Getting to Know You - Afghan Hound
If you’ve ever seen an Afghan Hound moving, you will have seen poetry in motion. From their flowing hair to their suspended gait, Afghan Hounds are pure elegance. They are one of the most ancient of breeds, dating back thousands of years, and hail from the Middle East. They are well adapted to the harsh living conditions of their native Afghanistan, with their long coat protecting them from the cold at high altitudes.
Their beautiful coats, which come in many colors, require a lot of grooming. A lot. If you want a wash-and-wear dog, this is not the breed for you. You must be prepared to spend a couple of hours every week washing, drying and detangling him. Otherwise, you’ll have a matted mess, and may have no choice other than to shave that beautiful coat right off. Furthermore, grooming an Afghan is challenging due to their low pain tolerance. A minor pull of the hair and they’ll be screaming bloody murder. But, if having a gorgeous dog sitting beside you on your couch in the evening is your heart’s desire, then the challenge of keeping them in show coat will be well worth it.
Afghan Hounds are tall, but not heavy dogs. A male adult Afghan Hound will measure approximately 27 inches and weigh around 60 pounds, while a female will be 23 inches and weigh 50 pounds. These sighthounds are fearless, large game hunters and, as such, have highly developed prey drives. They are also an athletic breed that need plenty of exercise in a secure area. No matter how well you train a recall, instinct is a powerful thing, so don’t expect them to come when called once they’ve started giving chase.
Intelligent and aloof, Afghans have been described as a cat in a dog’s body. They are affectionate, goofy and mischievous dogs known for stealing anything within their reach. And, believe you me, everything is within their reach. They are thinkers with an independent nature and, while they do bond with their masters, they have no particular desire to please them. It is this independent nature, along with that well developed prey drive that makes training an Afghan Hound a challenge. If you’re looking for an easy to train dog, that will be at your beck and call, keep looking. But if you want a loving companion who is a clown at heart, then the Afghan Hound may be the dog for you.
If you enjoy Christina's writing, check her books out! She is the author of “Chester Gigolo: Diary of a Dog Star” and "Insider Training: Chester Gigolo’s Dog Training Secrets Revealed” for which she won the 2016 DWAA Captain Haggerty award for Best Training Book and the 11th Annual National Indie Excellence Award (Animals & Pets). She is also a contributing author to “Animal Stars: Behind the Scenes with Your Favorite Animal Actors”. She has written multiple articles which have appeared in various international publications.