With the “hellhound” being featured in a number of popular movies and TV shows recently, we have noticed a spike in the number of people asking for advice on a real hellhound dog breed. We have said this countless times before and we will probably say it countless times again but you should never add a dog to your family just because of the way it looks without researching the breed first!
That said, in this article we are going to be going over the seven dog breeds that we feel look the most like a real life hellhound. Now, we have chosen realistic photographs of the breed to give you a real idea of what your own personal hellhound may look like if you do choose to add either of these breeds to your family.
We know that there are a number of photoshopped images of these dog breeds online making them look more like a hellhound but we didn’t want to take that path. Not only does it artificially increase your hopes of what your dog will look like but many of them make the breed look more vicious and scary than it actually is when some of these dog breeds can be total sweethearts when raised correctly even if they do look scary.
What Dog Looks Like A Hellhound The Most!
The hellhound actually has a different description depending on your location with some cultures describing the hellhound as a giant mastiff whereas others describe it more like a giant shepherd dog. Due to this, there are number of dog breeds that look like hellhounds with the Cane Corso and an all black German Shepherd usually being the most popular options.
That said though, there are a wide range of different dog breeds that do look like hellhounds in their own right. Keep in mind that some of these dog breeds can actually have coats and eyes of a wide range of colors with some combinations making them look more like a hell hound where as others will make them look less like a hellhound.
On top of that, some of these dog breeds can be very hard to find or literally costs thousands of dollars for a one that looks like a hellhound so you have to factor that in too. With the popularity of dogs that look like hellhounds spiking right now, we feel that the prices for some of these breeds that look particularly like hellhounds will increase even further too. In addition to that, some of these breeds do have their ears clipped to make them even more hellhound like but this practise is illegal in many locations so always check your local laws.
A Cane Corso
The Cane Corso is usually the dog breed of choice when trying to find photographs of a realistic hellhound breed. Everything from its features to coat color to eye color help to fit the description with some lager Cane Corso dogs looking particularly scary. That said though, the breed tend to have a friendly and clownish personality so even though they may look scary at times, they are more likely to be laid on their back trying to give themselves back scratches.
A Cane Corso with a jet black coat and dark hazel eyes making the dogs eyes look red in some light can make it look like a real life hellhound. One thing that gave rise to the Cane Corso being the hellhound dog breed of choice is a number of photographs showing them with actual red eyes. Please note that these photographs tend not to be photoshopped but the dog is suffering from a condition known as cherry eye with the dog needing the attention of a vet as soon as possible.
Although they are not pure bred Cane Corsos, some Cane Corso mixes can have yellow eyes that contrast with their jet black coat in some light making them look even more like a hellhound. This coupled with the breed easily being able to get to 100 pounds with much of their bulk being pure muscle really does help the breed fit the hellhound look.
A Black German Shepherd
An all black german shepherd fits the description of the western hellhound well due to its wolf like appearance, black coat, amber eyes that can look red in some light and their large size and teeth. Due to Fenrir in the Thor Ragnarok movie and a few other TV shows showing a norse hellhound, the popularity of black german shepherds has spiked in recent years.
That said though, even though the all black german shepherd is a real german shepherd that you can get official papers for, they are not able to compete in dog shows due to their coats being made up of a pairing of recessive genes. In addition to that, the prices for all black german shepherds was already two to three times more than a normal colored german shepherd but this has increased to around five times the normal price due to their hellhound features bringing in new buyers.
Most people are familiar with the german shepherd breed and a black german shepherd is the same as a regular german shepherd when it comes to temperament and behaviour. Although the breed may look scary or hellhound like, they are a loving and caring breed that make excellent family pets when raised correctly.
A Black Pitbull
A black pitbull can look very much like a hellhound due to its coat, eye color, shape, and size with many people instantly thinking of the pitbull when thinking of a real life hellhound. Although the breed is controversial and gets a lot of bad press in the media and may look particularly menacing, they can be great pets when raised correctly.
