The 60 cm (2 ft) long creature is one of the oldest rodents known. It resembled a mouse and already had characteristic rodent incisors. Ischyromys's hind legs were longer than the forelegs, which could be used for other means than walking. Unlike most other mammals of its time, Ischyromys was probably arboreal (along with its relative Paramys). It was a well-adapted climber that gradually beat out competition from rodent-like arboreal plesiadapiform primates.