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Italian Greyhound


Drs. Foster & Smith Educational Staff
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Canine Breed Profile: Italian Greyhound Canine Breed Profile: Italian Greyhound
The smallest of all sight hounds, the Italian Greyhound is a model of elegance and grace. Though depicted in art and architecture that dates back 2,000 years, the breed gained widespread popularity in 16th century Italy. This affectionate and intelligent breed has been the favored pet of royalty, presidents, and families the world over.
Interesting Breed Facts:
Popularity: 61st in 2008; with 1,450 registered with the American Kennel Club (AKC).
First recognized as a breed: The Italian Greyhound was first recognized by the AKC in 1886; the current breed standard was approved December 14, 1976. The Italian Greyhound Club of America was founded in 1954.
AKC Grouping: Toy. Canine Breed Profile: Italian Greyhound
Size: Both sexes measure 13" to 15" high at the withers; some measure up to 18" high. The average weight is 8 to 12 pounds.
Appearance: This small, slender breed features a long and narrow head that rests atop a gracefully arched neck. They have dark, bright eyes. Their small, fine ears are thrown back and folded. The tail is slender and tapered to a curved end. They have a short, soft, satin-gloss coat that requires minimal grooming. The coat can be of any color.
Medical conditions to watch for: Though a fairly healthy breed, some may exhibit hypothyroidism, seizures, luxating patellas (slipped knee caps), and certain autoimmune diseases. Some bloodlines are predisposed to certain eye diseases, patterns of hair loss, and leg fractures due to a lack of bone density.
Preferences: This sensitive and alert breed enjoys involvement in every aspect of family life. Their active and playful disposition requires physical and mental stimulation. If bored, they may exhibit destructive behavior.
Best features: The Italian Greyhound is highly affectionate, intelligent, and eager to please. They thrive when their affection is returned. They adapt well to most family households, including those with other well-trained pets. They have a long life expectancy of 13 to 15 years.
Biggest challenge to owners: They are a high energy breed and need one-on-one attention and proper socialization as puppies. They can be extremely stubborn about housetraining and require patience and consistency.

 

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