The Saluki, also called the Gazelle Hound, Arabian Hound, or Persian Greyhound, is native to the area from eastern Turkestan to Turkey.
It is believed that the Saluki is closely related to the Afghan Hound, which is another ancient breed.
The Saluki is the royal dog of Egypt, and perhaps one of the oldest domesticated dogs known to man. It was named after the Arabian city "Saluki" in the Middle East, which no longer exists today. Their bodies were often found mummified alongside the bodies of the Pharaohs themselves, and their pictures appear in ancient Egyptian tombs dating from 2100 BC. The Muslims considered them a sacred gift of Allah, and they were never sold but only offered as gifts of friendship or honor.
Salukis with a patch of white in the middle of the forehead are thought by Bedouin tribes to have "the kiss of Allah" and are regarded as special. Incredibly fast even over rough terrain, this desert sight hunter was used by the Arabs to hunt gazelle, the fastest of the antelopes, along with fox, jackal and hare.
They have also been successful as racing dogs.
• Gentle, friendly, even-tempered and extremely devoted.
• Aloof, sometimes even with it's own family.
• Prefer to partner with one person.
• Good with children who do not roughhouse them.
• Sensitive, they do not take kindly to harsh discipline.
• Calm, gentle, consistent training works best with these, and all breeds.
• Fairly submissive by nature.
• Easily distracted.
• Does well with other salukis.
• Not aggressive with other people, but their natural instinct is to chase and kill other smaller animals.
• May not be great with other small pets in the family. They have a strong hunting instinct..
• Will get along with the family cat if socialized with them from puppyhood.
• Prone to some eye diseases and cancer.
• Can sunburn, especially on the nose.
• Not recommended for apartment life. They do best with acreage.
• This breed needs to live Indoors, never outdoors. Cannot withstand cold temperatures.
The Saluki's appearance is quite distinct. The breed is slim, much like a greyhound with long, feathering in several places, including its tail and ears.
The Saluki is known for its even-temper, but sensitive nature. They can be rather gentle and affectionate, but they are not overly demonstrative. Known as very loyal, this particular breed tends to become attached to one person. They can, however, endure themselves to an entire family rather easily. Salukis are not impossible to train, but they are never considered perfectly disciplined.
Natural born hunters, the Saluki have been used on the hunt for ages. Arabs have long used the breed to hunt gazelle. The dogs are known for their incredible speeds, endurance and rather unusual gait. When running at full tilt, they carry all four legs off the ground at the same time.
Although considered a good companion dog, the Saluki is typically not thought to be good for apartment living. They need room to roam and run. They tend to be rather docile inside, but are alert. They make good watchdogs, but not guard dogs. It is sometimes recommended that Saluki not be introduced into homes with dogs other than other Saluki. Small pets, such as hamsters, rabbits and guinea pigs do not fare well with a Saluki in the house. Cats tend to hold their own.
The Saluki is considered a high maintenance breed on the love, affection and training end, but rather easy on the grooming. They are fairly clean and do not shed very much. Simple brushing or combing and bathing as needed tends to work extremely well.
With a long, regal history and an appearance that is rather distinct, the Saluki has been a favorite breed of many for centuries. Natural born hunters with a beautiful multi-colored coat in many cases, this breed is considered to be a gift from Allah by the Arabs.
Intelligent, even-tempered and rather sensitive, the Saluki is known as a good companion dog. It does tend to attach itself to a single person, but can get along well with an entire family.
Known for its almost regal attitude, the Saluki can seem aloof to some. For those who love a dog that will remain rather calm while indoors, the Saluki is ideal after proper training. They are known for being very gentle indoors, but fast and agile outdoors. Their natural endurance and speed make the breed ideal for hunting. Salukis are very good watchdogs, who will quickly warn of an intruder. They are not known for being overly aggressive with people, however, and typically will not attack.
Salukis are considered quite trainable, but they do require a gentle, firm hand especially in the puppy stage. If young Salukis are not properly trained and socialized, a well-adjusted adult cannot be expected. They require human affection and activity to ensure acts of defiance are kept at a minimum. Boredom can lead to destruction of shoes, furniture and more-especially with puppies.
The natural hunting instincts the Saluki display are quite strong. It is for this reason the breed is considered a bit defiant on training. It is nearly impossible to train the hunting instinct out of the dog, but most owners do not wish to do that anyway.
