One thing that you can definitely say about an Ibizan Hound is that once you’ve seen one, you’ll never forget what they look like. Which in our opinion is one of the “best” characteristics of these guys.
Because let’s face it…
If you have an opportunity to adopt a great dog that just happens to be a “show stopper” why would you want to settle on just any “regular” looking dog.
Is an Ibizan Hound going to be the “right” dog for you? That’s the real question and one that we hope to help you answer for yourself in this article where we’re going to attempt to shed some light on what it’s like to own one of these magnificent creatures.
If you’re ever lucky enough to have an opportunity to make one of these guys your own you’ll know for sure if it’s going to be a good idea or not. So, without further ado, let’s dive right in.
Ibizan Dog Breed Fast Facts
Country of Origin: Spain (Ibiza Island)
Original Purpose: Hunting rabbits
Height: 22.5 to 27.5 inches tall
Weight: 45 to 50 pounds
Life expectancy: 11–14 years
Dog Breed Classification: Hound group
The Ibizan’s Origins
It is generally agreed that the Ibizan dog breed originated within the Balearic Islands of Spain. That said however, it’s clear that while these dogs became a separate breed on these islands, their true heritage dates long before they were brought to the Balearic Islands during which time they most likely share many of the same ancestors of the Pharaoh Hounds of Egypt.
According to archaeologists there were dogs that very much like the Ibizan Breed Dog in Spain over 5,000 years ago all throughout Egypt. It’s also pretty fair to say that the life-like statuses of the jackal god Anubis, which was discovered during an excavation of King Tutt’s tomb in 1922 bore a striking resemblance to the Ibizan Hound.
But we should also…
Point out that any time you’re dealing with a dog breed that is really old, you’re generally going to get several competing theories about their “true” origin which is why we should also mention that there is another theory that has gained ground recently that the Ibizan hound was brought to Spain by Phoenicians in the 8th century BC and has nothing to do with Egypt.
What is knows is…
That regardless of “how” the Ibizan dog breed made it to the Balearic Islands, once there, they had a tough life. During this time, these guys were used to hunt rabbits and other small game and because conditions were rather difficult, folks back then imposed very strict breeding criteria to ensure that only the “best” Ibizan hounds were breed.
As a result…
Over the years, the Ibizan became a finely tuned and extremely sturdy dog in his own right, which is why the ultimately became known and acknowledged as a separate breed from their ancestors.
In 1956, the Ibizan Hounds made their way to the United States which is when two Ibizans by the name of Hannibal and Certera, were brought to the Rhode Island by Colonel and Mrs. Consuelo Seoane. These dogs produced a litter of eight puppies, which along with other imports, were the foundation of the breed in the United States.
The American Kennel Club (AKC) recognized this breed in 1979. The Ibizan first appeared in the Westminster Kennel Club show in 1980.
Physical Characteristics of the Ibizan Breed
Clearly the Ibizan Hound is an impressive physical specimen. After all, you really don’t need us to tell you that these guys look strong, powerful and supremely athletic.
But we should…
Mention that despite their appearance, they’re actually only a medium-sized dog. They’re also a bit lanky and wiry, which is why he doesn’t weigh much – only 45 to 50 pounds. That said however, they can grow very tall. Some Ibizans grow up to a shoulder height of 27.5 inches.
He is also…
Very fast and can run for miles at a time. Amazing stamina too. He does spectacularly well in dog sports such as lure coursing.
Lure Coursing is a dog sport which involves the dogs chasing a mechanically operated lure. Hound dogs do very well at this sport.
He is very much a hound dog…
With a long, narrow head, large and pointed ears, small piercing eyes and flesh-toned nose. His tail is set low and forms a sickle shape.
Even though these guys have a very short, wirehaired coat, with a pretty rough texture you might think that they don’t need to be brushed all that often, but the truth is regardless of which “coat type” (smooth or wired) you decide on you will need to brush these guys at least once a week to keep them looking they’re best!
Comparison dog breeds
You may compare the Ibizan Hound Dog to other popular breeds such as the Basset Griffon Vendeen, Chinese Shar-Pei, Italian Greyhound, Shepherd Dog, Irish Wolfhound, Scottish Deerhound, Springer Spaniel, Water Spaniel, Welsh Corgi, Afghan Hound, Podenco Ibicenco, Entlebucher Mountain Dog, Curly-Coated Retriever, Flat-Coated Retriever, Portuguese Podengo, Bull Terrier, Griffon Vendeen, and the Fox Terrier.
The Ibizan has a strong prey instinct and chases anything that moves. He has an excellent sense of hearing, is very alert and makes a very good watchdog.
He is a funny…
Playful dog when he wants to be, when as a guard dog, he means business. He keeps a close watch on strangers and lets you know if anything is amiss. You can depend on him to defend your family.
He is a very friendly dog. He is great with kids and makes for a very good playmate for (older) children. Now if you have a toddler, it’s probably better that you wait for a few years before bringing this dog home, simply because these guys do have a natural tendency to chance which is never a really good thing when you have a child around.
Which brings us…
A really good point when considering adopting an Ibizan Hound puppy, which is you’re definitely going to want to being his or her training right way. This way they can be socialized early and taught not to chase anything and everything that moves!
Ibizan Hound Health Concerns
Ibizan Hounds are among the strongest, healthiest breeds in the world which is probably why they have such a decent life expectancy of 11 to 14 years.
These guys were raised and cultivated in a rather harsh environment where food wasn’t always so plentiful. As a result, these guys seem to like to gorge themselves when given the opportunity, so you’ll definitely want to watch what they eat and how much they eat.
These guys are somewhat known for being rather indiscriminate about their food choices, which is why obesity and stomach pain are a common health concern with this breed.
You’ll also want to…
Speak to your Ibizan Hound breeder about any potential history of deafness or hip dysplasia in your puppy’s family history as these are two issues that do “popup” with this breed.
Which brings us to…
The last topic we want to discuss today which is the idea of purchasing a pet insurance policy on your new animal. Now we only suggest this because if you Ibizan Hound does develop hip dysplasia later in life or does suffer from some type of injury or other illness, veterinarian bills can really add up!
For more information on who we feel currently offers the “Best” pet insurance policies in the industry, feel free to check out our Best Pet Insurance Companies article.
I met this breed at a local dog sho in SC and feel in love! I walked by and this beautiful boy got in front of me, it was an Ibizan Hound! He laid his head next to me and then put his paws on my shoulders laid his head on me just like he was giving me a hug!!! I loved it, the owner said they are really good about knowing people’s feelings! Well I started to cry, I did not want to leave this dog! It was like he knew I was very emotional , you see my house of 20 years had burned down ! That was my first time meeting this wonderful breed. Some day I will have one !!!!
That’s an awesome story, thanks for sharing. People don’t give animals enough credit for being able to “sense” how we are feeling.
We hope you’ve been able to get your “affairs” back in order and hopefully your “some day” is sooner than you expect.