Sloughi: A Noble and Agile Breed

The Sloughi, also known as the Arabian Greyhound, is a remarkable ancient breed of sighthound originating from North Africa. With its sleek and muscular body built for speed and endurance, the Sloughi is a medium-large dog that embodies grace and agility. Their short, smooth coat comes in various shades of sand to mahogany red fawn, showcasing their regal appearance. Let’s dive deeper into the fascinating characteristics, history, and care of the Sloughi breed.

Key Takeaways:

  • The Sloughi is an ancient breed of sighthound known for its noble appearance and agility.
  • Originating from North Africa, the Sloughi has a rich history and is also called the Arabian Greyhound.
  • Sloughis have a short, smooth coat that can come in various shades of sand to mahogany red fawn.
  • They are loyal and affectionate towards their family, although they can be reserved with strangers.
  • Proper care, socialization, and exercise are essential for the well-being of Sloughis.

History of the Sloughi

The Sloughi, a remarkable breed with a long and fascinating history, originated in North Africa. This elegant sighthound has been cherished for centuries in countries such as Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia, Libya, and Egypt. Its roots can be traced back to the hunting dogs kept by Egyptian nobles and nomadic tribes. The name “Sloughi” is believed to be a Berber pronunciation of “saluki,” another sighthound breed that shares a similar appearance.

Throughout history, the Sloughi played a vital role as a hunting companion and a reliable guard dog in the vast desert regions of North Africa. Its exceptional speed, agility, and keen sight made it an invaluable asset to the nomadic tribes for hunting gazelles, hares, and other game. Despite its historical significance, the breed faced challenges due to political unrest and the decline of traditional hunting practices. However, dedicated breeders and enthusiasts have worked tirelessly to preserve the Sloughi’s heritage and ensure its survival.

Recognition of the Sloughi as a distinct breed came relatively late, with the Fédération Cynologique Internationale officially recognizing it in 1998. The American Kennel Club followed suit in 2016, granting the breed recognition in the United States. This recognition has brought increased awareness and appreciation for the Sloughi, paving the way for its continued presence in the world of purebred dogs.

History of the Sloughi

Origin North Africa
Countries Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia, Libya, Egypt
Ancestry Egyptian hunting dogs
Historical Use Hunting, guarding
Recognition Fédération Cynologique Internationale (1998), American Kennel Club (2016)

Physical Appearance of the Sloughi


The Sloughi is a striking and graceful medium-large dog with a slender and athletic build. Its long and elegant head, combined with its droopy ears, gives the breed a unique and regal appearance. The Sloughi’s body is lean and muscular, designed for speed and agility. With its distinctive silhouette, this breed is often referred to as the Arabian Greyhound.

The Sloughi’s coat is short, smooth, and fine, contributing to its sleek and streamlined look. It comes in a variety of colors, ranging from light sand to mahogany red fawn. Brindle and black markings are also possible but are not as common. Large white markings are not considered part of the breed’s standard.

Size-wise, the Sloughi typically stands between 24 and 29 inches (61-74 cm) at the shoulder and weighs around 35 to 55 pounds (16-25 kg). The breed’s overall appearance exudes nobility, aloofness, and grace, making it a true sight to behold.

Table: Sloughi Coat Colors

Color Description
Light Sand Pale yellowish-cream color
Sand Medium-toned sandy color
Red Fawn Rich reddish-brown shade
Mahogany Red Fawn Deep, dark reddish-brown color
Brindle Mix of light and dark tones in a striped pattern
Black Markings Dark patches or stripes on the coat

Overall, the physical appearance of the Sloughi reflects its impressive heritage as a skilled and elegant hunter. Its distinctive features and color variations make it a unique and eye-catching breed.

Sloughi Temperament: A Loyal and Noble Family Dog

The Sloughi is renowned for its loyal nature and noble demeanor, making it an ideal family dog for those who value these qualities. While they may be reserved and aloof around strangers, Sloughis form deep bonds with their owners and show unwavering loyalty. They thrive in a loving and secure environment where they feel a strong connection with their human companions.

