The Podenco Orito is similarly looking dog to another Podenco – the Podenco Andaluz. In fact, the Podenco Orito is most likely a specific color variety of Podenco Andaluz, which is not officially recognized by the breed standard. The word orito is meaning golden and indeed, the Podenco Orito comes in either black and gold or chocolate and gold color combination. The golden or blonde color most often appears on the muzzle, around the eyes, on the belly and chest and under the tail base. Some of them can also have small white spots on their coat.
The coat of Podenco Orito is relatively short, but it grows longer in some areas, for example on the tail. It is quite thick and dense coat.
The Podenco Orito is medium sized dog with typical Podenco appearance, such as long legs and strong limbs, slim but muscular body, upright triangular ears, long muzzle and powerful jaws and smaller round eyes. You can definitely tell on the first sight, that this is Podenco type of a dog.
The height of Podenco Orito is typically somewhere between 40-50 cm, which is 15-20 inch and weight is usually around 20 kg, which is 44 lbs. Females are naturally slightly smaller than males.
To understand Podenco Oritos temperament, it is important to know that for most of their history they were used as amazing hunters, most often rabbit hunters. And these dogs make just incredibly good rabbit hunters. They have exceptional sense of smell, but also very good sight, they have quick reflexes, good endurance, high prey drive and they are able to easily chase down the rabbit.
Podenco Oritos are just passionate hunters with high chasing instinct. They are absolutely devoted to the job. As good hunters, these dogs are also quite alert and active. Because of their high prey drive, Podencos are not ideal companion dogs for households with other smaller pets, such as hamsters or rabbits, but most podencos can happily live with other dogs in the family without any problems.
Of course, the Podenco Orito is not only a hunter, but also affectionate companion dog. They are known to create a strong bond with its owners and they are absolutely devoted to them. Podencos Oritos are known as docile and affectionate dogs, which are also quite sensitive and that should never be handled badly.
These are also very intelligent dogs with good problem solving ability, but also with independent mind, which is why they are not pushovers to train, but they can definitely learn all the basic obedience commands easily.
These dogs can be somewhat reserved with strangers, with people they do not know. It is their nature, they are naturally alert and watchful. But they should never be agressive without a reason and once they get to know the stranger, they will be friendly towards them.
Podenco Oritos are active dogs that need daily physical stimulation to stay healthy and happy. This includes daily longer walks, jogs, vigorous playtime or fun training sessions. Without enough exercise, they might develop some unwanted behaviour, such as destruction.
Just like all the Podencos, even the Podenco Orito is very old and ancient dog breed, that can trace its ancestry back to old Egyptian dogs, that were distributed all over the Mediterranean by Phoenician traders in ancient times. Most of them evolved on Iberian peninsula, such as Ibizan Podenco, Portuguese Podenco, Podenco Andaluz or Podenco Canario.
The Podenco Orito served for centuries as amazing hunters companion dog. Back in the past, dogs were bred for their purpose and Podenco Orito was used next to Podenco Andaluz and they were viewed as the same dogs, as their purpose was the same. But when the breed standard for Podenco Andaluz was written, it excluded brown and black dogs, which is a reason why Podenco Oritos were very often overlooked and their numbers started declining. Today, this breed is very rare and you can almost exclusively found them in souther Spain, even though some of them were rescued by people from other parts of Europe as well.
Health and grooming
The maintenance and grooming of Podenco Oritos coat is very very simple. Even without any grooming at all, they will keep their coat in excellent condition. Of course, regular brushing is only beneficial as it will remove any dirt and loose hair from the coat. Just like with any other breed, you should also regularly check their eyes, ears, nails and teeth and clip them or clean them if needed.
There are no scientific studies about Podenco Orito health, but it should be rather healthy dog breed with average lifespan around 13 years. They might suffer from the similar health issues as other Podencos, which are ear infections, some joint problems such as hip dysplasia or some eye problems, but none of those are extremely common in this breed.