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Volpino Italiano Temperament – and Lot’s More (Price, Puppies, Breeders)

Within most households, the Volpino Italiano temperament has a high probability of being a great fit. You see he’s intelligent, energetic, protective, loving and so darn cute that he’ll seem appealing to most potential dog owners.

But there are Volpino Italiano traits that might overwhelm some people such as his high-activity level. If you aren’t willing to put aside parts of your dog for entertaining him, he won’t make a good fit.

It’s understanding these parts of the Volpino Italiano temperament that’ll help determine if he’s a good fit for you. So please, keep reading and learn all the little details you need to make a responsible decision about getting one.

The Volpino Italiano Temperament and Personality

Highly Active

One of the traits most people don’t expect out the Volpino Italiano temperament is their high activity level. People often wrongly assume their small size means their energy will dissipate quite quickly, but this assumption couldn’t be further from the truth.

And if you don’t fulfill a Volpino Italiano exercise needs, he can become quite a nuisance. As a result, it becomes essential to satisfy his high-energy level in some way. It could be something like a couple of long walks every dag or extend playing sessions.

It doesn’t mean leaving him alone in the backyard for hours on end though: he’ll end up barking the entire time, and your neighbors will be knocking on your door soon enough. In most cases, owners find that games, which allow him to showcases his tricks work wonders.

But whatever you decide to do, you must ensure he at least 45 minutes of activity per day. Otherwise, he’ll start entertaining himself, which will consist of excessive barking as well as getting into your favorite things.


Another characteristic that you don’t want to underestimate within the Volpino Italiano temperament is his intelligence. He’s capable of learning various commands without much effort on the part of his owner.

He excel in numerous dog sports such as agility, obedience, rally or nose work. This intelligence also means he needs constant sources of mental stimulation or he might become bored.

As we all know, a bored dog is never a good thing and often leads to mischief; therefore, investing in puzzle toys could be a good idea for any potential Volpino Italiano owner. Experts also recommend that you keep evolving his training to keep him on his toes.

And you might want to change up his walking route every couple times out as well. This will ensure he becomes familiar with newer surroundings and provides him new challenges on his daily walks. In other words, keeping things interesting will do both you and him some good.


It might sound ridiculous given his size, but the Volpino Italiano temperament makes him useful as a guard dog. You see he loves his family and will do anything to protect them from harm, which gives him protective instincts.

These instincts often manifest through him being a little alarm system when a stranger approaches your home. He’s even known to bark when someone he doesn’t know approaches him on walks as well.

As you can imagine, this Volpino Italiano behavior can get quite annoying when you don't check it properly. It’s quite apparent that’ll you’ll need to teach him the quiet command as early as you possibly can.

If you don’t, he’ll bark at almost anything that enters your yard or makes a noise outside your apartment. This trait is one of the reasons he’s not an ideal fit for the apartment lifestyle.

Loving and Affectionate

One of the main Volpino Italiano traits that everyone seems to enjoy is his loving, affectionate personality. And this love isn’t just for one person like some other breeds; it’ll extend to every family member.

He can even get along with smaller children, but do monitor their interactions. The Volpino Italiano will show his discomfort when he feels uncomfortable, and it might result in a growl or snap.

He also has a fondness of other pets as long as they show him respect.

It also helps that he isn’t too clingy, which is often an issue for affectionate dogs. He does have a significant need for attention from his loved ones and can become mopey when ignored. With this in mind, he doesn’t represent a good fit for a person who’s going to be away a lot.


An undervalued part of the Volpino Italiano temperament is his pride. He won’t put up with disrespect from a person or animal that he sees as having a lower status. In other words, he has a little bit of a Napoleon complex.

For instance, when he first meets a smaller animal, he’ll try to assert his dominance over them. He’ll do the same with children as well. Given this information, these interactions must be monitored closely until it’s clear everyone knows their place.

