Thought to have originated on the island of Eivissa when the Phoenicians founded settlements there in the 8th century, the Ibizan Hound is believed to have a much older lineage, with depictions aligning with the modern breed appearing in Ancient Egypt from around 3,400 BC. Further speculation suggests that the true heritage of the Ibizan Hound began in 700 BC when sea traders brought these dogs to Ibiza from areas of France and Spain where they were traditionally used to hunt rabbit. Sometimes called the 'Podenco Ibicenco,' the breed is often likened to the Pharaoh Hound, Portugese Podengo and Cirneco dell'Etna. Officially recognised by the American Kennel Club in 1978.
In appearance and structure the Ibizan Hound bears a resemblance to the Greyhound, boasting a lean and athletic form, straight legs, small eyes, high-set ears and a narrow tail. Bigger than the Pharaoh Hound, the Ibizan is distinctive and graceful, coming in two varieties, the Smooth and Wire-Coated. Common colouring includes red and white, solid red or white and white and tan. Due to its early usage as a rabbit hunter, the Ibizan Hound should be gradually introduced to other house pets from an early age, especially if the pets are smaller than itself.
Requiring a great deal of exercise as well as mental enrichment, the Ibizan Hound is best suited to an active family or dedicated sole owner. Meek and mannered by nature, the Ibizan Hound adapts well to new situations and people, although will often display a certain reticence around strangers until it has familiarised itself with them. Compatible with children and devoted to its family, the Ibizan Hound makes a great addition to active domestic life, providing its needs for exercise and companionship are met. A healthy, fully grown Ibizan Hound will weigh 19-25 kg on average, with a life expectancy of 10-12 years when shown the appropriate love and care.
Typically healthy and resilient, the Ibizan Hound is not susceptible to many genetic diseases. Allergies are commonly identified in the breed, as are seizures, and the disease Axonal Dystrophy, affecting nerves and muscles, is frequently seen.