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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Was just watching the Meet the Breeds Afghan Hound video (absolutely love them - like so many other breeds - but will never own one most likely). Anyway - I love their faces and long snouts but do they get shaved like Poodles? I don't think they do but that would mean that they have two different kinds of hair? Short on the face and long everywhere else on their body?
 

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Afghan hounds are not shaved - the hair grows in that pattern - short on the face and along the spine, long everywhere else. The hair is silky, so it does tangle if not groomed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Afghan hounds are not shaved - the hair grows in that pattern - short on the face and along the spine, long everywhere else. The hair is silky, so it does tangle if not groomed.
That had been my impression too - BUT then there is this. Afghan puppies seem to have hair in their faces - so it changes with coat change? I have also read it has to be removed like plucked hair like a terrier? Then others yet state that it depends on when dogs are fixed - as in if they are fixed too early they get hair in their face and only unaltered Afghans develop the short hair in their faces? So it seems a bit more complex than that...Also see pics...
 

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Afghan all have the long, beautiful no matter what age they are altered. (My friend has one). She pulls his hair out to groom him. She said it comes out pretty easily and leaves him with his soft, short undercoat. He does get matted if she doesn’t do this. I’m no expert, just going by what she’s told me.
 

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I had friends, years ago that showed their Afghans. I do remember them running clippers over their dogs' faces and backs, but it was more of a touch up type thing, not a full-fledged clip. The dogs were Champions, too.
 

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While Standard Poodles will ALWAYS have my heart, my husband and I also own two Afghan Hounds. Our first, GCH CH Inisfree Sirae' Duet Imperious Mother of Dragons RE CGC (Khaleesi) is currently a retired, spayed couch potato. Our puppy, now 19 months old, Alphaville's Dragonfly in Amber (Amber) is currently being shown in AKC conformation. Both of our hounds are 100% owner handled and groomed. Khaleesi (AKA Monkey) is from a wonderful breeder in Minnesota. Amber (AKA Bug) is from an equally wonderful breeder in Sweden. They are both very different from each other!

Afghan puppies have "monkey whiskers" on their cheeks after their puppy coat starts growing in. When they're newborn, their coats are all just one length puppy fuzz, but as they start to mature, their faces grow the distinctive whiskers on each side. (Edited to add... Some hounds also have what is called "Mandarins", which is almost like a long beard on their chins. Occurring most often in males - but not all males, there are some females who also have this trait. I love patterning and Mandarins - it just makes the dogs look even more exotic and "Eastern". I have heard that some people clip or shave the Mandarins and I think that's a shame - I wish my girls had them!)

Maturity brings coat change (just like in poodles) and the monkey whiskers will naturally be replaced by smooth hair on the face. Monkey whiskers can be plucked if one is in a hurry to make their puppy look like an adult, but I love the puppy look! The saddle (smooth coat along the spine and partially down the sides) is also a natural progression of the adult coat coming in. The places where the hair is long and short is called "patterning". Some hounds have typical patterning of their faces, along the sides of their necks, along their backs and sometimes patches on their haunches. Bug has what is considered extreme patterning. She lost a lot of coat after her first season at the beginning of this year and she also has what is called "Turkish Pants", where the hair is shorter on her ankles too - causing her to look like she's wearing a pair of I Dream of Jeanie trousers! LOL!

There are mountain type Afghan Hounds, with lots of coat and who tend to be a bit larger (which describes Khaleesi) and Amber, with her sparser coat, is known as a desert type - you could probably drop her in the desert in Afghanistan and she would look a lot like the dogs who belong to the tribes there.

Both types of coat are acceptable - but the flashy, heavily coated dogs seem to get more love from the judges. Luckily, Amber has beautiful type and great movement. She'll do fine in the ring with judges who know hounds!

An Afghan Hound who is shown in conformation should never be shaved anywhere. The AKC standard specifically calls for them to be shown in their "natural state" with NO clipping or trimming. Hand plucking of the patterned areas (saddle, face, etc.) is generally acceptable as it is not clipping or trimming, but just cleaning up any fuzz in the areas that should be smooth.

Many people assume (wrongly) that Afghan Hounds are not intelligent - if you ever see those "10 most" and "10 least" lists out on the interwebs, they generally put Afghan Hounds as one of the least intelligent - but that is far from the truth. These dogs are bred to work independently from their owners in Afghanistan. They work in packs, patrolling their territory and hunting for their masters, but in a way that is independent of the humans.

They are not always obedient, because they want to know WHY they're being asked to do things that may not seem prudent to them at the time. Highly trainable dogs, like Standard Poodles, do it because they want to please their owners - Afghan Hounds want to please themselves (and if their owners are happy because of it, that's just a bonus!) LOL!!

We love the quirky, goofy nature of our hounds at home - but they are more stand-offish when meeting new people or in new situations. The standard calls it "aloof", and they're supposed to be that way. When an Afghan Hound loves you, you know they mean it, because they don't just love everyone!!

