Did you know?
The first dog to be cloned was an Afghan Hound. “Snuppy” was born in 2005 and created using a cell from an ear from an adult Afghan Hound.
If a [person] be great even his dog will wear a proud look. – Mohandas Gandhi
Although the Afghan Hound was ‘discovered’ in Afghanistan, he is believed to have originated in Arabia and Persia. An ancient member of the greyhound family, the Afghan developed his long coat to adapt to the harsh climate of Afghanistan.
This dog exudes dignity and aloofness and is perhaps the aristocrat of the dog world. A proud animal with an exotic expression that marks him as nobility has been his hallmark since the days of the ancients.
Don’t be fooled by his glamorous exterior – this dog is an athlete, originally bred to run down the gazelle and other prey such as deer, antelope, wolves, and snow leopards. Swift and agile, the Afghan is capable of covering rocky terrain with ease.
In the late 1800s, British soldiers in Afghanistan found the breed and brought it back to England where it was first shown as the “Oriental Greyhound”.
Photos displayed courtesy of Doug and Avery Gaudin, Obiwan, Ontario
The Afghan Hound stands up to 28 inches (72 cm) tall at the shoulder and weighs about 60 pounds (27 kg). Perhaps his most remarkable feature is his abundant, flowing coat. The Afghan’s coat is fine, long, straight and silky. The coat may be any color but be prepared – it requires hours of grooming each week to keep it in top shape.
Like many other hounds, the Afghan is aloof and may appear standoffish. Although reserved in temperament, he is also lively, active, and can be mischievous. He bonds well with his family but is best in a household with older children. Afghans are sight hounds, bred to chase and catch game by sight; any small animal that runs may trigger this response. This is especially true with cats. Bear this in mind if there are other pets in the house. A dignified aristocrat, he is an independent thinker. Boredom can be the cause of some destructive behaviour. Attention and exercise can often help alleviate the problem.
Alert and agile, and possessing a high activity level, the Afghan needs lots of outdoor exercise. You should count on a minimum of 30 minutes to one hour per day. He should have a well fenced area to run around in.
Remember, he is a far-seeing dog who will take off after anything that catches his interest. Lure coursing and agility are good sports for Afghans. However active he may be, an Afghan will adapt quite well to the life of a couch potato.
Characteristically independent, training may be a challenge. Start early! His stubborn streak and low boredom threshold will try your patience. Consistency is the key. Harsh training methods will only discourage him.