Afghan Hound

Description:
The Afghan Hound is an attractive and aristocratic looking dog that possesses a lot of dignity and it is by far one of the dogs that stand out as a show dog because of its superiority. This dog is very exotic; it has long silky hair and a very unusual oriental look and the way it stands is very imposing. The head of this dog is very long and refined and has a lot of silky hair on it. Its eyes are almond shaped and almost triangular, they shouldn't look round or pop out. This dog's neck has a good length to it but should not be too thick. The hipbones are very prominent; the back line is straight and its back and lumbar region show a lot of strength. The tibia might look somewhat exaggerated but it has to do with all of the hair it has on its legs. Its coat should not be cut, and the tail should have a curve shape or a ring at the end of it, it should not be too highly inserted and the dog should carry it upwards. The height of an adult Afghan Hound is about sixty-eight centimeters and a female's around sixty three centimeters. It weighs between twenty five to thirty kilograms.

Ideal owner:
Even though this dog has a very reserved and noble look to it, it is in fact very people oriented. A lot of them are really good with children. It can be quite stubborn at times and is a very confident dog, its also very intelligent and can trick their owners as all Hounds can. A lot of people consider this dog to have a very usual look, almost human. The Afghan Hound loves being outside and it loves to sit near the chimney with its owners. Consistency is key to training this dog; since its stubborn, it can sometimes become irritable, shy or run away. Never force this dog into doing something but rather be patient and consistent.

Growth:
The weight of a newborn Afghan Hound varies considerably and can be anywhere from 280 to 500 grams, in some occasions less. This breed matures slowly and the owner must not try to force this process. The real color of an Afghan is camouflaged by the black coat it has when it is a puppy, but its real color will be noticeable at four weeks of age. If it has any white spots on its body as a puppy these should go away within three months. Teaching this dog to socialize is very important since it is very sensitive. Breeders have said that the age of six to seventeen months is a critical time for its growth and personality. The best way to train this dog is to treat it with a lot of respect and to be consistent. Physical growth is usually pretty slow and at adolescence it might look a little awkward; they go through an ugly stage when they lose their puppy coat. During this time it is very important to brush its coat more often to avoid the new hair getting tangled with the old hair. Veterinarians and breeders suggest grooming its coat at least three times a week. Afghan adults can become very picky when it comes to eating and during this time it is important to avoid feeding it sweets and to make sure it gets a good balanced diet. It can be a challenge to train puppies to not do their needs inside the house.

General health:
The ways an Afghans hips are structured allow it to turn very quickly. Hip dysphasia is seen in this breed and there have also been cases of malformation in the articulation of the elbow. Some Afghan puppies are allergic to milk and this breed is very sensitive to certain chemicals. They are also sensitive to anesthesia, tranquilizers, and cortisone and these can cause hair loss. Another health risk is otitis and funguses and it is necessary to check them regularly. Make sure to ask the breeder about any incidences of cataracts and hypothyroidism within the family line. Besides needing a lot of exercise, this dog needs a lot of time to socialize; otherwise it can become reserved, introverted and can get sick very easily. The amount of care its coat requires is very demanding. Its coat needs to be groomed during for at least two hours a week and it needs to get bathed once a month. The average life span of an Afghan Hound is fourteen years or more.

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