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Italian Greyhound - Small Breed Dog Profile

Updated: Apr 16

Italian Greyhound stylish dogs

Italian Greyhound: Unveiling Stylish Dogs


The Italian Greyhound, often lovingly called the "Iggy," is a petite canine with a grand stylish dogs presence.

Its elegance, affectionate nature, and historical significance make the Italian Greyhound a cherished companion for many dog enthusiasts.

In this comprehensive guide, we'll delve into the breed's origin, purpose, physical attributes, personality traits, grooming needs, exercise requirements, age range, measurements, and health considerations.


"Italian Greyhounds are small, moderately active dogs and the smallest Sighthound breed. They have a short, smooth coat that can be any colour. Many behaviours come naturally to all dogs. Whether that's a desire to dig or a love of lazing, these can be influenced by different factors like genetics or personal experience." - Dogs Trust


italian greyhound

Origin of the Italian Greyhound


The Italian Greyhound boasts a history spanning over 2,000 years, tracing its roots back to ancient Egypt.

Small greyhounds resembling today's breed were highly esteemed as stylish dogs in Roman culture.

They were frequently featured in art and accompanied noble families.

The dog breed's name, reflecting its popularity in Renaissance Italy, highlights its historical significance.

three italian greyhounds

Italian Greyhound Purpose


As a sighthound, the Italian Greyhound was initially bred to pursue small game, primarily rabbits.

Its sleek, slender physique, remarkable speed, and agility made it an exceptional hunter.

While hunting may have been the breed's original purpose, modern Italian Greyhounds are valued more for their companionship and as stylish dogs, though their hunting instincts remain intact.

italian greyhound

Italian Greyhound Physical Attributes


Italian Greyhounds are celebrated for their elegance and grace.

They are small stylish dogs, typically reaching a height of around 33 to 38 centimetres at the shoulder and weighing approximately 2.7 to 6.8 kilograms.

Their short and refined coats come in various colours, including fawn, cream, and black.

The breed's distinct feature is its elongated, narrow head with a pointed snout.

italian greyhound wearing a hat

Italian Greyhound Personality Traits


Italian Greyhounds are known for their charming personalities.

They are affectionate and gentle, forming strong bonds with their owners.

Often described as "couch potatoes" due to their fondness for lounging, they are also quite playful and can exhibit unexpected goofiness.

Despite their elegant appearance as stylish dogs, they possess a mischievous side and relish playtime.

italian greyhound wearing a flower

Italian Greyhound Grooming Requirements


Grooming Italian Greyhounds is relatively low-maintenance.

Their short coat sheds minimally, and regular brushing keeps them in good condition.

Due to their sensitivity to cold weather owing to their thin skin, it's advisable to dress them in a stylish dogs coat or sweater during chilly temperatures.

italian greyhound on a dog walk

Italian Greyhound Exercise Needs


Although Italian Greyhounds have a penchant for lounging, as most stylish dogs do, they require consistent exercise.

They enjoy brief bursts of activity, such as sprinting in a secure area, to burn off energy.

However, caution is necessary to prevent overexertion and potential injuries.

Italian Greyhound Stylish Dogs

Italian Greyhound Characteristics


The Italian Greyhound is known for its slender build, delicate appearance, and graceful demeanour.

Their size and unique aesthetic make them stand out among stylish dogs.

two italian greyhounds

Italian Greyhound Lifespan and Age Range


Italian Greyhounds typically have a lifespan of 12 to 15 years, making them potential long-term companions when cared for properly.

italian greyhound in a field

Italian Greyhound Measurements


- Height: 13 to 15 inches

- Weight: 6 to 15 pounds

italian greyhound

Italian Greyhound Health Considerations


Italian Greyhounds are generally robust like most stylish dogs, yet they can be susceptible to specific health issues.

These may encompass dental problems, hip dysplasia, patellar luxation, and bloat.

Consistent veterinary care and a balanced diet are essential to ensure their well-being.


"Italian Greyhounds are a conundrum: for all their speed potential they're usually infuriatingly slow, miniature-sized – and they're not even Italian. No wonder they've entranced people since the heyday of the ancient Egyptians." - Country Life


faqs italian greyhound

Are Italian Greyhounds good with children and other pets?

Italian Greyhounds can coexist with well-behaved children and other pets.

Still, their delicacy calls for supervision during interactions to prevent potential injuries.

Do Italian Greyhounds need a substantial amount of exercise?

