Ibizan Hound

Table of Contents

ibizan hound portrait
Step into the intriguing world of the Ibizan Hound, a dog breed that effortlessly combines grace, athleticism, and a touch of quirkiness! With their striking looks and spirited personality, these captivating canines have been winning hearts for centuries.

Join us in this comprehensive guide as we explore everything you need to know about this breed, including their appearance, temperament, ideal environment, grooming, exercise requirements, training tips, dietary needs, health concerns, history, and more.

Best For

The Ibizan Hound is the perfect companion for active individuals or families who cherish outdoor adventures. These energetic dogs excel in environments that cater to their remarkable agility and zest for life.


OTHER NAMESPodenco Ibicenco, Ca Eivissenc
HEIGHT22.5-27.5 inches
WEIGHT45-50 lbs
LIFESPAN11-14 years
ibizan hound on a beach
Photo: Kristiinatammik/Getty Images


The Ibizan Hound is a picture of elegance, showcasing a unique blend of grace and athleticism in its physical appearance. Standing tall at 22 to 28 inches in height and weighing between 45 to 65 pounds, these dogs boast a lean, muscular build that speaks to their agility and speed.

The body of an Ibizan Hound is slightly longer than it is tall, with a deep chest and a well-defined waistline. Their long legs contribute to their impressive leaping ability, which is a hallmark of the breed. The Ibizan Hound’s tail is long and slender, typically carried low and sporting a slight curve.

The head is long and chiseled, giving the dog an air of noble refinement. The skull is flat and narrow between the ears, while the long muzzle tapers gracefully towards the nose.

The large, amber or caramel-colored eyes are almond-shaped, imparting an alert and intelligent expression. The Ibizan Hound’s gaze is often described as gentle yet piercing, reflecting the breed’s inquisitive and watchful nature.

Perhaps the most iconic characteristic of the Ibizan Hound is its ears. These large, erect ears are broad at the base and taper towards a rounded point, standing proudly on top of the head. When the dog is at rest or showing submission, the ears may fold back, giving them a more relaxed appearance.

The Ibizan Hound’s coat comes in two varieties: smooth and wirehaired. The smooth coat is short and dense, while the wirehaired coat is slightly longer and rougher in texture. Both coat types offer protection from the sun and cold, making them well-suited for various climates.

The breed’s coat color ranges from pure white to varying shades of red or fawn, with some dogs displaying a combination of white and red markings.

Despite their elegant appearance, Ibizan Hounds are known for their playful and sometimes goofy expressions. Their ability to contort their faces into amusing “grins” or furrowed brows adds an endearing touch of personality to their already captivating looks.

Overall, the Ibizan Hound’s distinctive physical characteristics not only reflect their ancient heritage but also highlight their agility and athleticism, which are key aspects of this remarkable breed.

ibizan hound in tall desert weeds
Photo: GoDogPhoto/Getty Images


The Ibizan Hound is a breed that carries an intriguing blend of traits that make it a fascinating companion. These dogs are known for their elegant appearance, but beneath that poised exterior lies a playful and affectionate heart.

At first glance, Ibizan Hounds might come across as reserved or even aloof. They’re cautious around strangers and may take some time to warm up. But once they feel comfortable, their true personality shines through. They’re friendly and outgoing, eager to engage with those they’ve grown to trust.

One of the most distinctive aspects of the Ibizan Hound’s temperament is its independent streak. These dogs are intelligent and have a strong will of their own. While this might sometimes be mistaken for stubbornness, it’s more a sign of their self-confidence and determination.

Despite their independence, Ibizan Hounds are very affectionate with their families. They form deep bonds with their human companions, showing a loyalty that’s both quiet and steadfast. They may not be overly demonstrative in their affection, but their constant companionship speaks volumes about their devotion.

Ibizan Hounds are also known for their gentle nature. They’re typically good with children and can get along well with other pets, especially if they’ve been raised together. Their sensitivity, however, means they respond best to a calm and gentle approach. Harsh words or treatment can upset these delicate creatures.

Beneath their calm and gentle demeanor, Ibizan Hounds have a playful side. They enjoy a good game and can often be seen engaging in clownish antics, much to the amusement of their families. This playful nature, combined with their agile bodies, makes them excellent playmates.

Ideal Environment

Physical Environment

As an active and athletic breed, Ibizan Hounds require ample space to explore and exercise. A home with a large, securely fenced yard is ideal for these dogs, as it allows them to stretch their legs and indulge in their natural instincts to run and play. However, they can also adapt to apartment living if provided with regular opportunities for outdoor activities and exercise.

