Ibizan Hound Dog Breed Information and Personality Traits

Known for being gentle, lacking of "street" smarts and wanting to be pampered, the Ibizan hound would instantly trade a soft bed for a chance to run and hunt.

Ibizan Hound at a glance
The Ibizan Hound Dog Breed

With the exception of its large ears, the Ibizan hound is a somewhat understated version of the greyhound.


Weight Range:

Male: 45-55 lbs.
Female: 40-50 lbs.

Height at Withers:

Male: 26

Female: 25


Dolichocephalic (long face), upright ears (naturally)


Exercise Requirements: 40 minutes/day
Energy Level: Average
Longevity Range: 12-14 yrs.
Tendency to Drool: Low
Tendency to Snore: Low
Tendency to Bark: Moderate
Tendency to Dig: Moderate
Social/Attention Needs: Low

Bred For:

Coursing rabbits


Length: Short
Characteristics: Flat
Colors: White, red, solid or in any combination
Overall Grooming Needs: Low

Club Recognition:

AKC Classification: Hound
UKC Classification: Sighthounds & Pariahs
Prevalence: Rare

The Ibizan (pronounced ee-BEE-than) hound bears an uncanny resemblance to the Egyptian god Anubis. One of the sight hound family, the breed is built on general greyhound lines, with long slender legs, a relatively narrow body, a slightly arched loin, narrow waist and long tail. With the exception of its large ears, the Ibizan hound is a somewhat understated version of the greyhound.

Besides its trademark ears, the Ibizan has several somewhat unusual traits for a sight hound: the chest is not extremely deep, and the angles of the shoulder assembly are not particularly acute. The gait is rather high stepping, and the tail is often carried fairly high when the dog is trotting.

Although fast, the Ibizan's true strength is its agility and jumping ability. These dogs possess a deer-like elegance that is most evident when they are running and jumping over rough terrain. The Ibizan is a medium to tall dog, ranging from 22 1/2 to 27 1/2 inches in height, and weighing from 45 to 55 pounds. The coat is usually short and close; the breed also comes in a wire variety, in which the coat is harsh and about one to three inches long. The colors are variations of red or fawn with our without white. In fact, some dogs are almost entirely white with a few red spots.


Ibizan hounds are a mixture of noble royalty and wild hunter. They enjoy being pampered but would instantly trade a soft bed for a chance to run and hunt. They are quiet inside the house.

An unusual trait outside is that they tend to give tongue (bark) when chasing. They are among the gentlest and most easy going of dogs, getting along well with other dogs and children. They are reserved with strangers, and even somewhat reserved with their family.

Like all sight hounds, obedience is not their middle name and they are apt to run off and not return until they are good and ready. They have no street smarts and no idea that they should protect you or your house from bad people.

Living With:

Ibizan hounds are unhappy if they do not get a chance to run every day. They especially like to play hunter and will chase any small animal that moves, even over the horizon, so you must be careful where you choose to let one off the leash. In many areas, no place is safe enough to unleash an Ibizan hound.

At home they enjoy a soft bed and warm rays of sunshine. They spend a great deal of their time relaxing and, as long as they get adequate exercise, are pleasant and quiet inside.


As their name reflects, the Ibizan (pronounced ee-BEE-than) hound hails from the Mediterranean isle of Ibiza where the breed was traditionally used to hunt rabbits. There its recorded history ends, and the mystery begins. How did a breed that looked as though it stepped out of an Egyptian tomb end up being discovered thousands of years later and thousands of miles away?

It is possible that Phoenician traders brought these dogs to Ibiza and neighboring islands as early as 800 BC. Here they remained in seclusion, specifically kept and bred for their ability to hunt small mammals by sight, smell and even hearing. The harsh conditions left little room for sentimentality, and those less fit were not kept or bred —circumstances that no doubt contributed to the breed's hardiness today. In its native land, the breed is called Ca Eibisenc.

It was not until the 1950s that the breed was exported and began its new incarnation as a companion and show dog. Among the rarest of breeds, the Ibizan hound is once again worshiped by those whose lives he shares.

The short coat is wash and wear. The wire-coated variety is a little more work, because it needs occasional combing, and the dead hairs must be pulled out a couple of times a year. Dirt falls out of the wire hair so, except for the slightly longer wire hairs around the mouth that should be washed regularly, little upkeep is required.