One important aspect of the Sloughi temperament to consider is their prey drive. As descendants of hunting dogs, Sloughis have a natural instinct to chase small animals. It is crucial to keep them leashed or within a secure area when outside to prevent them from pursuing prey. Early socialization and proper training are essential to help them control their instincts and channel their energy appropriately.

“Sloughis are known for their grace, agility, and noble appearance, and have a lifespan of around 12-15 years.”

When properly socialized and trained, Sloughis can be wonderful with children. However, they may not appreciate rough or overly rambunctious play, so supervision is necessary to ensure a harmonious interaction. Their gentle and affectionate nature can make them excellent companions for older children who understand how to respect the dog’s boundaries.

Table: Sloughi Temperament Traits

Trait Description
Loyalty Devoted and dedicated to their owners
Reserved Aloof around strangers
Prey Drive Instinct to chase small animals
Gentleness Affectionate and gentle with their family

In summary, the Sloughi’s temperament is characterized by loyalty, nobility, and a strong prey drive. They are best suited for families who can provide them with the love, attention, and appropriate outlets for their energy. With proper socialization and training, the Sloughi can be a cherished part of the family, offering unwavering loyalty and a gentle nature.

Sloughi Care and Maintenance

Sloughi care

Proper care and maintenance are essential for keeping your Sloughi healthy and happy. Here are some key aspects to consider:


The Sloughi’s short, smooth coat requires regular brushing to keep it healthy and shiny. Use a soft-bristle brush to remove loose hair and prevent matting. Additionally, check your Sloughi’s ears regularly for any signs of infection or irritation, and trim their nails when needed to prevent discomfort.


The Sloughi is a high-energy breed that requires plenty of exercise to meet its physical and mental needs. Daily opportunities for running and play are essential to keep them happy and prevent boredom. Consider activities such as long walks, jogging, or playing fetch in a secure area. Mental stimulation through puzzle toys or training exercises can also help keep them engaged.

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A balanced diet is crucial for the overall health of your Sloughi. Consult with your veterinarian to determine the appropriate type and amount of food based on your dog’s age, weight, and activity level. High-quality dog food with a proper balance of protein, carbohydrates, and fats, along with essential vitamins and minerals, will support their overall well-being.


Training is important for your Sloughi’s mental stimulation and to ensure they become well-mannered adults. Use positive and reward-based training methods to motivate and encourage them. Consistency, patience, and early socialization are key to helping your Sloughi develop good behavior and become a well-adjusted member of your family.

Sloughi Health Concerns

The health of a Sloughi is of utmost importance for their overall well-being. While they are generally a healthy breed, there are certain genetic conditions that they may be prone to. Regular veterinary check-ups and proper care can help ensure the longevity and vitality of these magnificent dogs.

Genetic Conditions

One of the key health concerns in Sloughis is progressive retinal atrophy (PRA), a degenerative eye disorder that can lead to vision loss or blindness. It is crucial for breeders to conduct genetic testing to identify carriers and prevent the spread of this condition. Responsible breeding practices and careful selection of breeding pairs can help reduce the occurrence of PRA in the breed.

In addition to PRA, Sloughis may also be susceptible to hip dysplasia and elbow dysplasia, which are developmental abnormalities that affect the joints. These conditions can cause lameness and discomfort in affected dogs. Regular exercise, a balanced diet, and maintaining a healthy weight can help minimize the risk of these orthopedic issues.

Eye Disorders

Sloughis can also be prone to various eye disorders, aside from progressive retinal atrophy. These may include entropion, a condition where the eyelids roll inward, causing irritation and potential damage to the cornea. Another eye condition that may affect Sloughis is dry eye, also known as keratoconjunctivitis sicca, which is characterized by insufficient tear production. Regular eye examinations and prompt veterinary care can help detect and manage these disorders to ensure optimal eye health.

It is essential for Sloughi owners to be aware of these potential health concerns and take proactive measures to maintain their dogs’ well-being. Regular exercise, a nutritious diet, routine veterinary care, and genetic testing are all instrumental in ensuring the health and longevity of these magnificent dogs.

