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Azawakh Information & Dog Breed Facts

Collection of all the general dog breed info about Azawakh so you can get to know the breed more.

Group Hunting Dogs
Popularity Rank492
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Other Names
What other names does the Azawakh have? The dog breed also known as...
Idi, Hanshee, Oska, Rawondu, Bareeru, Wulo, Tuareg Sloughi
Breed Type
What type of dog breed is it?
AKC Group
Is Azawakh recognized by the American Kennel Club?
Recognized by the American Kennel Club as a Miscellaneous breed.
FCI Group
Is Azawakh recognized by the Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI)?
Recognized by FCI in the Sighthounds group, in the Short-haired Sighthounds section.
How much does the Azawakh puppy cost? What is the price range of this puppy? What is the average price of this dog in the United States? Is this puppy expensive? How much should I pay for it? Azawakh price:
If you choose to purchase the Azawakh, you should know that the mentioned amount of money is an average of the collected data from breeders’ sites and puppy finder places. If you have a Azawakh for sale, please advertise it on a reliable website to make sure the Azawakh gets to a happy place.

Azawakh History

The original homeland of the Azawakh is the endless arid regions of the southern Sahara and the Sahel zone. Geographically encompassing the border region of Mali and Niger lies in the center of the Azawakh Valley. The Azawakh breed is also known as the Tuareg Sloughi, named after the Tuareg nomads. The breed has a few alternative names, including “Idii n’ illeli”, which means sighthound of the free people, or noble dog of the free people. The Azawakh is regarded as a respectful breed and enjoys appreciation from the nomads.

Moreover, while it is unknown exactly how old the Azawakh is, it is probably among the most ancient of all dogs, or at least directly descended from them. Genetics, archeologists, and other specialists disagree over when the dog was first domesticated, with estimates ranging between 14,000 and 100,000 years ago. Several archaeological findings spanning from 5,000 to 9,000 years ago show dogs that have been identified as potential ancestors to a number of modern breeds. Among the oldest of these varieties were dogs that closely resemble sighthounds, which are frequently depicted running down fleet-footed gazelles and hares. These ancient Middle Eastern sighthounds almost certainly developed into the Saluki and the Afghan Hound, two of the world’s oldest breeds. For many years, it was widely assumed that these two breeds spread over the world as a result of conquest and trade, eventually resulting in the profusion of sighthounds that can now be found all over the world. It is believed, that the Saluki spread to the Maghreb where it was developed into a very similar breed, the Sloughi. The Sloughi was then supposedly acquired by the few tribes who managed to survive in the Sahara such as the Tuareg. According to one theory, the tribes traveling brought their Sloughi dogs south to the Sahel, and then the Sahelian people gradually bred the Sloughi to localized conditions until it developed into the Azawakh.

However, while this traditional Middle Eastern theory is still possible and is supported by many, recent evidence has provided an alternative that seems more reliable. Genetic tests conducted on dogs across the world have shed light on the actual relationships between them. They have also demonstrated that sighthounds evolved independently several times over history and that the similarities in appearance are the result of being bred for similar purposes, rather than actual relationships. The tests have shown that the Azawakh is more closely related to the African Pariah dogs than it is to other sighthound breeds. Moreover, these tests have also indicated that the Azawakh possesses a unique variety of the glucose isomerase gene, which can be found in foxes, jackals, Italian wolves, Sloughis, and a few Japanese breeds. This has led to speculation, that the Azawakh’s ancestors may have interbred with jackals occasionally.

Furthermore, the Azawakh has gone through a difficult time when people were forced to abandon their dogs as the Sahel was a very difficult place to live and still is as many famines strike the region. There are not always enough resources for a tribe to support an excessive amount of dogs, therefore only the dogs considered the highest quality are selected to live. In most years, one puppy is selected from each litter, and the others are euthanized. This practice may seem cruel to Western eyes, but it is a necessity in the harsh environment of the Sahel. For cultural reasons, male Azawakhs are greatly preferred over females, and most of the puppies kept are male. Females are usually only kept when there is a need to produce more dogs. The Azawakh was subject to extreme natural selection, in addition to man-made selection. Any dog who was unable to cope with the Sahel’s high temperatures, arid conditions, and tropical diseases, passed away.

