The Lobito Herreno is a dog with wolf like and rustic appearance. It is a breed of strong constitution with athletic body, wedge shaped head, triangular and erect ears, tail that is set high and relatively small brown eyes.
The coat is pretty smooth and short, but it gets thicker and denser during winter and colder months. Usually the dogs coat is in the typical wolfs like gray color, but it can also be reddish, both with pale mask and light patches around the eyes. There can also be some white or light cream spots in the coat.
And what about the size? Well, on average, the Perro lobo herreno height is between 52-54 cm, which is 21-22 inch and weight between 18-22 kg, which is 40-49 lbs. Females are naturally slightly smaller than males, but the difference is not extremely huge.
Traditionally, these dogs were used to work with livestock animals. To herd them and also to protect them. But over the time, the need for livestock working dogs declined and most Lobito Herreno dogs turned into companion dogs. And they make amazing companions as well!
Even though they look like wolves, they should not have extremely high prey drive and they can be socialized to live with other pets in the family as well. They can also live with other dogs, or with smaller kids in the family, but of course, you should never leave any dog breed with a very young child unsupervised.
The Hierran Wolfdog is described as absolutely loyal, very active and playful, affectionate and curious dog breed. If they are provided with enough daily exercise, which is an absolute must and it can be done with daily longer walks, hikes, jogs, vigorous playtime or fun training sessions, than they are pretty calm and relaxed at home.
They are very friendly with people they know, but are typically suspicious towards strangers. But they should never be agressive without a reason and once they got to know the stranger, they will accept it. They can also be territorial.
As i already said, these dogs are highly energetic. They are also very very intelligent and they love fun traning sessions. They can learn almost all the tricks quickly and easily. Thanks to this, the intelligence, eagerness to please and high energy, they are excellent for various dog sports, like agility.
Overall, these dogs, that once were amazing herders, are today extraordinary companions, especially for active people and families.
The history and ancestry of this breed is rather unknown. There is no documentation about it, but there are two main theories about it. The first one say, that they naturally, over the time, evolved from the dogs already present in the Canary Islands from ancient times.
The other theory is more accepted, and it claims, that the ancestors of Lobito Herreño were brought to the Canarian El Hierro island with Castillian conquistadores at the start of the 15th century. But we will never know the exact history of this breed.
What we know for sure is, that they were further developed into the breed we have today by shepherds of Canary islands. They were living in largest numbers on the island of El Hierro, which is where they got their name.
The Lobito Herreño was most likely never bred for appearance and according to their breed standard, it was bred for its utilization, for its purpose, which was to be the best helper for the Shepherds of El Hierro.
Sadly, over the time, due to a decline in traditional shepherding, there was no longer need for these dogs, which caused a huge decline of this breeds population and they were brought to the verge of extinction. Today, it is estimated, that there are only lower hundreads of pure Perro lobo herreño dogs and it is very very rare breed and they are virtually unknown outside the Canary Islands.
Health and grooming
Generally, the Lobito Herreño is very tough and healthy breed with average lifespan around 13 years. It is very resiliant dog, that is not prone to any specific genetic health issues. Of course, just like all the larger dogs, they can sometimes suffer from joint and bone problems or bloating but it should not be extremely common with this dog. They can also suffer from the typical doggy issues, like some allergies or infections.
The care of Perro Lobo Herreño is quite simple. They can take care of their coat by themselves, but it is recommended to brush the coat in order to minimize the shedding, to remove all the loose and dead hair, to remove dirt from the coat and to redistribute natural oils all over it. No other grooming is required. Just like with any other dog breed, you should regularly check their eyes, ears, nails and teeth and clip them or clean them if needed.