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The Collaborative International Dictionary

Dhole \Dhole\, n. (Zo["o]l.) A fierce, wild dog ( Canis Dukhunensis), found in the mountains of India. It is remarkable for its propensity to hunt the tiger and other wild animals in packs. [1913 Webster] ||


n. An Asian wild dog, (taxlink Cuon alpinus species noshow=1).


n. fierce wild dog of the forests of central and southeast Asia that hunts in packs [syn: Cuon alpinus]


The dhole (Cuon alpinus) is a canid native to Central, South and Southeast Asia. Other English names for the species include Asiatic wild dog, Indian wild dog, whistling dog, red wolf (not to be confused with Canis rufus), red dog, and mountain wolf. It is genetically close to species within the genus Canis, though its skull is convex rather than concave in profile, it lacks a third lower molar, and the upper molars sport only a single cusp as opposed to 2–4. During the Pleistocene, the dhole ranged throughout Asia, Europe and North America, but became restricted to its historical range 12,000–18,000 years ago.

The dhole is a highly social animal, living in large clans without rigid dominance hierarchies and containing multiple breeding females. Such clans usually consist of 12 individuals, but groups of over 40 are known. It is a diurnal pack hunter which preferentially targets medium and large sized ungulates. In tropical forests, the dhole competes with tigers and leopards, targeting somewhat different prey species, but still with substantial dietary overlap.

It is listed as Endangered by the IUCN, as populations are decreasing and estimated at fewer than 2,500 adults. Factors contributing to this decline include habitat loss, loss of prey, competition with other species, persecution, and disease transfer from domestic dogs.

Dhole (Cthulhu Mythos)

Dholes, also called bholes, are fictitious creatures described in the Cthulhu Mythos of H. P. Lovecraft.

Below him the ground was festering with gigantic Dholes, and even as he looked, one reared up several hundred feet and leveled a bleached, viscous end at him.
—H. P. Lovecraft and E. Hoffmann Price, " Through the Gates of the Silver Key".

Dholes are huge, slimy worm-like creatures, at least several hundred feet long. Because they avoid daylight and are covered in viscous goo, their features are nearly impossible to discern. Similar creatures called bholes exist in the Vale of Pnath in the Dreamlands.

Now Carter knew from a certain source that he was in the vale of Pnath, where crawl and burrow the enormous dholes; but he did not know what to expect, because no one has ever seen a dhole, or even guessed what such a thing may be like. Dholes are known only by dim rumour from the rustling they make amongst mountains of bones and the slimy touch they have when they wriggle past one. They cannot be seen because they creep only in the dark.
—H. P. Lovecraft, The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath.

In The White People by Arthur Machen, whom Lovecraft admired, there is mention of "Dôls", but no description is given. In The Illuminatus! Trilogy, both the Dôls of Machen and Dholes of Lovecraft are mentioned as being references to mythical creatures associated with the Illuminati.

In addition, a Dhol appears in T. E. D. Klein's novel The Ceremonies in the form of a small, scurrying creature which possesses the bodies of various characters and animals. Klein makes reference to Machen's The White People throughout his novel.

Dholes appear to be related to (or perhaps identical with) Cthulhu-mythos author Brian Lumley's chthonians and their vermiform god, Shudde M'ell. Like dholes, chthonians are huge, worm-like creatures covered in viscous slime who live deep underground.

Category:Cthulhu Mythos species

Usage examples of "dhole".

Carter did not wish to meet a Dhole, so listened intently for any sound in the unknown depths of bones about him.

Great Abyss, to be distributed impartially amongst the Dholes, Gugs, ghasts and other dwellers in darkness whose modes of nourishment are not painless to their chosen victims.

Belial Hastur Nyarlathotep Wotan Niggurath Dholes Azathoth Tind-alos Kadith.

Shoggoths and Tcho-Tchos and Dholes and Tikis and Wendigos, for instance.

They were too persistent--they interfered with his duties in weaving spells to keep the frightful Dholes in their burrows, and became mixed up with his recollections of the myriad real worlds he had visited in light--beam envelopes.

There were hideous struggles with the bleached viscous Dholes in the primal tunnels that honeycombed the planet.

Yaddith would be a dead world dominated by triumphant Dholes, and that his escape in the light-wave envelope would be a matter of grave doubt.

He artfully fashioned a waxen mask and loose costume enabling him to pass among men as a human being of a sort, and devised a doubly potent spell with which to hold back the Dholes at the moment of his starting from the dead, black Yaddith of the inconceivable future.

Wolves, and their fiercer, doglike relatives, dholes, paced just beyond the range of her sling.

The usual choice of the great cats were the huge bison, aurochs, and deer, while packs of oversize hyenas, wolves, and dholes selected from more middle-size game.

Greens had had a lot of influence back in the 2030s, enough to override local protests and have bears, wolves, dholes, leopards and tigers and whatnot dropped into remote areas.

Dead bodies lay unclaimed by the sides of the busy streets, picked over by dholes and kit foxes, or floated amongst the flowering lilies in the wide canals, each attended by a retinue of green turtles and one or two pensive turkey vultures.

Carter did not wish to meet a Dhole, so listened intently for any sound in the unknown depths of bones about him.