Afghan Hound – Full Breed Profile

Written by: Bojana Radulovic
Afghan Hound is an ancient breed of elegant appearance and robust posture. Read on to discover everything about this breed, from history to grooming needs.
Dog Breed Group:
Hound Dogs
24 to 26 inches tall at the shoulder
50 to 60 pounds
Life Span:
10 to 12 years

Breed Characteristics:

Apartment Friendly


How well will this breed adapt to apartment living? Is the apartment size the most important factor when it comes to proper living conditions? Is the breed suitable for apartment living?

Good For First-Time Owners


Some dogs aren't suitable for first-time dog owners. Is this breed a good match for someone with no dog experience? Can training help them be on their best behavior with owners with no dog experience? Are they suitable to be handled by someone who is just entering the canine world?

Overall Sensitivity


Some dogs are sensitive. Certain breeds are rough on the outside, while having the softest heart on the inside. In other words, some dogs are 'thick-skinned' while some are 'easygoing.' Is this breed prone to sensitivity?

Tolerates Being Alone


Separation anxiety in dogs is a serious condition that can affect a dog's life quality. Is this breed prone to this condition? Can you leave him alone for hours? How destructive this breed can become when bored, neglected, or not loved enough?

Affectionate With Family


How affectionate this breed will be around his humans? Will he welcome new family friends easily or he will choose to be shy? Some breeds can be clingy with owners, while others don't attach a lot. Will this breed act as the family's best friend?



Some dogs will tolerate children, while others will adore well-behaved ones. Dogs and children should always be supervised, no matter how well trained the dog might be. Will this breed act as a nanny dog or he will stay away from children?

Friendly Toward Other Dogs


Some dog breeds cannot wait to run to the dog park and run with others. Others prefer to be with their humans, and not to be a part of a multi-pet household. Is this breed dog lover or not? How friendly this breed will be toward other dogs?

Friendly Toward Strangers


Some dog breeds tend to be reserved toward strangers and highly suspicious. Others are fast to walk away with them easily. How welcoming this breed is toward strangers?

Drooling Level


If you love to clean all the time drooling level in dogs is a trait that you should mind. Is this breed less likely to drool, or you will always need a towel on hand?

Easy To Groom


Heavier shedding during the shedding season is something that every dog needs to go through. However, some dogs shed just a bit all year round. Is this breed one of them? How often should you groom this dog?

Overall Health


What can you expect from this breed in terms of health? Are there any genetic conditions to vary about? Is obesity a major issue in this breed? By knowing more about the dog's health, you are learning how to help him live a longer and healthier life.

Prone To Obesity


Treats are a great addition to training sessions. Dogs love sweet bites of dog treats but they should be served in moderation. Treats can lead to obesity, next to poor nutrition. Can this breed gain extra weight from treats? How prone to obesity this breed actually is?

Trainability Level


Training some dogs is easier than others. How easy this dog will be to train? What can you expect? Some dogs are huge people pleasers and they will master commands easily, while others will try to outsmart you.

Intelligence Level


Dogs are smart beings. We do our best to train them, but they do still end up training us to adapt to their needs. How intelligent is this breed? Will he try to outsmart you? Or he will need multiple training sessions to master basic commands?

Prey Drive


Dogs were bred for a specific purpose. Those who were bred to hunt have natural instincts to hunt, even today. This is why many dogs, like Terriers, will chase other animals. They will also have a hard time concentrating on your commands when there is something small moving. Is this breed prone to following his prey instincts?

Barking Level


How vocal this breed is? Can you expect neighbors to ring you often to calm your dog? Or you can sleep without worries of hearing your Fido bark? Some breeds are highly vocal, others have unusual sounds, and some are silent. Is this breed prone to barking?

Energy Level


Low-energy dogs are happy with regular walks and indoor chill times. High-energy dogs are always ready for action. Is this breed a couch potato, energetic dog, or somewhere in between?