Italian Greyhounds as stylish dogs demand regular exercise, although they favour brief bursts of activity.

Overexertion should be avoided to minimise the risk of injuries.

Is training Italian Greyhounds challenging?

Italian Greyhounds are intelligent but may display a degree of stubbornness.

Practical training employs positive reinforcement methods and patience.


One remarkable feature of the Italian Greyhound is its adaptability to different living situations.

While small, they can thrive in various environments, from city apartments to countryside estates.

Their ability to adjust to the space available is a testament to their versatility as companion stylish dogs.

Social Behaviour

Italian Greyhounds are known for their affectionate nature and the strong bonds they form with their human families.

However, they are also social dogs and enjoy the company of other dogs.

They tend to thrive in multi-pet households, making them an excellent choice for those with existing stylish dogs.

Travelling with Stylish Dogs

Due to their small size and adaptable nature as stylish dogs, Italian Greyhounds are excellent travel companions.

Whether on a weekend getaway or an extended road trip, these dogs are happy to accompany their owners.

Travelling with them is relatively hassle-free, provided they are kept warm and secure during the journey.

Unique Considerations for Owners

Italian Greyhounds have some distinct characteristics that their owners should be aware of.

First, their thin skin makes them prone to injuries, particularly in homes with sharp furniture or objects.

Additionally, their lean build can lead to sensitivity to cold weather, emphasising the importance of proper attire for stylish dogs during chilly seasons.

Competitive Activities

Despite their preference for lounging as stylish dogs, Italian Greyhounds can shine in various competitive activities.

They outperform in dog sports such as agility, lure coursing, and obedience.

Their skill, speed, and intelligence make them impressive competitors in these arenas.

Unique Names

With their distinctive and elegant nature as stylish dogs, Italian Greyhounds deserve names that reflect their charm.

Many owners choose names that evoke their breed's Italian heritage or highlight their delicate appearance.

Names like Bella, Romeo, or Pippin can be fitting choices for these elegant companions.

What is the typical lifespan of an Italian Greyhound? 

Italian Greyhounds typically enjoy a lifespan ranging from 13 to 15 years, contingent upon their overall health and the care quality they receive.

Are Italian Greyhounds suitable companions for children and other animals? 

Italian Greyhounds generally get along well with children and other pets. However, given their small stature and fragile nature, it's advisable always to supervise interactions.

How much physical activity is necessary for an Italian Greyhound? 

Italian Greyhounds are moderately active canines that need frequent physical activity and mental stimulation to sustain their well-being.

Daily walks and ample opportunities for exploration are essential to their health.

What are some prevalent health concerns in Italian Greyhounds? 

While Italian Greyhounds are typically robust, they may be predisposed to certain health issues such as dental problems, epilepsy, and patellar luxation.

What are effective methods for training an Italian Greyhound? 

Italian Greyhounds are intelligent animals that respond well to positive reinforcement techniques.

Consistency and patience are crucial when undertaking training sessions with this breed.

italian greyhound wearing a scarf

Final Thoughts


With its rich history, elegance, and endearing personality, the Italian Greyhound emerges as a captivating breed of stylish dogs.

Comprehending their origins, characteristics, grooming requirements, exercise needs, age range, measurements, and health considerations is pivotal in providing optimal care for this charming small breed dog.

The Italian Greyhound is more than just an elegant breed; it's a versatile and adaptable companion.

Understanding its adaptability, social behaviour, travel compatibility, unique considerations for owners, competitive potential, and even selecting suitable names adds to the delightful experience of welcoming an Italian Greyhound into your life.

Disclaimer: This article is intended for educational and informational purposes only. It is not intended as a substitute for veterinary advice. For specific veterinary dog health advice, contact a veterinary pet healthcare provider.

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Italian Greyhound Stylish Dogs Mary Puppins

Mary Puppins Italian Grehounds, stylish dogs

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Kate Phillips, Chief Editor

BSc (Hons), MSc

Kate is the UK's very own Mary Puppins, a professional Dog Nanny, an expert in small breed dogs and a pet parent to her own beloved small dogs.

With over 30 years' experience and successfully helping high profile celebrity pet parents raise their furry families,

Kate shares her top tips with you.

Kate guides readers on small dog breeds, dog health, dog training, dog nutrition, dog food, dog walks, dog accessories, dog enrichment, rescue dogs, dog behaviour, dog grooming and the best products for dog mums and dog dads to create the ultimate lifestyle for their small dogs.



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