Choosing a Sloughi

Sloughi adoption

When it comes to choosing a Sloughi, there are a few options to consider. One option is adopting from a rescue organization or shelter. This allows you to provide a loving home to a dog in need. Not only will you be giving a Sloughi a second chance at life, but you’ll also be contributing to the reduction of pet homelessness.

If you decide to go the route of purchasing a Sloughi puppy, it’s essential to choose a reputable breeder. Responsible breeding practices are crucial to ensure the health and well-being of the puppies. By doing thorough research and asking the right questions, you can find a breeder who prioritizes the health and temperament of their dogs.

Important Considerations

  • Research the breeder’s reputation and ask for references from previous puppy buyers.
  • Inquire about the health testing that the breeder conducts on their breeding stock to ensure they are not passing on any genetic health conditions.
  • Visit the breeder’s facilities to see firsthand how the puppies are raised and if they are in a clean and healthy environment.
  • Ask about the breeder’s socialization program to ensure the puppies are exposed to various stimuli and experiences from an early age.
  • Request to see the puppies’ parents to assess their temperament and overall health.

By taking these precautions and choosing a reputable breeder or adopting from a rescue organization, you can increase the likelihood of bringing home a healthy and well-adjusted Sloughi.

Pros of Adoption Pros of Buying from a Reputable Breeder
Give a dog a second chance at life Assurance of responsible breeding practices
No contribution to pet homelessness Access to health and temperament information of the parents
Potentially lower cost Opportunity to establish a relationship with the breeder for ongoing support and advice

Whether you choose to adopt or buy from a reputable breeder, providing a loving and caring home is the most important factor. Sloughis are loyal and loving companions, and with the right care and training, they can bring joy to your life for years to come.

Sloughi as an Apartment Dog

Sloughi apartment living

The Sloughi is a breed that can adapt to apartment living, but it is important to note that they have high energy levels and require ample daily exercise. While they may be content with a smaller living space, they still need regular opportunities to run and play to meet their physical and mental stimulation needs.

Due to their hunting background, Sloughis have a strong prey drive, which means they should always be leashed or kept in a secure area when outside. It is essential to provide them with a safe and controlled environment to prevent them from chasing after small animals or getting into potentially dangerous situations.

When living in an apartment, it is important to ensure that the Sloughi has access to a secure area where they can be exercised off-leash. This can include a nearby park or a fenced-in yard. If a secure space is not available, apartment dwellers should be prepared to provide daily vigorous exercise for their Sloughi, such as long walks, runs, or playing fetch in a designated area.

Activity Duration Frequency
Moderate to intense exercise (e.g., running, playing fetch) 60-90 minutes Daily
Leashed walks 30-45 minutes 2-3 times a day
Mental stimulation (e.g., puzzle toys, training sessions) 15-30 minutes Daily

It is also important to note that Sloughis are sensitive dogs and thrive on human companionship. They are not well-suited for a sedentary lifestyle or being left alone for extended periods. They require regular interaction with their owners and should not be left alone for long hours on a daily basis. This breed bonds closely with their families and prefers being part of the household activities.

By providing sufficient exercise, mental stimulation, and quality time with their owners, Sloughis can adapt well to apartment living and remain happy and healthy.

Sloughi as a Family Dog

Sloughi Family Dog

The Sloughi can make a wonderful family dog when properly trained and socialized. With their loyalty and affectionate nature, they form strong bonds with their owners and can be a loving presence in the household.

When it comes to compatibility with children, Sloughis can get along well with kids if they are taught to respect and treat dogs kindly. Early socialization is essential to ensure that both the dog and children understand how to interact with each other safely. It’s also important to supervise any interactions between a Sloughi and young children to prevent accidental harm.

In terms of compatibility with other pets, Sloughis can coexist harmoniously with other animals if they are properly introduced and socialized from an early age. However, their strong prey drive should be considered when introducing them to smaller pets such as cats or small dogs. Close supervision and gradual introductions can help ensure a peaceful coexistence.