Exercise Needs


Some dogs are more than happy with a slow stroll down the street. Others need hours of active time to stay happy and fit. Is this breed demanding in terms of exercise? How much exercise this breed needs to stay happy and healthy?

Playfulness Level


Some dogs never lose that puppy spirit, not even in their senior years. Others are more serious and prefer having a job to do. Is this breed demanding in terms of playfulness? Can you expect playfulness in their senior years as well?

Afghan Hound was used for hunting big prey, such as leopards.

Originally from Afghanistan, the elegant Afghan Hound has probably the most eye-catching appearance in the canine world.

They may seem super-gentle and sensitive, but they are one of the most powerful today, and one of the fastest ones. It’s imperative to never walk this breed without a leash on.

Their coat isn’t there only to give them that elegant beauty, but to protect them from the harsh climate in mountainous regions of Afghanistan.

This is an agile hound, built for an all-day hunt. Their huge paw-pads acted as shock absorbers on their homeland’s punishing terrain.

Since at its core this is a highly sensitive breed, this isn’t a dog for inexperienced dog owners, but for those who understand what it’s like owning a dog who needs support and proper care.

Afghan Hound is great with children, which makes them great family dogs. They need a fair amount of exercise, and this isn’t a breed that will be happy sitting all day long.

Affectionate and adaptable, these dogs are for any size of the family.

If you can provide the care that this breed needs then you will have a loyal friend for life.

Quick Facts

Real name: Afghan Hound
Origin: Afghanistan
Breed type: Hound Dogs
Weight: 50 to 60 pounds
Height: 24 to 26 inches tall at the shoulder
Lifespan: 10 to 12 years
Litter Size: 6–8 puppies
Color: Fawn, gold, brindle, white, red, cream, blue, gray, tricolour
Coat: Long and smooth coat

Afghan Hound History

Elegant Afghan Hound is originally from Afghanistan, hence the name.

This breed may be known today as the Afghan Hound, but that wasn’t the case always.

Originally, this graceful breed was named Tazi. Dog experts claim that this breed is one of the oldest ones and that its roots can be traced back to the pre-Christian era.

It is also known that this breed was brought to England in 1925, and from there was brought to the States.

Zeppo Marx of the Marx Brothers is responsible for bringing this breed to the States.

The breed was extremely popular in the late 1970s. AKC officially recognized this elegant breed in 1926.

Afghan Hound Physical Appearance

The Afghan is a greyhound-like dog of elegant posture and sensational appearance. They have a long and silky coat that only adds to their overall star-like appearance.

At first sight, it’s obvious that this is a large size dog who may appear as if he is taller than longer. However, the truth is that this breed is well-balanced with a compact body, and a long and silky body.

This is a powerful breed, with a strong neck, large paws, and a unique tail ending in a doughnut bend.

It may not be easy to spot from the first look, but this bred has long ears covered with long hair.

There is also some coat on the face, but it’s short and glossy. The most common coat colors are black, red, cream, blue, brindle, white, domino, or black and tan.

They also have monkey whiskers, a fuzzy hair present on their cheeks.

Interestingly Afghan Hound puppies don’t look identical to long-haired adults.

Puppies have a coat that is short and fluffy. All in all, as adult dogs, Afghan Hounds have a striking appearance.

Afghan Hound Personality

This is a dog in search of one person or one family.

If neglected or left alone they will suffer deeply. Separation anxiety isn’t strange to this breed, although this condition is more often seen in small size dogs.

This slim dog will do everything possible in his power to keep his family members safe. They will bark at anyone who approaches their home. However, this doesn’t make them good watchdogs.

They are intelligent and a bit of an independent breed. As such, they may be challenging to train.

Luckily, they react well to food-based rewards. Don’t expect them to be highly motivated like Golden Retriever is, or any other breed that is enormous people-pleaser. However, if you are experienced as a dog owner, then you should have no issues during the training process.

Afghans may be large in size, but that doesn’t make them any fewer couch fans. They will be more than happy to snuggle with you on the bed for hours.

