If you’re looking for a small dog with a big personality, then an Italian Greyhound Chihuahua mix might be the right choice for you. Also known as the Italian Greyhuahua, let’s take a look at what they’re made of!
A Little Bit About Greyhounds
Sighthounds are some of the oldest breeds of dogs, traced right back to Ancient Egypt where they were owned by the Pharaohs and worshipped as gods.
‘Sighthound’ is the term commonly used for dogs who hunt on sight as opposed to most dogs that use smell.
Their slim bodies and legs make them aerodynamic enough to catch prey by chasing them down from the time that they see it.
Greyhounds are by far the most popular sighthounds as pets.
Their sighthound body makes them excellent racers, which is what they’re most famous for.
However, they typically retire at around 3 years old. After that, they become cuddly bundles of love that enjoy quiet nights on the sofa with their family.
Greyhounds work perfectly for families with children as they’re known to be very gentle and considerate.
They’re also very protective of their family and will follow you around everywhere just to make sure you’re okay.
Italian Greyhounds are a relatively modern breed created by reducing the size of other sighthound breeds over time.
Although they still have the sighthound prey drive and stamina, they are better suited to being lapdogs.
Their smaller size also means that they make great apartment pets, and they don’t need quite as much exercise as larger breeds.
Their smaller size also means that they can be mixed with Chihuahuas to make a Chihuahua Greyhound crossbreed.
A Little Bit About Chihuahuas
Chihuahuas are known for being the smallest of the dog breeds, but with one of the largest personalities. They know what they want and will tell you so.
The breed originated in Mexico and dates all the way back to 100 AD.
The Mexican tribes used them as sacrifices in burial rituals in the hope that they could be spirit guides to take the soul to the afterlife.
Today, they are bred as lap dogs and are now judged in shows in the Toy category.
Their coats and colors are so varied, from long-haired, wire-haired, and smooth-haired in every different style and color imaginable.
This has made them a fashion accessory among celebrities in more recent years.
Despite their bold personality, they love people, and cuddling up on the sofa is their favorite pastime.
They’re an excellent dog for novice dog owners, as they have minimal grooming requirements and are perfect for apartment living because of their small size.
Their exercise requirement is also minimal because they’re so small, so they’re the ideal pet for people who are a little less outdoorsy.
Italian Greyhound Chihuahua Mix
Italian Greyhuahuas came into being in the early 2000s, so there isn’t a lot of history there. However, we do know that they make great pets as they’re very protective over the family. They are also known to be calm and considerate around children.
Note: They do need to be socialized at an early age with other dogs otherwise they can become quite territorial.
Although Chihuahua Greyhound mixes are known to be loving and friendly dogs, they do get very attached to specific people.
They take this trait from their Greyhound side. Greyhounds are fiercely protective of their family and tend to follow them around everywhere.
The stubborn and often demanding personalities of the Chihuahua merge with this to create a dog that takes a while to warm up to strangers.
For this reason, it’s incredibly important to train them as early as possible and reinforce the training whenever you can.
Because of the Italian Greyhuahua’s small frame and tiny legs, they don’t really need that much in the way of exercise, although they do still need some.
It’s recommended to take them on 2-3 short walks per day to allow them to go to the toilet and stretch their legs.
Both Italian Greyhounds and Chihuahuas are on the smaller side of dog breeds. This means that you’re likely to have a very small dog by breeding the pair.
Typically, Italian Greyhuahuas are up to 14 inches tall at the shoulder and can reach around 15 lbs.
This makes them a great fit for smaller homes or homes without outdoor space.
Coat & Color
Chihuahua Greyhound mixes are one of the most varied mixed breeds when it comes to appearance.
Italian Greyhounds have a very fine, short coat to keep them streamlined when running.
Chihuahuas’ coats on the other hand varies in length, texture, and color, so your Greyhuahua’s coat will entirely depend on the parents.
Their colors are often mixed, and it’s rare to get an Italian Greyhuahua with a single-color palette.
The length and coarseness of the fur are also very unpredictable.
However, we do know that both Italian Greyhounds and Chihuahuas have straight coats rather than curly or wavy fur. This guarantees that your new pup’s coat will be straight in appearance.
It’s advisable to take a look at both parents (if that’s something that really matters to you). However the truth is, you can never be certain.
Because they’re such small dogs though, it’s advisable that, whatever their coat length, you wrap your Italian Greyhound Chihuahua mix up in winter to stop them getting cold.
You should also brush your Chihuahua Greyhound mix at least once a week, or twice if they have longer fur.
Common Health Issues
The Italian Greyhuahua’s tiny bodies look cute, but unfortunately, they are prone to quite a few health issues:
Chihuahuas are prone to epilepsy from birth. This can be controlled with medication.
The seizures that they have are not as noticeable as human seizures. You might notice them staring into the distance, unable to move with glazed-over eyes.
This can sound and look quite daunting, but there isn’t much fatal danger in dog seizures except in particular cases.
Chihuahua Greyhound mixes’ hearts are so tiny, that they can be prone to murmurs if they beat a little too quickly.
This can be a birth defect or down to ill health elsewhere in the body. Medication can help to control it, but a good diet and careful exercise program will need to be stuck to rigidly.
Patellar Luxation essentially means your dog’s kneecaps are displaced. This can happen from birth, as a birth defect, or could be developed over time.
You’ll notice this if your Italian Greyhound Chihuahua mix is struggling to walk or seems to be in pain when walking. This can be treated through surgery but may never be completely normal.
Your Greyhound Chihuahua’s tiny lungs and windpipe can make over-exercise and eating dangerous if you’re not careful.
Obstructions in their windpipe can quickly cause pain unfortunately. This would make it difficult for your dog to breathe, and can even be fatal if not handled properly.
You should always feed small dogs in small manageable amounts – sometimes wet food is the better option.
Overall, Italian Greyhuahuas make great little pets, especially if you don’t have a large home.
They do have personalities that are larger than their bodies, and some health problems. You’ll need to ensure you keep a strict diet and training regime to keep them happy and healthy.