Author Topic: irish wolfhound query...  (Read 20674 times)

Offline matt

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irish wolfhound query...
« on: July 24, 2005, 09:28:10 pm »
I have been seriously interested in the IW for quite some time now and was hoping that anyone here would be willing to offer advice, recommend reading, etc...concerin g an IW specifically. I have also been considering a great dane, mastiff, saint B...(most other large dogs) I have contacted the IWCA and AKC through email for advice and am following suit here...I myself would be considered an "extra large dog", if I were a dog...I'm 6'9", 275lbs and have always felt that a bigger dog would be more up my alley, whenever I encounter a small dog I think that I should just go ahead and get another cat (I already have two) While I love my two kittens forever, I want to feel like I've got a companion and not an animal who gives me attention when they feel like it (my cats are exceptional in that respect, but nonetheless... they are still cats and they choose their affections) I have researched many extra-large breeds and find myself going to the Irish Wolfhound, every time...everyth ing I read about them seems like me. Big and lazy- but can really move if necessary. (Former college basketball player who loves doing nothing but also enjoys exercise)...a wolfhound just seems like the dog I'm destined to get...any advice, thoughts, recommendation s, anything?

thanks...

matt

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Re: irish wolfhound query...
« Reply #1 on: July 24, 2005, 09:33:34 pm »
I don't know much of anything about the IW except they are the tallest breed of dog...mamadog (Vicki) is a member here who has one but I haven't seen her for awhile...Sorry ...But good luck  in your research! :)

Offline matt

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Re: irish wolfhound query...
« Reply #2 on: July 25, 2005, 07:27:58 pm »
I have also put some thought into getting a dane... and in a perfect world I'd have a couple of every extra-large breed in a giant fenced park/yard...I think that it will come down b/t a dane and a wolfhound. (something about the wolfhound though)...Concerning temperment- I've read nothing but good things concerning kids, other pets, other people...is this because of socialization or genes? or maybe a combination of both? I've had several encounters with danes and each one has been pleasant, but unfortunately the dog I want is not too common around here and I've only encountered one or two when I was just a kid...what kind of vehicles do people recommend for someone who owns an extra large breed? I've only got a Thunderbird for the time being and will most likely get something bigger whenever I decide to get myself a gentle giant...thanks

Offline shangrila

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Re: irish wolfhound query...
« Reply #3 on: July 25, 2005, 07:50:11 pm »
My SO's parents have an irish wolfhound/lab mix. He has a great temperment with people he knows, but not so wonderful with strangers. The one trait about him that is classic irish wolfhound is that he likes to lean on people. He's about the same weight as I am and he will come sit next to me and lean so hard I practically fall over! But it's just his way of showing affection for people he cares about.

As far  as cars go, I think most people with giant dogs seem to have SUVs. There was a thread awhile back called "my new topic: what we drive" or something to that effect where bpo people said what cars they had.
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Offline GrumpyBunny

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Re: irish wolfhound query...
« Reply #4 on: July 25, 2005, 07:50:50 pm »
Hey Matt, I don't have too much to add - I fall in love with every big breed I see...  I have loved IW's for a long time... but then I waver between them, and Pyrs...  and Newfs.... oh, and Leonbergers! 

The only advice I can give you is to spend as much hands-on time with the breed as possible.  I don't know where you live, but try to get out to as many dog shows as possible, maybe see if you can find an online forum for IW owners that can share personal stories, etc. 

I am sure that mamadog will have great advice for you when she sees this!
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Offline brigid67

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Re: irish wolfhound query...
« Reply #5 on: July 25, 2005, 08:41:08 pm »
great pics Tina- so looking forward to getting my baby.

I love IW's too....

In a perfect world i would have them all!!!!  lol  my cake and eat it too...

Offline matt

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Re: irish wolfhound query...
« Reply #6 on: July 25, 2005, 08:48:47 pm »
thanks for the pics...jack's a pretty good looking dog. how much does he weigh? i'm guessing about 125lb? how tall is he? i can't guess because he's always sitting down in your pictures!!  ;) i'm certain that i will have a dane or danes at some point... i'd like to own enough property to be able to accommodate several extra large dogs. (i'm still waiting to find the best place for such a giant) do you think (or know) how much different a dane/wolfhound mix would be? to my understanding wolfhounds already have dane in them..so would they just be more danish? (that was funny,  funny to me at least...ha. danish...) anyway, enough with the dumb joke...