Climate Adaptability

In terms of climate adaptability, the Ibizan Hound’s coat provides protection against both hot and cold temperatures. Their short, dense coat helps shield them from the sun’s rays, making them well-suited for warmer climates. However, they may require additional shade and access to fresh water during hot weather to prevent overheating.

On the other hand, their coat also offers some insulation against the cold, but they should not be exposed to extreme low temperatures for extended periods. In colder climates, providing a warm, comfortable shelter and possibly protective clothing like a dog sweater or coat can help keep them cozy and safe.

Ideal Owner

Ibizan Hounds are best suited for pet parents who lead an active lifestyle and are willing to invest time and effort into their dog’s physical and mental stimulation. Their high energy levels make them great companions for outdoor enthusiasts who enjoy hiking, jogging, or participating in canine sports such as agility, lure coursing, and obedience competitions.

Other Pets

When it comes to other pets, Ibizan Hounds can coexist peacefully with other dogs, particularly if they have been socialized from an early age. However, their strong prey drive may pose challenges in households with cats or smaller animals.

It is crucial to monitor interactions between the Ibizan Hound and smaller pets closely, and consider providing separate spaces for them to ensure the safety of all animals involved.

ibizan hound jumping
Photo: Kristiinatammik/Getty Images


The Ibizan Hound, with its short coat and minimal shedding, is a relatively low-maintenance breed when it comes to grooming. However, regular grooming is still essential to ensure the dog’s overall health and well-being. Here, we will outline the basic grooming needs of the Ibizan Hound, including frequency, tools, and what to expect in terms of their care.

Coat Care

The Ibizan Hound’s coat comes in two varieties – smooth and wirehaired. Both types require minimal grooming compared to other breeds. For the smooth-coated variety, weekly brushing with a soft-bristle brush or rubber grooming mitt is sufficient to remove loose hair and maintain a healthy, shiny coat.

The wirehaired variety may need slightly more attention, as their coat can be prone to matting. Weekly brushing with a slicker brush or a comb with both coarse and fine teeth should help prevent tangles and keep the coat in good condition.

Ibizan Hounds do not have a strong odor, and their coats repel dirt to some extent. As a result, they do not require frequent baths. Bathing your Ibizan Hound every few months or as needed should suffice.

When bathing, use a mild dog shampoo to avoid stripping the natural oils from their coat, which helps maintain its protective qualities. Be sure to rinse thoroughly to remove all soap residue and minimize the risk of skin irritation.

Ear Care

The Ibizan Hound’s large, erect ears can be prone to dirt and wax buildup, which can lead to infections if not addressed. To maintain their ear health, check and clean their ears weekly using a soft, damp cloth or cotton ball.

Avoid using cotton swabs, as they can push debris further into the ear canal or cause injury. If you notice any signs of redness, swelling, or foul odor, consult your veterinarian, as these may indicate an infection.

Eye Care

Regularly examine your Ibizan Hound’s eyes to ensure they are clear and free of discharge. If you notice any buildup or debris, gently wipe the area with a soft, damp cloth or a cotton ball moistened with warm water or a saline solution formulated for dogs. Be cautious not to touch the eye itself and use a separate cloth or cotton ball for each eye to prevent cross-contamination.

Dental Care

Good oral hygiene is crucial for the overall health of your Ibizan Hound. Dental issues can lead to more severe health problems if left untreated. Brush your dog’s teeth at least two to three times a week using a toothbrush and toothpaste specifically designed for dogs. Regular teeth brushing helps prevent plaque and tartar buildup, reduces bad breath, and minimizes the risk of gum disease and tooth decay.

Nail Trimming

Ibizan Hounds require regular nail trimming to prevent overgrowth, which can cause discomfort and affect their gait. Inspect and trim their nails every three to four weeks, depending on how quickly they grow.

Use a guillotine-style or scissor-style dog nail clipper, and be cautious to avoid cutting the quick, a blood vessel within the nail. If you are unsure about trimming your dog’s nails, consult a professional groomer or your veterinarian for guidance.

ibizan hound puppy in a wood
Photo: Kristiinatammik/Getty Images


The Ibizan Hound is an energetic and athletic breed that requires regular exercise to maintain its physical and mental well-being. As a hunting dog with a strong prey drive, the Ibizan Hound possesses great stamina, speed, and agility. Consequently, you should be prepared to provide them with ample opportunities for physical activity and mental stimulation.

