Pharaoh Hound – Full Breed Profile

Written by: Bojana Radulovic
The Pharaoh Hound is an ancient bred that is today classified as rare. Could this rare dog be your next Fido? Read on and discover.
Dog Breed Group:
Hound Dogs
21 to 25 inches tall at the shoulder
45 to 55 pounds
Life Span:
11 to 14 years

Breed Characteristics:

Apartment Friendly


How well will this breed adapt to apartment living? Is the apartment size the most important factor when it comes to proper living conditions? Is the breed suitable for apartment living?

Good For First-Time Owners


Some dogs aren't suitable for first-time dog owners. Is this breed a good match for someone with no dog experience? Can training help them be on their best behavior with owners with no dog experience? Are they suitable to be handled by someone who is just entering the canine world?

Overall Sensitivity


Some dogs are sensitive. Certain breeds are rough on the outside, while having the softest heart on the inside. In other words, some dogs are 'thick-skinned' while some are 'easygoing.' Is this breed prone to sensitivity?

Tolerates Being Alone


Separation anxiety in dogs is a serious condition that can affect a dog's life quality. Is this breed prone to this condition? Can you leave him alone for hours? How destructive this breed can become when bored, neglected, or not loved enough?

Affectionate With Family


How affectionate this breed will be around his humans? Will he welcome new family friends easily or he will choose to be shy? Some breeds can be clingy with owners, while others don't attach a lot. Will this breed act as the family's best friend?



Some dogs will tolerate children, while others will adore well-behaved ones. Dogs and children should always be supervised, no matter how well trained the dog might be. Will this breed act as a nanny dog or he will stay away from children?

Friendly Toward Other Dogs


Some dog breeds cannot wait to run to the dog park and run with others. Others prefer to be with their humans, and not to be a part of a multi-pet household. Is this breed dog lover or not? How friendly this breed will be toward other dogs?

Friendly Toward Strangers


Some dog breeds tend to be reserved toward strangers and highly suspicious. Others are fast to walk away with them easily. How welcoming this breed is toward strangers?

Drooling Level


If you love to clean all the time drooling level in dogs is a trait that you should mind. Is this breed less likely to drool, or you will always need a towel on hand?

Easy To Groom


Heavier shedding during the shedding season is something that every dog needs to go through. However, some dogs shed just a bit all year round. Is this breed one of them? How often should you groom this dog?

Overall Health


What can you expect from this breed in terms of health? Are there any genetic conditions to vary about? Is obesity a major issue in this breed? By knowing more about the dog's health, you are learning how to help him live a longer and healthier life.

Prone To Obesity


Treats are a great addition to training sessions. Dogs love sweet bites of dog treats but they should be served in moderation. Treats can lead to obesity, next to poor nutrition. Can this breed gain extra weight from treats? How prone to obesity this breed actually is?

Trainability Level


Training some dogs is easier than others. How easy this dog will be to train? What can you expect? Some dogs are huge people pleasers and they will master commands easily, while others will try to outsmart you.

Intelligence Level


Dogs are smart beings. We do our best to train them, but they do still end up training us to adapt to their needs. How intelligent is this breed? Will he try to outsmart you? Or he will need multiple training sessions to master basic commands?

Prey Drive


Dogs were bred for a specific purpose. Those who were bred to hunt have natural instincts to hunt, even today. This is why many dogs, like Terriers, will chase other animals. They will also have a hard time concentrating on your commands when there is something small moving. Is this breed prone to following his prey instincts?

Barking Level


How vocal this breed is? Can you expect neighbors to ring you often to calm your dog? Or you can sleep without worries of hearing your Fido bark? Some breeds are highly vocal, others have unusual sounds, and some are silent. Is this breed prone to barking?

Energy Level


Low-energy dogs are happy with regular walks and indoor chill times. High-energy dogs are always ready for action. Is this breed a couch potato, energetic dog, or somewhere in between?

Exercise Needs


Some dogs are more than happy with a slow stroll down the street. Others need hours of active time to stay happy and fit. Is this breed demanding in terms of exercise? How much exercise this breed needs to stay happy and healthy?

