African Wild Dog (Lycaon pictus)

Wild Dog (Lycaon pictus) Silhouette

Quick stats of the Wild Dog

  • Diet: - Carnivore
  • Shoulder Height: - 0.73 m
  • Weight: - Male - 29 kg
  • Weight: - Female - 29 kg
  • Lifespan - 12 years


Wild Dog © Toursa

Sometimes called hunting-dogs, wild dogs are found in packs of between five and twenty or more. They have good eyesight and tend to prefer open country and hunt during daylight.

The wild dog has long slender legs and a lean body - advantages to any predator which depends on its running ability to catch its prey. Their large, rounded ears are very distinctive, as is their blotched or mottled body coloration, generally a mixture of black, orange-brown and white.

Nomadic for much of the year, wild dogs will roam over very large areas, constantly searching for prey to satisfy their almost continuous hunger. Once the pack has chosen its next kill they hunt down the victim with dogged persistence and matchless stamina. They will chase their prey, sometimes for great distances, and once their prey is down, either from exhaustion or the extent of maiming, death is very quick.

1-7 pups are born in the dry season, after a short gestation period of 2-3 months. The young are well looked after by the pack. The young start hunting with the pack when they are 2-3 months old. They are also the first to eat on a kill.

Other Names for the Wild Dog

  • Wildehond
  • African Wild Dog
  • African Hunting Dog


Distribution map of the Wild Dog
Distribution map of the Wild Dog

Taxonomy of the Wild Dog

  • Order - Carnivora
  • Family - Canidae
  • Genus - Lycaon
  • Species - Lycaon pictus

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