Exercise Amount & Types

On average, Ibizan Hounds need at least one hour of exercise daily, which can be broken up into multiple sessions. The type of exercise should vary to keep them engaged and prevent boredom. A combination of brisk walks, jogging, or hiking can help meet their cardiovascular needs, while off-leash play in a securely fenced area allows them to stretch their legs and indulge in their natural instincts to run.

Interactive games such as fetch, frisbee, or hide-and-seek can also be enjoyable for Ibizan Hounds while providing additional mental stimulation. These dogs are known for their impressive leaping ability, and incorporating activities that involve jumping or climbing can be both challenging and fun for them.

It is essential to remember that Ibizan Hounds are intelligent and can become bored with repetitive tasks. Keeping exercise routines varied and engaging will help ensure that they remain interested and motivated.

Dog Sports

Ibizan Hounds excel in various canine sports, which can be a fantastic way to channel their energy and natural abilities. Lure coursing, a sport that mimics the pursuit of prey, is particularly well-suited for this breed due to their strong hunting instincts.

Other competitive activities such as agility, obedience trials, or even scent work can also provide valuable outlets for their physical and mental energy while strengthening the bond between you and your dog.

Exercise Precautions

When exercising your Ibizan Hound, be mindful of the weather conditions, as extreme heat or cold can pose risks to their health. In hot climates, schedule exercise sessions during cooler parts of the day, such as early morning or late evening, and provide access to fresh water and shade. In colder weather, consider providing a dog coat or sweater for additional warmth and protection during outdoor activities.


Training an Ibizan Hound can be both a rewarding and challenging experience. These dogs are intelligent, athletic, and highly adaptable, making them capable of excelling in various activities and tasks. However, their independent nature and natural problem-solving abilities can sometimes lead to stubbornness, which may pose challenges during training.

When it comes to trainability, the Ibizan Hound is considered moderately easy to train, provided that the right approach is used. Early socialization and consistent, positive reinforcement-based training techniques are essential for success. Starting training while the dog is still young will lay a solid foundation for good behavior and help curb any potential issues before they become ingrained habits.

Patience and persistence are key when training an Ibizan Hound. They may not respond as quickly as other breeds to commands and may need more time to understand what is expected of them. Using a variety of rewards, such as treats, praise, and play, can help keep them motivated and engaged in the learning process.

Keep training sessions short and enjoyable, focusing on one or two commands at a time to prevent overwhelming the dog.

Due to their strong prey drive, Ibizan Hounds can be easily distracted by small animals or interesting scents. Therefore, it is crucial to work on building a reliable recall command to ensure their safety during off-leash activities.

Additionally, teaching basic obedience commands like “sit,” “stay,” “down,” and “heel” will help establish a strong bond between you and your dog, and contribute to a well-behaved and manageable companion.

It is important to remember that, despite their occasional stubbornness, Ibizan Hounds are sensitive dogs that do not respond well to harsh training methods. Using force or punishment can lead to fear, anxiety, and a breakdown of trust between you and your dog. Instead, focus on building a positive, rewarding relationship that encourages your dog’s natural curiosity and intelligence.

two ibizan hounds playing
Photo: Kristiinatammik/Getty Images

Diet & Nutrition 

The diet and nutrition of an Ibizan Hound play a crucial role in maintaining their overall health, energy levels, and longevity. Providing your dog with a balanced, high-quality diet tailored to their specific needs will ensure they receive the necessary nutrients for optimal well-being.

What to Feed & How Much

When selecting food for your Ibizan Hound, consider options that follow the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) guidelines. These guidelines ensure that the food meets minimum nutritional standards for a dog’s specific life stage and size. You can choose from dry, wet, or raw food options, depending on your preference and your dog’s dietary needs.

The amount of food your Ibizan Hound requires depends on their age, weight, activity level, and overall health. As a general guideline, puppies should be fed more frequently (3-4 times a day) to support their rapid growth and development. As they grow older and their metabolism slows down, you can gradually reduce the feeding frequency to twice daily.

Adult Ibizan Hounds typically require around 2 to 3 cups of high-quality dry food per day, divided into two meals. However, this is a rough estimate, and individual needs may vary. Be sure to consult your veterinarian or refer to the feeding guidelines provided by the pet food manufacturer for specific recommendations based on your dog’s unique requirements.