Playfulness Level


Some dogs never lose that puppy spirit, not even in their senior years. Others are more serious and prefer having a job to do. Is this breed demanding in terms of playfulness? Can you expect playfulness in their senior years as well?

One look at the Pharaoh Hound should be enough to realize just how much this small size dog resembles Anubis, the (or jackal) god.

This dog of 25 inches and 55 pounds, has a low tendency to drool and a very low tendency to bark or dig.

All in, this is truly a polite apartment dog. Pharaoh hounds are affectionate and energetic dogs who love being active.

They love to run, play, and spend time with their humans when they are active. They are pretty much rare in the States.

The Pharaoh Hound is often confused with Ibizan Hounds, although this breed tends to be smaller.

Still, they have greyhound-like features, such as long and slender legs, narrow-body, and loin and long tail. When excited, this breed will blush which isn’t something that’s commonly seen in dogs.

They need around 40 minutes of exercise on a daily level.

Just like all sighthounds, Pharaon hounds are chasers, and as such shouldn’t be left alone without the danger of them running after something and into a roadway.

Indoors, this breed will always be calm and peaceful.

If you like long brushing sessions, this breed isn’t for you, because this is a kind of ‘wash and wear’ dog.

Quick Facts

Real name: Basenji
Other names: Barkless Dog
Origin: Congo
Breed type: Hound Dogs
Weight: 9-11 kg (22 to 24 pounds)
Height: female 16 inches, male 17 inches
Lifespan: 10 – 12 years
Litter Size: 4 – 6 puppies
Color: Chestnut red, pure black, tricolour (pure black and chestnut red), or brindle
Coat: Short, soft coat

Pharaoh Hound History

The Pharaoh Hound is an ancient breed, They are often connected with Egypt as they originated in this north-African country.

Egyptians are proud of being creators of this elegant breed. In old art and literature, they can be found under the name of the “Kelb tal-Fenek,” meaning “dog of the rabbit.”

They were bred to catch rabbits on hard and rough terrain.

Did you know that the Pharaoh Hound is one of the oldest domesticated dog breeds in the world?

Dog fanciers believe that this breed originated around 4000 B.C.

Are they really from Egypt? Yes, their roots can be found in Egypt, where these prick-eared hunting dogs were depicted in many paintings and murals.

This is a rare breed, so just getting this dog will be pricey. The Pharaoh Hound Club of America was founded in 1970. The AKC officially recognized the breed in 1984.

Pharaoh Hound Physical Appearance

The Pharaoh Hound is a dog of medium size and graceful body line. One look at this breed is enough to realize that this is a well-balanced dog with a muscular body.

Their overall movement is easy, while the face has an alert expression. Eyes are usually blended with the coat, while the skull is long and lean.

The neck is long and lean, while the tail is medium set. The coat is short and glossy and of smooth texture.

They can come in a range of colors, including tan and chestnut with white markings. Overall gait should be free and flowing.

Pharaoh Hound Personality

Pharaoh Hounds are massive people lovers.

Once you get a Pharaoh Hound you will inf act get a 24/7 live shadow. These active dogs will do their best to make their people happy.

In practice, this means that they will do their best to perform any trick perfectly, to be next to you when you are feeling blue, and to keep you active.

To keep them happy and fit you will have to provide enough exercise. This means regular walks and going to dog parks for some dog playtime.

Pharaoh Hounds are adoptable dogs who will be happy to live in a house with a big backyard, or an apartment of bigger space.

They will adapt to any family size, and they will love spending time with children. However, children should know the following:

  • Not to pull dog’s ears
  • Not to pull dog’s tail
  • Not to treat dogs as they are toys
  • Not to disturb dogs when they are eating, drinking water, or resting in their crate

Temperament and dogs will depend on many factors, such as heritage, training, and early socialization.

Pharaoh Hound Training

Training your dog should be a fun experience, especially with smart breeds such as Pharaohs are.

These dogs are playful, affectionate, and smart.

As affectionate dogs, they are in fact huge people pleasers and they will do their best to master a trick in a matter of seconds.

Do you have experience as a dog owner? If not, this breed isn’t for you. On the other hand, if you have rich experience as a dog owner, and you know your way around hounds, this is a breed to consider having.

Pharaohs are easy to train when you know what you’re doing. They thrive on positive reinforcement, overall praise, and rewards.

