This elegant and graceful little Greyhound in miniature has a long history as a favourite of royalty and pet of the nobility. Even Cleopatra owned one of these delightful little creatures! The Italian Greyhound has always been greatly prized for their beauty, diminutive size and sweet disposition. Although giving the impression of being fragile, the breed is actually very hardy although they prefer living with older, gentle children or adults.

Appearance and temperament

Alert, intelligent, cheerful, brave and courageous, the Italian Greyhounds are easy to train and are quick learners. They can easily adapt to both city and country living, and occupy so little space that they can usually accompany their owner everywhere. They have a very loving disposition and thrive best when this affection is reciprocated. Their smooth coat and low body fat give them no protection from the cold and they adore the comfort of home, where they are well known for their appreciation of all of life’s little luxuries.

Average life span

Up to 14 years

Grooming and care

Very minimal grooming is required due to their odourless thin, glossy, shedless coat. Although it is important that they are thoroughly dried after bathing.


The Italian Greyhound enjoys exercise and outdoor activity, and will delight in chasing small game given half a chance. They move with a characteristic high-stepping prance, and remain playful long past puppyhood.

Health concerns

For the latest research in breed-related problems in Italian Greyhounds visit the University of Sydney’s LIDA (Listing of Inherited Disorders in Animals) website.

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