Cirneco Dell’etna

Dog Breed Profile

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Cirneco Dell’etna History

The Cirneco dell’Etna (also called the Etna Sheepdog) is a herding dog from southern Italy. It is the national mascot of Sicily. The Cirneco dell’Etna is an ancient breed of working sheepdog that originated in the Sicilian region. The origins of the Cirneco dell’Etna are unclear, but it may be descended from the Etruscan lupo. The Cirneco dell’Etna is a medium–large, square–proportioned, short-coated, rustic working dog. The head is broad and elongated, with well-developed jaws. The eyes are dark, and the tail usually set high. The feet are round and large, with thick pads and strong nails. As might be expected, the Cirneco dell’Etna is a strong, agile, and tenacious worker, and is highly prized for its intelligence and obedience. The Cirneco dell’Etna is intelligent and eager to please, but also independent and stubborn, and therefore needs a firm, consistent hand.

Time of Origin


Country of Origin




Cirneco Dell’etna Physical Characteristics

The Cirneco Dell’Etna is a breed of domestic sheepdog that originates from Italy. The breed was developed in 1928 in the commune of Rocca di Mezzo in the province of Messina on the island of Sicily, when an attempt was made to preserve the ancient local zoccolo breed. The Cirneco Dell’Etna is now well established throughout southern Italy, as well as in other countries, and is regarded as the national sheepdog of Italy.

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Nose Colors


Coat Colors


Height Range

Male Height Range: 18 – 22 inches

Female Height Range: 17 – 20 inches

Weight Range

Male Weight Range: 22 – 26 lbs

Female Weight Range: 18 – 20 lbs

Cirneco Dell’etna Health

Description of breed health.


12-15 yrs

Cirneco Dell’etna Health Concerns

Obesity, Toe and Muscle Injury

Cirneco Dell’etna Temperament and Behaviour

The Cirneco dell’Etna is a beautiful, graceful canine with a noble and serene appearance. They are naturally lively, curious, and sociable creatures, and make great companions for families. They are highly trainable and are easy to housebreak. While very playful, they are also quite calm and gentle.

Cirneco Dell’etna Activity Requirements

Cirneco dell’Etna are large, muscular Italian hunting dogs that were used as a guard dog and as a hunting companion. They are still used as hunting companions today, but their popularity as household pets has increased in recent years. While they are a generally healthy, alert, and energetic dog, they are not as high strung as other breeds. They are better suited for homes with experienced dog owners, as they may nip at small children and strangers. If you are looking for a high-energy, playful breed, a Cinerco may be a poor choice. While they are generally healthy and have few serious health concerns, they are higher maintenance than other breeds.

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Daily Food


Kennel Club Recognition

American Kennel Club

Recognized by the American Kennel Club

Cirneco Dell’etna is part of the Hound group.

Visit the American Kennel Club website.

The Kennel Club

Recognized by The Kennel Club

Cirneco Dell’etna is part of the Hound group.

Visit the Kennel Club website.

Australian National Kennel Council

Recognized by the Australian National Kennel Council

Cirneco Dell’etna is part of the Hound group.

Visit the Australian National Kennel Council website.

Canadian Kennel Club

Not Recognized

Cirneco Dell’etna is part of the Unclassified group.

Visit the Canadian Kennel Club website.