CanaDogs logo: Canadian dog breeders

Did you know?

Domestic dogs can perceive images on television similarly to the way we do; they recognize onscreen images of animals as they would in real life—even animals they’ve never seen before—and they recognize TV dog sounds, like barking.

Silken Windhound

Dogs do speak, but only to those who know how to listen – Orhan Pamuk

Borzoi puppies CanaDogs

‘PR’ Hunter’s Run Charger

Silken Windhounds are a relatively new breed. They were created by American Borzoi breeder Francie Stull, who was looking for a smaller hound with a long silken coat and an affectionate and confident personality. Ms. Stull began her breeding program with her favourite Borzois and added Lurchers and Whippets to the bloodline.

By the time the breed had stabilized in the mid-1980s, the resulting dog was a medium-sized elegant sighthound, with an easy-care, long, silken coat equally at home in conformation shows and in the field. The first Silken Windhound litter was whelped in 1985. The name Silken Windhound became official in 1998 and the International Silken Windhound Society, the breed parent club, was founded in 1999. In 2011, Silken Windhounds were recognized by the United Kennel Club.

Silkens are now found in 24 countries around the world.

Photos displayed courtesy of Michèle Fink, Secret Haven, Ontario

Silken Windhounds are much smaller than their ancestor the Borzoi, standing between 18 1/2 and 23 1/2 inches (47 to 60 cm) tall at the shoulder. They have a moderately long, soft, and silky coat that may be straight, slightly wavy, or curly. Any colour or pattern is acceptable. Their overall appearance is one of grace, elegance and strength. They require little grooming and are naturally clean and tidy. 

Alert, friendly and intelligent, the Silken has a well balanced character. Possessing a friendly and playful disposition, they make excellent family pets who are good with children. They are gentle, affectionate, and devoted companion animals at home as they get along well with people and other dogs. They are happiest when sharing family activities and are normally quiet and well-behaved inside the home.

These animals are classified as sighthounds, bred to chase and catch game by sight. They exhibit a strong prey drive in the field and any small animal that runs may trigger this response. Bear this in mind if there are other pets in the house – especially cats.

Borzoi Adult Canada

Windnsatin Clouded Leopard

Borzoi CanaDogs

ISWS Ch/UKC GrCH ‘PR’ Hunter’s Run Charger

Like other sighthounds, Silken Windhounds need room to run and exercise daily. Possessing the poise and sporting abilities of the larger
sighthounds, these athletes move with a smooth, effortless trot and bursts of speed when required. 

Basic obedience training and socialization are recommended for all dogs. This is especially important for those who wish their dogs to perform as therapy dogs. Their calm, even temperament and love of people means they excel as pet therapy dogs. 

Their eager to please personality means they are perhaps more easily trained than some of their hound cousins! Silkens respond particularly well to rewards and affection and are best trained in short, positive sessions.

In addition to the show ring, Silken Windhounds can be found competing in lure coursing events, agility, and flyball

Silkens live to their middle or late teens.

Purina Hall of Fame CanaDogs