Rajapalayam is an Indian breed dog that was bred by the rajas of Tamil Nadu in the ancient times for hunting. When the British invaded India, these dogs started serving in armies due to them being a formidable hunting dog.

In the olden days, people usually preferred to own mainly white coloured Rajapalayam dogs, and coloured puppies were separated from the litter and killed. But thankfully, this practice has now been abolished and is now a thing of the past. 

Popularly known as the companions of the royalty, Rajapalayams are easy-going and low-maintenance dogs that do require however, regular training and exercise. These dogs have a gait that could be likened to a horse, and are extremely graceful and good-looking.

One of the most beautiful aspects of these dogs is their beautiful eyes. Rajapalayams generally have deep golden eyes that catches everyone’s attention immediately.

 If you are looking to own a Rajapalaym, we have assimilated all the information that could help you know about this handsome breed and also make you understand if they are the right breed for you.

Quick information

Height25-30 inches (63-76 Cm)
Weight65-70lbs (30-32 Kg)
CoatDense and short
Tendency to droolmild
TemperamentSmart, loyal, affectionate
Life span8-10 years
ColorsWhite, brown, black
SheddingMinimal, once or twice a year
Country of OriginIndia
NatureNot Friendly
Smell SniffingModerate



Rajapalayams or the Indian ghost hounds, as already mentioned above, were bred by the Rajas of Tamil Nadu, possibly the rulers of the Nayak dynasty that ruled from 1529 to 1736 AD. These dogs were originally used to hunt boars and other wild animals.

Their protective and fierce nature also made them an excellent guard dog, and they were used to protect crops, people, other animals and properties.

When the Britishers invaded India, the Indian Rajas used these dogs in the wars, particularly the three Carnatic wars and Polygar war against the British army.

These dogs were regarded as an essential asset during the wars as they used to attack the cavalry of the Britishers. Even now, Indian army employ Rajapalaymas at the Jammu and Kashmir border.

But slowly, hunting became less popular in India and with time, the Rajapalayam breed was left at the verge of extinction. In fact, currently it is estimated that there are only around 200 of this breed left.

Recently, the Kennel club of India started a project known as “save the rajapalyam’” project to save these beautiful dogs from going extinct and to increase their number through proper breeding. The Indian post also launched a postage stamp featuring Rajapalayam to raise awareness amongst people about them. 

Temperament and Behaviour

Rajapalayam dogs are known for being extremely loyal and affectionate. When trained properly, they can turn into perfect family companion dogs. While these dogs can be aggressive towards strange dogs and other animals, when other dogs are introduced slowly or when the socialization is done at a young age, Rajapalayams are known to get along well with them. They are very loving dogs and good and patient with kids.

Rajapalayams are also excellent dogs that are extremely loyal that will protect you and your family at any cost. They are energetic and active dogs that love playing around and have abundant energy. However, Rajapalayams are quite sensitive dogs.

Shouting at them or punishing them can have emotional impact on these dogs. Also, because these dogs are extremely protective, they can be aggressive towards guests and other strangers visiting your house, and wouldn’t like to be touched or handled by them.

While Rajapalayams are totally devoted to their owners and love them a lot, they can be left alone for a few hours without any issues. They do not have any separation anxiety are known for bring independent and not too clingy.

They adapt to different lifestyles quite easy, so it doesn’t matter if you have a large house with attached garden or you living in a small apartment, your Rajapalayam dog will fit in easy in all the situations.

Health and Care

  • Rajapalayams are pure breed dogs and hence, usually does not have any serious health conditions. While frequent vet visits are not essential with these dogs, take it to vet once every couple of months to ensure that your dog is healthy.
  • Rajapalayams often have a lifespan between 8 to 10 years, but if you care properly for them, they can live for longer number of years. 
  • If you are living in a city with extreme weather conditions, these dogs will adapt pretty well. Rajapalayams are originally from the subcontinent where it gets really hot during the summers, so their tolerance to heat is pretty impressive.
  • Rajapalayams also adapt quite well during winters and are known to love snow. These are tough dogs that can survive easily in rough conditions without any problems.
  • Rajapalayams are giant dogs that need to be fed properly. Make sure that you provide at least three cups of nutritious food to your dog every day.
  • If you are unsure what a well-balanced diet comprises of for your dog, it is recommended that you meet a vet for proper information and instructions. 

