THE SALUKI STANDARD
“PHOTOGRAPHS CAN ASSIST BY GIVING US AN ILLUSTRATION OF THAT LANGUAGE.
THIS HELPS US TO BECOME FAMILIAR WITH THE TYPES OF SALUKIS THAT WERE ORIGINALLY IMPORTED AND BRED —AND THEIR COUNTERPARTS IN MORE RECENT TIMES.”
There are additional descriptions in the standard that can be dif- ficult to interpret if you have no references as to how these words are used in relation to Salukis. Photographs can assist by giving us an illustration of that language. This helps us to become familiar with the types of Salukis that were originally imported and bred—and their counterparts in more recent times. To demonstrate this, here are photos of Salukis from the first half of the 1900’s. There were different types in the original imports from the Middle East just as there are in the more recent photos, but let’s look for what they all have in common. For the more recent dogs (Salukis of the past 50 years) I’ve chosen Salukis that have either won frequently under well-respected Saluki breeder-judges or have been successful at open field coursing, or both. What do all their structures tell us? Square or just off-square, a tiny bit taller than long or a tiny bit longer than tall. Hip bones and scapulas are approximately the same dis- tance from the ground to reflect a balance front to rear. The “shoul- ders sloping and set well back, well muscled without being course” means the whole front assembly is set well back onto the body and the scapula lies onto the body. This, combined with a correct hip and rear structure, sets up a good topline. We do not want to see a
noticeably steep “ski slope” coming off the neck, which often means the scapula is not well laid back, the front assembly is too far for- ward, there’s a roached or flat back or, worse, a falling-off topline. Width to the first and second thighs showing good muscling is important, as are “…muscles slightly arched over loin.” What drives this hunting machine is power, and this takes muscles! A “long, supple and well-muscled” neck that is wider at the base is able to grab and carry prey on the run. Moderate angles in the front and rear legs reflect the words, “Hindquarters—Strong, hipbones set well apart and stifle moderately bent…” And then you look for the balance in front by the return of the upper arm. Feet are described as, “Of moderate length, toes long and well arched, not splayed out, but at the same time not cat-footed; the whole being strong and sup- ple…” This equates to a more hare-like foot with well arched toes that can take miles of punishment, which means the pads of the feet must be thick. Flat or splayed feet or thin pads cannot do this. An S-curve underline underneath a chest that is “deep and moderately narrow,” combined with a flexible spine, assists with the double sus- pension gallop for hunting prey. Although a group of twelve photos cannot show you every correct structure, it can give your eye a good
218 | SHOWSIGHT MAGAZINE, JANUARY 2021
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