Moreover, the primary purpose of the sighthound is to chase down and catch fast-moving prey. The Azawakh is similarly used and is capable of reaching very fast speed in extremely high temperatures. They are exceptional hunters with an eye for obtaining meat and are known to hunt hare, antelope, and wild boar. They are renowned for their relentless stamina and ability to run 40 mph. They were previously trained to protect camps and hunt with owners, although today, the Azawakh prefer to hunt within a pack.

The breed was almost entirely isolated for centuries. Despite the growing interest in dog breeding, the European imperialists that gained control of much of the Sahel in the 19th century paid little to no attention to the Azawakh. This began to change in the 1970s when the French were in the process of granting independence to their remaining colonies. At the time, a Yugoslavian diplomat named Dr. Pecar was stationed in the West African nation of Burkina Faso. He became interested in the breed, but local customs prohibited their sale. These dogs could be offered as gifts, and Dr. Pecar was given his first female in thanks for killing a bull elephant who was terrorizing a community. Pecar was later able to acquire two littermates. He brought these three dogs back to Yugoslavia where they became the first Azawakhs to arrive on the European continent. Shortly after, French bureaucratic officials working in Mali returned to Europe with seven more individual Azawakhs. In 1981, the Azawakh was first recognized as a unique breed by the Federation Cynologique Internationale under the name Sloughi-Azawakh. Five years later, the Sloughi was officially dropped from the name. Although rare, imports of Azawakhs continued to arrive periodically. Three such dogs formed the basis of the Coppe Line, which together with the French and Yugoslavian lines constitute the majority of the descendants of the original seven dogs. Although, it is not exactly clear when the first Azawakh was imported to the United States, it was probably during the early 1980s. The first confirmed litter whelped in the US was born in 1987. All of the earliest American Azawakhs were red with white markings, the most commonly found colors in Europe.

As interest in the breed slowly increases in the US, a few dogs were imported directly from Africa, and a group of breeders met in 1989 to form the American Azawakh Association. In 1993, the United Kennel Club granted full recognition to the Azawakh as a member of the Sighthound & Pariah Group. The Azawakh is also recognized by the AKC as a Miscellaneous breed.

Azawakh General Appearance

What size is this breed? How big is this dog? Azawakh size:
How much does the Azawakh weigh? Azawakh weight:
Male: 44–55 pounds (20–25 kg), Female: 33–44 pounds (15–20 kg)
Avg. Weight
What is the average weight of the Azawakh? Azawakh average weight:
Male: 44–55 pounds (20–25 kg), Female: 33–44 pounds (15–20 kg)
How tall is the Azawakh? Azawakh height:
Male: 25–29 inches (64–74 cm), Female: 24–28 inches (60–70 cm)
Avg. Height
What is the average height of this fido? Azawakh average height:
Male: 25–29 inches (64–74 cm), Female: 24–28 inches (60–70 cm)

Azawakh Hair & Care

What type of coat does the Azawakh have? What does this canine coat look like?
What color is the breed's coat? What color is a proper Azawakh's coat?
BrindleGoldenWhiteBlue BrownGrayBlack
How to groom the Azawakh and how often?
Effortless: The Azawakh requires minimal grooming. Seasonal flea treatment is needed, but cutting the dog's hair by a professional groomer isn't necessary. Ears and eyes should be cleaned sometimes to avoid infections. Azawakh is one of the best choices if you don't have the time, skill or money to take care of a high maintenance dog. Highly recommended for beginners.
Shedding Level
How much do Azawakh dogs shed? How to control, reduce and prevent the shedding of the Idi? Azawakh shedding level:
Azawakhs shed moderately. It's a natural process of the hair growth cycle. Regular brushing reduces the amount of hair that sheds. It mostly depends on their health status and breed type.

