0
TOTAL
SHARES

Italian Greyhound

Personality:Sensitive and alert, playful, highly affectionate

Coat & Grooming:The satiny, odorless coat sheds little and requires minimal grooming; nails need regular care

Energy Level:Somewhat Active; IGs are dainty housedogs, but at heart they’re still flash-and-dash coursing hounds

Originally: the Mediterranean basin

Nicknames: IG; Iggy

Size: Small

Meet the Italian Greyhound

​IGs are Greyhounds in miniature, more slender than their larger cousins but a Greyhound’s equal in grace and elegance. Standing ideally 13 to 15 inches at the shoulder, these high-stepping charmers possess the sleek, curving lines common to all coursing hounds. Distinguishing features of the breed are long, fine-boned legs and dark eyes than shine with intelligence. Despite the appearance of fragility, IGs are swift, hearty hounds who have survived the upheavals of two millennia.

What's Their Story?

​Archaeological evidence suggests that IGs were bred as noble companions some 2,000 years ago, at the height of Roman power in the Mediterranean. The breed came into its own in Renaissance Italy, where owning mini versions of popular breeds was a fad among the wealthy. IGs were nearly wiped out by the depredations of World War II. American breeders, an ocean away from the ravages of war, kept the breed alive and helped repopulate its numbers in peacetime Europe.

What are they Like?

​IGs are cherished for their loyal, affectionate nature. They combine the attentiveness of lapdogs and the intriguing complexity of ancient, aristocratic hounds. Bred for centuries as snuggling companions, they won’t tolerate being ignored. “On the whole,” writes an IG expert, “the breed would much rather be in your lap or bed than on the floor.” But they are true sighthounds and will bolt after quick-moving prey at the drop of a cat. A short-coated, low-fat breed, IGs need extra attention in cold weather.

See more Italian Greyhound photos here

WOOF WATCH: Dog Blows Bubbles In the Pool

Who does like a little water play?

Aug 27, 2014 | 8496 Views Read More

Head of the Class: 10 Most Intelligent Dog Breeds

The teachers' pets of the dog world.

Aug 26, 2014 | 52146 Views Read More

Why Some Dogs Need to Go Back to School

What to do when training falls apart.

Aug 25, 2014 | 156 Views Read More

This Frenchie is Determined to Get that Ball

Just...a...little...closer...

Aug 25, 2014 | 10435 Views Read More

11 of the Most Emotional Movie Moments Featuring Dogs

It's canine cinema at its best.

Aug 22, 2014 | 13445 Views Read More

Top 5 Breeds of Houston

Are the breeds bigger in Texas? Find out here.

Aug 21, 2014 | 12025 Views Read More