Meet the Breed: Afghan Hound
Known for their enviable locks, Afghan Hounds are one of the oldest dog breeds around, and some insist that they’re in fact the oldest. It wouldn’t be surprising considering their aristocratic charm and dignified character. Read on to find out what else this elegant beauty has to offer!
Photo by Arve Kern
The most notable characteristic of this regal breed is their long, flowing hair. While their silky hair is often thought to be a light to golden brown, coats can also be dirty blonde, ashy brown, black. Their coats were originally ideal for their native habitat in the colder mountainous regions of Afghanistan.
Despite a bounty of hair, Afghan Hounds are actually quite skinny under their coat. Dogs of this breed can reach up to 29 inches tall, but only weigh up to roughly 60 pounds. In comparison, Labrador Retrievers are typically about 22 inches in height but can weigh up to 80 pounds. The Afghan Hound’s body is narrow and is defined by long limbs, muzzle, and tail.
As one might expect of this stoic breed, Afghan Hounds can be independent, aloof, and strong-willed. However, they can also be very silly when playing and affectionate during down time. As a creature of contradictions, Afghan Hounds would do best with a very experienced dog owner who has a lot of patience and time.
Afghan Hounds are independent, but they shouldn’t be left alone for extended periods as they get bored easily. They’ll need plenty of interactive toys when home alone, because they can become very destructive without sufficient mental stimulation. Because of the Afghan hound’s tendency to get bored easily, daily exercise is a must for this fancy pooch.
As hounds, the breed is incredibly prey-driven and sheds their aristocratic composure quickly under certain circumstances. Walking off-leash is not recommended in general for sighthounds, who have a strong drive to pursue anything they perceive as prey. Extra training and care should be taken around smaller animals, as they can be mistaken for prey by these natural-born hunters.
Afghan hounds are incredibly loyal, and this in addition to their intelligence makes them well-behaved once trained. Skills like potty training shouldn’t be a challenge for these doggos who want to please their pawrents. They’re inherently stubborn however, which is characteristic of any hound, so initial training can be difficult. Using a real bark pee pad like Bark Potty can be a helpful training tool, because it contains textures and smells that canines are naturally drawn to!