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Italian Greyhound Breed Summary

Devoted, Living, Energetic, Adaptable and Adoring

Italian Greyhounds are discussed as being one of the smallest 'sighthounds', though they were once the preferred dog of choice of royals and nobles! Some even believe that the mummified bones of similar dogs that were found in Ancient Egyptian Tombs may have been descendants of this breed.

Nowadays, they are still a very popular breed around much of the world, including here in the UK as well! This is mainly due to their size and their loving personalities. They are very sweet and kind in nature which means they make great family pets.

Fun Fact: Queen Victoria was a huge fan of the breed!

Kennel Club Group Toy
Lifespan 12 - 15 Years
Height (at the withers) Males and Females 33cm - 38cm
Weight Males and Females 3.5kg - 8kg
Coat Coats are Short, Fine and Very Glossy.
Colour Black, Black & White, Black White Trim, Blue, Blue & Fawn, Blue & White, Blue & White Pied, Blue White Trim, Cream, Fawn, Fawn & White, Fawn & White Pied, Fawn White Trim, Pale Fawn, Red, Red & White, Red White Trim, White
Eye colour Dark
Common health issues Hereditary cataracts , Progressive retinal atrophy (PRA), Congenital deafness (more especially white coated dogs), von Willebrand’s factor, Legg-Calve-Perthes disease, Epilepsy, Broken bones, Polyendocrine syndrome, Colitis, Patellar luxation, Vitreal syneresis of the eye, Periodontal disease, Hypothyroidism, Colour dilution alopecia, Autoimmune haemolytic anaemia, Liver shunt, Corneal dystrophy, Thrombocytopaenia

These dogs absolutely love to be around people! However, they do not do well around children as they have a very delicate physique and can be easy to accidentally injured. But they are a very adaptable breed, comfortably living in almost any setting, whether that be in the countryside or a busy city environment. They are bundles of energy and love to run around! For this reason, they need somewhere where they can let loose! They don't necessarily like strangers, but would never act out on aggression to anyone! Their high prey drive tells a different story however as they will happily hunt and kill smaller mammals. For this reason, they shouldn't live in a home with other small pets, such as cats or rabbits.

The Italian Greyhounds history remains much of a mystery to all! However, some do believe that the breed came into existence almost 2,000 years ago! Similar-looking dogs were found around this time period in Turkey and Greece in a lot of artwork dug up during archaeological digs. Additionally, the skeletal remains of dogs with a similar structure were found in the same era! It's thought that they were originally bred to hunt and kill vermin, due to their extremely high prey drive but also as companion dogs. Many of these dogs were depicted in sculptures during the Middle Ages and miniature versions of them began to appear in Italy. It was during the 16th and 17th centuries that they were seen in many courts across both Europe and the UK, including Mary Queen of Scotts and Charles I who both owned the breed. Nowadays, they are popular with many families across most of the world.