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Lurcher

The Lurcher is a type rather than a breed, and unlike any other named designer crossbreed, there are a variety of combinations of breeds that create a Lurcher. Lurchers are usually a mixture of sighthound and pastoral and/or terrier type breeds. Lurchers can be a straight cross between a pastoral breed and terrier breed, or be a ‘multi-breed’ cross – so a mixture of several of these breeds. It is more usual that a Lurcher is a multi-breed cross than a first-cross. The only truly common factor among lurchers is that they should look like a tall, athletic, sighthound-related dog - but, to add further mystery, not all tall sighthound-ish dogs are a Lurcher – for example a sighthound x sighthound is a Longdog!

Lifespan
13 – 15 years
Weight
12 – 30kg
Height
16 – 30cm
Colours
Coats come in any colour, and any coat type, including smooth, broken, wire-haired and long-haired
Size
Medium
UK Kennel Club Groups
N/A
The need-to-know
  • Dog suitable for owners with some experience
  • Basic training required
  • Generally healthy breed
  • Enjoys active walks
  • Enjoys one to two hours of walking a day
  • Medium dog
  • Minimum drool
  • Requires grooming every other day
  • Quiet dog
  • Barks and alerts to visitors/anything unusual
  • Could have issues with unknown dogs but gets along with known dogs
  • May need additional training to live with other pets
  • May need additional supervision to live with children
  • Needs a small garden
  • Can happily live in the city
  • Can be left occasionally with training
Lurcher Personality

Who knows! Life with a Lurcher is likely to be a voyage of discovery as cross-breeding and particularly multi-breed cross-breeding, will produce very variable personality traits.

Within one litter of puppies from parents who are first crosses themselves, for example, Collie x Greyhound mum, and Saluki x Deerhound dad, it is highly unlikely all the puppies will be an even mix of all four breeds. Typically, some will resemble one, some another, some a mix of two and so on – and this will include personality as well as looks.

It is very important therefore that you know the breeding, not just of your planned puppy’s parents but their grandparents too. Do not get a Lurcher if you do not like the inherent nature of one of the parent/grandparent breeds! 

You can expect: 

  • A dog that likes to hunt by sight, but some will hunt by scent as well. 
  • A dog who is an endurance champion when it comes to exercise however some are sprinters and once exercised will flake out for hours on the sofa.
  • Most are very intelligent but some will be better problem solvers than others. 
  • Some are extremely easy to train and very keen to please and others you will need to work much harder to motivate and get ‘on side’.
  • A strong prey-drive, this is a dog bred up until very recently, to hunt a variety of our native small furry things! Again some lurchers will be more easy going than others, some can live with cats if raised with them from puppies, some will absolutely not and would if given the opportunity, kill cats!
  • A highly opportunistic thief – don’t leave food lying around, and whilst this applies to most dogs, Lurchers are often extremely determined and very agile. Don’t be surprised that yours is standing on top of the extractor fan hood trying to reach the cake tin you hid on top of the cupboards!
  • Do not mistake Lurchers as having the same traits as retired racing Greyhounds, who are generally happy with two 20 to 40 minute walks a day and a lot of time to sleep! This is a common error as while Greyhounds are sprint athletes, not endurance runners, once some other breed is added to the mix, such as collie, Saluki, terrier etc that changes things entirely!
     
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