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Galgo Español: Wikis


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Galgo Español
Two Galgos Españoles
Other names Spanish Galgo
Spanish Greyhound
Nicknames Galgo
Country of origin Spain
Weight Male 60-65 pounds
Female 50-55
Height Male 26 to 28 inches
Female 25 to 27 inches
Coat Smooth, or Rough
Color Any
Litter size 6-8 pups
Life span 12-15 years

The Galgo Español (Spanish Galgo) or Spanish Greyhound is an ancient breed of dog, specifically a member of the sighthound family. Despite being called a "Spanish Greyhound", the Galgo is not truly a Greyhound. The lineages of the two breeds are different. However, in the last century or so, some breeders have cross-bred Galgos and Greyhounds in order to produce faster Galgos.





A Spanish Galgo

Galgos are similar in appearance to Greyhounds, but are distinctly different in their conformation. Galgos are higher in the rear than in the front, and have flatter muscling than a Greyhound, which is characteristic of endurance runners. They also tend to be smaller, lighter in build, have longer tails and have a very long, streamlined head that gives the impression of larger ears. Their chests are not as deep as a Greyhound's and should not reach the point of the elbow [1]

An example of a rough-coated Galgo

Unlike Greyhounds, Galgos come in two coat types: smooth and rough. The rough coat can provide extra protection from skin injuries while running in the field. They come in a variety of colors and coat patterns including solid colors (like black and red), brindle and parti-color (two colors or patterns together).


A female Galgo. Note the flatter leg muscles

Galgos have a very similar nature to Greyhounds. They are calm, quiet, gentle and laid back; happy to sleep their day away on their backs on a sofa. More than 90% of Galgos can be considered cat-friendly and are therefore an ideal choice for the hound lover who also owns cats. Almost all Galgos are also friendly towards other dogs and small dogs. Galgos are also very good with children, being calm in the house there is less risk of a child being knocked over or jumped on than a more excitable breed. They are very gentle and tolerate the often over-enthusiastic attentions of children with little risk of retaliation from the dog. Galgos have a very reserved personality and they have a tendency towards shyness, so it is very important that they be socialized early in life so that they grow up to be comfortable around strange people, dogs and locations.[1]


Like many other sighthounds, Galgos are a fairly healthy breed although they are sensitive to anaesthesia. As such, proper care should be taken by the owner to ensure that the attending veterinarian is aware of this issue.


The Galgo was named for the Gauls, a tribe of Celts, who inhabited the Iberian Peninsula 400–600 BC. The Galgo breed was probably a result of the dogs brought by the Celts on their migration through the peninsula mixed with dogs brought by traders who did business with the Celts. In the intervening centuries, it is likely that other sighthound breeds were interbred to produce the Galgo that we know today.


Galgos as pets

Galgos love to lie on the couch

Because they tend to be quiet and docile, Galgos make very nice house pets. They tend to get along well with people and other dogs, and they can be well-behaved around cats if properly socialized. There is a growing interest in adopting out ex-hunting Galgos from Spain to other countries in Europe and North America. There are a number of different organizations dedicated to re-homing Spanish Galgos, please see the external links section for more information on Galgo adoption.

Galgos excel at performance activities like lure coursing and racing. They are eligible to compete in lure coursing events sanctioned by the American Sighthound Field Association, entered in the Limited class. They also make very nice show dogs and have enjoyed success in the European show ring, although they are not as well known in the American show world due to their rarity.

Use as hunting dogs

Galgos have speed and stamina

Galgos are great endurance runners and are routinely used in Spain to hunt rabbits and hares. Following the end of the hunting season most of these animals are abandoned or killed, often being hung from trees. It is common practice for the galgos that hunted successfully to be hung from higher branches so that they die relatively quickly. Dogs that performed badly are hung from the lower branches so that their feet just touch the ground resulting in a long drawn out death.[2].


  1. ^ a b Little Lobito Kennel
  2. ^ BBC News article dated 29 April 2002

External links


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