An all black pitbull is the cheapest dog featured on our list and will often sell for less than $400 even if it does look particularly hellhound like. You can often find pitbulls in dog rescue centres for free too so checking out your local dog rescues can be a great way to get yourself a hellhound looking dog without having to break the bank.
Due to there being so much inbreeding with backyard breeders for the pitbull breed, there are unfortunately a number of common health conditions that the breed can suffer from these days. If you are getting your dog from a rescue centre then this is a risk that you are going to have to take but if you are purchasing a pitbull with AKC papers then the chances of the dog having health issues are lower.
The Dogo Canario
Although the Dogo Canario does not have much black in its coat, its tiger striped look with a large amount of orange resembling hellfire can give the dog a hellhound look. The Dogo Canario is very rare in North America though and is still considered a rare dog breed in Europe outside of Spain so they can be expensive to import.
Being a mastiff, the Dogo Canario is build for size and strength and the breed doesn’t let you down. Males can easily get to over 100 pounds with most of their bulk being pure muscle making them particularly strong. That said though, the breed tends to be easier to train than most people think and provided you offer the dog plenty of positive reinforcement during training sessions, it can quickly learn to stay by you when out walking without pulling.
The paws of the Dogo Canario can also grow to the size of dogs designed to live in snow or ice covered areas further adding to its hell hound look too. The dog does tend to have dark eyes with no real way to catch them so they look red but we couldn’t leave the breed off our list of real life hellhounds.
The Doberman Pinsher
The Doberman Pinsher is a very popular breed that most of our readers will be familiar with and instantly know what the dog looks like. Its slender body, short coat, and distinct features offer up images of a hellhound and although it is not the largest breed on our list, it definitely has its place as a dog that looks like a hellhound.
You can take this one step further and opt for an all black melanistic Doberman that does not have the traditional tan markings of the Doberman too. Please note though, the all black coat is due to genetic issues in the dog and they are not officially recognised as Doberman Pinshers even if both parents are papered dogs due to the potential health issues off any offspring from a melanistic Doberman.
The “Doberdane” also has a particularly hellhound like look to the dog but due to being a Doberman Pinsher Great Dane mix, it can have a wide range of coats. This means that anything but an all black coat on the dog tends not to look particularly hellish at all.
The Xolo is a very rare breed in the west but can definitely fit the bill for a hellhound due to its unique look and mohawk hairstyle. The Xolo are available in a coated and uncoated variant with the uncoated having black skin adding to that hellhound look.
The Xolo can have a wide range of different colored coats though so anyone specifically looking for a dog bred that looks like a hellhound should be trying to go with an uncoated Xolo. Additionally, most Xolos are much smaller than the other dogs on this list too and although you can make them look like hellhounds in photographs, when something is added for scale, their hellish look tends to fade.
Please note that the Xolo breed can have a wide range of health problems due to the way the breed has been maintained over the years. Unless you know for a fact that you are getting your Xolo from a reputable source with a lower chance of the dog having health-related issues, we would not recommend that you go with one.
What Breed Of Dog Is The Hellhound In Good Omens?
The hellhound dog breed in the Good Omens TV series is a great dane and although an all black great dane with yellow eyes can look particularly hellhound like, they opted for a dog with most of its coat being white. It is believed that this is due to the TV producers wanting to keep as many episodes with a rating of 13+ as possible and not wanting to add a particularly scary looking dog breed to the show.
The great dane has a huge range of coat combinations and the all black variants can be very rare and expensive to find. In addition to this, due to their massive size, a great dane is not the ideal dog breed for many people as they require lots of space and exercise.
As we touched on earlier in the article, the “doberdane” can look particularly hellhound like but due to one parent being a pure bred great dane, the various heart health problems can pass on to the doberdane too. This is why we would recommend that you go with one of the other dog breeds on our list if possible.
That brings our article going over the various hellhound dog breeds to an end. If you get lucky with the breeds coat then some of these dog breeds can look very hellhound like and really fit the bill. That said though, just because the dog looks scary, most of them are very friendly and will make great pets when correctly trained, cared for, and socialised with other dogs and humans.