If 2020 can be remembered for one thing, that is the arrival of Frida, my Podenco Canario puppy, rescued from Tierra Blanca, in the south of Tenerife. Adopting a dog was not something I had planned to do this last year, after all, the world was experiencing a global meltdown and the decision to adopt a dog is no small undertaking. But when I discovered the Podenco breed, there was no looking back.
Discover the Podenco Types – Because Each One is Beautiful
Podencos come in a variety of guises from the Ibizan hound, Podenco Andaluz, Podenco Canario, Podenco Ibicenco, and Podenco Valenciano. One look at their cheeky, ginger and white faces will be enough for them to cast their spell on you. They are famous sighthounds and it is argued that the Egyptians used them for hunting thanks to their excellent agility and sharp senses. Today however, they are not held in such high regard, especially not in their homeland of Spain. Each year, after the hunting season ends, thousands end up on the streets, or if they are lucky, in shelters for dogs as hunters don’t want to pay to maintain them until the next season. But, the reality is, they make wonderful pets as they are:
Great with other pets
Loving towards children
100mph Couch Potatoes
Great companions if you work from home
Very quiet and hardly ever bark
They Welcome You Home With a Smile
If you have never seen sighthounds smile, search it in Google Images NOW! Honestly, it is quite possibly the funniest thing. Everytime we return home we are greeted by an overexcited Frida giving us her best grin. Teeth out, gums a glare – the whole lot! While this truly melts my heart, there are some owners who are not familiar with this trait and misinterpret it for aggression and subsequently return their newly adopted dog to the sighthound rescue centre. But, since there is no bad bone in Frida’s body, every smile is full of love.
Podencos Are Total Goofballs
Like seriously! Podencos love to please their owner and are always looking for ways to entertain you or make you laugh. When I was visiting the dog shelters near me, they were full of Podencos, each one performing a repertoire of well rehearsed tricks to catch our attention. At home, Frida is no different and once she finds something that causes us to laugh, she will repeat this for days and days, eager to get a reaction from us. Dancing, jumping, smiling, kissing and hugging are all on her list of goofy tricks.
They LOVE Other Dogs
Podencos are social creatures and while their favourite pastime is Netflix and chill on the sofa close to their owners, they adore the company of other dogs. When we go for walks, you can tell another dog is close by as Frida will start to crouch down and start her wiggle dance. She will then excitedly bound up to her new friend and demand playtime. She is truly happy running around the dog park or play fighting with her best friend, Amor the Border Collie.
They Demand Cuddles 24/7
Podencos are real snuggle buddies and have so much love to give. It may take them a while to build trust with their new owner but once you have won a place in their heart they will reward you with endless affection. Don’t be surprised when you adopt a dog if you find your podenco crawling into bed with you at night or trying to curl up into the smallest place on the sofa just to be by your side. They just want to feel close to you all the time.
An Adopted Dog Will Become Your Shadow
Wherever you go, expect your little furball to follow. They love constant companionship and you will become their leader. Dogs are pack animals and they look up to the ‘Alpha’ which will be you. Show them your world, take them on hikes, to the beach or even just to the park. Wherever you go, they will be happy because they are with you.
There Are So Many Podenco Dogs Up for Adoption
Sadly, sighthounds are one of the most abandoned dog breeds since they are used as a ‘tool’ for hunters. Because of this, they are not protected by laws and it is cheaper for a hunter to dispose of a dog once the hunting season is over rather than keeping it for the next year. In Spain alone, it is predicted that 100,000 Podencos are killed at the end of each hunting season. When I was looking at dogs for adoption near me, I visited shelters in Tenerife with over 600 dogs, most of which were Podencos. However, despite having received sometimes an abusive treatment from their past owners, Podencos are extremely loving animals and are perfect pets.
It is So Easy to Adopt a Podenco Dog
Due to the awful treatment of Podencos, many rescue dog shelters are dedicated entirely to helping this breed and encouraging people to adopt a dog. Hope for Podencos is one of the most famous in Spain and they work tirelessly to find forever homes for their gorgeous Podis. They even run a sponsorship programme which allows you to support one of their rescued podencos who need to remain in their care, such as my sponsored dog, Diana. Most rescue centers make the rehoming process easy and some even let you adopt a puppy for free – vaccinations, sterilization and micro-chipping included. Of course, it is always recommended to make a donation if you receive your puppy for free.
What to Know Before You Adopt a Dog!
Adopting a dog is a life changing decision and one that you have to commit to for the next 15 years, or more. It requires a steady lifestyle, bucket loads of patience and the knowledge that there will be times when your plans will change because your dog’s needs have to come first. It is, however, one of the most rewarding experiences one can enjoy. Whether you choose to adopt a dog or foster a dog, it is important to do your research to ensure you and your furry friend will be the best fit.
If you feel that you haven’t had your fair share of dog pictures for the day, catch up with Frida on her Instagram.0