Afghan Hound: Care & Characteristics of the Dog Breed

Afghan hound

The Afghan hound is a medium-sized, thin dog breed well-known for its show-worthy traits. It is distinguished by its long, silky hair. The majority of today's Afghan hounds are believed to have originated in Great Britain in the early 20th century, despite the breed having its origins in Afghanistan (where the breed name was Tazi). Afghan hounds are renowned for their independence, self-assurance, and gentle, relatively calm, and amusing attitude with people they feel familiar with in addition to their beautiful beauty.

Breed Overview

GROUP

HEIGHT: 25 to 27 inches at the shoulder

WEIGHT: About 50 to 60 pounds

COAT: Long, thick, and fine

COAT COLOR: Any color or combination of colors, including brindle and domino

LIFE SPAN: 12 to 14 years

TEMPERAMENT: Dignified, silly, aloof, happy, independent, quiet

HYPOALLERGENIC: Yes

ORIGIN: Afghanistan

Characteristics of the Afghan Hound

When an Afghan dog trots by with its head held high, long locks swinging, and royal carriage, it is difficult to overlook. This attractive breed has a strong sense of self-confidence, which comes with a little bit of independence and a strong will. This hound also has a tendency to be clumsy, lethargic, and a little ditzy when it wants to. This breed requires a soft but strong touch to guide its behavior since it is extremely sensitive to harsh instructions.

Affection Level Medium
Friendliness Medium
Kid-Friendly Medium
Pet-Friendly Medium
Exercise Needs High
Playfulness Medium
Energy Level Medium
Trainability Low
Intelligence Medium
Tendency to Bark Low
Amount of Shedding Medium

History of the Afghan Hound

The Afghan hound predates recorded history, making it difficult to pinpoint when it initially emerged. Nevertheless, one of the first descriptions of the breed was published in a sketch made by English soldier Thomas Duer Broughton in India in 1809. Afghan hounds are one of nine "basal" or ancient breeds, which means that their DNA is more closely connected to historical canines than to popular modern varieties.

Afghans originate from a variety of places in Afghanistan, and depending on where they are from, they have distinctly different coats and skin tones. Mountain-dwelling Afghan hounds have thick, black coats, whereas desert-dwelling Afghan hounds have lighter-colored, lower-volume coats. Humans have relied on them for generations as hunting partners because of their speed, fast and independent thinking, and panoramic vision, which are characteristics shared by all sighthounds.

The majority of today's Afghans are the product of English breeding attempts in the 1920s. The species was a favorite of British troops and nobility in the early 1900s, but during World War I, when resources were diverted and it was impossible to raise and care for companion animals, it almost became extinct. British military officials started transporting Afghan hounds to the West in the middle of the 1920s, and the American Kennel Club officially recognized the breed in 1927. (AKC). Afghan hounds had established themselves as staples of the show-dog and obedience circuits in America by the 1980s.

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Afghan Hound Care

Due to its vitality and lengthy hair, this breed requires a fair amount of exercise and maintenance. An Afghan hound will frequently be content to relax on the couch with its owners after having some time to romp around. Despite the fact that brushing is a requirement for this dog, the Afghan's coat is remarkably practically dander-free due to particles being caught in its hair, a lack of an undercoat, and some limited shedding. For these reasons, the breed is regarded as hypoallergenic.

Exercise

Afghans require around two hours of activity each day, which might include walking or running as well as pursuits that appeal to their inherent hunting instincts, such lure coursing. This breed enjoys swimming and hiking equally. A opportunity for the Afghan to run loose in a limited area once or twice each week is also advised.

Grooming

Grooming is a crucial component of an Afghan's care because of their lengthy coats. Although baths are only essential when absolutely necessary, its delicate and silky coat needs be combed often to avoid matting and tangles. In order to keep an Afghan hound's coat smooth and to minimize shedding, brush it several times each week.