Azawakh Characteristics

What kind of personality does the Azawakh have? What characteristics does the breed have?
Intelligent Rank
How smart is the Azawakh? Are they intelligent?
Average: Azawakh's has average obedience intelligence. Patience is needed for teaching this breed to any tricks and commands though, but it's worth the effort. They understand and memorize new commands in 25-40 repetitions. This breed obeys for the first command 50% of the time or better.
Are Azawakh dogs easy to train? Do they go well on dog training?
Azawakhs are quite easy to train. Sometimes they can be challenging, but if you're consistent in teaching new commands they will obey for sure.
How playful is this breed?
Azawakhs, like any other dog breed, like playing. Sometimes they bark as excitement for playing, but they are not the most playful dog breed.
Sensitivity Level
How sensitive are they? Azawakh sensitivity:
Azawakhs have an average emotional level and are not the most sensitive dog breed. Sometimes it's okay to change the daily routine, have guests and listen to loud music. Some dogs handle moderate punishment very well, while others crumble apart at a dirty look. This breed is not affected emotionally for moderate punishment.
Affection Level
How affectionate are they?
Azawakhs are highly affectionate dogs. They like being involved in the family's life. This breed isn't considered as an aloof dog.
Social Needs
How much social interaction does the Idi need? Azawakh social needs:
Azawakhs need for social interaction is average. This breed likes being around people or other animals, but they don't mind being left alone for a few hours either.
Do Azawakh dogs bark a lot? Why does my Hanshee bark?
Low to Average: The Azawakh rarely barks. This breed could be a good choice if you're looking for a quiet breed. They don't bark unless there is a good reason. Top reasons for barking: protection, alarm, fear, boredom, attention seeking, greeting, separation anxiety, compulsive barking.
Watchdog Ability
Is Azawakh good as a watchdog?
Azawakhs are one of the best watchdogs. Their main job is to observe and they're very consistent in their effort. The best vocal cords and sense of hearing belong to them. Usually, they're very territorial and protective about their property, so the Azawakh dogs will alert you if they sense something different.
Do Azawakh dogs have an aggressive behavior to protect their territory?
Azawakhs are extremely protective guard dogs. This breed doesn't hesitate to protect their territory so the Azawakh can be a good choice if you want an excellent guard dog. Keep calm and the Azawakh will take care of unwanted people or animals.
Biting Potential
Do Azawakh bite humans? How likely are you to get bitten from the Idi? What are the odds of getting bitten by a Azawakh? Why do dog bites happen?
The Azawakh has a low chance of biting somebody. Top reasons for dog bite: protection, pain, excitement, herding instinct, being provoked. (Data based on the available online bite statistics.)
How much mouthing/nipping/play biting does the Azawakh do?
Azawakhs have an average tendency to nip, chew, play-bite, or herd people. It's a common habit during puppyhood, not aggressive behavior. These "bites" don't hurt, but Azawakhs need to be taught for a good attitude.
Impulse to Wander or Roam
How likely is the Azawakh to run away? Does this breed explore or wander a lot? Does Azawakh roam?
Azawakhs tend to escape less than other breeds. They have low to average wanderlust potential. Exploring the world is not the best activity they can imagine.
Prey Drive
Do this canine have a strong prey drive? Does Azawakh have high prey drive?
Azawakhs have a higher impulse to chase and catch something than other dog breeds. Cats or any other small animals might be in danger. It's a natural instinct, doesn't necessarily mean that Azawakhs are aggressive. Better to keep this breed on a leash.
Apartment Friendly
Is Azawakh good as an apartment dog? Can they live in a flat?
Azawakhs are very apartment-friendly dogs. Besides the daily walk outside they don't require a big garden.
Are they adaptable and easy-going?
Azawakhs don't adapt well to lifestyle changes and different living environments. They don't like moving from one place to another.
Tolerates Being Left Alone
Can you leave this breed home alone?
Just like every puppy, they are prone to panic, cry, bark, whine when they left alone by their owner. With proper socialization and quality time with the dog can solve this problem.
Fighting Dog
Where Azawakh dogs used as a fighting dog in the history?
Not really
In history, this breed was not really used for combat dog.

