Saluki

Breed Details

Size:

Exercise Requirements:

Grooming Requirements:

Weight:

16-30 kg (approx)

Life Span:

10-15 years (approx)

Appearance

The Saluki is slighter, thinner, and somewhat more angular than the greyhound. Salukis' hipbones typically show as well as the last three ribs and a couple of vertebrae. The Saluki is built for both speed and endurance and is the long-distance runner of the sighthound family.

The wide range in styles is reflected in the range of acceptable heights: 23 to 28 inches for males, although most Saluki's today are nearer the top of the range.

Feathered Saluki's have long, silky hair on their ears, under their tail, between their toes, and sometimes on the backs of the limbs and under the throat, with the rest of the coat short and soft. Although most people consider the distinctive feathering pattern the hallmark of the breed, the Saluki also comes in a smooth variety, in which all the hair is short and sleek. All colours are allowed, and almost any colour can be found in the breed.

History

The Saluki is one of several breeds that can trace its roots back to the ancient Egyptians. It has been prized since ancient times for its ability in the hunt, running down gazelle, hare and other swift prey over hot desert sands, providing sport for kings and food for nomads. In a culture that considered dogs unclean, the Saluki alone was allowed to share the Bedouin tents and was dubbed "El Hor" ("the noble one").

Breeding with non-Salukis was strictly forbidden, a practice that allowed the Saluki to remain virtually unchanged for thousands of years, although it has always exhibited a wide variety of styles. Part of this variety arose from the wide distribution of the breed throughout the Middle East, with different tribes favouring dogs that were best adapted to hunt different game over different terrain. When the Saluki came to England in the early 1900s, breed fanciers made sure that the standard allowed for all the variation in the breed.

Temperament

The Saluki is decidedly a one-family dog, tending to be aloof, or even shy, with strangers. This is a devoted, but not particularly demonstrative, a breed that will relish sitting by your side, not on your lap. Salukis are quiet at home, extremely gentle with children and good with other dogs. They make adequate watchdogs, but miserable protection dogs.

Salukis must get a chance to run, and run hard, every day. Given this chance, they are moderately obedient, as long as they happen to want the same thing you want.

Care/Grooming

Upkeep for the feathered variety consists of brushing the long feathers a couple of times a week; otherwise, mats can form in the ears and between the toes where the hair also grows long.

Dogs with very long ear feathering may need to wear an ear stocking (snood) when eating to keep the ears out of the food. Feathered Saluki's are genetically long-coated dogs. Spayed Saluki's often grow long body hair that may need clipping to retain the Saluki appearance.

Breeders