A Quick Look at the Volpino Italiano History

The Volpino Italiano history is one that dates a bit farther back than your average dog breed. You see his origins seem to come from around the 15th century. People often think he’s the descendant of the numerous Spitz breeds found within Europe.

But even with this general thought, it's impossible to know his precise ancestry. Experts typically narrow down his DNA to having traces of various modern dog breeds: German Spitz, American Eskimo, and the Pomeranian.

Nonetheless, the peak of his breed's existence was when he was a favorite among both Italian royals and peasant farmers. His first adventure out of Italy was when immigrants brought him over to North America during the late 19th century.

He didn’t thrive in the new world at first, and his popularity significantly declined during the 20th century. It got so bad that he faced extinction; it was thought that there were only five purebred Volpino Italianos by 1965.

But a few breeders took upon themselves to bring him back, and his numbers started to rise in the 1980s. As a result, this popularity got him recognized by the United Kennel Club in 2006.

And Volpino Italiano breeders hope the breed’s continued rise will get him acknowledged by the American Kennel Club soon.

Understanding the Volpino Italiano Appearance

The Volpino Italiano size is on the small side and his physique is compact.

  • Volpino Italiano weight is 9 – 14 lbs.
  • Volpino Italiano Height is 9 -12 inches

Those numbers is what you’d expect from a cat, not a dog.

You'll also quickly notice that he has pointy ears and a sharp muzzle, which closely resembles a fox. The top of his muzzle also aligns with his nose as well, and it always has black coloring. But his head isn’t round by any stretch of the imagination as it’s almost wedge-shaped.

We should also mention that his coat will consist of incredibly long and thick hair, which shouldn’t ever wave or curl. This long hair will form a fringe on his tail. A thicker fringe formulation will appear on the back of his thighs, which people refer to as his skirts.

And lastly, the Volpino Italiano colors typically is solid white; however, sometimes he can have solid champagne or red coloring.

A Brief Guide to Volpino Italiano Training

Training a Volpino Italiano isn’t a hard thing to do as long as you approach it the right way. You’ll need to start training and socializing him as soon as possible: the earlier, the better. It’s also essential you understand that he can have an independent side, which might make training a little tricky.

But if you keep a firm and consistent hand, his independent side shouldn't give you many issues. This approach consists of setting rules, patience, and confidence about how strict you’re in enforcing the laws.

One thing you don’t want to do is be overly authoritative with him; it’ll only make training him much more difficult. It’s best to stick with positive reinforcement methods, which focus on praise and encouragement.

In most cases, he responses exceptionally well to a training regime that uses treats as the motivator. You see he tends to be unbelievably food motivated. It’s also imperative that the socialization process involves various environments, people, and animals.

It’ll ensure he ends up learning how to appropriately respond regardless of the circumstances surrounding him.

Helpful Dog Training Resource:

For help with training your Volpino Italiano dog, you should take a look at The Online Dog Trainer by Doggy Dan. Doggy Dan is an expert Dog Trainer based in New Zealand. His online resource contains Hundreds of Excellent Dog Training Videos that will take you step-by-step through the process of developing a healthy, happy well-behaved dog.

The Volpino Italiano Grooming Requirements

The Volpino Italiano does require a bit more maintenance than your average breed as he has a double coat. He’ll need weekly brushing to ensure the fur doesn’t mat, which can cause some serious issues when it does.

It’s also imperative that you understand that his coat sheds. This shedding will typically be seasonal and will require the brushing to increase during these times. You should invest in both a metal comb and a pin brush to ensure these brushing sessions do their job.

In some cases, you might find a de-matter, a slicker brush, and detangling spray as useful grooming tools as well. Another point of emphasis is the fur between his toes and pads as it needs weekly trimming.

The fur between his pads and toes tends to mat, which becomes a serious nuisance when unattended. Outside of these requirements, the rest of his grooming needs are basic care that you expect with any dog breed:

  • Brushing his teeth weekly
  • Trimming his nails monthly
  • Checking ears regularly for build ups

Relevant Volpino Italiano Health Issues

As one of the healthiest breeds, the Volpino Italiano lifespan is much longer than the average dog: 14 to 16 years.

