Kangaroo Dog

He is not recognized by the F.C.I.

Origin
Australia
Translation
Francis Vandersteen
The Kangaroo Dog is an Australian sighthound that is considered a "type" of dog rather than a thoroughbred. The breed is maintained solely for game hunting, and breeders show little interest in joining the ANKC. However, there is discussion among a small group of hunters about starting a working registry that focuses on the working ability of these dogs rather than their looks alone.

Hunting greyhounds such as Greyhounds and Scottish Deerhounds accompanied early settlers as they spread across Australia, providing meat for their masters by catching animals such as emus, kangaroos and wallabies. They also protected the sheep herds of early pioneers from dingoes.

The best of these dogs were bred together, to combine the qualities of each breed to create a racing dog that could cope with Australia's harsh, rugged conditions. Greyhound was used for its speed and fantastic vision, while Deerhound blood added harder feet, a thicker coat, a more powerful body and excellent stamina. There is evidence that other racing and working dog breeds such as the Borzoi, Whippet, Saluki and Irish Wolfhound were added to the mix, but the majority of the heritage comes from Greyhound and Deerhound bloodlines.

From these breeds emerged two distinct but similar types : smooth-coated kangaroo dogs and rough-coated Australian staghounds. Both types are known for their great speed, excellent stamina and powerful bodies.

Although rare, "roo dogs" persist in rural communities where hunting rabbits and foxes remains a popular pastime. As well as being bred to continue the type, Roo dogs are also often crossed with molosser and bulldog breeds to add speed and stamina to certain pedigree dog lines.

Smooth-coated Kangaroo Dogs are better suited to the warmer regions of Australia, as they are less protected from the elements. Because they are generally more sighthound-like than their muscular cousins and lack the thick protective coat, they are also prone to skin tears when hunting dangerous animals like dingoes and wild hogs, and are probably better suited to small game. like rabbits, foxes and hares. Hunting native animals such as kangaroos with greyhounds is now strictly illegal.

The ability of kangaroo dogs to use their sense of smell while hunting varies from lineage to lineage, although most seem to have an average nose and rely much more on sight to hunt their prey. Staghounds or Kangaroo dogs with an infusion of Great Dane or Wolfhound tend to display better scenting abilities.

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