Italian Segugio

Other names: Segugio Italiano, SEGIT, Italian Hound

Italian Segugio

This Italian breed of canine is from the scent hound group. This ancient dog group actually comes in two coat varieties – a wire haired and a smooth haired dog. In addition to being a scent hound, the Segugio Italiano also excels at hunting and the capture and killing of his prey.

Key facts about the Italian Segugio

Life expectancy :

7

19

12

14

Temperament :

Hunter

Size :

Origins and history

The Segugio Italiano, or SEGIT as it is also known, is an ancient breed dating back thousands of years. It was initially bred by farmers, who needed a dog to hunt hare and rabbits and in some cases, even wild boar. The breed is more common in Italy, but not well known elsewhere. 

Remains of other dogs, very similar to this breed, were found in the province of Verona. Also, a painting from around 1600, in the Borso d’Este castle, displays a dog very similar to the Segugio Italiano. Although no one really knows of their exact ancestry, these artefacts go some way to prove his heritage in Italy. In more recent years, the Segugio has become one of the most popular Italian hunting dogs.

FCI breed nomenclature

FCI Group

Group 6 - Scent hounds and related breeds

Section

Section 1 : Scent hounds

Physical characteristics of the Italian Segugio

Adult size

Female : Between 20 and 23 in

Male : Between 20 and 24 in

Weight

Female : Between 40 and 57 lb

Male : Between 44 and 62 lb

Coat colour

Black
Red

Type of coat

Very short
Long
Hard

Eye colour

Brown

Description

The Segugio Italiano is a medium sized dog, athletic but not heavy. His lean, long limbs together with his muscular build allow him to hunt over many terrains for long periods. His square-shaped body is broad, but not stocky. He has a large, long head carried on a slender long neck. The Segugio’s ears are triangle-shaped and are set low on the side of his head.

Good to know

It will be no surprise if you have never even heard of this breed of dog. This is probably because not even one dog has been registered in the United Kingdom during the last 10 years. Any prospective owners will need to look further afield, most likely to Europe, to find a puppy.

Varieties

Italian Short-haired Segugio

Italian Rough-haired Segugio

Temperament

  • 33%

    Affectionate

    The Segugio Italiano dog is affectionate to almost everyone he meets.

  • 33%

    Playful

    This breed certainly loves kids. They make excellent childminders and playmates.

  • 66%

    Calm

    He has a very sensitive nature and doesn’t like to hear raised voices in the home. But likewise, he is a very calm and gentle character.

  • 66%

    Intelligent

    A very smart dog, however can also be stubborn if things get too repetitive when training.

  • 100%

    Hunter

    The Segugio Italiano is certainly an excellent scent hound and in addition, he will hunt and kill prey when required to.

  • 66%

    Fearful / wary of strangers

    Even though the Segugio Italiano will bark when a stranger approaches, he will be friendly when he gets to know them.

  • 100%

    Independent

    As with the majority of hounds, he can be quite independent. However, he does need the company of his master or another dog for most of the day.

    Behaviour of the Italian Segugio

    • 33%

      Tolerates solitude

      If this dog is left alone for any long period of time, he will become bored, and start to “sing”.

    • 66%

      Easy to train / obedience

      Although these canines are eager to please and train quite easily, a firm but consistent hand is required. He can also be quite stubborn if repetitive routines are used when training. As a noisy dog, his “singing” can annoy the neighbours, so the Segugio Italiano must be taught the command to remain quiet from a very young age. 

    • 100%

      Barking

      Part of this dog’s hunting technique involves baying loudly and melodiously when on a scent trail.

    • 66%

      Tendency to run away

      As with many scent hounds, when out walking he only needs to pick up on a scent and he will dash off without thinking of the consequences. The Segugio Italiano has little road sense when he is following a scent, so it’s important to keep him on a lead when out walking. 

    • 66%