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About Italian Greyhounds

Updated on May 9, 2015
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Hope Saidel is co-owner of Golly Gear, a bricks-and-mortar and online shop featuring fun, affordable and practical small dog products


Tiny and elegant - IGs are real dogs!

From the Italian Greyhound Club of America: "The Italian Greyhound is a true greyhound, his small size the result of selective breeding. There is some difference of opinion as to whether he was originally bred for hunting small game or was meant to be simply a pet and companion. It seems most likely that he filled both roles, and for this reason he is very adaptable to both city and country living. He is rather luxury loving and enjoys the comfort of an apartment; at the same time being a true hound, he likes exercise and outdoor activities, weather permitting.

"The Italian Greyhound can weigh as little as 7 lbs. or as much as 14 or 15 lbs., but the average weight is about 10 lbs. His coat is short and smooth and requires little grooming. He is odorless, sheds little, and is not yappy. When he does bark, his voice is rather deep for his size. Although giving the impression of fragility, the breed is hardy, seldom ill, and thrives in such northern countries as Sweden and Finland, housed indoors.

"Perhaps the most outstanding characteristic of the Italian Greyhound is his affectionate disposition. He thrives best when this affection is returned and is happiest with his owner and immediate family. For this reason, he may sometimes seem a trifle aloof with strangers. He is sensitive, alert, and intelligent and remains playful until long past puppyhood. He adapts to most households and gets along well with other pets and children. He is eager to please and learns quickly. Many have done well in obedience trials."

Dash flying around the agility course
Dash flying around the agility course

Dash has a fan club!

In our agility class we have friends (a husband-and-wife team) who run Italian Greyhounds named Dash and Tate.

Dash has been doing agility a bit longer than Tate (who spent time earning his breed championship first!) and has developed a following at every agility trial he competes in. For good reason - watching Dash is like trying to follow a grey blur around the course - he's fast, accurate and a ton of fun!

Photo courtesy of Jennifer Graves on fb

Learn more about IGs

Meetups are resources for people and dogs

We've designed our shop so that we have a training/play space for dogs and their people to come and hang out, practice training, or just play. During the winter months we're happy to host a local Italian Greyhound meetup group once a month and both the dogs and people just love it.

We've discovered that IGs have a very distinct style of play when they're together. It seems to be true that different breeds of dogs recognize their own kind and truly enjoy being together. The IG people are all very kind and welcoming to newcomers.

IGs are one of the breeds that have very specific issues and needs - from dental problems to thin skin, and trying to stay warm. The meetup group members all help each other out - any issue one is currently facing, another has had and can help. Learning from others' experience is one of the benefits of belonging to a group.

Italian Greyhounds in action!

© 2009 Hope

Do you love an Iggie? Tell us about your favorite breed!

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    • ShariBerry profile image

      Sharon Berry 6 years ago from Michigan

      I think they are adorable. I guess my favorite breed is the German Wirehaired Pointer because we currently have 2 of them. I guess I like the bigger breeds because next in line is a Great Dane. I've had 2 of them and they are awesome pets.