Feel free to PM me or friend me on FB if you have any further questions. We're still pretty new to the breed (Khaleesi is turning 7 this month), and we're still learning too. Luckily we have lots of friends in the sighthound world who are there for us whenever we have questions.

Barb Plum
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
While Standard Poodles will ALWAYS have my heart, my husband and I also own two Afghan Hounds. Our first, GCH CH Inisfree Sirae' Duet Imperious Mother of Dragons RE CGC (Khaleesi) is currently a retired, spayed couch potato. Our puppy, now 19 months old, Alphaville's Dragonfly in Amber (Amber) is currently being shown in AKC conformation. Both of our hounds are 100% owner handled and groomed. Khaleesi (AKA Monkey) is from a wonderful breeder in Minnesota. Amber (AKA Bug) is from an equally wonderful breeder in Sweden. They are both very different from each other!

Afghan puppies have "monkey whiskers" on their cheeks after their puppy coat starts growing in. When they're newborn, their coats are all just one length puppy fuzz, but as they start to mature, their faces grow the distinctive whiskers on each side. (Edited to add... Some hounds also have what is called "Mandarins", which is almost like a long beard on their chins. Occurring most often in males - but not all males, there are some females who also have this trait. I love patterning and Mandarins - it just makes the dogs look even more exotic and "Eastern". I have heard that some people clip or shave the Mandarins and I think that's a shame - I wish my girls had them!)

Maturity brings coat change (just like in poodles) and the monkey whiskers will naturally be replaced by smooth hair on the face. Monkey whiskers can be plucked if one is in a hurry to make their puppy look like an adult, but I love the puppy look! The saddle (smooth coat along the spine and partially down the sides) is also a natural progression of the adult coat coming in. The places where the hair is long and short is called "patterning". Some hounds have typical patterning of their faces, along the sides of their necks, along their backs and sometimes patches on their haunches. Bug has what is considered extreme patterning. She lost a lot of coat after her first season at the beginning of this year and she also has what is called "Turkish Pants", where the hair is shorter on her ankles too - causing her to look like she's wearing a pair of I Dream of Jeanie trousers! LOL!

There are mountain type Afghan Hounds, with lots of coat and who tend to be a bit larger (which describes Khaleesi) and Amber, with her sparser coat, is known as a desert type - you could probably drop her in the desert in Afghanistan and she would look a lot like the dogs who belong to the tribes there.

Both types of coat are acceptable - but the flashy, heavily coated dogs seem to get more love from the judges. Luckily, Amber has beautiful type and great movement. She'll do fine in the ring with judges who know hounds!

An Afghan Hound who is shown in conformation should never be shaved anywhere. The AKC standard specifically calls for them to be shown in their "natural state" with NO clipping or trimming. Hand plucking of the patterned areas (saddle, face, etc.) is generally acceptable as it is not clipping or trimming, but just cleaning up any fuzz in the areas that should be smooth.

Many people assume (wrongly) that Afghan Hounds are not intelligent - if you ever see those "10 most" and "10 least" lists out on the interwebs, they generally put Afghan Hounds as one of the least intelligent - but that is far from the truth. These dogs are bred to work independently from their owners in Afghanistan. They work in packs, patrolling their territory and hunting for their masters, but in a way that is independent of the humans.

They are not always obedient, because they want to know WHY they're being asked to do things that may not seem prudent to them at the time. Highly trainable dogs, like Standard Poodles, do it because they want to please their owners - Afghan Hounds want to please themselves (and if their owners are happy because of it, that's just a bonus!) LOL!!

We love the quirky, goofy nature of our hounds at home - but they are more stand-offish when meeting new people or in new situations. The standard calls it "aloof", and they're supposed to be that way. When an Afghan Hound loves you, you know they mean it, because they don't just love everyone!!

Feel free to PM me or friend me on FB if you have any further questions. We're still pretty new to the breed (Khaleesi is turning 7 this month), and we're still learning too. Luckily we have lots of friends in the sighthound world who are there for us whenever we have questions.

Barb Plum
Moderator
Love this answer! This is what I was looking for. I have utmost admiration and love for sighthounds - although I have never owned one. I have friends with greyhounds, whippets and Italian Greyhounds and I adore all of them. I love the gentleness - the one thing my husband could not overcome is that just one slipped lead or broken harness could mean that they will take off and he just could not bear even the thought of that. So we went Poodle instead of Whippet. I am somehow thinking that my old lady dog may be an Italian Greyhound - once I am too old to do much grooming. I love what you wrote about the Afghan intelligence. I always thought they were massively short changed by intelligence tests - which as you pointed out are more "enthusiasm or willingness to please tests" than anything else. I took two IGs in when my friend went on a trip - those two dogs Kahlo and Miro would not stay with anybody. I had met them only twice in NYC and out of the blue their owner called me and asked if I could take them while they were away. She was sure that even though they would not stay with anyone else, they would stay with me for two weeks. She said they respected me in a way she had not seen before. We tried it and it it worked beautifully. They loved staying with us and I loved their nature.
 
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