Breeds of dogs: Cirneco dell'Etna

Breeds of dogs: Cirneco dell'Etna

Origin, classification and history

Origin: Italy.
F.C.I classification: Group 5 - spitz and primitive type dogs.

Cirneco dellEtna is a very ancient breed. Its origins date back to 1000 BC. This breed is said to derive from the dogs of the Egyptian Pharaohs of the last dynasties and from dogs imported into Italy by Phoenician traders. Subsequent studies have indicated that Cirneco is most likely an indigenous Sicilian breed. In past centuries it has been used for hunting wild rabbits. Breed not widespread outside Italy.

General aspect

Medium-small size dog, with an elegant and slender shape with a satin hair on all parts of the body. It has a dry muscle and has a light but firm and resistant construction.


For its character, conformation and affection, Il Cirneco cannot be considered only a hunting dog, but also a discreet guard dog and a pleasant companion dog. It could be classified as a triple-aptitude breed. His temperament should also be praised. And a very responsive canine. It is the only dog ‚Äč‚Äčable to move without difficulty on rough and rugged terrains of volcanic origin. Its toughness and class also allow it to be trained without problems. Its most developed sense is certainly the sense of smell that it displays during hunting.
Peculiarities: there are two very similar breeds: the Pharaon Hound and the Podenco Ibicenco.

Cirneco dellEtna (website photo)

Cirneco dellEtna (website photo)


- males from 46 cm to 50 cm
- females from 42 cm to 46 cm
- males from 10 kg to 12 kg
- females from 8 kg to 10 kg

Trunk: with length equal to the height at the withers. With very high withers and chest slightly longer than half the height at the withers.
Head and muzzle: with oval-shaped skull and slightly divergent or parallel cranio-facial axes. The upper profile of the skull is slightly convex. The muzzle reaches at least 80% of the length of the skull. Truffle: on the same line as the nasal bridge and must be rectangular in shape.
Teeth: regularly aligned and complete in number; scissor closures are allowed.
Neck: with a very arched upper profile. As long as the head.
Skin: well-fitting throughout the body. Black spots should never occur.
Limbs: both hindquarters and forelegs must be perpendicularly proportioned.
Shoulder: with shoulder blades about 1/3 of the height at the withers and must be inclined 55 degrees from the horizontal plane.
Musculature: dry but well proportioned to the body.
Upper line: straight on the withers.
Tail: inserted at the bottom, uniform in shape, long up to the hock.
Proportions: trunk length equal to the height at the withers; the muzzle is to the skull as 8 to 10.
Hair: of equal length throughout the body; always satin and smooth.
Allowed colors: uniform fawn, isabella, fawn and white, tolerated the uniform white color with orange spots. Most common defects: prognathism, enognatism, convergence of the cranio-facial axes, concave nasal bridge, non-standard measures, total depigmentation, black mucous membranes, colors of the coat not allowed, gazzuolo eye, monorchidismo, crriptorchidismo.

curated by Vinattieri Federico -

Video: Cirneco and Bengal buddies (September 2021).