It is essential to monitor your Ibizan Hound’s weight and body condition regularly. Adjust their food intake as needed to maintain an ideal weight and prevent obesity-related health issues. If you have concerns about your dog’s diet or notice significant changes in their weight, appetite, or overall health, consult your veterinarian for guidance.

Treats & Water

Treats can be an essential tool for training and bonding with your Ibizan Hound, but they should be given in moderation to avoid excess weight gain or unbalanced nutrition. Opt for healthy, low-calorie treats like small pieces of fruits, vegetables, or lean meats and avoid table scraps and high-fat, high-sugar snacks.

Fresh water is a vital component of your Ibizan Hound’s diet and should be available at all times. Regularly clean and refill their water bowl to encourage adequate hydration, especially during hot weather or after physical activity.


The Ibizan Hound is a generally healthy dog breed with a life expectancy of 11 to 14 years. However, like all breeds, they can be prone to certain health issues. Providing a healthy diet, scheduling regular veterinary check-ups, and ensuring up-to-date vaccinations are essential steps in maintaining their overall health and well-being.

Here are common health issues associated with the Ibizan Hound:

Hip Dysplasia: This is a genetic condition where the hip joint doesn’t develop properly, leading to arthritis and pain. Regular screening for hip dysplasia and maintaining a healthy weight can help minimize the risk and manage the condition if it occurs.

Allergies: Ibizan Hounds can be prone to various allergies, including food, environmental, and contact allergies. Identifying the allergen and implementing appropriate management strategies can help alleviate symptoms and improve quality of life.

Eye Problems: Some Ibizan Hounds may experience eye issues such as Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA), which can lead to vision loss, or cataracts, which cause cloudiness in the lens of the eye. Regular eye exams can help detect these conditions early and allow for prompt treatment or management.

Bloat (Gastric Torsion): This life-threatening condition occurs when the stomach fills with gas and twists on itself, cutting off blood circulation. Large, deep-chested breeds like the Ibizan Hound are at higher risk. Feeding smaller, more frequent meals and avoiding vigorous exercise immediately after eating can help reduce the risk.

Deafness: Some Ibizan Hounds may be affected by congenital deafness, which can be present at birth or develop later in life. Regular hearing tests and monitoring for any changes in your dog’s responsiveness to sound can help identify potential issues.

To keep your Ibizan Hound healthy, provide a balanced diet tailored to their specific needs and life stage, following the guidelines set by the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO). Regular veterinary check-ups and vaccinations are crucial in preventing and detecting potential health issues early.

Additionally, maintaining a healthy weight, providing regular exercise, and monitoring your Ibizan Hound’s overall health can help minimize the risk of developing breed-specific health problems. By taking these steps, you can contribute to a long, happy, and healthy life for your Ibizan Hound.

ibizan hound lying down on leaves
Photo: Eloi_Omella/Getty Images Signature


The Ibizan Hound, also known as the Podenco Ibicenco, is a graceful and elegant dog breed with a rich history dating back thousands of years.

This ancient breed is believed to have originated in Egypt, where their striking appearance and keen hunting abilities made them highly prized by the Egyptian nobility. Depictions of dogs resembling the Ibizan Hound can be found on Egyptian tombs dating as far back as 3,000 BCE.

It is widely believed that the Phoenicians, a seafaring civilization that engaged in extensive trade throughout the Mediterranean, played a significant role in the breed’s migration from Egypt to the Balearic Islands, particularly the island of Ibiza, off the coast of Spain. The exact timeline of this migration remains uncertain, but it is thought to have occurred around the 8th or 9th century BCE.

Once established in Ibiza, the Ibizan Hound became an indispensable companion to local farmers and hunters, who relied on their exceptional speed, agility, and scenting abilities to hunt rabbits and other small game. The breed adapted well to the island’s rugged terrain and sparse vegetation, developing a lean, athletic physique and a versatile gait that allowed them to cover long distances with ease.

Over time, the Ibizan Hound became deeply ingrained in the culture and traditions of Ibiza. They were highly valued not only for their hunting prowess but also for their striking beauty and gentle temperament. The breed remained relatively isolated from the rest of the world until the mid-20th century when tourism to the Balearic Islands began to increase.

The Ibizan Hound first gained international recognition in the 1950s, when Colonel and Mrs. Consuelo Seoane, American expatriates living in Spain, became captivated by the breed’s unique appearance and abilities. They imported several Ibizan Hounds to the United States, where they began a breeding program to establish and promote the breed outside of its native homeland.

