It is an African sighthound descending from the types pictured in the wall paintings of the Central Sahara which date back thousands of years. The ever- increasing aridity of the Sahara caused Tuareg, Dahoussahaq and Peul shepherd-hunters to migrate with their dogs to the more hospitable lands of the Sahel: in areas suitable for farming and hunting along the dry valley of the Azawakh. Belonging to the culture of peoples who domesticated and shaped it, it is known as Oska in the Tuareg language. European enthusiasts discovered the breed with admiration, and selected with the help of the breeders who owned the first lines exported to Europe, as of 1968. (1)
Particularly slim and elegant, the Azawakh sighthound gives a general impression of great slenderness. Its bone structure and muscles show through thin and dry skin. It is a slender dog whose body fits into a rectangle with a vertical long side. (1)
Quick, attentive, distant, can be very reserved with strangers, but it can be gentle and affectionate with its family, and people whom it is willing to accept. (1)
Azawakh are very social and emotional. They need a master that provides firm but fair leadership. Azawakh thrive on companionship of other Azawakh. (2)
Height at the withers: Males: 64 –74 cm. Females: 60–70 cm. A margin of 2 cm above and below the standard is tolerated.
Weight: Males: 20–25 kg. Females: 15–20 kg. (1)
Now you know a little about the Azawakh you may have think that this is the dog for you. Before you make a decision, please make contact with the breed club or your State controlling body for purebred dogs. They will be able to give you information about available puppies and also suggest dog shows where you can see the breed and speak to breeders. In this way you will gain a better perspective of the Azawakh and its needs and whether this breed would suit your lifestyle.