Even if you think you know dogs very well, forget everything you think you know when it comes to dealing with a Saluki. Salukis are an ancient breed which is still closely related to their ancestor, the pale-footed Asian wolf. Salukis still retain many wolf-like characteristics such as remarkable intelligence and reasoning abilities which cannot be measured by the usual "obedience trial" mentality. However, wolves are wild animals while Salukis have been domesticated by humans for thousands of years. A Saluki will decide whether cooperation with you is in his best interests. Salukis are a very gentle breed but they can "spook" easily. They are clannish and prefer their own kind to other breeds (although they can form excellent friendships with other dogs, given time and opportunity). They are gregarious, usually preferring to live in a pack (family) situation where they closely interact with their family members. Like wolves, they bond totally to the pack leader (in this case, you). If you learn to become a strong, fair leader you will find Salukis very easy to raise and live with. (The Affection Training Method outlined in our publication Only Angels: How to Raise and Train the Perfecct Saluki or Other Sighthound can show you how.) If you are volatile and demanding, both you and your Saluki will be miserable. The worst mistake a new owner can make is to think Salukis are like other dogs-they're not! Salukis are a breed apart-with the aloofness of a cat, the curiosity and dexterity of a raccoon and near-human intelligence. They present a challenge, but once they accept you the bond is forever. Because of the Saluki's special needs, STOLA seeks to find appropriate permanent adoptive homes which will be right for both you and the Saluki.
If you decide to adopt a Saluki, there are a few additional facts you need to know-
Salukis can easily clear a 6 foot fence and have been known to scale 12 foot cliffs and walls with ease. Salukis have also been known to climb trees and cyclone fencing and to jump from balconies. You must exercise common sense in exposing them to potentially dangerous situations.
They have been clocked at 35 to 50 mph. If they are running from you, you won't catch one. It is vital to train your Saluki to return to you immediately on voice command. The Affection Training Method offered through STOLA publications can show you how.
Yes, they can! They can open most doors and cupboards if they are motivated. Child-proof latches may be needed on your food cabinets and refrigerator. All poisons and household cleaners must be kept under lock and key.
If they want to escape from a crate, they usually can. (And you'll probably never figure out how they do it.) They can slip through amazingly small openings. Never leave a window open (not even a screened window) when the Saluki is home unattended. The Saluki can easily get through the screen (or even remove it) and escape. Salukis are very bonded to their people. They usually escape when unattended to try and find their people, just as wolves want to be reunited with their pack. Never leave your newly adopted Saluki unattended in a car. They have been known to escape from locked crates inside cars.
Think of your rescue Saluki as a human infant for the first six months.
At this point you may be saying, why on earth would I want a Saluki? Simply because they're fabulous! All of the problems mentioned can be remedied with time, patience, love and the appropriate training. You must allow the adopted Saluki about 6 months to completely adjust to his new home. He may test you time and time again the way adopted children do, just to make sure you are worthy of his affection and loyalty, but once the Saluki accepts you and you become his family you will be rewarded with a near perfect relationship. Once they learn what you expect them to do, Salukis are easy to live with, have no body odor, shed very little hair, and will provide you with possibly the best relationship you've ever had in your life. You never own a Saluki, you have a relationship with one, a relationship that is based on unfailing loyalty and trust. At STOLA we know the difficulties you may face, and the joy you will experience in living with a Saluki. We want to make the transition as easy as possible for you that is why we offer unlimited support during the first few months that the adopted Saluki moves in with you. Through STOLA we give adoptive Salukis a second chance, and we want to make your Saluki experience the rewarding, exciting event it should be.
Salukis are not for everyone. They require time, commitment, and a willingness to become truly involved with them. They are not a "backyard" dog. They must have personal contact in a loving, nurturing environment. At STOLA we do our very best to see that goal is reached. If you would like to investigate the possibility of living with a Saluki, or if you would like opportunities to spend more time with Salukis through volunteer activities, please contact us.
To adopt a Saluki through STOLA, please fill out the preliminary Adoption Application under the Forms Section of this website or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for additonal informaton.
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