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Afghan Dogs

Updated on September 14, 2013

Afghan Hound: Swift Hound

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Swift Hound


The Afghan hound is a fleet-footed dog whose progenitors might be from ancient Egypt, but Encyclopedia Britannica in Facts Matter states there isn't any proof for that assertion.

According to the Columbia Encyclopedia, the Afghan Hound dog made it to England post World War I from Afghanistan because British military officers brought them back to Britain. Britannica says they came back with the military after the Indian-Afghan border wars that occurred in the latter 19th century.

In her article "Afghan Hound" Sharon Pflaumer discusses the two kinds of Afghan dogs the British saw. A quote from her article follows below.

"Two primary Afghan Hound types were bred when the breed was first sighted by the British military during the Indian-Afghanistan border wars in the late 1800s: the mountain or Ghazni type, and the desert or Bell Murray type. The former was a darker, shorter, stocky dog with lots of coat, while the latter was a lighter, finer-boned dog with a sparser coat."


Hip Bones Make Them Fleet-footed

Their hipbones are further apart and stand higher than the majority of other dog breeds. Thus, Afghan hound dogs are extremely fast; they take on craggy, bumpy terrain with ease. They are long-haired sight hounds meaning they hunt using sight and swiftness. The unusual hips help them to be great hunters; they can easily race up and across mountains, catching up with leopards and gazelles. They also hunt hare, deer, snow leopards, wolves, jackals, and antelope. The hunter rides his horse following the quick Afghan Hound.

The bred was developed to course its prey. They are adept at flushing birds too for a falcon or the hunter's weapon. Afghan dogs hunted in braces or in pairs. If pairs were used the male polished off the prey, and the female compassed it distracting the deer or antelope so the male could attack

Physical Characteristics Of Afghan Hounds

Afghan hound dogs are tall reaching to 25 to 27 inches in height. They weigh about 50 to 60 pounds. The long coat is like silk. The ears flop. The long and thin tail shoots upward and curves. The head is slender, long and sports a silky topknot.

Afghan Hound Temperament

Afghans are smart.They are somewhat harder to train compared to other dogs because they have an aloof attitude, and they are so independent. None-the-less, they are surprisingly sensitive. But a trainer with a caring and patient way can win this breed's faithfulness and affection, though the Afghan Hound dog isn't extremely demonstrative, until it wants to be affectionate.

When Afghan hounds are playing, they may ignore their master's call and other commands. The personality of the Afghan can be timid and might be excitable.


The Afghan requires regular excercise and isn't suited to living in an apartment. The breed needs a yard and a high fence. A daily run is preferable, but a walk is okay.


The gait is is springy, elastic, and like a gallop.


Their thick and silky fur needs combing and brushing every day or two. Matting is a big problem. The owner should have the dog clipped regularly, if he doesn't have the time or inclination to do excessive grooming by himself.

Dogs whose fur is clipped short still need a bath and blowing dry to stop matting. The routine is at two week intervals.

AKC Colors

The colors accepted by the AKC are black, tan, red, apricot-cream, brindle, and silver-cream.


"Afghan hound". Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica Online.
Encyclopædia Britannica Inc., 2012. Web. 08 Nov. 2012

"Afghan hound." Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th Edition, 11/1/2011, p. 1, 1p,

Pflaumer, Sharon. "Afghan Hound." Dog World. Jun.2002: Vol. 87 Issue 6, p30,


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