Common Health Problems

While Rajapalayams are relatively healthy dogs, they do face a few health problems. Two of these really common health problems are blindness (commonly seen in white coloured dogs) and deafness (commonly seen in dogs with blue eyes). Also, because they have been bred in the subcontinent where it gets unusually hot and humid which provides a hospitable environment for growth of virus and bacteria, these dogs are also susceptible to various skin infections.

Some of the common health problems faced by Rajapalayams are:

  1. Deafness
  2. Blindness
  3. Mange
  4. Dermatitis
  5. Ear or skin infection


  • Rajapalayams have short, dense coat that does not require much grooming. However, you can brush their coats once or twice per week to manage shedding. You don’t have to bathe them frequently as it can strip away natural, try to bathe your dog occasionally or when needed. 
  • However, one need to ensure that trimming of nails is done on a regular basis. Nails when left untrimmed can grow long and can break causing the dogs a lot of pain and discomfort. 
  • Rajapalayams don’t shed all the year round, but once or twice a year they do shed profusely. That’s when you should brush their coats regularly to keep the shedding in check.
  • You can also take them to a professional dog groomer for managing the shedding. 


  • Rajapalayams are not easy to train. Training them requires a lot of time and patience. Thisis because these dogs are stubborn and tend to have a very short attention span.
  • It is important that you start training them from a young age, otherwise it will get more difficult as they grow old. 
  • Rajapalayams are also sensitive dogs that can get emotional when they are shouted at or punished. That’s why training them even using soft punishment is not advisable.
  • You need to make sure that you only train them using words of encouragement. That’s why these dogs are often recommended for those people who possess prior experience with dogs as they can be too much to handle for new owners. 
  • If you are a new pet owner who wants to own a Rajapalayam but don’t have much experience with them, you can always hire a professional trainer to train it.
  • However, this is an expensive option and not suitable for people with limited budget.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1. What is Rajapalayam breed price in India?

Rajapalayams are a rare dog breed and hence, in much demand. Buying them in India can cost you somewhere between Rs.5000 to Rs.10000 (INR, ₹). 

Q2. What is Rajapalayam breed price in USA, UK, and Canada?

Buying Rajapalayam in the USA can cost you around $500-$800 (USD, $), in Canada it can cost somewhere around CAN $800 (CAD, Can$) depending on the breed quality, whereas in the UK it can cost you around 1200 pounds (GBP, £)

Q3. Do Rajapalayams make good family dogs?

Yes, when trained properly, Rajapalayams make excellent family dogs. They might have a reputation of being aggressive, but are actually pretty good with kids and are extremely loyal and affectionate.

Q4. Do Rajapalayams need regular exercise?

Yes, Rajapalayams do need regular exercise as they are energetic and have high stamina. You can take them on daily walks to make sure they remain fit. 

Q5. Do Rajapalayams tend to bark a lot?

Rajapalayams don’t bark often. They only bark when they sense danger or they get excited. If you are looking for a quiet dog breed, they are a good choice for you.

Q6. Are Rajapalayams aggressive?

Rajapalayams have a reputation of being aggressive with strangers as they are protective, but with their owners, they are extremely affable and loving.

Q7. What is the normal temperament of a Rajapalayam dog?

The normal temperament of Rajapalayam dogs is that they are loyal, courageous, loving, devoted, protective and intelligent.

Q8. What is the average litter size of a Rajapalayam dog?

The average litter size of a Rajapalayam dog is usually 5 to 8 puppies.