The decision to purchase an Irish Wolfhound should not be made lightly. Although every breed of dog has its pros and cons, the Irish wolfhound has some unique features that require careful thought before one makes the commitment to own one. The Irish wolfhound is an expensive dog both to purchase and to maintain. Pups are not easily available for purchase, and breeders are very discriminating about where they will place their dogs. Expect to be asked many questions about the home you will provide for a puppy and how he will be cared for. Puppies grow rapidly from only a pound at birth to around 100 lbs at about six months of age. That cute little puppy in the whelping box, is an enormous monster six months later, destroying everything he can get his very large teeth into.
Because of his great size, the Irish Wolfhound requires more of everything - more food, more space, more exercise, and more medicine. The list goes on. Moreover, the prospective purchaser must consider that the average life span of the hound is only six and one half years. Obviously, some hounds live longer, and others, shorter lives. But the reality is such that one must be prepared to lose a true and loyal companion before one is ready to do so. Having said this, we as breeders are committed to making longevity a priority in our breeding program. True fanciers of the breed love their hounds every minute they have them, and hope for reunion at the legendary Rainbow Bridge.
Finally, the prospective owner must realize that the Irish wolfhound is a sighthound, a hunter by instinct, and therefore must be properly enclosed in secure fencing or under its owner's personal supervision at all times for its own safety.
If you think that you would like to own an Irish wolfhound, become an informed purchaser. Contact the breed association, find out who the local breeders are in your area. Visit them and check out their hounds at local all-breed and specialty shows. Read everything you can about the breed and surf the net for all the information you can find. Whether you want a dog for show or as a companion, become an informed consumer. Think about the responsibility you will be taking on and decide whether an Irish wolfhound is really the right breed for you.