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Overall, the Sloughi can be an excellent addition to a family that can provide them with the love, attention, and training they need. With proper care and consideration for their specific traits, they can thrive as a loyal and loving family companion.

Sloughi Exercise and Training

The Sloughi is a highly active and energetic breed that requires ample exercise and mental stimulation to thrive. Regular physical activity is essential to keep them happy, healthy, and well-behaved. It is recommended to provide them with at least 60 minutes of exercise every day, but more vigorous activities are ideal.

One of the best ways to fulfill the Sloughi’s exercise needs is through off-leash running in a securely fenced area. They have a strong prey drive and can reach incredible speeds, so engaging them in activities like lure coursing or chasing after a flirt pole can provide excellent physical and mental stimulation. It is important to note that Sloughis should always be supervised and trained in recall to ensure their safety.

“The Sloughi is a highly active and energetic breed that requires ample exercise and mental stimulation to thrive.”

In addition to physical exercise, the Sloughi also benefits from mental enrichment activities. Training sessions that involve obedience commands, agility exercises, or puzzle toys can help keep their minds sharp and prevent boredom. They are intelligent dogs with a sensitive nature, so positive reinforcement methods that include rewards and praise work best for their training needs.

Sloughi Socialization

Proper socialization is crucial for Sloughis to develop good manners and become well-adjusted adults. Early and ongoing exposure to various people, animals, and environments can help prevent potential behavioral issues and ensure they are confident and friendly in different situations.

Introducing them to different sights, sounds, smells, and experiences from a young age is important. This can be done by taking them on regular outings to parks, pet-friendly stores, and other safe environments. Positive interactions with other dogs and animals can also help them develop appropriate social skills.

Overall, the Sloughi requires an active and engaging lifestyle that includes plenty of exercise, mental stimulation, and positive socialization. Meeting their needs in these areas will result in a happy, well-rounded companion.

Sloughi Genetic Testing

Sloughi Genetic Testing

Genetic testing plays a crucial role in ensuring the health and well-being of Sloughis. As a breed, they can be prone to certain genetic health conditions, such as progressive retinal atrophy. By conducting genetic testing, owners and breeders can gain valuable insights into the genetic makeup of their dogs and make informed decisions regarding breeding practices and healthcare management.

Sloughi genetic health testing involves analyzing the DNA of individual dogs to identify specific genes or mutations associated with certain conditions. This information allows breeders to determine if a dog is a carrier or at risk for developing these conditions, helping them make responsible breeding decisions to minimize the occurrence of inherited health problems in future generations.

Additionally, genetic testing can provide valuable information for the lifelong care of Sloughis. Knowing the genetic predisposition of an individual dog can help veterinarians tailor their healthcare plans and monitor for the early detection of potential health issues. It also allows owners to take proactive steps to manage and mitigate any inherited conditions, improving the overall quality of life for their Sloughi.

By embracing genetic testing, Sloughi breeders and owners demonstrate a commitment to the health and well-being of the breed. It is a proactive step towards preserving the Sloughi’s genetic diversity and ensuring the future of this ancient and noble breed.

Table: Common Genetic Health Conditions in Sloughis

Condition Description Testing Method Frequency
Progressive Retinal Atrophy A degenerative eye disease that leads to blindness. DNA testing for specific mutations Recommended for all breeding dogs
Hip Dysplasia A hip joint malformation that can cause pain and mobility issues. Orthopedic evaluation and X-rays Recommended for all breeding dogs
Elbow Dysplasia An abnormal development of the elbow joint that can lead to lameness. Orthopedic evaluation and X-rays Recommended for all breeding dogs

Note: This table is not exhaustive and serves as an example of common genetic health conditions in Sloughis. Consult with a veterinarian or geneticist for comprehensive information and guidance on genetic testing for the breed.

Sloughi in Competitive Sports

Sloughi in lure coursing

The Sloughi breed’s exceptional speed, agility, and natural hunting instincts make them well-suited for various competitive sports. One of the most popular activities for Sloughis is lure coursing, a sport that mimics the chase of prey. In lure coursing, dogs pursue a mechanical lure across a field, showcasing their speed and agility as they navigate twists and turns.

