Schweizer Niederlaufhund vs Istarski Ostrodlaki Gonic - Breed Comparison

Schweizer Niederlaufhund vs Istarski Ostrodlaki GonicSchweizer Niederlaufhund is originated from Switzerland but Istarski Ostrodlaki Gonic is originated from Croatia. Schweizer Niederlaufhund may grow 17 cm / 6 inches shorter than Istarski Ostrodlaki Gonic. Schweizer Niederlaufhund may weigh 12 kg / 26 pounds lesser than Istarski Ostrodlaki Gonic. Schweizer Niederlaufhund may live 4 years more than Istarski Ostrodlaki Gonic. Schweizer Niederlaufhund may have less litter size than Istarski Ostrodlaki Gonic. Both Schweizer Niederlaufhund and Istarski Ostrodlaki Gonic requires Low maintenance.

Basic Information

Hound dog
Hound dog
Height Male:
35 - 43 cm
13 - 17 inches
43 - 60 cm
16 - 24 inches
Height Female:
33 - 40 cm
12 - 16 inches
43 - 60 cm
16 - 24 inches
Weight Male:
8 - 15 kg
17 - 34 pounds
12 - 27 kg
26 - 60 pounds
Weight Female:
6 - 18 kg
13 - 40 pounds
12 - 27 kg
26 - 60 pounds
Life Span:
12 - 16 Years
10 - 12 Years
Litter Size:
5 - 7
6 - 12
Medium dog
Medium dog
Other Names:
Small Swiss Hound.
Istrian wire-haired or short-haired scenthound
Colors Available:
mostly white with orange, tri color, mostly white with black, black with tan
White with orange markings
smooth or coarse
Short and smooth or medium length and wiry
Affectionate, Courageous, Friendly, Gentle, Independent, Intelligent, Loving, Stubborn
Affectionate, Alert, Cheerful, Courageous, Curious, Docile, Energetic, Friendly, Gentle, Independent, Intelligent, Lively, Loving, Loyal, Outgoing, Playful, Protective, Quiet, Responsive, Social, Territorial
Low maintenance
Low maintenance
Kids Friendly:
New Owners Friendly:


schweizer niederlaufhundOriginating in Switzerland, the Schweizer Niederlaufhund was established around 1900, when hunting became restricted to districts. The Swiss hunter needed a slower dog for the limited territory they could hunt in. Crossing selected Schweizer Laufhunds with Basset Hounds and other selected smaller, short legged hounds developed the Schweizer Niederlaufhund. By 1905 there was already a Schweizer Niederlaufhund Club.

The Niederlaufhund became one of the best hunting dogs in the world, with its powerful body and ability to outhunt the Laufhund in tracking big game. Slower of course than the Laufhund it has a great sense of smell and an ability to easily find wounded animals. There are a few varieties, just like with the Swiss Hound again mostly because of their coloring. The Luzerner Niederlaufhund, the Jura Neiderlaufhund, and the Schwyzerlaufhund. They have musical voices that they use to communicate with the hunters and each other as well as that amazing sense of smell. They can hunt for hours without tiring and without much information from the hunter.

They are a cross breed not recognized by the larger kennel club such as the AKC and the UKC. They are recognized by the Dog Registry of America, Inc. (DRA), the American Canine Association Inc. (ACA) and most importantly by the Federation Cynologique Internationale (FCI). This last one is important because it could lead to recognition as a new breed by the UKC and the AKC.

istarski ostrodlaki gonicThe Istarski Ostrodlaki Gonic, also referred to as the Istrian wire-haired or short-haired scenthound is a very ancient dog breed. Apparently the dog has been found in paintings that go way back to the early 1700s.

The dog can either have a short, smooth coat or a rough, wiry longer coat. He has always been popular with hunters, used for hunting rabbits and fox.

An interesting fact with this dog is the correlation between the Dalmatian dog and the Istrian short-haired hound. According to veterinary investigations, there are strong likenesses between the two breeds.

The truth is, the origin of the Istrian has been a matter of dispute for some time but in 2003 the Federation Cynologique Internationale recognized the breed as hailing from Croatia.


schweizer niederlaufhund puppyThe Schweizer Niederlaufhund is a medium size, short dog. They look like their cousins, the Schweizer Laufhund but smaller. Their body is just slightly longer than it is tall, so you are left with the impression of a mostly square dog. The Niederlaufhund is well put together, with strong legs, a noble head, long droopy ears, broad chest, and a low held tail.

The Small Lucerne Hound has a white cote with smooth speckles of black or gray making them appear to be blue.

