notes on the lurcher

"The Lurcher has a short coat and a smooth undercoat that thickens in the winter. The legs are long and straight. The chest is deep, providing lung capacity for endurance. The small, wire-haired ears are high set. The small, dark eyes are round and alert. Colours vary widely since the Lurcher is derived from sighthound crosses. There is also a long-haired variety. A Lurcher is a fun-loving, affectionate, lovable dog; but beware, Lurchers are great escape artists. They are high-energy dogs that need to run. These dogs were bred to hunt rabbit and hare in Ireland and Great Britain by Irish gypsies and tinkers in the 1600's. They have inherited fast agile movements from the sighthound crosses in them. Lurchers have the strong hunting instincts of the sighthounds. This combination also proved to be a good obedient dog which learns commands fast. Good for the outdoor type families, they are usually gentle with people, which makes an amendable companion.

The Lurcher was bred in Ireland and Great Britain by the Irish gypsies and tinkers in the 1600s. They were used for poaching rabbits, hares and other small creatures. It is never bred to a specific standard and is often not considered a breed, as the Lurcher is more a crossbreed: usually three quarters sighthound. The most common combinations are the Greyhound/Collie and the Greyhound/Terrier. The name Lurcher a is derived name from the Romany word lur, which means thief. The gypsies considered the short-haired Lurcher the most prized. The Lurcher is rarely seen outside of Great Britain and Ireland, and is still common in its native land. The Collie crosses were often not large enough to do the work the Lurcher was intended for. Gypsies traditionally sneered at any Lurcher that was not predominantly Greyhound, since these "lesser" Lurchers were not as good at hunting and could not stand a full day's work of the hunt. The stringent training methods of the Gypsies are looked down upon in some Lurch circles, since the pups began working at six months old. Only the top-producing pups were kept; the rest were sold at traditional bargain rates. Today some breeding is carried out in a more systematic manner, with Lurchers bred to Lurchers to perpetuate the "breed's" prowess at rabbit and hare coursing.

Lurcher on wikipedia
entertaining, educational site on lurchers
rescue a lurcher

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Portraits and paintings of the Lurcher and Terrier

The lurcher and terrier, a long held relationship between the two types of dog. Radically different in size, both make fantastic subjects to paint, with plenty of variety of shapes sizes and colours

two terriers portrait

modern lurcher painting

Paddy - Portrait of a Lurcher - oil on canvas

Lurchers and terriers are a staple in the world of dog art, depicted throughout history by many different artists - click here to read an article on the Lurcher and Terrier in dog art featuring


jack russell sitting


modern jack portrait



modern terrier  dog portrait

A handsome pair of smooth haired fox terriers
10x14in oil painting on canvas

For information on commissioning a portrait of your dog please contact the artist


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basset dog painting dalmatian pup portrait fox terriers picture westie dog portrait


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