Here's a little look into some of the design work that's being done right now on Arunë, specifically the veldts and savannah of the far south.
(created by Steve Doolittle for Arunë Sudus)
If encountered singly, this wild dog does not seem any more dangerous than most types of opportunistic scavengers: It is a thin, narrow-bodied canine of slight build, covered in scraggly black and taupe fur, possessing almost comedically large ears which are constantly pricked, and seeming to pose little threatening interest towards anything larger than a hare.
Like most dogs, though, the danger lies in packs.
Veldthounds have taken pack hunting to extreme levels of efficiency, co-ordinating in subtly-shifting patterns of movement using yips, barks, and what seems to be pre-determined, or instinctual, maneuvers. Their mangy calico fur blends into the mottling shadows of the underbrush, and keeps prey and other predators from guessing accurately their numbers when the dogs are in close proximity to one another. Their large ears are like pointed scoops registering the location of their unseen hunting partners, and their sharp eyes track movement voraciously. Compounding the threat from a veldthound pack is the sheer speed of its members: These hunting dogs are capable of land speeds rarely matched by other quadrupeds, and the odd race of antelope able to outrun them is rarely given a chance to reach top speed in time.
Obviously, veldthounds are social creatures. They have complex, ever-shifting hierarchies and languages from pack to pack, and function synergistically in the presence of each other.
Native people of the Veldt have never domesticated this particular wild dog. While it has been attempted, verbal records of such attempts have underlying themes of annoyance, frustration, and occasionally outright fear. Some tribes of the Veldt have religious and spiritual beliefs about the dogs that ties into a reluctance to domesticate them. The Oruna, a large tribe dominant over much of the Central Lakelands, hold that the veldthounds are Eru, the reincarnated souls of children who have drowned trying to draw water from rivers. In times of drought, the souls are given bodies from the old hides of many other dead animals (hence their mottled fur) and run up and down the dried up river beds, seeking the meat of the living to sustain their cobbled forms. In this capacity, the dogs are seen as transient messengers between Orugbe (the creator of living things) and man. From the view of natural philosophers, dried up creek beds make for great hunting.
ACTIVITY CYCLE: Any
INTELLIGENCE: Semi (2-4)
NO. APPEARING: 3d4 or 1d100+50
ARMOR CLASS: 7
HIT DICE: 1-1
NO. OF ATTACKS: 3
SPECIAL ATTACKS: Disembowel
SPECIAL DEFENSES: None
MAGIC RESISTANCE: Nil
SIZE: S (3' long)
MORALE: Unsteady (5-7) in small packs or Steady (11-12) in large packs
XP VALUE: 65
Combat: The veldthounds fight as a highly organized pack, biting (for 1-6 points of damage) or clawing with both of their claws (1-4 points of damage). They can either bite or use both claws in any given turn, but not both. If they circle their prey and a flanking pair both hit with their bite attacks, they have managed to grab their opponent in their mouths. These attacks will deal only 1 point of damage, but the grabbed creature cannot move or attack while it is held. A third can then attempt to rip open the stomach of their prey; this is a bite attack that deals 3 times the normal amount of damage (1d6 x3). Creatures pinned by two veldthounds can attempt to break the pin with a contested strength check on any succeeding turn; the veldthounds have an effective strength of 16 for this purpose.