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Breed Priorities – The Italian Greyhound

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210 – February 2017

by Nikki Riggsbee

The Italian Greyhound is both a small hound and a toy dog. Both are important to breed type. Ideally, the IG should have both the diminutive size, fine bone, and elegance of the toy coupled with the S-curved, graceful outline of the Greyhound in miniature.

Seventeen breeder-judges were invited to take a survey on their breed’s priorities, and I was interested to see how the hound charac- teristics were valued compared to the toy char- acteristics. All said they would participate. By the deadline, twelve completed surveys were returned. The two focuses contended for im-
portance in the judges’ responses.

Some breeds have great numbers of breeder-judges. Others, like Italian Greyhounds, have fewer. The judges contributing to this survey av- eraged over 27 years in the breed and more than 14 years judging it. Many have judged IG specialties or the national or both. The IG Breed Standard is included at the end of the article.

Prioritizing Virtues

The breeder-judges were given a list of breed virtues from the AKC Italian Greyhound standard to prioritize, and their re- sponses were averaged. The following is the list of Italian Grey- hound characteristics in sequence by the breeder-judges’ average priorities, with 1 being the most important.

1. Ideal elegance and grace
2. Body medium length, short coupled
3. Action high stepping and free
4. Body high at withers
5. Neck long, slender, gracefully arched
5. (tie) Definite tuck-up
7. Chest deep and narrow
8. Shoulders long and sloping
9. Ears small, fine, thrown back or at right angle to head, and folded
10. Fine bone
10. (tie) Back drooping at hindquarters 12. Eyes dark, medium in size
12. (tie) Head narrow and long
14. Muzzle long and fine
15. Harefoot
16. Dark nose

Click here to read the complete article
210 – February 2017

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