Italian Greyhound Puppies: The Ultimate Guide

italian greyhound puppies

Italian greyhound puppies differ from whippets, as they are much smaller in size and come in fewer colours and colour combinations.

However, in spite of their small size and temperament, Italian greyhound puppies will still need a fair amount of physical activity every day.

In addition, they may be prone to displaying some prey drive instincts due to their sighthound background.

The personality of Italian greyhound puppies is sweet, intelligent, friendly, playful, and affectionate. These dogs will form a great bond with you as a result of their affectionate and loyal nature.

Yet, they do tend to show some stubborn traits. This means that these dogs will need your patience and time during training, where they may refuse to listen or show an overly independent character.

Traning should also be fun, engaging, and non-harsh, or it could stress out your Italian greyhound puppy.

For someone who loves the idea of owning a Greyhound or Whippet but cannot keep any of these dogs due to living circumstances, an Italian Greyhound can be a great option.

The Greyhound is a large dog that can take up quite a bit of space in your home. On the other hand, a Whippet is an energetic and lively dog that needs exercise every day.

Due to their smaller size, Italian Greyhounds need less physical activity and take up very little space.

For these reasons, an Italian Greyhound can make a great lap dog and companion, suited even to a smaller home.

If you are considering getting an Italian Greyhound puppy, this article will discuss everything you need to know about this breed.

Follow along to find out a few basic facts about these dogs, what things to train your new puppy, and what are the pros and cons of owning an Italian Greyhound.

Italian Greyhound Puppies At A Glance

Italian Greyhound puppies are small and sweet dogs with a naturally lean build, triangular ears that sit forward or to both sides, and a thin tail that comes down to a point.

They look a lot like Whippet puppies, in spite of being two different breeds. In fact, the very similar resemblance of an Italian Greyhound puppy to a Whippet puppy may cause some people to mistaken one for the other.

Italian Greyhound puppies will be smaller in size, and come in fewer colour combinations and markings.

What are some of the most common colours of an Italian Greyhound puppy? They include gray (blue), black, tan, red, fawn, or cream, sometimes combined with white and/or black.

However, one thing to note is that Italian Greyhound puppies never come in brindle markings. If you see a brindle puppy that you are told is an Italian Greyhound, it will most likely be a Whippet or crossbreed.

Italian Greyhound Puppy Facts

Weight And Size

Italian Greyhounds are small and fragile dogs, both as puppies and even as fully developed adults. On average, Italian Greyhound female puppies will weigh about 2.5 to 4 pounds at 8 weeks old (2 months), whereas males will weigh about 3 to 4.5 pounds.

From here on, an Italian Greyhound puppy will usually grow around a quarter of a pound or more per week. At 12 weeks of age (3 months) Italian Greyhound puppies, both male, and female will weigh from 3.5 to 4.9 pounds.

When Italian Greyhounds reach half a year old (6 months), they will weigh from around 6.4 to 8.8 pounds, males and females alike, with a height of 6.5 to 7.5 inches.

Italian Greyhounds usually stop growing at one year old, though some individuals may still grow even up to 1.5 years.

A fully grown Italian Greyhound will weigh on average 7 to 14 pounds. Males and females are of similar weights and sizes, though some females can be slightly smaller. As for the height, Italian Greyhounds grow to measure at 12.5 to 15 inches.

Health And Lifespan

Italian Greyhounds are susceptible to developing a few health conditions. Some of these are minor and can easily be prevented, yet others are more serious. A lot of diseases in Italian Greyhounds are hereditary and therefore common in this breed due to genetics.

One condition which can begin in a 6-month-old Italian Greyhound puppy is periodontal disease or dental decay. These dental diseases are often caused by a puppy’s adult teeth being too large for their mouth to fit, or simply genetically bad.

Other health conditions which can appear before 3 years old include cataracts, which are not difficult to treat, as well as seizures or epilepsy, which usually first occur at 6 months of age.

Progressive Retinal Atrophy and Luxating Patella are also diseases these dogs are susceptible to, but they typically occur late in life rather than during puppyhood or the first year or so.

Some skin conditions can also be present in Italian Greyhounds, and they include colour dilution alopecia in gray-blue dogs, pattern baldness, and Demodectic Mange, which can ever occur in small puppies.

However, reputable breeders will have their dogs tested before breeding them to ensure that the possibility of getting some of these health conditions and diseases is not passed down genetically to offspring.

Like a lot of other small breed dogs, Italian Greyhounds usually have an average lifespan of 12 to 15 years or more.

Temperament

In spite of being considered widely as a cute lap dog, the Italian Greyhound was once used to hunt small game, and therefore still has some prey drive instincts.

