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10 Dog Breeds that Begin with I

Ibizan Hound

Ibizan Hound on a grassy hill

The Ibizan Hound is a long-legged canine that has existed since the start of civilization itself. These purebred dogs were originally developed as a rabbit chaser in the Balearic Islands. They are excellent trackers and demonstrate remarkable agility and obedience in the field. Even today, Ibizan Hounds are used to hunt game in Spain.

Although they have a lot of energy, these pups can quickly adapt to apartment life. Just make sure that you don’t leave them alone for long periods. This is because Ibizan Hounds can get destructive when they are anxious. The use of dog toys is recommended to keep this breed distracted while you are away.

Icelandic Sheepdog

Icelandic Sheepdog standing in grass

This is the ONLY native dog breed of Iceland. Icelandic Sheepdogs were originally bred as herding dogs by Vikings, nearly 1000 years ago. They strikingly resemble foxes with their upright ears and angular heads. These Spitz-type dogs come in two variants, long-haired and short-haired.

Icelandic Sheepdogs can make excellent family companions if they are socialized early on in their lives. While they can adapt to apartment life fairly easily, this breed requires regular exercise to stay healthy and calm.

Indian Spitz

Closeup Portrait of an Indian Spitz

Indian Spitz is a high-spirited watchdog that is quite intelligent and playful. These canines are very obedient, loyal, and relatively easy to train. They come in two sizes, but even the smaller version has the personality of a large dog.

Indian Spitz are full of energy and are known to cause a lot of fuss if left unchecked. They tend to bark a lot and this behavioral problem should be curbed as early as possible. These dogs are very protective and often think that they are in charge. If you can handle the barking issue, this affectionate and caring dog can be a great addition to your family.

Irish Setter

Irish Setter on a rocky shoreline

The gundog breed is native to Ireland and has a reputation for staying quiet. Irish Setters do not make much noise, but they tend to bark a lot when alarmed. They may seem good guard dogs, but these pups are quite bad at that role because of their friendly nature. They are too friendly with humans, including strangers.

Irish Setters are sweet-tempered and love playing with children. Likewise, they do fine in apartments because they stay quiet most of the time. The only thing that you need to ensure is ample exercise. Due to their hunting background, Irish Setters require a lot of exercise to stay happy and content.

Irish Red and White Setter

Irish Red and White Setter portrait in tall grass

This medium-sized dog breed was primarily developed for hunting. These dogs are easy to train, but it takes them longer to learn new things. However, once trained, the Irish Red and White Setters become loyal and excellent hunters. Therefore, they are for patient owners who can give sufficient time to their pets.

 This breed was nearly driven to extinction as breeders were only breeding the all red variant. Currently, the situation is much better as more members of Irish Red and White Setter were bred. These pooches do not fare well in small apartments because they prefer to run a lot. If their physical needs are met, they are great companion dogs.

Irish Terrier

Irish Terrier standing in a low to the ground tree

The Irish Terrier is known by many names. Some call it the gentleman’s dog while others know it as the farmers’ friend. These hardy dogs are very easy to train and have a fiery temperament. The red coat of this breed suits its temperament perfectly.

Irish Terriers make great watchdogs and are excellent companions. Likewise, they can easily chase vermin away or even make quick work of them if necessary.

Irish Water Spaniel

Irish Water Spaniel laying in tall grass

Irish Water Spaniels are big dogs, but they are as playful and friendly as small toy dogs. These excellent swimmers love water and were often used to hunt game around rivers. Even today, the members of this breed retain their love for bird hunting. They can often be found watching the sky with watchful eyes.

Irish Water Spaniels have a coat that repels water. This helps them to stay dry and also keep the waterborne allergies at bay. Although they shed very rarely, their coats do require regular grooming to maintain their shiny appearance.

Irish Wolfhound

Irish Wolfhound sitting on a river bank in tall dead weeds

The Irish Wolfhound was initially used to drag men off chariots and horses in wars. Likewise, they were also used to hunt big game, like boars and wolves. Despite its historical background, this big dog is incredibly gentle and obedient.

The Irish Wolfhounds are the tallest dogs in the world. An Irish Wolfhound standing on its rear legs can grow up to 7 feet tall. It is believed that kings had entire armies of this breed in the 2nd and 4th centuries.

Istrian Shorthaired Hound

Istrian Shorthaired Hound standing in grass

The Istrian Shorthaired Hound is among the oldest dog breeds to live in the Balkan region. These canines are known for their superior hunting capabilities and an eager attitude. The history of this breed is not very clear because most of it is undocumented. However, it is believed that they were used centuries ago to hunt game, like foxes and rabbits.

The domestic Istrian Hound is a working dog that is not suited for apartment life. This is because they need large areas to run around in and they bark too much.

Italian Greyhound

Italian Greyhound in field of yellow flowers

This breed is similar to a regular Greyhound, in every regard, except for its size. The Italian Greyhound offers a great balance between strength, stamina, and determination. They are much more than just lapdogs.

These athletic pups have done reasonably well in dogs sports and are instinctive chasers of small game. It is often said that Italian Greyhounds were the choice of dog for noblewomen and jesters.

Jack Chi laying on red plaid blanket

11 Dog Breeds that Begin with J

Hokkaido jumping in grass

18 Dog breeds that Begin with H