Azawakh Good With

Stranger Friendly
Are they friendly with strangers?
Azawakhs are not stranger friendly dogs.
Child Friendly
Are Azawakh dogs kid-friendly? Are they good with young children? Azawakh and children:
Azawakhs are not the most kid-friendly dogs. If you have children, you may have to reconsider your choice for having a puppy from this breed.
Cat Friendly
How well do Azawakh dogs get along with cats? Are they good with kittens? What is this fido's temperament with cats?
Azawakhs are not cat-friendly dogs.
Dog Friendly
Is Azawakh good with other dogs? Are they dog-friendly dogs? How well do Azawakh dogs get along with other dogs? What is this canine temperament with other dogs?
Azawakhs are average friendly towards other dogs.
Office Friendly
Are Azawakhs good office dogs? Do Azawakhs make good office friendly dogs? Can Azawakhs be office dogs?
Azawakh is not the best dog breed for office environment.
Senior Citizens Friendly
Are they senior citizens friendly dogs? How well do Azawakh dogs get along with the elderly people? What is the Idi temperament with senior people? Are Azawakh dogs good for elderly owners?
Azawakhs are not the best breed for elderly people.
Pet Friendly
Are they pet-friendly dogs? How well do Azawakh dogs get along with other pets? Are Azawakh dogs good with pets? What is this canine temperament with other pets?
Azawakhs do best when they’re the only pet at the family.
Good For First Time Owners
Is Azawakh breed good for first-time owners? Do they make a good dog for novice owners?
Azawakhs are not good for novice owners, due to their stubborn personality.
Service Dog
Are they good as service dogs? Can Azawakh be a service dog?
Not really
This breed generally not used as a service dog. A service dog is a term used in the USA to refer to any type of assistance dog specifically trained to help people who have disabilities, such as visual impairment, hearing impairments, mental disorders, seizures, mobility impairment, and diabetes. Service dogs are protected under the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act). Azawakh is not the best breed for service purposes.
Therapy Dog
Are they good as therapy dogs? Can Azawakh be a therapy dog?
Not really
This breed generally not used as a therapy dog. A therapy dog is a dog that might be trained to provide affection, comfort, and love to people in hospitals, retirement homes, nursing homes, schools, hospices, disaster areas, and to people with anxiety disorders or autism. Azawakh is not the best breed for therapeutic purposes.
Detection Dog or Sniffer Dog
Are they good as detection dogs? Can Azawakh be a sniffer dog?
Not really
A detection dog or sniffer dog is a dog that is trained to use its senses (mostly its smell) to detect substances such as explosives, illegal drugs, wildlife scat, currency, blood, and contraband electronics such as illicit mobile phones. Azawakh is not the best breed for detection purposes.
Search and Rescue Dog (SAR)
Are they good as SAR dogs? Can Azawakh be a search and rescue dog?
Not really
The use of dogs in search and rescue (SAR) is a valuable component in wilderness tracking, natural disasters, mass casualty events, and in locating missing people. The Azawakh is not the best breed for SAR purposes.
Boat Dog
Are they good as boat dogs? Can Azawakh be a boat dog?
Not really
Azawakh breed usually doesn't like being on a boat.
Cart Pulling or Drafting Dog
Are they good as cart pulling dogs? Can Azawakh be a drafting dog?
Not really
A drafting dog or draft dog is a dog bred and used for cart pulling. Dogs bred for this work have strong builds and qualities that are needed, strength and determination. Azawakh is not the best breed for drafting purposes.