As well as that, Italian Greyhounds need quite a bit of exercise, at least 40 minutes to 1 hour a day.

After all, these dogs descend from a certain type of sighthound, so it is only natural for them to require a fair amount of physical activity.

Italian Greyhound puppies are very energetic and playful, and they have a sweet yet mischievous personality. From an early age, these dogs show that they are affectionate and loving, and enjoy bonding with their owner as well as keeping them company.

When it comes to training and learning, Italian Greyhounds are intelligent and clever, but like a lot of sighthounds, these dogs do tend to be stubborn. For this reason, they need shorter, engaging training sessions and enough patience and time.

Adopting An Italian Greyhound Puppy

An Italian Greyhound puppy can either be adopted from a rescue facility, shelter, or breeder. These dogs are becoming increasingly more popular, and there are plenty of puppies available out there.

Rescue centres also often contain quite a lot of Italian Greyhound puppies for those looking to adopt a rescue dog.

This is because Italian Greyhounds are sometimes turned in by their former owners after they discovered this dog’s lively nature and mischievous temperament was not for them.

For this reason, it is important to get acquainted first with the personality and needs of the breed you are considering adopting.

By adopting an Italian Greyhound puppy from a rescue centre, you are giving a dog a loving home and changing his world completely.

However, not every local rescue group will have an Italian Greyhound puppy waiting for you. Nonetheless, there are a lot of breeders out there who have healthy Italian Greyhound puppies available.

When looking to adopt from a breeder, try to choose one that is reputable and genuinely cares about his or her dogs. It is also important to observe the environment and space where the mother dog and her litter of puppies are kept before making a decision.

When you have picked the right breeder and decided on adopting a puppy from them, it is now time to bring your little Italian Greyhound home.

Before you even adopt your new Italian Greyhound puppy, you will first need to ensure that you have a high enough fence that your Italian Greyhound won’t be able to jump over when he gets older.

These dogs can jump 4 feet, so a fence slightly taller than that will be ideal to prevent them from escaping.

You will also need plenty of toys for this dog, as Italian Greyhound puppies love to play and have fun. Toys will further draw their attention away from any other objects they may be prone to chewing or biting, like shoes or furniture.

Another thing to consider when getting an Italian Greyhound puppy is to make sure you have enough money to treat any health conditions these dogs are prone to.

How To Find The Best Italian Greyhound Puppy For You

When picking an Italian Greyhound puppy from the litter, interact with each of the puppies to see how they will react toward you.

Although you cannot fully learn a puppy’s temperament in detail just from the first meeting, you will still be able to get some cues regarding his or her overall disposition, and how your puppy will behave toward you.

For instance, the puppy that runs out first excitedly and doesn’t show any hint of fear will most likely be confident and social, whereas a puppy that prefers to hang around at the back of the litter may have a rather shy or calmer temperament.

Seeing how each puppy behaves when you come over to them can help you spot which Italian Greyhound puppy will be best for you, and which one matches your personality the most.

You can additionally talk to the breeder and ask them about the individual temperament of each of the puppies, which will help you choose the one which you most prefer.

Even though some puppies from the litter may be more playful and energetic than others, none of the puppies should act overly fearful, withdrawn, or aggressive in any way.

It is also important to note the overall appearance of each puppy. Italian Greyhound puppies should have clear eyes, a shiny smooth coat with no dandruff or hair loss, and they shouldn’t limp or struggle to walk.

Any puppy displaying concerning behaviour or appearing ill or neglected may indicate that the breeder does not look after their dogs properly.

On the other hand, a rescued Italian Greyhound, either from a shelter or rescue facility, could potentially have one or some of the aforementioned issues, due to the possibility that they have been brought there because of previous neglect or abuse.

If you are adopting your puppy from a rescue centre, you may need extra finances, time, and the ability to provide adequate care for your dog in case he is recovering from his former life.

How To Tell If You’re Suited To An Italian Greyhound Puppy

To tell if you’re suited to an Italian Greyhound puppy, you will first need to get acquainted with this breed’s basic needs and requirements.

Some of the things to take into account include whether you can provide daily exercise, enough attention, and social interaction for this dog and whether you can dedicate plenty of time and patience to training your new Italian Greyhound puppy.

Before adopting an Italian Greyhound puppy, you may want to ask the breeder or adoption facility about their individual character, energy levels, or behaviour toward others.

This can help you determine whether your puppy will have a personality or demeanor suited to your own. It will also give you a better understanding of your dog’s individual needs, and you may base your decision on whether you will be able to take care of those needs.

If your Italian Greyhound puppy’s personality suits yours and both of you get along well with each other, it is a good indication that you are suited to your puppy.

