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Ibizan Hound Information

 Ch. Paradise's No Highland Fling SC, FCh. "Tango" in his Anubis pose!

Pronounced ĭ-bee-than Hound. 

From the AKC standard..."The Ibizan's clean-cut lines, large prick ears and light pigment give it a unique appearance. A hunting dog whose quarry is primarily rabbits, this ancient hound was bred for thousands of years with function being of prime importance. Lithe and racy, the Ibizan possesses a deer-like elegance combined with the power of a hunter.  Strong, without appearing heavily muscled, the Ibizan is a hound of moderation.  With the exception of the ears, he should not appear extreme or exaggerated.  In the field the Ibizan is as fast as top coursing breeds and without equal in agility, high jumping and broad jumping ability.  He is able to spring to great heights from a standstill."

Characteristics:  The Ibizan Hound has been described as the 'Peter Pan' dog.  It was not until I actually lived with one that I truly understood what that meant!  Always playful and somewhat mischievous, this breed never really grows up and is always ready for fun!  They are intelligent although not necessarily in the way you would like.  Many learn to open doors, gates, and garbage containers.  Ibizan Hounds can be terrible thieves.  Ibizan Hound owners have very clean kitchen counters and food is always defrosted on top of the refrigerator or better yet inside the oven or microwave. 

Ibizans are clean with no doggy odor.  They are affectionate, but not demanding or slobbery.  Rather than lick, they enjoy poking with their nose.  Even-tempered, affectionate, loyal, and extremely athletic, they require a great deal of exercise.  They are very agile dogs, able to jump great heights from a standstill. It is recommended that Ibizan Hound owners have fences at least 6-feet in height as they enjoy jumping anything shorter.  The Ibizan Hound has been clocked at speeds of up to 40 mph!  They are a proud breed and demonstrate it with their alert expression and eye catching gait.

Kadin, Arbeca's Al Kamel of Aza
This is Kadin easily sailing over a 5' fence.  Thank you Erica Kasper, Aza Hounds, for allowing us to use this photo.

History.  As far back as 3,400 BC remains of dogs similar in conformation to the Ibizan Hound were found in the tombs of Egyptian Pharaohs.  In 1922, when the tomb of Tutankhamen was unearthed, images of Anubis, the Watchdog of the Dead, were found.  The entrance to Tut's tomb was guarded by a life-size statue of Anubis, lending further evidence that it was an Ibizan Hound that was worshipped as "the dog of the Pharaohs."  Cleopatra was said to have several of these ring tailed, prick eared hounds.   

 

It is the island of Ibiza, a small Balearic island off the coast of Spain, that the Ibizan Hound owes its present name.  The Phoenicians and other early traders who sailed the Mediterranean Sea in the eighth and ninth centuries carried the dogs from Egypt (1 below) to Ibiza (2 below).  Legend has it that the Ibizan Hound rod atop Hannibal's elephants as the Carthaginian general invaded Italy by crossing the Alps.  The fact that Hannibal, who lived from 247-183 BC, was born on the Island of Ibiza adds to the likelihood of this tale and accounts for the Ibizan Hound being referred to at times as "Hannibal's dog." 

The Ibizan Hound has had several names through the centuries, and even today it is known by other names.  In Ibiza, they are called the Podenco Ibicenco, "the dog with the air of the a doe," and in other Balearic islands where the Catalan language is spoken they are called Ca Eivissenc. 

On the island, the dogs were used as hunters of rabbits and other small game.  The shortage of food on the island at one time made it necessary for the residence to have a dog of great stamina and keen hunting skills who would help in acquiring food.  The Ibizan Hound is renowned for these very traits.  They have a wonderful sense of hearing and hunt by sight, sound, and scent!  With food at such a premium, only the strong and skilled survived.  The virtual isolation of Ibiza kept the Ibizan Hound breeding sound and true for over 5,000 years!

It wasn't until 1956 that the first Ibizan Hound made it to America.  And in 1979, the Ibizan Hound affectionately known as "Beezers" became the 124th breed of dog registered with the American Kennel Club.

The AKC standard lists the color as white or red, solid or in any combination.  No color or pattern is preferred.  There are two types of coat, both untrimmed.  Short and wire-haired which can be from one to three inches in length with possible generous mustaches.  The size of the Ibizan Hound is from 23.5 inches to 27.5 inches for a male and 22.5 to 26 inches for a female.   

Ibizan Hound hunting videos:  Warning, rather graphic.  Not for the squeamish. 

Recommended Reading:

Interesting Information:

Since we are still fairly new to the breed, please see the following suggested web sites:

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