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Ibizan Hound… Everything That You Need to Know at a Glance!

One thing you can say about an Ibizan Hound is that once you’ve seen one, you’ll never forget what it looks like. In our opinion, this 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 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 that we hope to help you answer in this article, where we will attempt to shed some light on what it’s like to own one of these magnificent creatures. This way, 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 accurate heritage dates long before they were brought to the Balearic Islands when they most likely share many of the same ancestors of the Pharaoh Hounds of Egypt.

In fact…

According to archaeologists, some dogs were much like the Ibizan Breed Dog in Spain over 5,000 years ago throughout Egypt. It’s also pretty fair that the life-like statue of the jackal god Anubis, discovered during an excavation of King Tutt’s tomb in 1922, closely resembles the Ibizan Hound.

But we should also…

Point out that any time you’re dealing with an old dog breed, 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 known is…

Regardless of “how” the Ibizan dog breed made it to the Balearic Islands, they had a tough life once there. During this time, these guys were used to hunting rabbits and other small game, and because conditions were rather tricky, folks back then imposed stringent breeding criteria to ensure that only the “best” Ibizan hounds were bred. As a result, over the years, the Ibizan became a finely tuned and highly sturdy dog in his own right, so they ultimately became known and acknowledged as a separate breed from their ancestors.


In 1956, the Ibizan Hounds made their way to the United States when two Ibizans named Hannibal and Certera were brought to Rhode Island by Colonel and Mrs. Consuelo Seoane. These dogs produced eight puppies, which, along with other imports, were the foundation of the breed in the United States.

Shortly after, the American Kennel Club (AKC) recognized this breed in 1979. The Ibizan first appeared in the Westminster Kennel Club show in 1980.

Physical Characteristics

The Ibizan Hound is an impressive physical specimen. After all, you don’t need us to tell you these guys look strong, powerful, and supremely athletic. But we should mention that despite their appearance, they’re only a medium-sized dog. They’re also skinny and wiry, so 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 swift and can run for miles at a time. Incredible stamina, too. He does spectacularly well in dog sports, such as lure coursing.

What’s that?

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 also a hound dog with a long, narrow head, large and pointed ears, small piercing eyes, and a flesh-toned nose. His tail is set low and forms a sickle shape.

But beware…

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 touch 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.

Personality and Temperament

The Ibizan has a strong prey instinct and chases anything that moves. He has an excellent sense of hearing, is very alert, and makes an excellent watchdog. He is a funny, playful dog when he wants to be, when as a guard dog, he means business. He watches strangers closely and lets you know if anything is amiss. You can depend on him to defend your family.

But really…

He is an amiable dog. He is excellent with kids and makes a perfect playmate for (older) children. Now, if you have a toddler, it’s probably better to wait a few years before bringing this dog home simply because these guys have a natural tendency to change, which is never perfect when you have a child around.

When considering adopting an Ibizan Hound puppy, this brings us to a perfect point: you will want to be their trainer the right way. This way, they can be socialized early and taught not to chase anything and everything that moves!

Potential Health Concerns

Ibizan Hounds are among the strongest, healthiest breeds in the world, which is probably why they have a decent life expectancy of 11 to 14 years. But remember, these guys were raised and cultivated in a harsh environment where food wasn’t always plentiful. As a result, these guys seem to like to gorge themselves when given the opportunity, so you’ll want to watch what they eat and how much they eat.

In fact…

These guys are somewhat known for being rather indiscriminate about their food choices, which is why obesity and stomach pain are common health concerns 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. These are two issues that do “pop up” with this breed.

Which brings us to…

The last topic we want to discuss today is purchasing a pet insurance policy for your new animal. We only suggest this because veterinarian bills can add up if you, Ibizan Hound, develop hip dysplasia later in life or suffer an injury or other illness!

For more information on who we feel currently offers the “Best” pet insurance policies, please check out our Best Pet Insurance Companies article.

{ 2 comments… add one }
  • Shae W. January 31, 2020, 7:04 am

    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 !!!!

    • indulgeyourpet January 31, 2020, 7:14 am


      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.



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