Sculpture of Lithuanian Hound in Telšiai, Lithuania
|Breed status||Not recognized as a standardized breed by any major kennel club.|
|Domestic dog (Canis lupus familiaris)|
The Lithuanian Hound (Lithuanian: Lietuvių skalikas) is a rare, medium-size hunting dog from Lithuania. It is sturdy and heavy-boned, but at the same time sleek and muscular. It has a short black coat with some brown on snout, chest, ears, forehead. The official standard allows for a small white spot on the chest, but not on toes. The dog's long tail is naturally low. The head is large, chest is broad, deep and low. Ears are long with rounded tips, and hang close to the cheeks. Neck is quite long and strong with no dewlap. The feet are strong and round, with compact toes, helping it be a fast, very agile, and determined pursuer.
The Lithuanian Hound has been traditionally used to hunt hare, fox, and boar. The breed is mentioned in the Statutes of Lithuania (16th century). It is believed that it comes from the mixing of bloodhounds with several other hound breeds. Once a popular breed in Lithuania, the population decreased to 78 individuals after World War II. Thanks to several enthusiasts, the hound was revived, standardized, and the number of registered and documented dogs reached around 350 in 1987. After the dissolution of the Soviet Union, the breed decreased to around 150 individuals by 1998. The decrease in popularity is explained by changing hunting habits: the Lithuanian Hound is best suited for hunting large animals in large open areas, but modern hunting plots are decreasing in size. The Lithuanian Cynological Society plans to register the breed with the Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI).
- Tamošiūnas, Vytautas; Vytautas Klovas (1999-04-02). "Veislė iš arti: Lietuvių skalikas". Didysis šuo (in Lithuanian). 2 (15).
- (Lithuanian) Jonas Zinkus; et al., eds. (1985–1988). "Skalikas". Tarybų Lietuvos enciklopedija. IV. Vilnius, Lithuania: Vyriausioji enciklopedijų redakcija. p. 19. LCC 86232954.
- Jareckaitė, Neringa (2001). "Lietuvių skalikai: veislės standartizacija, dinamika, paplitimas" (PDF). Veterinarija ir zootechnika (in Lithuanian). 12 (34). ISSN 1392-2130.
- "Lietuvių skalikas" (in Lithuanian). 2009-04-09. Retrieved 2009-07-15.
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