About the Project

Our aim is to monitor the overall health of Italian Greyhounds as a breed, and to work with owners and breeders to safeguard the ongoing good health of this beautiful breed for the future.

Background

Thankfully Italian Greyhounds are a relatively healthy breed and we aim to keep it that way.

Most live to around 12 – 14 years of age, although some live considerably longer. At present, there is no evidence in the UK to suggest that IGs are particularly prone to specific health problems but there are inevitably some health problems that occur within the breed.

Good breeders will always do their utmost to ensure that they breed from healthy IGs thus giving puppies the best start in life.

Registrations of Italian Greyhounds with the Kennel Club have more than doubled in the last decade – and these are births recorded for registered dogs only – many more Italian Greyhounds each year and not registered with the Kennel Club and therefore untraceable

Italian Greyhounds have grown in popularity over the last ten years with bloodlines coming into the breed from across the globe.  Therefore it is more important than ever to keep the breeds genetic health at the forefront of breeders’ minds to ensure the Italian Greyhounds future is bright.

Impact

The experience of owning a much loved dog and discovering that it has a genetic disease can be devastating.  It is not something we should just accept.  It is ethically wrong to breed dogs which will suffer unnecessarily in order to fulfill business interests or in pursuit of success in the show ring. 

How we work

The launch of the IG Active Health Project in 2018 started with a Breed Health Survey to give a current picture of the health of IGs in the UK. The survey and its findings are available on this website.

The findings allowed us to identify key recurring health issues that we are now prioritising for support to the IGs and their owners who are affected, as well as educating breeders to avoid breeding these health issues into future generations where possible.

Our work is ongoing and we plan to run a Breed Health Survey every two years to continue informing our action plan so we can update as existing initiatives as necessary and implement new ones to continue to safeguard the health of our breed.