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Ibizan HoundIbizan Hound

an ancient breed of hunting dog

The Ibizan Hound originated on Ibiza, one of the Balearic Islands off the coast of Spain. The breed type has been known throughout the islands for more than 5,000 years, and it is said that Ibizan Hounds rode on Hannibal's elephants when he invaded Italy. Raised on Ibiza to hunt rabbits and other small game, over time the breed became known on the European continent, where it was prized by poachers. The association with poaching eventually led to Ibiza being banned from France.

In the 20th century, the Marquesa de Belgida of Barcelona, Spain, Doa Maria Dolores Olives de Cotonera, took a strong interest in the Ibizan Hound, by then considered an indigenous Spanish breed. She had a large kennel on Majorca where she bred high-quality Ibizans whom she promoted throughout the world. Today, the Ibizan Hound is a prized hunter, coursing dog, show dog, and companion animal all over the globe. It was recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1979 and first appeared at the Westminster Kennel Club show in 1980.

The Ibizan stands 22-28 inches tall and weighs 40-55 pounds. It is red and white, has a long, narrow head, large, erect ears that can point forward, sideways, or be folded backward, and flesh-colored pigment on the nose and eye rims. Bred for speed, stamina, and determination, Ibizas are well known for being able to jump up 6 feet in the air, and they can reach speeds up to 40 miles per hour.

Ibizan Hounds are pack animals and so fit in with families just fine. They need to be raised with or seriously socialized to pets like cats and other small animals, as these are considered prey to them unless otherwise instructed. They are happiest if they have access to an area where they can safely extend themselves and really run, even if these runs are short bursts of intense speed. It is never a good idea to exercise an Ibizan Hound off lead unless in a safely enclosed area.

American Kennel Club
Ibizan Hound Club of the United States

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This page was last updated on 08/06/2016.

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