American Canine Association


Irish Wolfhound


One of the largest and oldest dog breeds to exist today, is the magnificent Irish Wolfhound. Believed to of been originated as far back as 7000 BC, this breed was not only bred for hunting and protecting but was used to drag injured men off of horses and out of chariots. Due to their giant size, this breed hunted large prey such as Elk and wolves. Bred with the bloodlines of Scottish Deerhounds, Great Danes, Borzoi and Tibetan Mastiffs, this breed was created. In 1902 this breed was deemed a mascot for the Irish Guards.


Larger than almost any other dog breed, the Irish Wolfhound stands on average of 7 feet in height when on its hind legs. Both males and females weigh in between 90lbs and 150lbs, while they measure 28-35 inches in height. Though intensely large in size, this breed is built very lean and tall. With a large wedge shaped skull and scissor bite muzzle, this breed has very small ears that are triangular and should be folded back on their head when relaxed. This breed has a very long body, with tall, thin legs all of the way down that end with large feet. Their tail should be long, firm and hang down and outward. This breed has medium length wiry hair that comes most commonly in tan, but is also available in brindle, gray, red, black, white, and fawn with touches of black. Please note that this breed does not reach full growth size until the age of 24 months.


Known for staying a puppy for awhile, the Irish Wolfhound is never in a rush to grow up. This gentle giant can be quite clumsy in the home when it comes to stepping or sitting on things; for Irish Wolfhound owners, this is just one of the lovable traits from this breed. The Irish Wolfhound is only a deterrent for strangers due to size, so do not count on their personality to scare anyone away, this giant is lovely at greeting guests and a great addition to any family with children of all ages. Though daily walks are essential to the health and well being of the Irish Wolfhound, it is very important not to run or over exercise this breed as it grows very fast and will become prone to injury. This breed does well with other pets as long as it is raise along side of them. Due to their size, this breed is only recommended for country living situations.


It is recommended that you have your Irish Wolfhound professionally groomed every 6 months. Daily brushing is required for this breed. The Irish Wolfhound is an average shedder.

Special Notes

This breed is prone to bone cancer, bloat and heart issues. It is highly recommended that any potential owner of the Irish Wolfhound has a safe and secure fence, tall enough for the breed to play and relax within. This breed only lives an average of 6 years. Please fully educate yourself about the Irish Wolfhound prior to adding one to your family to ensure this is the right breed for you and you can make a life long commitment to your new pup. A properly fenced in area is highly recommended for this breed while outdoors. Do not add a new dog to your family unless you are able to provide both physically and financially for the life of your new pet. All dogs originate from wolves (Canis Lupus). Each breed of dog was originally created by mixing different breeds together in an effort to bring forth certain characteristics. Once a breeder has created acceptable “breed characteristics” within their bloodline and these “breed characteristics” have shown to be reliably reproduced in the offspring for three (3) generations, the bloodline may be upgraded from the category of “foundation stock” to “pure-bred”. The same “pure-bred” breed standards vary from different continents, countries, territories, regions, breed clubs, and canine pure-breed registries depending on the goals of their breeders. Dog DNA testing companies can have accurate results for a specific bloodline of a small colony of dogs. However, there are tens of thousands of different bloodlines in the world which have not yet been tested for marker baseline results by Dog DNA testing companies as of 2017. For this reason Dog DNA testing companies do not guarantee the 100% accuracy of their breed lineage results and will also show different marker results for the same pure-bred breed in different continents, countries, territories, regions, breed clubs, and canine pure-breed registries depending on the goals of their breeders.

© 2022 American Canine Association, Inc.