dry out your dog’s skin which may cause further problems. In addition, leaving shampoo residue on your dog’s coat can lead to skin issues. So, ensure you wash this thoroughly when bathing your dog.

Podencos are susceptible to ear infections. To prevent this, be sure to check and clean your dog’s ears once a week. There should not be any strands of hair blocking the ear canal’s airflow. Always keep your dog’s ears dry, especially after taking a swim.

Nails can also grow quite fast on a Podenco. If they have not been trimmed or filed for a while and start to overgrow, it could cause your pet problems with their joints, which is extremely painful.

Like most dogs, Podenco Canarios are prone to gum and tooth problems, so train your dog to get their teeth brushed from a young age. That will prevent foul breath and tooth issues such as decay.

Health and Conditions 🏥

Although the Podenco Canario is a fairly healthy breed, there are still some health problems they are prone to.

Minor Conditions
    • Ear infections
    • Epilepsy
Serious Conditions
  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Testicular tumor (Males)

Hip Dysplasia: Hip joint issues are more common in large dog breeds, and the larger Podencos are no exception. A dog with this growth disorder will frequently exhibit muscle reduction around its back end, an abnormal gait, and a rise in stiffness. You can manage Hip Dysplasia by long-term medication or lifestyle adjustments.

Hunting Injuries: Any hunting or working dog is more prone to injuries while on the job. Common injuries in Podencos include bites (especially for those dogs that hunt ferrets and rats), penetrating injuries, and fresh wounds.

SRY-Negative xx Reversal: This is an extremely rare genetic disorder that is commonly seen in Cocker Spaniels. The affected female dog will develop either testes or ovotestes instead of ovaries.

Testicular Tumor: This condition is the most common type of cancer for intact male dogs. The best way to prevent this is through neutering.


Male vs Female

There are no recognizable distinctions between males and females in the breed. However, males can grow slightly taller and heavier than females. Males weigh between 44-55 pounds, while females weigh between 37-46 pounds.

3 Little-Known Facts About the Podenco Canario

Despite them being hunting dogs, Podencos can be kept outdoors and make a wonderful family pet. Their energetic and playful nature make them lively addition to the household.

Here are three little-known facts about Podenco Canario.

1. Podencos Comes with Three Different Coats to Pick From

Podencos come with three different types of coats: long, wire, and smooth. The smooth-haired varieties shed a moderate amount and require regular brushing to get rid of dead fur.

Long and wire-coated Podencos will need a bit more maintenance. Although the wire-coated Podencos rarely shed, they will require regular brushing to detangle their hair and clipping.

2. Your Family Will Love Podenco Canario Dog

Although they can be a bit shy to strangers, Podencos are loyal to their owners. They are friendly and love to cuddle with family members. They tend to be highly energetic and need daily exercise to be well suited to active individuals or families.

A myth spread by hunters in Spain says that Podencos are not intelligent and cannot be trained. Although they can become stubborn, they are knowledgeable and eager to please their owners. With proper training and persistence, your Podenco will be rolling over and giving paw in no time.

3. If You Like to Laugh, the Podenco Pet Breed Is for You

Usually considered as clowns of the dog world, Podencos will keep you entertained. They are incredibly playful and will often do whatever it takes to get your attention. In addition, Podencos love playing and socializing with other dogs.

divider-dog paw Final Thoughts

Podenco Canarios are lively, funny, and loyal companions you could be looking for. Their distinctive personality and appearance will attract you and turn you into a committed follower. As these dogs are discovered outside of Spain, more new owners have become loyal Podenco Canario pet breed fans.

If you have space in your family for an energetic pet, the Podenco Canario may be the perfect choice for you.

Bringing a Podenco in your family may need you to make a few precautions or slightly change your lifestyle. However, in return, you will get a playful, faithful companion who will cherish your company above anything and bring you joy every day.

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Featured Image Credit: Marcelino Pozo Ruiz, Shutterstock

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