Ibizan Hound (Podenco Ibicenco)

Country of origin:
Height (cm):
Weight (kg):
Life span (years):
white and red; entirely white; entirely red; fawn
Hair length:
long, short
Recognized by:
FCI code:
Good with kids:
Pros Cons
  • excellent hunter
  • rarely participates in dog fights
  • wonderful family companion
  • very sensitive
  • chases small animals
  • needs a great amount of daily excercise


The Ibizan Hound was initially bred for hunting on rabbits and small animals on Ibiza, one of the Balearic island. The trademark of this dog is funny up-right ears and pink nose. For hundreds of years it has been developed in the very isolated territory but now it has fanciers all over world.

The dog that closely resembles the Ibizian Hound was portrayed in many Egyptian masterpieces including hieroglyphs and sculptures of over 5000 years old. It means that the breed is supposedly one of the most ancient dogs. Recently it had been commonly accepted that the dog was imported to the West by Egyptian and Spanish merchants around VII-IX BC.

Nowadays the scientists have proved that this theory doesn’t correspond to the facts. Genetic findings demonstrated that the present-day Ibizian Hound is modern revival of an older type and doesn’t have the ancestry of thousands of years. Most likely the dog has been existed on Spain’s Balearic Islands for quite a while. From the name of one of the islands (Ibiza) the name of the dog was derived. 
It is believed that the Phoenicians, the experienced and most daring traders of that period, have brought the dog there in VIII-IX century BC. This dog hunted for rabbits and hares to provide the food to the habitants of Ibiza. It is endowed with excellent scent and sight senses and at that time hunted not only for humans but also got provision for itself as it wasn’t fed by them.

The hardships of life have shaped the Ibiza Hound into skilful, hardy and patient hunter that could at day and at night both alone and in pair. The breed might have never reached the Western world unless in 1956 a pair of dogs was taken by Colonel and Mrs. Consuelo Seoane to Rhode Island. These couple of dogs along with a few other imports provided the basis of the breed in America.

The Ibizian Hound was granted recognition of American Kennel Club (AKC) in 1979 and for the first time took part at the Westminster Kennel Club show in 1980. It is also recognized by most major kennel clubs but still remains a rare breed.

The Ibizian Hound has taken care for itself for many centuries so there is much restraint and aloofness in its demeanour. If you want to have the dog, which will be extremely tender and loving then the Ibizian Hound is not for you. However, this is a very devoted and kind breed and majority of the dogs will make friends with children if they have been properly introduced to each other.

The strangers will be met by the Ibizian Hound with certain suspicion and restraint. The dog which has been correctly socialized will usually be amicable and welcoming with strange people. The territorial feeling is comparatively week in it so it’s worth as a protector or a watch dog is doubtful. The Ibizian Hound reacts very emotional to stress in a home. It will feel itself terrible almost to the point of being physically ill, when the members of the family quarrel in loud voices.

The Ibizian Hound has hunted in a company with other dogs for hundreds of years. So it’s generally ok with other canine animals under the condition that the dog has been appropriately socialised with them. The breed doesn’t strive to impose its dominative position and may be brought into household with its counterpart. Though the initial meeting of the dogs should be carefully observed in order to prevent possible fights.

Rabbits were primarily source of nourishment for the Ibizian Hound and it kept much of its prey drive intact. The small home pets will never be safe around this breed but if they have been brought up together your Ibizian Hound will probably accept it as a member of the pack. The future owner should realize that no matter how good the Ibizian Hound is trained the instinct will occasionally win and this will result the death of neighbour’s cat.

Health Problems
The most common problems for the breed include:

• seizures;
• epilepsy;
• canine hip dysplasia;
• elbow dysplasia;
• ear infections;
• eye problems.

The grooming requirements for the Ibizian hound are relatively low. Its coat demands only regular brushing and the professional grooming may never be needed. The breed is a medium shedder but it’s going to be more visible if the dog has white coat. A rare bath will suffice to keep the dogs fur clean.

The Ibizian Hound is considered to be more trainable than most other hounds. The dog is capable to compete at the highest level in different obedience and agility contests. Bearing that in mind, the breeds’ independent character makes the training harder and demands great amount of encouragement and incentives to achieve reasonable success.

Screaming and negative stimulus is going to shape defiant and obstinate dog. Being an intelligent and quick-witted dog the Ibizian Hound will from time to time take a stubborn stance and refuse to follow the master’s commands.

The Ibizian Hound is a strong and athletic dog with substantial need for exercise. Though it tends to be at ease and calm while at home the dog requires a prolonged walk daily. Behavioural or emotional issues may arise if the dog doesn’t receive enough outlets for its energy.

The Ibizian Hound is one of the fastest runners in a dog world and impresses by its endurance. The leash is a must for the dog since its prey urge may prevail at any times and lead to very unpleasant surprises in a form of a dead cat. It’s very crafty at escaping even from the most safely fenced area and therefore once off-leash it should be attentively supervised on the constant basis.