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What is a Dingo Dog?

Dingo Dog standing at opening of hollow fallen tree

The original Dingo, which hails from Australia, was introduced by seafarers back in the 19th century. These new canine settlers eventually became wild, and many still are today. However, they have also been interbreeding with domesticated dogs, for nearly as long, creating a unique Dingo Dog hybrid. Although a Dingo in normal circumstances, would, obviously, not make a great pet, many Dingo Dogs (the hybrids) are perfectly capable of living in harmony with their human families. Before you rush to the nearest adoption option, you truly need to understand how special this particular breed is. These aren’t your ordinary dog breeds. In this article, we will answer questions about these awesome companions from the land down under.

A Quick Bit of Info About the Dingo

If you have never seen one of these guys, it can be tempting to want to approach them. But, and it’s a rather large one, these dogs are not the kind that you want to pet or snuggle with. The wild Dingo breed originated many millennia ago and is even thought by some to be the descendants of the Asian Dingo. They are pack animals with a very strong predatory drive. They are a very real threat to humans. In fact, some of you might remember the heartbreaking Azaria Chamberlain case, which brought the Dingo and the horrific risk he poses, to the forefront back in the early 80s. In that instance, a wild Dingo snatched a small infant right from her bed.

Dingo VS Dog

Dingo Dog laying on a rock under trees

Honestly, there is not much of a difference between the two, at least as far as their physicality goes. The largest difference is going to be in personality and temperament, and the difference is huge. Dingoes, wild ones, have been left to their own for a very long time and as such, they have grown to fear humans and try to avoid them for the most part. Dingo attacks are, sadly, not very rare though, particularly those on small children and pets. A Dingo is not domesticated, and likely never will be, whereas your run-of-the-mill pooches are.

Characteristics of a Dingo Dog

close up of dingo dog walking

As a general rule, the Dingo Dog will come in a variety of fur color patterns, an elongated snout as well as longer canine teeth than most dogs of comparable size, and a more flattened skull, all dependent on parentage and genetics. They typically have a shorter coat, usually with a variety of smallish, white markings on the legs, paws, chest, and/or muzzle. They can weigh anywhere from 22 to 44 lbs. They are quite intelligent and incredibly fast, and, if they are bred correctly, they do well in a home with other pets as well as with small children.

Dogs that Look Like Dingos

A Carolina Dog (the American Dingo) playing ball

If you are still unsure about an actual Dingo Dog, there are other options. In addition to Dingo/domestic dog hybrids, some regular dog breeds share the same physical traits and characteristics as the wild Dingo, but without the negative aspects. The Red Australian Cattle Dog and The Carolina Dog (AKA The American Dingo Dog) are both very good examples of breeds that look like (but, thankfully, don’t act like) untamed Australian Dingoes – Freestanding, pointed ears, a fish hook-like tail, and a foxlike snout. Both of these breeds are much nicer, and far more domesticated, than their wild counterparts, and they make excellent family pets.

Research Before Adoption

Close up portrait of a Dingo Dog's head

As with any hybrid, a Dingo Dog can be somewhat of a surprise with regards to inherited traits. You sometimes don’t know what you are going to get. If you are looking to add this breed to your family, you should adopt from a reputable breeder, rescue, or organization – and always do your research. A wild Dingo might resemble a cute and fluffy dog but being inherently wild, they are much closer to wolves than to the domesticated dog, personality-wise. While Dingo Dogs are family-friendly for the most part, it is imperative that you know exactly what you are getting and how to handle, and train, them correctly.

The wild Dingo is anything but out of the ordinary as there are many running free throughout the continent of Australia. Due to this, interbreeding between Dingos and domesticated pups is also not uncommon, but that does not mean that you should just bring home a wild hybrid (Please don’t do this, for yours and the animals’ sake). Dingos, and even some hybrids, can be dangerous as well as possibly being incredibly aggressive – these traits can be passed down from the wild parent. They can pose a risk to family members and other pets around. That is why it is so important to acquire your Dingo Dog from people or places that know what they are doing. This unusual breed is specifically bred to be in a family environment.

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