Offline mamadog

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Re: irish wolfhound query...
« Reply #7 on: July 25, 2005, 10:14:51 pm »
Hello to Matt and everyone else. Sorry I've been missing so much lately.
Matt,
I do have an IW, Finn who is 9 months old now and I'm in love with the breed. Perfect!  I'm on my way to bed right now, but when I get up in the morning I will write you about IW's. So far it sounds like your impression of them is about right on. Big, lazy and goofy...and oh so sweet! So sorry for the teaser tonight. Just wanted to let everyone know I was here.
See you in the moring..

Vicki

Offline Greytmom

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Re: irish wolfhound query...
« Reply #8 on: July 25, 2005, 10:18:33 pm »
Hi Matt,

I have never owned an IW but had a professor in college with one. He was a big beautiful dog. I have 2 rescue greyhounds, 1 adult 3 and 1 puppy 8 months. Not as large as the IW but at least in the same family. Good luck with your search. I hope you find the dog for you. You might want to try a greyhound but one that is cat safe. They love to run, but you can only let them off lead in an enclosed area.

Toni
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Greyhounds are great

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Re: irish wolfhound query...
« Reply #9 on: July 26, 2005, 07:05:54 am »
Matt,
I have a dane/wolfhound mix named Strider. He is around five months old in these pics. Mom was a wolfhound and Dad was a mantle dane--like Jack and my Merlin. He was a rescue from Southern IL that I found on petfinder.com.
At seven months old he has the long lanky build and slender face of an irish and the coat and color of a merle dane. I have a purebred dane also, and the main difference that I can see is compared to my dane at the same age, Strider is more energetic and more stubborn. He was easier to house-train and more affectionate, boarderline clingy. I really like the mix, but I agree that finding one may be a bit of a challange. Good luck in your search and let us know what you decide.
Stella

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Re: irish wolfhound query...
« Reply #10 on: July 26, 2005, 08:02:26 am »
Tina,
No harm, no foul. With three of them in the house I don't always remember who's who either! ;D
He has the smooth short coat, but it is extremely soft and wonderful to stroke. It is a little longer and more wirey at the back of his hind legs, I think someone referred to them as chaps?? Anyway he is definetly an unusual looking dog.
Stella

Offline Tammy A.

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Re: irish wolfhound query...
« Reply #11 on: July 26, 2005, 08:33:46 am »
I've met and played with IWs.  The local IW group always has a booth at the Irish Festival here in Dallas. 

All the dogs were very friendly, affectionate, and leaners.  I think they are great dogs.  When researching giant breeds - I steered away from IWs because I don't care for rough/terrier-like/wire coats.  But I'm a silly girl who never got over my love of a soft stuffed teddy bear.

Rescues are great, but if your heart is set on the breed, do some research and go with a breeder.  My GSD was bought from a breeder, as was my Anatolian.  Any subsequent Anatolians or GSDs would be rescues, but it's kinda nice to raise a puppy from a breeder as you generally know what you are getting.  I didn't need a wildcard in raising my first Anatolian, as they are a challenging breed.

