IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR PROSPECTIVE BUYERS OF 

IRISH WOLFHOUND PUPPIES

Irish Wolfhound breeders are working together to promote the ownership of pure bred registered Irish Wolfhounds of complete known ancestry. The Irish wolfhound breeders listed on this web site are dedicated to protecting the future of this magnificent breed in Australia.

Why are complete and accurate pedigrees so important? Because a pedigree is more than just a bunch of names - to a good breeder (and owner) it provides an astonishing amount of information about phenotype (physical features) and genotype (health, breed characteristics and temperament) that may become evident during the life of your dog or surface in future generations. Responsible Irish wolfhound breeders need to KNOW this information because they try to plan any matings to ensure future generations are as magnificent, strong and healthy as possible.

So even if you just want a 'pet' Irish wolfhound puppy it is extremely important for the future of the breed that you get what you expect... and, unfortunately, getting an Irish wolfhound puppy with a complete known and undisputed ancestry is not as easy as it once was.  This may not automatically be the case if a breeder just tells you that the sire and dam are registered as Irish Wolfhounds with 'ANKC papers' - registration rules have selectively not been enforced and some dogs and bitches are now registered as pure bred Irish Wolfhounds despite having previously had at least one ancestor shown as unidentified on their pedigree registrations. At that time, this ancestor was shown by DNA Profiling and Parentage Certification to be an identified but unregistered dog of unknown ancestry.  You need to ask questions and do your research carefully if you want a pure bred Irish Wolfhound puppy that has only identified and registered pure bred Irish Wolfhounds as their undisputed ancestors. (Note, pedigree 'blanks' have since been replaced with the name of a dog, Ornumflow Lord Erikson, so breed researchers should adjust research accordingly.)

Some common questions and answers:

Q. If an Irish wolfhound breeder tells me I will get 'full ANKC registration papers' with my Irish Wolfhound puppy, does that automatically mean I am getting an Irish wolfhound puppy with a completely known pedigree?

A. Unfortunately, NO it does NOT. Only Irish wolfhound breeders who are breeding from registered Irish Wolfhounds with complete, known pedigrees are included in our Breeder list. They do not breed from dogs or bitches with incomplete ancestry. They do not own unsterilized dogs or bitches that are descendants of dogs and bitches with incomplete ancestry. (There may be other breeders, but check their credentials with someone on the list.)

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Q. I purchased an Irish Wolfhound puppy and then received correspondence about issues with my Irish wofhound puppy's registration. I have been told everything is sorted now. My wolfhound is on the 'Main Register'. Does this mean my bitch should be bred from or my dog used at stud?

A. Unfortunately, NO it definitely does NOT. First of all, owning a dog of any breed on the 'Main Register' doesn't necessarily mean they should automatically be bred. Genetic background, health, quality, physical characteristics and temperament all need to be considered before breeding. Research should extend as far back in a pedigree as possible for both your own dog or bitch as well as any prospective mates. In the opinions of the listed breeders, no one should breed with a dog or bitch that does not have a completely known pedigree in any breed that is not on a ‘development register’. In the opinion of the Irish wolfhound breeders on this web site, dogs registered as Irish wolfhounds that have pedigrees with incomplete ancestry should not be used for breeding. Your veterinarian may counsel you to spay/neuter at an appropriate age since you are not planning to breed.

If you own a dog with an incomplete pedigree and are thinking about breeding, contact any Irish wolfhound breeder on the list (there may be others not listed). If you wish to breed in the future, they will do their best to arrange a mentoring process and assist in finding an Irish Wolfhound puppy with a completely known pedigree as you move towards becoming a breeder. You will be working with people who believe that always holding the future of the breed uppermost in one's mind is a crucial part of being a good breeder.

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Q. My potential breeder tells me they 'show' their dogs and have won important awards, some from overseas judges. There are Champions in the litter’s pedigree. Does this automatically mean that my puppy will have a complete pedigree with no 'unknowns'?

A. Unfortunately, NO it does NOT.  Some breeders enjoy the sport of dog showing and some may not, but responsible Irish wolfhound breeders are concerned about the future of the breed in Australia and that means show awards are less important when it comes to breeding plans than a complete researched pedigree with its known breeding line history.  Judges look at the individual dog in the ring;  judges can not be expected to know if any dog's littermates (or parent or grandparent) might show characteristics less typical of the breed as judges look only at the one dog in front of them on that day.  Breeding is not a beauty contest. Knowing who ALL of the ancestors are is more important than show ribbons.  Unidentified ancestors = increased risks. 

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Q. The breeder tells me they are a Member and Officer (or 'Committee Member') of an Irish Wolfhound Club. Does this automatically mean that their Irish wolfhound puppies will have a complete pedigree with no blanks or 'unknowns'?

A. Unfortunately, NO it does NOT. Most breeders belong to one or more IW Clubs. However, Irish wolfhound breeders listed have made a personal commitment to join the effort to ensure this breed is not affected over time through the breeding of dogs with incomplete pedigrees. Incomplete pedigrees = ‘who knows what is back there’ = increased Risks for the breed.

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Q. A breeder has emailed me a pedigree for a litter. I do not see any blank spaces or any marked 'unknown'. Does this automatically mean that their Irish wolfhound puppies will have a complete known ancestry?

A. Unfortunately, NO it does NOT. Canine registration bodies (for example, 'Dogs Victoria') typically issue an ANKC registration certificate that shows a pedigree with only 3 generations. The 'blanks' or ‘nameless dogs’ will drop off the part of the pedigree that is printed on the certificate after just a few generations. But those UNKNOWNS will always be back there. It might sound inconsequential if there is one missing grandparent in a 3 generation pedigree but that actually means there are 63 'unknowns' in the 7 generation pedigree. That is a LOT of information missing about phenotype (physical traits), health and temperament for the future generations. The Breeder list gives only Irish wolfhound breeders who will never breed from or sell an Irish Wolfhound puppy with incomplete or unknown ancestry - no matter how many generations have been bred.

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Would you like more information? Are you interested in an Irish Wolfhound puppy with known heritage and a complete pedigree? Please contact someone on the Breeder page and they will discuss if the Irish Wolfhound is the right breed choice for your companion. Please do not be surprised by a lot of questions – responsible breeders will want to know more about you besides how you intend to pay for a puppy. If they are not planning a litter in the near future, they will put you in touch with another Irish wolfhound breeder whose breeding stock and kennel contain only Irish Wolfhounds with completely known ancestry. 

Once you have completed your research and decided that the Irish Wolfhound is the breed for you and you are seriously considering an Irish wolfhound puppy, it is time to:

  • Ask for scanned copies of the official registration papers for both parents. As the registration will likely show only     3 generations, there may be no 'blanks' but you will still need more information. Ask about all four grandparent's registrations, and​

  • Ask for at least a 7 generation pedigree for the puppy's litter (or the proposed mating).

  • Always ask "Are there any unknown or unidentified ancestors within 7 generations of the puppy?"

If you have any doubt about the answers, then we recommend that you check with any Irish wolfhound breeder listed on this web site to verify the answers and pedigrees that you have been given.  As a future owner of this breed you can help ensure the future remains bright for this wonderful breed by only buying an Irish wolfhound puppy with complete known ancestry. No matter what the rationale, do not accept 'blanks' and unknown ancestors.