Where Are Irish Wolfhounds From?
The Wolfhound is a member of the sighthound group that includes Greyhounds, Afghans, and Scottish Deerhounds. They originated in Ireland, a result of crossing English dogs and Middle Eastern coursing hounds. The exact year of their creation is unknown, but they were written about as early as the 4th Century. They were such brilliant hunters of wolves and the now extinct Irish Elk that their prowess was said to exceed that of Mastiffs and Bulldogs. The breed nearly became extinct in the early to mid 19th century, when prey dwindled and they were no longer needed for the hunt. Fortunately, they experienced a resurgence in the late 1800’s when Captain George Graham of the British army concentrated on a careful breeding and standardization program to restore their numbers. Today, they are mostly companions, though some owners let their stretch their legs by competing in lure coursing.