Azawakh Health Factors

Health Issues
Is it a healthy breed? Do Azawakh dogs have health problems?
The Azawakh is a healthy breed, but there are certain health issues that you should check with your vet regularly.
Health Problems
What health problems does the Azawakh breed have? What are the health issues and concerns of the Azawakh breed? Health risks of Azawakh:
Anesthesia SensitivityAutoimmune ThyroiditisBloatEosinophilic MyositusHeart ProblemsHypothyroidismIdiopathic EpilepsyLacerationsSeizuresSkin AllergiesWobbler's Syndrome
Life Expectancy
How long do Azawakh dogs live? What is the average lifespan of this breed? How old can a Azawakh be?
10-12 years
Is the Azawakh breed hypoallergenic?
Azawakhs don't do well with allergy sufferers by causing allergic reaction. Some of the dog breeds are even considered to higher the possibility of an allergic response. Coat type isn't necessarily relevant, because most people are allergic to dander (flakes on the dog's skin) or saliva, not actually to dog hair.
Energy Level
How much energy does the Azawakh have?
Azawakhs have an average energy level, so if you live a semi-active life, this breed can be a good choice for you.
Exercise Need
How much exercise does this dog need? How much exercise do Azawakh dogs require per day?
Azawakhs have an average exercise need. This breed is satisfied with short walks every weekday and a long one on weekends.
Sleeping Need
How much sleep does this fido need?
Azawakhs sleep 12-14 hours a day as an average dog and they're not considered as a lazy breed.
Avg. daily food consumption
How much food does the Azawakh need? How often should I feed my canine? What dog products should I buy?
2 to 3 cups of a high-quality dog food a day.
Weight Gain Potential
How easy to gain weight for this dog? Azawakh risk for obesity:
Average. The Azawakh has an average risk for obesity. Daily walks should be on schedule. To make your dog happy and fit, feed him with quality dry dog food and live an active life together. Try to find the happy medium between exercise and feeding. If you notice any weight gain, consult your veterinarian and make a diet plan. Reduce unhealthy food and snacks, and measure the Azawakh's weight regularly.
Weather & Climate
Which weather condition is preferred by this dog? Can they tolerate hot and cold weather & climate?
Prefers warm weather
How stinky is this dog? Why does it smell bad and how to get rid of the smell?
The Azawakh has an average chance of bad smell. Top reasons for dog stinkiness: infection of bad tooth/ear/skin folds, gas attacks.
Drooling tendency
Does the Azawakh drool?
The Azawakh is a perfect example for very low drooling tendency. If you're disgusted by slobber spots on your clothes, the Azawakh could be a perfect choice for you. Drooling is the unintentional saliva flowing outside of the mouth. It can be completely normal or a sign of a health problem. Certain dog breeds drool minimal compared to others, just like the Azawakh. If you notice any change in your dog's drooling habit, you should contact a vet as soon as possible.

Azawakh Reproducibility

Gestation Length
How long does this dog's pregnancy last? How long does this dog pregnant? How long does it take to have puppies?
60-64 days
Reproductive cycle of the female Azawakh: The first period called Proestrus lasts for about 9 days. During this time the females start to attract males. You can notice by swelling vulva and bloody discharge. The second part is the Estrus when the bitch is receptive for the male. It lasts for about 3 to 11 days. The sign of the proestrus part is the soft and enlarged vulva. The discharge decreases and lightens in color. The third part is the Diestrus. Normally, it occurs around day 14. In this period the bitch’s discharge changes for vivid red and coming to its end. The vulva returns to average, and she will no longer permit mating. The fourth part called the Anestrus. The time frame between heat periods normally lasts about six months.
How often can the Azawakh have a litter? Once a year.
More frequent breeding is not healthy. It is very important not to buy a dog from a puppy mill, where the needs of the pups and their mothers are ignored. It's an inhumane high-volume dog breeding facility, where puppies born several times a year.
Litter Size
How many puppies can the Azawakh have? What is the average litter size of this fido?
4-6 puppies

Azawakh Pros & Cons

  • Apartment Friendly: Azawakhs are very apartment-friendly dogs.
  • Grooming: Effortless: The Azawakh requires minimal grooming.
  • Drooling tendency: The Azawakh is a perfect example for very low drooling tendency.
  • Watchdog Ability: Azawakhs are one of the best watchdogs.
  • Impulse to Wander or Roam: Azawakhs tend to escape less than other breeds.
  • Hypoallergenic: Azawakhs don't do well with allergy sufferers by causing allergic reaction.
  • Adaptability: Azawakhs don't adapt well to lifestyle changes and different living environments.
  • Child Friendly: Azawakhs are not the most kid-friendly dogs.
  • Cat Friendly: Azawakhs are not cat-friendly dogs.
  • Office Friendly: Azawakh is not the best dog breed for office environment.
  • Senior Citizens Friendly: Azawakhs are not the best breed for elderly people.
  • Good For First Time Owners: Azawakhs are not good for novice owners, due to their stubborn personality.

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