Tammy

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Offline mamadog

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Re: irish wolfhound query...
« Reply #12 on: July 26, 2005, 09:35:43 am »
Better late than never right? LOL
So I will tell you about Finn, who is in most ways a very typical IW. Big, lazy, goofy and smart. He learned commands quickly and knows when to use them. Example: we teach all of our dogs that they cannot come in or go out a dor without first sitting and waiting for an "ok". If Finn goes to the door he sits. If he forgets I just don't open the door. It takes him about 3 seconds to go "oh yes, I remember" and do it. He likes to stay close, following me from room to room. I can sometimes go into the next room, but if I stay gone too long or go upstairs he will come to find me. He doesn't demand attention other than just being near me, but loves to be loved on! The lean he does when I rub him or scratch him is the sweetest! Head hugs: he puts his head down and presses it up against me. I melt every time! He is a bit skiddish of people he doesn't know, which is fairly common for dogs as family loyal as IW's, but Finn was not socialized much before we got him (at 5 months old) so it's a bit more so with him. By skiddish I mean he tries to hide. I have only seen him "not like" someone 3 times and all 3 times I agreed with him! He barked and growled at them, but made no move to bite or anything. He also barks when someone walks up to our house, which I encourage and he stops when I say "ok". Did I mention he's very goofy!?
He can easliy be walked off leash because he wouldn't dream of leaving my side. Sight hounds run, I'm told when they want to chase something, but I have never seen this from him...though I am still very careful about where I walk him off leash.
One of the things I have never liked about puppies is how active they are. Like a 2 year old on speed! IW's however do not have this issue. He is lazy. Very lazy. When I take him to the park to play he will play and LOVES it! But when in the house he seldom gets very active. Now and then he will pick up his bone, toss it, go get it and do it again. It lasts for about 5 mins. But IW's should  not be exercised much till after they turn 1, so a romp in the yard in plenty for them.
My only "complaint" (if one can call it that) is that he is more illness-prone than my other 2 dogs. He gets rashes from time to time (they are easy to deal with)  and seems more fragile so I worry about him more. The breed is prone to other illness (cancer etc.) That didn't keep us from wanting one simply because anyone, dog or person can get sick, die, or not get sick and live for a long time. One never knows.
He's clumsy, due to his paws being too big for him! Backed into a cactus (ouch!) and knocked it over trying to get away from it. Sometimes he trips over his own feet.
He is great with children of all ages and wonderful with my cats. He playes with my little "special needs" cat and is very gentle with her. He is also very gentle with small or sick children.  He loves other dogs!
Ok, so the poops are huge and he gets smelly and needs a bath every couple of weeks. Just a water rinse helps a lot, and shampooing too often bothers his skin.
I never want to live in a house with an IW again. He is so sweet. He can't be left home alone for more than 10 hours or he will get lonely for me, but he is so well behaved I can bring him almost anywhere with me.

May I ask where you are from Matt? Perhaps you could find someone close to you to let you spend time with their IW. From what you said it sounds like a good breed for you. Keep in mind the amount of food, and it often costs more for any meds he might need.
Good luck and feel free to ask anymore questions you might have. I'm so in love with him! Even if he needs his own couch and can steal food off the counter!

Vicki

Offline Bear

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Re: irish wolfhound query...
« Reply #13 on: July 26, 2005, 10:05:28 am »
Hey Vicki, thats a great synopsis of your Irish Wolfhound.. all the juicy stuff!
 :)
Michael

Offline mamadog

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Re: irish wolfhound query...
« Reply #14 on: July 26, 2005, 12:46:59 pm »
I forgot to mention the licking! He loves to lick...and it's sloppy! Especially feet for some reason, he'll just lay down at my feet and lick them till I tell him to stop. He also sticks his head in the shower with me and licks the water off my leg. And he nibbles. Lick lick lick, nibble with just the front teeth gently, lick lick lick.
He has no idea how big he is so sometimes you have to pat his butt and tell him to move. He likes to walk behind me so he can see me, but when he stops to let me go by he doesn't leave me room to get around him!
Slobber: He doesn't drool, but when he drinks water he leaves a trail of it from the bowl across the room. If I could put sponges on his feet he could clean it up himself! But it's not much and I usually don't bother with it unless I have company coming :)
He has no problem having his feet or ears touched and seems to enjoy being combed wich I try to do at least every other day or he starts to look like a hobo! His hair is softer than one would think by looking at him.
IW's need positive training  methods cause they're very sensative to being scolded and will become neurotic. A stern voice is all that's needed, no raising your voice or hitting. (I don't mean beating, but some people will tap the snout as a repremand and even this will scare most IW's)  Just looking at him will earn me a big smile and a wagging tail! Or if I'm upset with him, a look will make him very sorry for what he did.
He will get "treats" out of the trash if he can, but he's very neat about it, only taking what he wants and not dumping the whole trash can. Almost anything left out is in danger of being chewed at this age so keep lots of toys for him in one place and teach him that he can only have things from his own toy box...and keep things up high till he grows out of that stage!
I have to run to the doctors now..I could talk about Finn all day!!!

Vicki
Another thing to consider that I forgot to mention is that large breeds take longer to mature than small ones. 18 months for most IW's (females being a bit sooner) so I still don't feel like I really know him well because he's still changing so much.