Given this information, it’s no surprise that the number of conditions he’s prone to are rather low:

But this low proclivity to health issues doesn’t mean you can skip out on regular vet visits. Experts still recommend you visit your vet every six months for a checkup to ensure everything with your dog’s well.

You should also ensure that the puppy you end up getting has parents with up-to-date eye exams. This examination needs to be done by a veterinary ophthalmologist, and the breeder should have the certification.

Along the same lines, the puppy’s parents should have an examination done for patellar luxation as well. The results should be registered with the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA) and made readily available by the breeder.

Volpino Italiano puppies with parents that have both these certifications have a significantly less of chances of getting these conditions. If the breeder doesn’t have either of these certifications readily available, run away fast.

These requirements are the standard operating procedure for reputable breeders. And if they don’t have them, you can bet something isn’t right about their breeding practices.

Helpful Health Resource

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Finding Your Volpino Italiano

Volpino Italiano For Sale

If you’re looking to buy a Volpino Italiano, there are two places you should look at immediately: the Volpino Club of America/North American Volpino Club.  These clubs will direct you towards Volpino Italiano breeders within the United States or even foreign breeders.

But the best part about these clubs is you can take comfort in the breeders must follow strict guidelines. These organizations only associate themselves with reputable breeders that adhere to humane breeding practices.

The only issue it’s entirely possible there won’t be any litters available as this breed is rare. If this situation ends up happening, you can then move onto trying sites like Puppyfinder.com; however, these sites are bit more a gamble.

You see the breeders on these sites don’t have to follow any guidelines; therefore, it becomes much more likely you end up contacting a bad breeder. Due to this, it becomes necessary that you set up a meeting with the breeder before purchasing the puppy.

It’ll give you a chance to evaluate them and ask specific questions about the puppy’s family history. And since you don’t want to support awful breeding practices, you should be aware of some warning signs.

These signs include things like online payment via credit card, lack of necessary certifications, unsanitary breeding facilities, etc. If the breeder displays any of these signs, move onto a different one as quickly as humanly possible.

But if your breeder checks out, you can expect a Volpino Italiano puppy to cost anywhere from $600 to $800. This price could be higher or lower depending on factors like bloodlines, breeder, and medical issues.

Volpino Italiano For Adoption

Since the Volpino Italiano is a rare breed, you’ll have a hard time finding one in a rescue or shelter. It also doesn’t help that there isn’t an official Volpino Italiano rescue within the United States borders.

With this in mind, it’s going to tough finding one up for adoption. You should try your luck on sites like Adoptapet.com where they’ll list the closest available Volpino Italiano near you. And they’ll also provide you with the contact information of the organization holding him.

You could also try going down to your local shelter or humane society. It’s highly improbable one will be there; however, it doesn’t hurt to take a look. You can also give them your contact information to call when/if one does enter their facility.

If you do find one, make sure you ask several questions about the dog’s background. In other words, ensure you cover topics like previous situation, temperament, training, medical issues, etc.

All the answers you get will give you knowledge about how you can make the transition into your home smoother. It’ll also give you enough information to evaluate whether or not you represent the best fit for him.

If you think your household is a good fit, an adoptable Volpino Italiano price will range between $50 and $300. The cost will vary depending on things like medical expenses, rescue or shelter, and age.

Conclusion: Is the Volpino Italiano the Right Dog For You?

If you’re looking for a loving, energetic small dog, the Volpino Italiano temperament is probably a perfect fit. He’ll brighten up every day with an infectious personality that brings a sense of fun into any home.

But if you’re looking for a small dog that’s a couch potato, he isn’t for you. His high-activity level will drive you mad, and he’ll end ripping apart your favorite shoes. People living in apartments should avoid this breed as well; loud noises tend to activate his personality’s yapping side.