Other Names : Tazi, Baluchi Hound
Country of Origin : Afghanistan
Dog Group : Hound
The Afghan Hound is one of the most ancient of dogs, and legend states it was this breed that Noah took into the Ark. Whether or not this is true, the Afghan's pedigree is without a doubt pre-Christian. Northern African sight-hounds migrated into the mountains of Afghanistan and the hounds with the heaviest coats were used to breed from, thereby creating the Afghan. The breed then spread into the border areas and even into India where they assisted both hunters and shepherds. In Afghanistan, the breed is used to guard sheep and cattle, and to hunt deer, wolves, gazelles and foxes. The elegant, aristocratic Afghan was no pussycat, hunting leopards and panthers single-handedly to the kill. Originally export of this dog was prohibited and the first to arrive in England and the United States was at the turn of the 20th century. Captain Banff imported "Zardin" from Afghanistan around this time and he was first shown at the Crystal Palace Kennel Club Show in 1907, making a tremendous impact. The breed received Kennel Club status in Great Britain in 1926, but it took another ten years for its acceptance in the United States.
With their aristocratic appeal and supreme dignity, Afghans are one of the flashiest of dogs making them the top show-dog contenders. Their long silky coats, eastern expressions and commanding statures ensure they are noticed wherever they go. At all times, their heads are held high, showing their nobility and elevated self-esteem. It is a wonderful sight to see an Afghan in full flight, covering the ground with long, powerful strides, its long, silky coat flowing in the breeze.
Feeding & Ownership
Afghans can easily become finicky, spoiled eaters and a strict eating regime should be enforced when they are puppies, with no treats being given.
The breed has a tendency to be aloof with those they do not know but has great affection and loyalty for their owners. Despite this aloofness with strangers, they can be the greatest of clowns at playtime and are very much people-orientated dogs. Many are especially good with children, and love to be included in family matters both indoors and outdoors. The most important time for personality development is between the ages of 7 and 16 months, therefore proper socialisation during this time is imperative because of their sensitive natures. Afghans need plenty of social time or they can become introverted which, in turn, can be detrimental to their health.
As they lose their puppy coat, extra grooming is necessary to avoid the new coat matting with the old, which would cause discomfort. The older animal's coat should be groomed daily and bath given once a month. Frequent, fastidious combing is necessary to ensure the Afghan looks tidy and feels comfortable.