Italian Greyhound – G.W. Little

Italian Greyhound

Italian Greyhound Dog Breed Information

Italian Greyhound

The Italian Greyhound is a true sight hound in miniature. Developed more than 2,000 years ago, it is unclear if the breed was originally used to hunt small game or simply as a companion animal. Possibly they were utilized in both capacities.

The name Italian Greyhound was not derived from its origins but rather from its fantastic popularity in Italy during the 16th century. Their popularity today is significantly less but this hardy, sensitive, intelligent dog still makes a wonderful family pet.

Italian Greyhounds demand a lot of love and attention from their family, and because of their quirky, playful nature it’s not hard to give it to them. They are loving and affectionate, and do well with children that know not to mishandle them.

Because of the short, fine fur that is characteristic of this breed they are very sensitive to cold weather. They do not like being cold, and it may be hard to persuade them to go potty outside during the winter. You’ll definitely need sweaters on hand for this breed!

Although each dog is different, Italian Greyhounds may work best in an "only dog" household. They have a strong tendency towards pack behavior, and fights can break out over dominance. That being said, there are many owners that report having multiple dogs with no problems, so it will be a personal decision on your part.

Italian Greyhounds have a lot of energy and will require walks as well as a backyard to play in. They do need some supervision because they love to climb and can get themselves into trouble by jumping off decks in pursuit of cats or other animals.

They are very clean dogs and rarely need a bath. Because of their short coat grooming is a non-issue, although the time you save in the grooming department will have to be applied in the attention department! This dog will crave every ounce of love you have to give.

The Italian Greyhound was first registered with the AKC in 1886. For more information on this fascinating little breed visit the Italian Greyhound Club of America website at or the American Kennel Club at If you're interested in adopting an Italian Greyhound, you can visit, or for more information.


Size 13 to 15 inches tall
Weight 5 to 15 pounds
Accepted Colors Any color except brindle and tan markings usually found on other black and tan breeds.
Coat Short, glossy & soft.
Grooming No special grooming. The coat is not cut.
Origins Ancient Mediterranean basin (modern day Greece or Turkey)
Registration FCI, AKC, KCGB, CKC, ANKC, UKC
Group Toy
Notes Requires exercise.