Afghans should never be left alone to explore the area or walk without a leash. They are fast, and you won’t be able to catch them.

Plus, they may be prone to chasing smaller pets, which is something that you should address from a young age if your home is a multi-pet home.

Afghan Hound Training

Training your Afghan Hound should start as soon as you bring him home. The training process is something that should be taken seriously and never ignored or postponed.

Training and early socialization are what makes a dog a good canine citizen.

During the socialization window, your dog should get his vaccine, know basic commands, and fully understand house dog rules.

To keep his interest in training at peak, make training short and fun. Be consistent. Every day’s progress can take you a long distance.

If training is too much for you, or if you feel like you don’t have enough time to invest in training your Afghan properly, think about puppy classes.

Professional training inputs can do wonders for a dog’s behavior and bond with your canine.

Have the right treats on hand to enhance training results.

Dogs love rewards, and there is no better way than serving a treat to keep your Fido happy and satisfied.

Afghan Hound Exercise

Do you love spending long hours daily outside? Do you enjoy long rainy walks and a hike here and there?

If not, the Afghan Hound isn’t the breed for you.

This is an active breed, and this is an important feature. Why? It’s important to match your dog’s energy with yours.

If you prefer to stay indoors and have moderate outdoor activities, then a low-energy breed is for you, and not an Afghan Hound, or a German Shepherd.

Always match the dog’s energy level with yours.

As an active breed, Afghan Hounds need at least two hours of exercise per day.

To meet their need, think about dog sport, such as agility, or obedience. Think about indoor games as well, for extremely rainy, hot, or cold days.

Afghan Hound Grooming

Afghan Hound comes with a long and silky coat that needs to be properly groomed to keep its form.

This is a “high maintenance” breed for several reasons. To keep their coat in order, you will have to brush him at least twice per week with the right grooming tools.

If this is too much work for you, think about hiring a professional dog groomer.

Yes, this can be a bit pricey, but it will save you time and energy. Plus, your Afghan Hound will have the best care when handled by a professional.

Their coat is silky, which is why it may tangle easily. Dogs shouldn’t be bathed too often, but that may not be the case with this breed.

They could need more frequent bathing, which is why you should stick only to dog-friendly shampoo.

This way you will keep his skin well-balanced.

If recommended by your veterinarian brush his teeth with a toothpaste specially designed for dogs.

The rest is basic care:

  • Trim or grind nails monthly
  • Clean ears when needed
  • Learn how to clean dog’s ears properly
  • Check eyes daily for any sign of infection
  • Check gums weekly

Grooming should be a pleasant experience. To achieve this, expose your Afghan Hound to begin brushing when he is a puppy.

Dogs are extremely sensitive about their feet, which is why handling their paws frequently as a puppy is important.

Always reward him with a nice treat. Positive training and grooming methods can go a long way.

No dog should ever experience any kind of harsh methods. Remember: a single treat can take you a long way.

Afghan Hound Health

Afghans are considered to be healthy dogs. Of course, certain conditions may appear during their lifetime, but they may be affected by several reasons.

This is why you should only deal with responsible dog breeders who will guarantee for their puppies.

This means that they will show you medical documentation on the breed and inform you of potential future health issues.

Always do your best to find a good breeder.

As for health issues in this breed, you can expect to see:

  • Hip dysplasia
  • Allergies
  • Cancer
  • Juvenile cataracts
  • Hypothyroidism

This doesn’t mean that your dog will experience any of the listed conditions.

It just means that you should provide regular check-ups so you can avoid seeing any of the listed behaviors in your canine.

Is Afghan Hound For You?

This is a family dog with impressive energy levels. They will thrive in a single-person home or a family of many. This isn’t the breed to consider having if you don’t have experience as a dog owner.

On the other hand, if you have experience as a dog owner, and you know how to handle a large size dog that is a high-maintenance breed, then this breed may be for you.

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