The Small Bernese Hound has a tricolor coat of white, tan and black. There are tan marks on the eyebrows. There is a wire haired Small Bernese as well. He has a short beard.

The Small Schwyz Hound is smooth coated in white with orange or yellow-red patches. The wired haired version is extinct.

The Small Jura Hound is a single coated dog with a black coat and tan marking above his eyes as eyebrows as well. He might have some white as well.

istarski ostrodlaki gonic puppyMedium in size, the Istarski Ostrodlaki Gonic stands at roughly 43 to 60cm at the withers and weighs roughly 12 to 27kg. The chest of the dog is broad and deep, the skull slightly rounded while the muzzle is strong and rectangular shaped. The nose is dark brown or black.

The ears are floppy and are nearly always in the orange color while the tail is long and is carried low. The coat of the rough haired dog is of medium length. In fact the coat can either be short and smooth or longish and wiry with a woolly undercoat. The color of the coat is white with orange markings.


This breed of dog is sought after for his cheerful personality. He is loyal to his human family and is a social dog, loving to spend time around his family.

He is energetic, confident and strong-willed and this is why, as with most other dogs, he will benefit from training and socialization, as this makes him obedient and responsive to his owner. He is evenly tempered, being gentle and docile.

Health Problems

schweizer niederlaufhund dogThe Niederlaufhund Is prone to a very medical issues to keep an eye on. They include:

• Hip Dysplasia – This comes from hip joints that are not well formed and cause reduced mobility and pain. Parents can be tested before the dogs are bred to make sure their hips are good, and that dysplasia will not be passed to puppies. This dysplasia can cause arthritis and even lameness.

• Ear Infections – With long drooping ears it is easy for the dog to acquire ear infections. This is even more so for a hunting dog like the Niederlafhund. It is important to clean the dog’s ears on a regular basis.

Dental Disease:

istarski ostrodlaki gonic dogThere are people who don’t take dental disease seriously in dogs as they think that it simply affects the teeth, when in fact dental disease can affect the dog’s entire body.

Dental- and gum disease is to be regarded with concern as it can be painful and even life threatening. It affects many dogs, and unfortunately your Istarski is also likely to have problems with his teeth. Tartar build-up and infection of the gums can lead to tooth loss but also damage to the kidneys, heart and joints.

Dogs need to have their teeth attended to regularly and if this is something new to you, speak to your vet and find out about special canine toothpaste and toothbrush and how to use them.


Dogs can be susceptible to bacterial and viral infections such as rabies, distemper and parvo, and that is why visits to your vet are so important. These life-threatening diseases for your Istarski Ostrodlaki Gonic are preventable through vaccinations.

Caring The Pet

schweizer niederlaufhund puppies1Feeding the puppy - give 1 cup per day of high quality dog food divided into 3 meals.

2.Feeding the adult – give one and one half cups of high quality dog food divided into 2 meals.

3.Points for Good Health - Stamina

4. Games and Exercises – needs a lot of daily exercise and loves field trials, running and activities like barn hunt.

istarski ostrodlaki gonic puppiesTaking care of an Istarski Ostrodlaki Gonic dog is much like caring for a child – doing everything you can to keep him healthy and happy, after all, he is a member of your family.

You want to be watching his diet and making sure that it is the best quality there is, full of vitamins and minerals to keep his eyes bright, his nose wet and his tail wagging.

There are excellent commercially manufactured dog foods on the market today and the best ones ensure excellent nutrition for your dog to keep him in optimal condition through each stage that he goes through. Try to include some home-made food into this kibble such as cooked chicken, brown rice and vegetables and it can be to his benefit to just to include some raw meat from time to time.

Make sure your Istarski Ostrodlaki Gonic is well exercised, that you check his teeth and ears to ensure there are no infections and to call the vet immediately you suspect something is wrong. Make sure you have him examined as a puppy and that he gets his necessary injections as there are diseases that can kill your dog.


schweizer niederlaufhund dogsChildren friendliness – yes, they are but use caution around small children and small prey.

2. Special talents – the breed exhibits and amazing sense of smell.

3. Adaptability - needs room to run and explore – is very frustrated when confined.

4. Learning ability – highly intelligent and eager to learn.

istarski ostrodlaki gonic dogsThe Istrian Wire-haired Scenthound or Istarski Ostrodlaki Gonic as he is also referred to is a strong, well built hound which is elegant in appearance.

He has a remarkably striking coat - bright white with orange markings. He has always been an excellent hunting dog, even to this day. This background hunting of his will require that he receives ongoing exercise as well as mental stimulation.

Treat this beautiful dog well - exercise him, groom him, feed him well and love him and you will be rewarded with the loyal and devoted friendship of an amazing dog.

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