The Saluki... is a marvel of
- Vita Sackville-West
Iroki Faridaat Kinyago
The Saluki is one of the
most ancient breeds of dog, and has remained virtually unchanged for
nearly 7,000 years. Originating in Mesopotamia, the Saluki has also been
called the Persian Greyhound or Persian Gazellehound.
Bred by the nomadic
Bedouin tribes, the Saluki uses his incredible eyesight to locate prey,
chase it down, and hold it for the hunter without killing it. He hunts in
a pack for hare, fox, wild ass, and gazelle.
The Saluki has great speed
and stamina enabling him to survive in the harsh desert environment.
Lithe, athletic, and graceful, the Saluki was highly prized by Bedouin
tribesmen. In Arabic, he is called "El Hor" or "The Noble One". He has also been called the Royal Dog of Egypt, and his remains
have been found buried with pharaohs.
Saluki males stand between 23 and 28 inches at the shoulder. They have
silky, short-haired coats that may be black and tan, tri-coloured, or white,
cream, fawn, golden, red, tan, or grizzle, with or without white markings.
There are two varieties of Saluki. The feathered Saluki has long hair on
the ears, thighs, and tail. The smooth variety has no feathering. Though
large, the Saluki is a modest eater.
Intelligent, independent, and aloof with
strangers, the Saluki is nevertheless a loyal and devoted family dog and
will not be happy if he is excluded from this group. As befits a regal,
aristocratic dog, the Saluki enjoys the finer things in life and takes
well to pampered domestication. The soft, gentle eyes of the Saluki are
far seeing. In fact, a Saluki can see clearly for at least a mile! Since
these dogs were bred to chase down small animals, cats and other household
pets may trigger their hunting instincts.
Early training and socialization are
important so they do not develop into excessively shy or cautious animals. Salukis are
proud animals but sensitive too. Harsh training methods are not
appropriate. In fact, training will likely require extra patience on the
part of the owner. Salukis consider themselves above the need to perform
silly tricks for your enjoyment!
Bred for high-speed hunting,
Salukis have bursts of speed of up to 40 mph. They require a lot of
exercise to build their strength and stamina. A high fence around a
good-sized yard is necessary so they can enjoy an unrestricted run.