The American Kennel Club (AKC) first registered the Ibizan Hound in 1978, and the breed was officially recognized as part of the Hound Group in 1979. Since then, the Ibizan Hound has slowly gained popularity as both a show dog and a companion animal, with enthusiasts drawn to the breed’s distinctive looks, gentle nature, and impressive athleticism.

While still relatively uncommon outside of their native Ibiza, the Ibizan Hound has found a dedicated following among dog lovers who appreciate their remarkable combination of beauty, agility, and intelligence.

Today, the breed can be found competing in a wide range of canine sports, including conformation shows, lure coursing, agility, and obedience trials. However, at home, the Ibizan Hound remains a beloved companion, prized for their loyalty, affection, and adaptability.

Parent Club

The official breed club for the Ibizan Hound in the United States is the Ibizan Hound Club of the United States (IHCUS). Founded in 1977, the IHCUS is dedicated to promoting and preserving the unique qualities and heritage of the Ibizan Hound.

The club provides resources, education, and support to breed enthusiasts, owners, and breeders. To learn more about the IHCUS and access valuable information about the Ibizan Hound breed, visit their webpage here.

Breed Standard

A breed standard is a set of guidelines established by breed clubs or kennel organizations, defining the ideal appearance, temperament, and physical traits of a specific breed. It serves as a reference for breeders, judges, and enthusiasts to evaluate and maintain a breed’s unique qualities.

Covering aspects like size, appearance, and temperament, breed standards are used in dog shows and competitions to assess individual dogs against the ideal representation of their breed.

You can check the Ibizan Hound’s breed standard set by the American Kennel Club (AKC) here.

ibizan hound in sunset
Photo: Kristiinatammik/Getty Images


When considering acquiring an Ibizan Hound, it’s essential to prepare for their specific needs, such as space for exercise, proper nutrition, and regular grooming. Researching the breed’s temperament and unique characteristics will help you determine if it’s the right fit for your lifestyle.

Instead of buying, consider rescuing an Ibizan Hound in need of a loving home. Many dogs end up in rescue organizations or shelters due to various reasons, and adopting one can be a rewarding experience. The American Kennel Club (AKC) and the Ibizan Hound Club of the United States (IHCUS) can assist you in finding a rescue organization or available Ibizan Hounds for adoption.

By choosing to rescue, you not only provide a deserving dog with a new lease on life but also contribute to reducing the number of dogs in shelters. Reach out to the AKC and IHCUS to explore rescue options and find the perfect Ibizan Hound companion.


Are Ibizan Hounds good family dogs?

Yes, Ibizan Hounds make good family dogs. They are affectionate, loyal, and gentle with their family members. They typically get along well with children, but supervision is recommended during playtime to ensure the safety of both the dog and the child.

Are Ibizan Hounds smart?

Ibizan Hounds are intelligent dogs with a natural problem-solving ability. They excel at various tasks and activities and can be trained effectively using positive reinforcement techniques. However, their independent nature may sometimes lead to stubbornness during training.

How high can Ibizan Hounds jump?

Ibizan Hounds are known for their impressive jumping abilities. They can easily clear obstacles up to 5 feet in height, thanks to their strong hind legs and agile bodies. This skill makes them excellent candidates for canine sports like agility and lure coursing.

Are Ibizan Hounds rare?

While not extremely rare, Ibizan Hounds are less common than many other dog breeds. They have a dedicated following among breed enthusiasts, but their numbers remain relatively small compared to more popular breeds.

Do Ibizan Hounds require a lot of exercise?

Yes, Ibizan Hounds are energetic and athletic dogs that require regular exercise to stay healthy and happy. Daily walks, runs, and play sessions can help meet their exercise needs. Involvement in canine sports like agility or lure coursing can also provide an excellent outlet for their energy and natural abilities.

Are Ibizan Hounds hypoallergenic?

No, Ibizan Hounds are not considered hypoallergenic. While they have short coats and shed minimally, they still produce dander and allergens that can trigger allergic reactions in sensitive individuals.

What type of climate is suitable for Ibizan Hounds?

Ibizan Hounds can adapt to a variety of climates, but they are best suited for moderate temperatures. Their short coats provide limited protection against extreme cold, so extra care should be taken to keep them warm in colder climates. Additionally, their lean bodies and minimal body fat can make them more susceptible to heat, so it’s essential to provide shade and fresh water during hot weather.

Table of Contents