Afghan hound grooming requirements are really simple, save from routine brushing. Regular dental care should be given, and nails should be clipped as necessary. Afghan hounds' long hair around their ears makes them more susceptible to ear infections, so it's important to keep their ears clean and examine them frequently for symptoms of irritation or infection. To stop it from falling into their food or accumulating germs in their ears, many Afghan dog owners tie their dog's hair up in a top knot.

Training

Afghan hounds are noted for their intelligence, yet they may also be distant and resistant to training. Most Afghan owners find that sticking to the fundamentals of home training is adequate, unless the purpose is to train for competition, obedience, or sport. Remember that even the best-trained Afghan hound may still defy commands to "stay" or "come" if they are on the hunt for prey because one of their strongest traits is their hunting drive.

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Common Health Problems

Like other purebred dogs, Afghans are susceptible to certain health issues, although not all members of the breed will develop them. In addition to providing health certifications demonstrating that a puppy's parents do not have any of the health issues common to the breed, a responsible breeder will be forthright and honest about any known health conditions affecting the line a puppy is bred from. Examples of such health conditions include:

  • Allergies: Skin allergies may cause itching
  • : Affects hip joint functions
  • Hypothyroidism: Thyroid gland does not make enough hormones causing problematic symptoms such as weight gain
  • Juvenile cataracts: Opacity of the eye lenses
  • : Skin disease caused by mites
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Diet and Nutrition

Like other dogs, Afghan hounds thrive on a diet high in protein-rich, high-quality food. Afghan adults should consume two meals per day, each consisting of roughly 2 to 2.5 cups of dry food, however dry food can be partially or completely substituted with wet food. Afghan puppies, old citizens, and those who are ill or injured have distinct nutritional requirements, therefore it's crucial to acquire specific instructions from a licensed veterinarian when figuring out their food. For adult Afghan hounds that are overweight, reduce food intake while increasing activity.

Where to Adopt or Buy an Afghan Hound

Afghan hounds may be the ideal breed for you if you can provide them with the extensive care and activity they require. Do your homework to fully understand what owning an Afghan hound entails, though. Contacting reliable Afghan hound breeders or Afghan hound rescue organizations will help you learn more.

  • Afghan Hound Club of America
  • Afghan breeder directory (U.S.)
  • Afghan Hound Club of America National Rescue (U.S.)

If you buy your Afghan from a breeder, expect to pay an average of $1,000 for this elegant dog. However, prestigious breeders may charge upwards of $2,500 to $5,000 for a show-worthy Afghan.

Afghan Hound Overview

Pros
  • Quiet breed, not a big barker

  • Sweet and gentle nature

  • Great chaser

Cons
  • Requires fair amount of grooming

  • Can be stubborn and has a tendency to be more self-directed

  • Long hair makes it prone to ear infections

More Dog Breeds and Further Research

Afghans are great dogs, but do some research on similar breeds to be sure. Breeds with a lot of the same characteristics include:

While every dog is different, you may learn a lot about a dog's potential personality traits by looking at their breed. Visit all of our other for additional details.

FAQ
  • Is an Afghan hound good for a first-time dog owner?

    As a result of its high maintenance and training requirements, this breed is sometimes discouraged for new dog owners. The Afghan has a more aloof disposition, which is contrary to what most new dog owners desire in their puppies. In fact, due of its independent and somewhat distant nature, this breed is frequently described as cat-like.

  • Is this breed good with children?

    Despite being calm and loving, this dog might not be the best choice for younger children because it is too aloof and not engaging or lively enough for toddlers. Younger kids could be curious and yank gleefully on the dog's long hair, which might overpower this enormous hound.

  • Can an Afghan hound live in an apartment?

    Even this enormous dog may be content to lounge and slumber in limited apartment quarters after it has been ran around if you have the time to exercise an Afghan to tire it out. Like most other dogs, it may get too exuberant and then destructive if left alone in a limited living space.

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