Another sport in which Sloughis excel is agility. In agility competitions, dogs navigate through obstacle courses, including jumps, tunnels, and weave poles, in the fastest and most accurate time possible. The Sloughi’s athleticism and intelligence allow them to excel in this physically demanding sport.

While lure coursing and agility are popular sports for Sloughis, they can also participate in other activities such as obedience and rally. These sports provide mental and physical stimulation for the breed and strengthen the bond between the dog and their owner.

Table: Sloughi Sports and Competitions

Sport/Competition Description
Lure Coursing Mimics the chase of prey with a mechanical lure across a field. Showcases speed and agility.
Agility Tests a dog’s ability to navigate through obstacle courses, including jumps, tunnels, and weave poles, in the fastest and most accurate time.
Obedience Evaluates a dog’s ability to follow commands and demonstrate control and obedience.
Rally Combines elements of obedience and agility, testing a dog’s ability to navigate a course while following specific commands.

Participating in these sports not only allows Sloughis to showcase their natural abilities but also provides them with mental and physical exercise. Regular participation in competitive sports can help keep Sloughis physically fit, mentally stimulated, and maintain a strong bond with their owners.

Sloughi Clubs and Associations

For enthusiasts of the Sloughi breed, there are several clubs and associations dedicated to promoting and preserving the breed’s unique qualities. These organizations provide resources, support, and a sense of community for Sloughi owners, breeders, and enthusiasts. By connecting with these clubs and associations, individuals can access valuable information, find reputable breeders, and network with others who share their passion for the Sloughi.

American Sloughi Association

The American Sloughi Association (ASA) is a recognized organization committed to the betterment of the Sloughi breed in the United States. The ASA promotes responsible breeding practices, provides educational resources about the breed, and hosts various events, including specialty shows and lure coursing trials. They also maintain a breeder directory, making it easier for individuals to find reputable Sloughi breeders who prioritize the health and temperament of their dogs.

International Sloughi Organizations

In addition to the ASA, there are international organizations that cater to Sloughi enthusiasts worldwide. These organizations include the Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI), which is the international canine organization that governs breed standards and events, and the Sloughi World Congress, which brings together Sloughi experts, breeders, and enthusiasts from around the globe. These international organizations offer a wealth of information, show opportunities, and a platform for collaboration and exchange of knowledge.

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Connecting with Sloughi Breeders

For those interested in acquiring a Sloughi puppy, connecting with reputable breeders is crucial. Breeders who are members of recognized clubs and associations often adhere to ethical practices and prioritize the health and well-being of their dogs. They can provide valuable insights into the breed, guide individuals through the process of acquiring a puppy, and offer ongoing support and advice. The American Sloughi Association and international Sloughi organizations are great resources for finding reputable breeders who are dedicated to the breed’s preservation and improvement.

Sloughi Clubs and Associations Website
American Sloughi Association
Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI)
Sloughi World Congress

Sloughi as Therapy and Service Dogs

The Sloughi’s loyal and affectionate nature, combined with their gentle and calm demeanor, makes them well-suited for therapy work. These dogs have the ability to provide emotional support, comfort, and companionship to individuals in need, bringing joy and positivity to their lives.

The Sloughi’s intuitive nature allows them to sense and respond to their owner’s emotions, making them excellent therapy dogs. They have a natural ability to empathize and connect with people, which can be particularly beneficial for those dealing with anxiety, depression, or other mental health challenges.

As service dogs, Sloughis can assist individuals with disabilities or special needs. Their intelligence and eagerness to please make them trainable for a variety of tasks, such as retrieving items, opening doors, and alerting to medical emergencies. With the right training and guidance, Sloughis can become invaluable companions and helpers in daily life.

Whether as therapy dogs or service dogs, Sloughis provide not only practical assistance but also emotional support and unconditional love. Their presence can make a significant difference in the lives of those they serve, offering comfort and a sense of security.

