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Saluki (or Gazelle Hound)

 

Lithe and leggy, Salukis are the supermodels of the canine world. Their looks are legendary: this ancient breed can be traced back to the pyramids. Archaeologists have even found these dogs entombed with Egyptian royalty!

But this dog is more than just a pretty face and a gorgeous body. She's built for speed and long distances. The Saluki runs in a “double-suspension gallop,” where “all four feet are off the ground” at once. They also have larger hearts than most breeds, which helps them to cover long distances without tiring.

Originally from the Middle East, this medium-sized breed can grow to between 40-65 pounds and lives an average of 10-17 years. The breed is recognized by the American Kennel Club and classified as a member of the Hound group.

 

AKC RecognizedY
Breed's original pastimeCoursing
OriginMiddle east
Breed groupHound
Average lifespan10-17 years
SizeLarge
Bark factorModerate
AKC Ranking110
FamilySighthound
Date of originAncient times
Original function Coursing hares
Today's functionLure coursing
Average size of maleHeight: 23-28 Weight: 35-65
Average size of femaleHeight: 23-28 Weight: 35-65

 

Other nameNone
Energy level Low energy
Exercise needs Medium
Playfullness Moderately playful
Affection level Moderately affectionate
Friendliness toward other dogs Friendly
Friendliness toward other pets Friendly
Friendliness toward strangersShy
Ease of training Easy to train
Watchdog ability Low
Protection ability Not very protective
Grooming needs Low maintenance
Cold tolerance Low tolerance
Heat tolerance Medium tolerance

BEHAVIOR & TRAINING

WHAT IS A SALUKI'S PERSONALITY LIKE?

Salukis are gentle, dignified, and loyal. They'll do best if supervised while playing with children and other dogs. These elegant dogs are loving but not effusive; if you're looking for a cuddle-puppy, this is not the breed for you.

WHAT IS SALUKI BEHAVIOR LIKE?

She might look like she lives to sashay down the runway, but this athletic breed is no fainting, fragile beauty. The Saluki is a strong, swift, agile dog, built to run long and hard over difficult terrain. These graceful hounds need lots of space to stretch their legs; their prey drive and sighthound nature means that running should happen within a safely fenced area.

HOW EASY IS IT TO TRAIN A SALUKI?

As a breed, Salukis are dogs that know their own minds. You'll need to be patient and consistent with this hound. She'll appreciate the physical activity and mental stimulation provided by training.

Many Salukis compete in lure coursing and show rings. Their acute hunting instincts make Salukis an outstanding hunting breed, but a poor candidate for off-leash play.

CARE & HEALTH

HOW MUCH DO SALUKIS SHED AND WHAT ARE THEIR GROOMING NEEDS?

Whether feathered-coated or smooth, Salukis don't usually shed much compared to other dogs. Smooth Salukis require brushing and bathing only occasionally. Salukis with feathering on their ears and legs will require more frequent grooming to prevent mats and tangles and keep those locks clean.

WHAT HEALTH PROBLEMS DO SALUKIS HAVE?

As a breed, Salukis are generally healthy. Some are prone to eye disease or hip dysplasia while others have demonstrated hypothyroidism, cardiomyopathy, and hemangiosarcoma. They may also react poorly to barbituate anesthesia, so be sure to ask your vet about this if your Saluki has surgery.

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