Species group: Hound Group dogs
Other name(s): Afghan; Affie; Sage Baluchi; Tazhi Spai; De Kochyano Spai; Tazi; Ogar Afgan; Afghanische Windhun
The Afghan Hound is an elegant aristocrat that might be easier to manage if you happen to have a staff and a large estate. The American Kennel Club (AKC) points out that this ancient breed was developed to chase a variety of challenging prey-- including jackals, wolves, and snow leopards-- often at high altitude: "Because of the variety of game hunted and the diversity of the geography, the Afghan Hound's most desirable traits were being sure-footed and agile to work the rugged terrain, strength and speed to bring down prey, plus the stamina to maintain a strenuous chase for a sustained length of time."
For the pet owner, that means you'll need to have time, space, and energy to exercise your dog. It also means that the personality is somewhat variable and independent. Some Afghans are standoffish, some are silly and playful, and some may be a little stubborn. The same ability to pick up on quick cues that made them a great member of hunting teams including humans, falcons, and other hounds will also make them somewhat sensitive. You'll need to bring your best dog psychology to train your pet with love and a focus on positive rewards.
And there are a couple of quirks you probably can't train away. This dog may not be able to resist chasing smaller pets, so think carefully before bringing them into the multi-pet home. And, finally, how much time do you have to spend brushing out that beautiful coat?
Appearance / health:
Within the breed there are two styles, one originating from a desert region and one originating from a mountainous region. The main differences between the two types are hair length (longer in the mountain variety and patterned in the desert hound), height (taller in the mountain variety), and build (more muscular in the mountain variety).
General breed characteristics show the dog as tall and thin with a refined head, silky topknot, strong jaws and big feet. Dark almond shaped eyes sparkle from the face, and the ears lie flat to the head. Other distinguishing characteristics include prominent hipbones and a ring at the end of its tail.
The Afghan Hounds’ ears have such long hair that at times it will get in their mouths when they eat. There is a simple cloth device called a “snood” that helps keep their ears in place while eating.
Though the traditional long coat requires daily grooming, the Afghan Hound is actually an average shedder. Brushing the dog’s dry coat can cause fur damage, which can lead to matting. Bathing the Afghan is recommended weekly and air-cushioned brushes or pin brushes are useful for grooming.
This breed needs much exercise, which can be achieved through games, long walks, hikes and runs.
Afghan Hounds have a particularly low pain threshold, meaning that even minor injuries will affect them more that might be expected otherwise. Typical health issues include cataracts and progressive paralytic diseases, hip dysplasia, hypothyroidism and other eye issues. They are known to be allergic to the chemicals on flea collars and in applications for flea and tick control.
Behavior / temperament:
With an independent streak and much energy, this dog is a great athlete. Originally bred to run down prey including the gazelle, wolves and snow leopards, they are known to show dominant behavior and thus need a dominant owner. For these reasons and others, this breed is not appropriate for the novice dog owner who may not have time to keep their Afghan appropriately socialized or trained.
Generally the Afghan Hound is considered aloof, dignified, affectionate, sweet and to have a sensitive temperament. They are also described as reserved, lively, noble, courageous, and suspicious of strangers. They are sometimes disobedient if not properly trained and have at times been seen as timid and high strung.
Afghan pups aren’t typically easy to train, but this will depend on your particular dog. They can and will be trained, however it has been known to be challenging. When training any Afghan Hound, patience, gentleness, and a good sense of humor are required.
Afghan Hounds can be noisy - this trait seems to vary from dog to dog.
incredible gold hair, extreme clowns, posh dog, elegant hound, majestic appearance
dysplasia, secured fenced area, good brush, high maintenance breed, constant care, nervousness
luxurious coat, tall breed, truly majestic appearance
My husband and I were friends with another young couple in Boston, and they had a beautiful, black Afghan Hound named Clyde. Clyde was elegant, quiet and friendly- a perfect dog for a city brownstone apartment. Once, we visited with our two-month-old son and, when he fell asleep, we put him in the middle of our friends' bed. We had dinner in the next room, and when I went in to check, there was Clyde, curled up on one side of my son, keeping him safe. My husband and I decided that an Afghan Hound would be a good family dog for us.
We got a female Afghan Hound from a local breeder and, of course, had to name her Bonnie to go with their Clyde. Bonnie was an apricot, long-haired beauty, graceful, prancing as she walked or ran, and was full of energy. She loved her walks and runs around the yard, and we loved watching her move. She slept at the end of our bed, and sometimes tried to sneak in between us, stretching out her long legs and pushing either me or my husband to the edge of the bed. Bonnie was gentle with our son, careful to not knock him over, and was a stranger to no one who visited.
One hot summer we decided to keep Bonnie cool, and cut her hair short all over, with small tufts on her head and feet. She looked sweet, but after we cut her hair she slunk around the corners, as if embarrassed, for a few days until she got used to her new "look". Then the prancing, happy dog came back to us. Of course, her hair grew back by winter, and she was her elegant self again.
We had taken care of two male Afghan Hounds for a few months before we got Bonnie, and they were wild ones who leapt our six-foot fence and took off to the woods. They required a lot of watching and chasing, but Bonnie had a wonderful temperament. She was content to be with us, followed me around during the days, welcomed my husband home after work, slept under the table while we ate dinner, and curled up with us for the evening while we read or watched tv. I would call her the perfect family dog, and she was certainly the Bonnie to our friends' sweet Clyde.
Photo: "Afghan Hound" by Sannse at the English language Wikipedia. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons - https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Afghan_Hound.jpg#/media/File:Afghan_Hound.jpg.
From IoneLove55 Mar 16 2015 1:47PM
Easy dosing with liquid form in small dogs
I use a lot of Metacam liquid for arthritis pain in my small patients. It tastes good, and can be given over food or directly by mouth. Won't be effective for all patients, and potential GI upset, careful with compromised kidneys/livers etc. Overall, a good medication. I use the generic Meloxicam tablets for large dog patients, a very inexpensive NSAID for these patients with arthritis pain..
From Angela Dwyer DVM yesterday
The importance of socialization
As it is for us human beings, socializing in the early stages of our lives is extremely important for our growth and self esteem. The most important thing is to make sure that your puppy has had enough socialization and to ensure that it wasn’t taken away too soon from his litter. Often puppies, especially when for sale, are taken away from their mother and siblings way too soon. If this is not your case and your puppy was brought up following the right guidelines, make sure to provide him with the right amount of socialization time. One of the most effective ways to do so is to take him to a puppy day care. Here your puppy will be followed and looked after by a team of experts and dog trainers. Depending on the set up and environment of the day care, I recommend a minimum age of 3 months when you first bring your puppy to day care. Very important is to take it easy at the beginning: once or twice a week, for the first month at least, should be enough for your puppy, in order to give him time to adapt and get used to the day care. Most puppies will love it and they will learn from other dogs, with help of the trainers, with regard to how to behave, play and have fun. .
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