It is very strongly recommended Salukis be housed in homes with fenced in yards and not be allowed to run off a leash in unsafe areas. If a Saluki gets loose to chase a small animal, getting it to come back can be rather difficult, if not impossible, until they manage to catch and kill the object of their attention.
Salukis are considered acceptable in homes with children. It is, however, suggested the children be older and well behaved. Salukis do not withstand rough play very well.
The Saluki is known for its smooth, silky coat. It tends to be one of the easier breeds to keep properly groomed for this reason. The Saluki needs a full brushing or combing in the feathery areas only about once or twice a week. The smooth-coated variety only really requires a rubdown for proper care. On the shedding scale, the Saluki tends to be very house-friendly. They shed very little.
Salukis are loved for their virtually odor-free coats. They only require minimal grooming care. It is smart, however, to at least carefully inspect a dog's coat, ears, eyes and feet at least once a week.
Bathing Salukis need only take place as needed. They do not need a regular bathing routine. It is best to wait for them to feel or look like they need it to avoid drying out their skin. It is also wise to keep them out of prolonged sun exposure. Their snouts are prone to burns.
When bathing Salukis, select a shampoo that has been created for dogs. Many dog owners opt for human shampoos because of their smells, but these are not right for a dog's sensitive skin.
Since Salukis tend to run a lot, they might not require nail care beyond weekly inspections for breaks or other problems. If they are not run on hard surfaces, however, the nails might need to be clipped from time to time.
With a fairly smooth coat, the Saluki is a very easy breed to groom. Beyond the ears and other feather points, rubdowns or combing is typically all that is needed to keep them looking beautifully regal.
The Saluki requires a lot of exercise. They are natural-born runners that enjoy the thrill of the chase as much as they love a successful hunt. With top speeds of up to 40 miles per hour, the Saluki is not a breed that should be left unattended, or unleashed, in unsafe areas.
Salukis are known for completely ignoring owner and handler calls when they are in pursuit of prey. With this in mind, many owners make sure their Salukis are never left off a leash when outside of fenced-in areas. Fences, by the way, need to be at least five feet high, as these dogs are quite good jumpers, as well. It is very important to make sure Salukis don't get out of an owner's control. Those who escape are in danger of getting lost or getting into accidents.
At least two good, long walks (runs) a day is the minimum requirement for Saluki exercise in most cases. They tend to enjoy hunt training and agility training, as well.
Backyard play can involve agility exercises with running included. This can serve well to get them out and properly exercised when a full-tilt run isn't practical. Many Saluki owners ride their bicycles alongside their dogs (on the leash) to allow for a good run for the dog. These canines can easily out run and even outlast most people, so they might try to take the lead if owners attempt to run with them.
Salukis also do incredibly well with lure coursing. They simply love to exercise their legs, gain top speed and chase. When these three things are combined into exercise, they are truly their happiest.
Salukis tend to be very docile and fairly well behaved indoors. Outside, however, they like to run, really like to run. Owners who provide plenty of opportunity for this find they have happy dogs.
Salukis are thought to be very intelligent and quite trainable-to a point. This very spirited breed will respond quite well to obedience training in controlled situations. In open fields, however, they will very typically not respond to their handler's calls at all. This is especially the case if they have their sights set on a small animal.
With incredibly adept natural hunting skills, these dogs are often considered civilized, but quite defiant in certain circumstances. It is nearly impossible, if not completely undesirable, to try and train the hunting instincts out of this breed.
Puppies must be trained and socialized early. They are subject to fits of defiance and destruction if they are not given proper amounts of exercise and affection. If they are trained and exercised, however, they are practically perfect while indoors.
Salukis respond very well to endurance training and love lure coursing. They are also readily suited for tracking and other hunting-related activities. They exceed in most activities that rely on their natural speed, endurance and hunting abilities.
Salukis do require a lot of reinforcement and firm guidance to train. Defiance will still likely be present in the most highly trained members of this breed, however, but typically only in outdoor, unleashed situations. They do not respond well to harsh training measures.
The Saluki is considered a very healthy breed overall. There are a few potential medical conditions that might be a concern. The appearance of these is known for the breed, but not highly common.
Eye problems: They are subject to some genetic eye conditions.
Sunburn: Salukis can and do sunburn.
This is of particular concern on their long, tapered noses. Care should be exercised to protect them from too much exposure. This is one of the reasons why they are recommended for indoor living and outdoor playing.