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Afghan Hound Dog Breed Facts You Should Know

The Afghan Hound is an ancient breed native to the Middle East and evidence of their existence has been found from Egypt to Afghanistan.

They are sighthounds, which means they use their eyes more than their nose when they hunt.

Their original purpose in life – although they were also used for herding and as watchdogs.

Today, in addition to being an elegant show-dog, Afghans are still used for hunting, as well as racing and lure coursing (a speed event where dogs chase a mechanical lure).

Afghan Hound Dog Breed Facts You Should Know


Afghans are a leggy dog, with long, silky fur, a long narrow head, and a curiously curled and rather naked tail.

They are often the color of sand with the face generally darker. However, the overall color can be lighter or darker.

In some lines (although white markings are discouraged in the breed standard) the face is light and the body dark.

They have a dignified, serene appearance, almost aloof.

They are from 27 to 29 inches in height and weigh from 60 to 65 pounds when fully grown.


Often described as the “king of dogs” Afghans seem to be aware of their place in the general scheme of things.

They are suspicious of strangers but not generally aggressive.

Some may be timid and high-strung, but in general, they are loyal, affectionate and sweet, high-spirited, and happy.

They must be properly and gently trained from a very early age or they may be disobedient.

Health problems

Afghan Hounds are generally healthy, however, they have a low pain threshold. 

Hip dysplasia does occur but is not prevalent.

If you are considering lure coursing, you may need to keep an eye on joints, especially in a young dog that is still developing.

In general, Afghans live for about 14 years.

Exercise requirements

These dogs have been bred for centuries to run, so an hour or so every day galloping in a wide open area PLUS a walk or two won’t slow them down.

Be prepared to provide them with a big backyard or access to a large, secure field for their daily run.

Afghan Hound Dog Breed Facts You Should Know


With all that fur you can expect to have an ongoing battle with burrs and mats.

The requirements for show dogs prohibit trimming, but the family pet might not mind.

Regular baths with a gentle shampoo or soap bar of your Afghan Hound will help with the matting problem. However, it’s discouraged in show dogs to protect the condition of the coat.


Ideally, Afghan Hounds are indoor dogs that need a lot of space to run outside.

They aren’t suited to apartment life.

They are good with older, sensible children, but not recommended around smaller children.

Although they are generally good with other animals, they may chase smaller animals, because, well, that’s what humans designed them to do.

Debbie P

Thursday 25th of June 2020

Thanks for the article. I learned a lot.

Sarah Lehan

Thursday 30th of January 2020

I think afghans are the movie starlet of dogdom. They are so pretty.

Mallory Bailey

Wednesday 29th of January 2020

This was very informative! Good to know if we adopt an Afghan in the future.

Shelley P

Wednesday 29th of January 2020

These are such gorgeous dogs! I didn't know they were bred to be such active dogs. If I had more room, I'd love to adopt one :)

Shannon Holmes

Wednesday 29th of January 2020

I did not know these were hunting dogs. Thanks for the information :)

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