An Introduction to the Saluki
One of the oldest known breeds of dogs, which has existed virtually
unchanged for many thousands of years, the Saluki was known by the Arabs as El Hor - the Noble One. Used for coursing gazelle, fox and hare, the aristocratic Saluki was held in such high esteem that he was never sold, only given away and then only to extremely worthy recipients. He was permitted to enjoy the choicest tidbits from the plate and the finest linen from the bed and even declared to be a sacred animal.
A gentle, dignified dog, the Saluki is somewhat aloof at first and does not quickly take to strangers. But once he attaches himself to a person, he does so for life. Affectionate without being overly demonstrative, the Saluki is nevertheless extremely devoted to his owner and family.
His beauty is that of the thoroughbred horse, displaying extreme grace and symmetry in his clean-cut lines. There are two varieties of Saluki which are similar in all respects except for the fact that the Smooth variety carries no feathering.
Colors can be white, cream, fawn, golden, red, grizzle,tan, tricolor(white, black and tan) and black and tan. However, many dogs are splotched and spotted in three colors and this is not a detriment. Dogs should average in height from 23-28 inches and bitches may be considerably smaller. This is typical of the breed. Coat is smooth and of a soft, silky texture. He is typically in the 50-65 lb. weight range.
He is normally an alert, active dog, clean and quiet. He is at home with all members of the family and as he is not naturally rough with people, will not submit to rough handling by a child. He also needs a fenced in yard, preferably 6' high. He can run at great speeds and loves to chase things.
The breed was officially recognized in America in 1927 by the AKC, with the Saluki Club of America being formed in July of the same year.
The Saluki can exist only in the homes or kennels of those who love and understand him. Anyone with the personality to live with a Saluki, once having had one, must always have one. To be fair to the breed and to its future owners , it must be strongly stressed that this is a rare breed for a very good reason. It takes a rare person to be able to live up to the Saluki standard of humans. If you qualify, the relationship is the greatest in the world of dog and man. If you don't ,find another breed less demanding.
Burch, Virginia, How to raise and Train a Saluki, TFH Publications, 1965.
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