Saluki Breed Magazine - Showsight

“The Saluki has two varieties, Feathered and Smooth—but in the conformation ring they are not separated by variety— AND ARE TO BE JUDGED ON AN EQUAL BASIS.”

stock came from and the individual breeder’s interpretation of the Stan- dard. As long as the style is within the confines of the Standard it has breed type. Th e Saluki has two varieties, Feath- ered and Smooth, but in the confor- mation ring they are not separated by variety and are to be judged on an equal basis. In the Smooth variety the points should be the same with the exception of the coat, which has no feathering. At the present time the writers consider that the Smooth Variety is more than com- petitive with the Feathered Variety— because they look di ff erent is no reason to overlook them. Th e height size variation, dogs 23 to 28 inches and bitches may be consider- ably smaller, this size variation is based on where the particular style of Saluki originated. We have seen mature bitch- es—never in the show ring—as small as 19 inches at the shoulder. Th e 5 inch size variation in males is the largest size variation of any Hound breed. Any dog over 28 inches is no longer a Saluki. Th e Saluki is a sighthound and chases and kills the game it pursues. Th e range of the Saluki was from the southern tip of Arabian Peninsula north to Syria, and east to Iraq, Iran, northern India, northern Pakistan, southern Afghani- stan, into China. Th ey were mainly kept by the nomadic tribes of Asia and the Bedouins in the Arabian Peninsula. In southern Arabia the gazelle is 20 inches at the shoulder. Th e environment is dry, hot and little water and food. As a result,

the tribesman, horses, game and dogs are small. In Northern Iraq much of the game is quite large as there is plenty of vegetation, water and large game and dogs. Th e environment in which the Saluki existed, and the game it hunted determined the conformation and size of the Saluki, or as previously stated its style. Some other style di ff erences are due to the feathering. Th e Standard states the ears are covered with long silky hair. In some styles the feathering is long and covers the entire ear yet the feathering is only on the top portion of ear and the bottom half of the ear which is covered by feathering has real short hair. Th is is acceptable, just as the ear that is fully coated with long feathering is accept- able. Di ff erent lengths of ear feathering exist, varying from just covering the ear to feathering extending four to five inches past the end of the ear leather. Th e amount of feathering is unimportant. The Standard is silent on ear set. Ear set can vary from level with to skull down to even with eye. What is important is that the ear is mobile— meaning the relatively low set ear can move up to skull level and the rela- tively high set ear can move toward the center of the skull. Prominent eyes detract from the expression, while deep, faithful, far-seeing eyes are large and oval provid- ing the proper Saluki expression. Eye color is from dark to hazel which means there can be a very dark eye, a self-col- ored eye (matching the coat color) or a

lighter bird of prey eye on a dark or light colored dog. All are correct. Th e Standard calls for a head long and narrow with the skull moderately wide between the ears. Th e skull definition places a limit of the term “narrow.” Th e Saluki needs to kill the game, too narrow a head and it will not be able to fulfill the basic original purpose of the breed to kill gazelle or other quarry. When the head is too wide the dog loses the impres- sion of grace and great quality, but more importantly it will aid in reducing its speed and endurance. Th e dog must be light on his feet and appear agile. Th ey must also be in good running condition- ing with supple muscles and not carry- ing too much weight. Yet, a too thin dog with every vertebrae and rib showing is not correct either. We like to see the last two or three ribs (11th thru 13th) and the rest covered. Th e Standard calls for teeth strong and level. In the 1800s and early 1900s, level bite meant that the incisors are aligned in a level plane, not dropped or misaligned; it was not meant to mean that the upper and lower incisors met edge to edge. As the Saluki Standard was drawn up in the early 1900s level means aligned in a level plane. Th e term strong teeth, based on the basic original func- tion of the breed to kill its quarry, indi- cates the entire mouth is full and com- plete and properly aligned with a strong lower jaw. Based on function a scissor or pinscher bite is acceptable. A long, supple and well-muscled neck and deep and moderately narrow

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