Table: Comparison of Therapy Dogs and Service Dogs

Criteria Therapy Dogs Service Dogs
Training Trained to provide emotional support and comfort to individuals in various settings, such as hospitals, nursing homes, and schools. They do not have public access rights. Extensively trained to perform specific tasks to assist individuals with disabilities or special needs. They have public access rights and can accompany their owners in public spaces.
Legal Protection Not protected by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Protected by the ADA, which grants them access to public places, transportation, and housing.
Focus Providing emotional support and comfort to individuals. Performing tasks to assist individuals with disabilities or special needs.
Training Requirements Can often be certified through therapy dog programs. Must have basic obedience training and pass temperament evaluations. Undergo extensive training tailored to the specific needs of their handler. Must pass stringent assessments and meet specific standards.
Access Rights Do not have public access rights and are typically only allowed in designated therapy settings. Have public access rights and can accompany their owners in public spaces, including restaurants, stores, and transportation.

“The presence of a therapy dog can provide comfort and emotional support, helping individuals feel more relaxed and at ease. The connection between a therapy dog and a person in need can be incredibly powerful and therapeutic.” – Dr. Jane Thompson, Animal-Assisted Therapy Specialist

The Future of the Sloughi

Preserving the future of the Sloughi breed is of utmost importance to ensure its continued existence and the continuation of its unique qualities. Various organizations, breed clubs, responsible breeders, and dedicated enthusiasts all play a vital role in conserving and promoting the Sloughi. By adhering to responsible breeding practices and conducting genetic testing, breeders can reduce the risk of passing on genetic health conditions to future generations. This commitment to health and well-being is essential in maintaining the overall quality of the breed.

Conservation efforts for the Sloughi also involve education and awareness about its history, characteristics, and its significance in North African culture. By spreading knowledge and understanding of the breed, more people can appreciate and value the Sloughi, making it less likely to fall into obscurity. Educating individuals about the breed’s needs, such as exercise requirements and proper socialization, helps ensure that Sloughis find suitable homes where they can thrive.

Furthermore, fostering a sense of community among Sloughi enthusiasts is crucial for the breed’s preservation. Breed clubs and associations provide resources for owners and breeders, including information about upcoming events, health considerations, and networking opportunities. By joining these organizations, individuals can access valuable support and guidance, enabling them to make informed decisions and contribute to the future of the Sloughi.

Future focus areas Actions
Breed promotion Participate in dog shows and exhibitions to showcase the Sloughi’s unique qualities.
Health testing and research Continued genetic testing to identify and address potential health concerns.
Public awareness Spread knowledge about the Sloughi breed’s history, traits, and its significance in North African culture.
Collaboration with international breeders Exchange knowledge and genetic diversity to maintain the health and quality of the breed.

With a collective effort from breeders, owners, and enthusiasts, the future of the Sloughi looks promising. By prioritizing careful breeding practices, genetic health testing, education, and community involvement, we can ensure that this ancient and noble breed continues to thrive for generations to come.


In conclusion, the Sloughi is an exceptional breed of sighthound that combines elegance, loyalty, and high energy levels. With their sleek and muscular bodies, they are built for speed and endurance, making them ideal for active individuals or families. Sloughis have a noble appearance and a range of coat colors, adding to their distinctiveness.

Their temperament is characterized by loyalty and affection towards their owners, although they may be reserved with strangers. Training and socialization are essential to ensure they become well-adjusted adults. While they can be great with children, it is important to teach kids to respect and treat the dogs kindly.

Proper care, including regular grooming and exercise, is crucial to maintain their overall health and well-being. Sloughis have a few genetic health concerns, but regular veterinary check-ups and genetic testing can help address these issues. By adopting from shelters or choosing reputable breeders, individuals can contribute to the preservation of this unique and ancient breed.

In conclusion, the Sloughi is a remarkable breed with a rich history and distinctive qualities. Their elegance, loyalty, and need for physical activity make them a perfect match for active individuals or families who will provide them with the care and attention they require. By adhering to responsible breeding practices and prioritizing their health, we can ensure that the Sloughi continues to thrive for generations to come.

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