The Azawakh originates from the Burkina Faso, Mali, and Niger areas of West Africa. Also known as the Tuareg Sloughi, this sighthound originally hunted hare, antelope, and wild boar among the Tuareg people. The Azawakh is regarded as an elegant, tall and prized companion. The Azawakh is also considered a dog with a protective personality towards his owners. The Azawakh comes in various color combinations such as red, sandy, fawn, parti-color, blue, black, and brown. The Azawakh is ideal for a home without a family household as he fares best as a protector. His head markings show a black mask with white markings on his legs, bib, and the tip of the tail.
The Azawakh breed is also known as the Tuareg Sloughi, named after the Tuareg nomads. The breed has a few alternate names, including Idii n' Illeli (sight hound of the free people, or noble dog of the free people). The exact origin of the Azawakh dog is unknown, although it was not until the 1970s that the breed began to become popular in certain areas. The Azawakh is known to have originated from the Southern Sahara and Sahel areas of West Africa, bordering near Mali and Niger. The Azawakh is regarded as a respectful breed and enjoy appreciation from the nomads. The Azawakh developed as a result of interbreeding thousands of years ago and share ancestors with the Saluke and Sloughi. The Azawakh is still considered a newer breed in terms of understanding its temperament and broad history. Considered members of the family, this breed still likes to provide protection against invaders and strangers. They are exceptional hunters with an eye for obtaining meat and are known to hunt hare, antelope, and wild boar. The Azawakh 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 and are not known as solitary hunters. In the 1980s, the Azawakh was brought over to the United States. The first puppies were red and fawn with white markings. The Azawakh breed is not currently registered with the AKC but was recognized by the UKC in 1993. Although the Azawakh is still rare in the United States, it is slowly climbing in popularity.
The Azawakh has a leggy, athletic appearance. The bone structure and muscles of this dog are apparent throughout the lean skin. The Azawakh breed may be mistaken as having the appearance of being starved but this is the natural state. For instance, much of the dog's height is attributed to the long legs as this breed is built for speed and requires regular exercise in order to maintain his muscular frame. The Azawakh is regarded as a regal and elegant breed due to it’s appearance. With a body that is taller than it is long, the back is flat and short, while the legs are thin and long. The head consists of a long muzzle, pendant ears, and dark-colored almond-shaped eyes. The steady gaze of the Azawakh gaze contains an expression of intelligence. It’s coat is short and thin, coming in different color combinations such as black, blue, cream, fawn, gray, red, sandy, and white. The athletic gait is described as light. The tail is usually carried low on the body and raised over the back. The ears of this canine are described as medium-sized and remain close to the head.
In order to maintain the coat of this moderate shedder, you should brush your dog weekly to order to prevent an overabundance of shedding. A firm bristle brush or curry brush will do the trick. Regular nail trimming should occur between 3 and 4 weeks to maintain short nails. His ears should be assessed weekly and cleaned as needed to prevent ear infection and keep them free of debris. It is recommended to brush the teeth daily to decrease the risk of oral disease in your Azawakh. A bath at least once monthly will avoid the overproduction of oils on the coat, causing a dull look. The Azawakh has a high activity level and is a naturally athletic dog requiring daily walks with enough additional exercise provided to keep him content. The Azawakh would fare best in a dwelling with excessive space to run around to maintain an active lifestyle. This breed fares best in a warm and dry climate and does not like the cold weather due to thin skin. The diet of the Azawakh is known to be best maintained with a low-protein diet since it was bred to adapt to these conditions. Fruits and vegetables, such as bananas and carrots, are highly recommended by many professionals and can be mixed with some wild rice.