Training An Italian Greyhound Puppy

Training an Italian Greyhound puppy should be a positive, fun, and engaging experience. This will not only encourage your Italian Greyhound to learn, especially if he shows a stubborn character, but it will also avoid putting any stress on this naturally sensitive dog.

Punishing your puppy or being harsh with them, including raising your voice and shouting, can have a very negative impact on an Italian Greyhound and will only discourage them from learning.

When you first get your Italian Greyhound puppy, begin by first teaching him basic obedience and commands. This is important, because it will help you have more control over your dog, and certain commands can assist you in further training.

Some of the easiest and most important things to teach your puppy are to sit, get down, heel (so that he won’t pull on a leash), and to stay. You will also need to feed your puppy at set times, to get him used to a routine.

A rewarding system is perfect for training a puppy, both in obedience and in-house training, so that he will learn which behaviours are encouraged (such as relieving himself outside). He will be likely to repeat good behaviours because of the resulting tasty treat.

You will also need to provide plenty of chewable toys, as your Italian Greyhound puppy will be teething and therefore prone to biting and chewing everything in sight.

Always ensure that you have removed anything toxic objects that may be lying on the ground out of reach of your puppy.

This is due to the fact that Italian Greyhound puppies, just as any other puppies, are prone to playing with or eating anything that grabs their attention.

When it comes to chewing furniture, a good solution is to spray certain essential oils like citronella (which is disliked by dogs) on the area where your puppy is inclined to chew so that he won’t be willing to go near it.

When getting your Italian Greyhound puppy, you will soon learn that most individuals of this breed are very clingy and love to be with their owners all the time. They may seek their owner’s attention in a variety of ways.

For this reason, you will need to train your puppy to manage on his own at times when you are not able to give him the attention he desires.

If your puppy is always completely dependent on you, leaving him on his own in the future will be an impossible task.

Leaving an Italian Greyhound alone when he has not been trained to manage on his own may potentially lead to problematic behaviours such as excessive barking, whining, chewing, digging, or even separation anxiety.

The best way to teach your Italian Greyhound puppy to be able to be left alone is by ordering your puppy to go to his bed, and then moving away a short distance to see his reaction.

If he follows you, order him back to bed until he obeys and finally stays there.

Reward your puppy for staying on his bed and not going after you. Move further away from the bed until you are outside the door. Now close the door and wait out 5 to 10 minutes to see your dog’s reaction.

If your puppy begins to act frantic or cry after you, you may need to go back to the beginning. If he remains calm, then try this again a few times but increase the length of time you’re away to get your dog adjusted to being alone.

Another thing you may need to teach your Italian Greyhound puppy is that he cannot get attention from you by jumping at you.

Though some people may not mind this behaviour, or view it as completely fine, others may find it a frustrating problem.

This is especially true of families with small children that can easily get knocked over, or those who often have a lot of visitors over.

The best way to stop jumping in your Italian Greyhound puppy is to simply ignore this behaviour from the very beginning until your dog learns that this is not a good way to get the attention it craves from you.

Pros And Cons Of Italian Greyhound Puppies

Pros

  • Low shedding
  • Their coat is tangle free, as well as very easy to groom and maintain
  • Italian Greyhounds don’t possess a strong dog odor which is present in a lot of other breeds
  • The small size of the Italian Greyhound makes it a good dog to be kept in a small home or apartment
  • Affectionate and docile nature
  • Playful and fun to be around
  • Loyal to their owners or family, and will a form strong bond with their human companion
  • Adaptable
  • Will bark to alert their owner of any suspicious activity
  • Friendly and non-aggressive breed
  • Gentle with children
  • Athletic and agile dog, making them excellent in certain dog sports
  • Good exercising companion for active person

Cons

  • Prone to a few health conditions
  • Can be clingy or attention seeking – this may be good for some people, but not ideal for those who lead a busy lifestyle
  • Prey drive instincts present in some individuals may incline them to chase cats or other small animals
  • Need exercise daily to stay happy
  • Can be sensitive to their owner’s mood or a stressful situation
  • Small size, fragile build, and thin skin makes them more susceptible to injuries
  • Can be stubborn
  • Can be good escape artists due to their jumping and digging skills
  • Prone to shyness around strangers, especially due to lack of socialisation
  • Get cold easily

Final Thoughts

There are so many joys that come with getting a new Italian Greyhound puppy, but there are also a number of factors to take under account as well when adopting one of these dogs.

Such factors may include whether or not you can provide for some of the needs and requirements of this dog, and whether you have enough patience, time, and the right attitude toward training an Italian Greyhound puppy.

When you acquaint yourself beforehand with this breed, learn of their traits, and interact with the litter to spot the puppy with the best personality, it will make looking after your new dog much easier, and raising him will be a more enjoyable experience.

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