Any negative training method will lead to destructive dogs. No dog should ever experience any harsh training method or any negative handling.

Dogs have emotions and they suffer as all living beings do – so make sure that you really want a dog and that you have enough patience to handle them the best way possible.

That being said, if you feel like you need help training your Pharaoh to think about hiring a professional dog trainer or enrolling him in puppy classes.

This can make the training process shorter. Otherwise, make training sessions:

  • Fun
  • Short
  • Concistent
  • Engaging
  • Based on positive reinforcment
  • Reward-based

Pharaoh Hound Exercise Needs

Exercise is a great way to keep your dog active.

Pharaohs are hounds and it’s well-known that hounds prefer an active lifestyle. This is why outdoor people are the best fit for this breed.

Next to a regular walk, you should provide a minimum of 30 minutes of exercise per day. This way you will have a dog who is mentally satisfied and physically fit.

Plus, exercise is a great way to let the dog explore more and an efficient method to keep his joints and hips healthy and strong.

Pharaoh Hound Grooming

Every dog should be properly groomed.

No matter how small or big he is, his appearance should always be neat. Pharaohs, just like other dogs, shed and they need weekly brushing to keep their coat healthy and shiny.

For maximum results, use a hound glove, which is basically a rubber mitt with a nubby palm that fits over the hand. This simple brushing tool should help you remove loose hair and keep extra hair from your furniture and clothes.

As you probably know already keeping dog hair away from the clothes is crucial, especially if you have a busy lifestyle.

Always double-check your clothes for extra hair before you leave your home.

Cheat Sheet on Pharaoh Hound Grooming

Not sure what grooming a dog actually means? You know that brushing is a big part of grooming practice, but you have no idea what should be done next?

Don’t worry because we have got you covered. Before we list the biggest parts of a dog’s grooming practice, you should know that you can always hire a professional groomer.

This way you will always have a well-groomed dog of elegant appearance.

Still, provide some brushing time, because your Pharaoh will see it as a bonding experience.

Here is what you should provide on regular basis to always have a well-groomer Pharaoh Hound:

  • Trim or grind nails monthly
  • Check gums regularly
  • Check eyes daily for any sign of eye discharge
  • Bathe when needed and always use shampoo especially designed for dogs
  • Clean ears when needed

Overall, Pharaohs are easy to groom.

Always use simple but effective tools to make grooming a fast and stress-free process for both you and your hound.

Talk with your veterinarian about the best shampoo to use because this breed comes with certain roughness in the coat.

Pharaoh Hound Health

Pharaoh Hounds are considered to be healthy dogs.

If you choose to deal with responsible dog breeders you can sleep peacefully, knowing that your hound healthy puppy.

What if you choose to adopt? In that case, doctors from an animal shelter will inform you of the dog’s health, give you papers on the dog, and probably tell you that the dog is being microchipped.

You will have to microchip the dog into your name. Is it possible to find Pharaoh Hounds in animal shelters and rescue groups? Simply said, yes.

You will be surprised to learn that many purebred dogs end up without proper care and owners, for many reasons.

Adoption is a humane thing to do and is definitely something to consider doing.

What can you expect to see in Pharaoh Hounds health-wise? This breed is prone to bacterial and viral infections, such as rabies, parvo and distemper.

Luckily, many of these issues are preventable through vaccination.

Stick to vaccination schedule and for any health-related though talk with your veterinarian.

The best way to keep your Pharaoh Hound healthy is to provide regular veterinarian check-ups. Prevention is the key when it comes to having a healthy dog.

Is Pharaoh Hound For You?

The Pharaoh Hound is a playful and athletic breed of ancient roots.

They are light on their feet and fast to jump. These hounds will move gracefully through the house and will be the first ones to start a run when in a dog park.

They need a great deal of exercise, which is why they are suitable only for experienced dog owners who spend a fair deal of time outdoors.

Early training and proper socialization are mandatory to keep this breed entertained. This dog isn’t for you if you don’t want to deal with an independent dog who is fearful and sensitive.

On the other hand, if you are an experienced dog owner, and you want a medium-sized dog, that is cautious, athletic, and graceful, then this breed might be for you.

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