Cirneco dell'Etna

A Cheer-nay-what?

The Cirneco dell'Etna (pron: "cheer-nay-ko") is a small hound from Sicily. While it is found all over the Italian island, it is particularly in the area surrounding Mount Etna, an active volcano, where they are used for rabbit hunting on the rough volcanic terrain.

The Cirneco is an ancient breed that has changed very little for perhaps 3000 years. They undoubtedly share ancestry with the other similar breeds of the Old World, such as the Ibezan Hound and clearly the Pharaoh Hound, with which Cirnechi (the plural of Cirneco, pronounced "cheer-nay-kee") are frequently confused. Over the millennia, man has hardly altered them, and we really have to thank nature for giving the breed its ability to work for many hours in the heat with little food and water. Cirnechi are extremely hardy and free from inherited health problems. Loyal, friendly and very affectionate, they are attentive, keen to learn, and highly intelligent, though more than a little mischievous!

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Where can I get more information?

Any info you find here is purely the opinion of the author.

UK Cirneco dell'Etna Club affiliated to the UK Kennel Club.
The site is at If you are interested in joining the UK Cirneco Dell'Etna club please register on that site!

If you wish to obtain further authoritative information about Cirnechi visit any or all of these sites;

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Where can I get my own Cirneco?

We don't sell Cirnechi from these pages. Please visit any of the following breeders sites;

As Cirnechi remain a rare breed, finding a puppy will require patience. Be under no illusion that they are readily available, only a handful of pups are born each year.

We don't breed or source puppies directly through this site. We'd recommend that any prospecting Cirneco parents first contact any of the above breeders.

Others who may be able to provide you with a wonderful addition to your family in the shape of a Cirneco pup are Jennifer Holzke's Sambuca Show Dogs - in Tennessee USA, Jonathan Lappin's Eindackel Kennel in Northern Ireland (website defunct - possibly no longer breeding), and Kennel Iosono in Finland. Iosono hounds descend from the Italian Hadranensis kennel as does our Lorenzo.

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Where can I see Cirnechi?

*** Cirnechi at Crufts & Discover Dogs ***

Crufts - "The World's Greatest Dog Show" next takes place every March at the Birmingham NEC (UK). There's always a Cirneco stand in the Hounds section of the ever growing Discover Dogs area. Check for official info about Crufts!

The annual Kennel Club's Discover Dogs event takes place in November at Earls Court, London. Several UK owned Cirnechi and their families attend over the weekend, and you can meet them to find out first hand what these beautiful little hounds are like to live with. Click here for more info about the event.

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Aims of this site

The domain was created late in March 2006, just after showing off Lorenzo in the Discover Dogs area at Crufts. I'd originally planned a portal for Cirneco lovers as there was no UK club at that time, fortunately, David Morris came to the rescue of UK Cirneco fans by starting the Cirneco dell'Etna Club. Now my pages at exist only as a tribute for our much missed and beautiful hound, Lorenzo.

If you want to be kept informed about all things Cirneco in the UK, please contact the Cirneco dell'Etna Club at

If you previously asked us to keep your details, we no longer have them recorded, as we have no further need of them. We did not, and can not, pass them them to the club or anyone else, as we agreed not to divulge your info! Please contact the club directly.

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© Alex Burnham
last updated: 11 May 2018