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rec.pets.dogs: Pharaoh Hounds Breed-FAQ

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Archive-name: dogs-faq/breeds/pharaohs
Posting-frequency: 30 days
Last-modified: 05 Jun 1996

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This article is Copyright 1996 by the Author(s) listed below. 
It may be freely distributed on the Internet in its entirety without
alteration provided that this copyright notice is not removed.  
It may NOT reside at another website (use links, please) other
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                               PHARAOH HOUND,
                            THE COMPANION OF KINGS
   Kay Durr, K'Azar Pharaoh Hounds (
   Copyright 1995-1996 by Kay Durr.
   Last edited: March, 1996
      Present Day History
      Activities Available to Pharaoh Hounds
      Requirements for Buyers
      Additional Information Available
      About Us
      Thank You
   The Pharaoh Hound is the oldest domesticated dog in recorded history.
   Two hounds are depicted hunting Gazelle on a circular disc which is
   thought to have been part of a game. The date, around 4000 B.C., was
   certainly before the first dynasty. The origin of this hound in
   prehistoric times has been the subject of research by many
   Egyptologists. They conclude that if this race of dogs could have
   resulted from a mixture of many kinds of wild canidae, it is quite
   natural that from time to time, one of these elegant individuals would
   crop up with the elegant silhouette of Canis Doerdelini, the beautiful
   limbs of the Canis Lupaster, & the long nose, erect ears & gentle
   nature of the Pariah or Wandering Dog of Egypt. They were seen as
   representatives of the Ancient Gods by the original Egyptians. The
   dogs were favored as the hunters and faithful, loyal companions in the
   daily life of the kings and nobles of all periods in Ancient Egypt &
   were frequently depicted in carvings.
   In 1935, a burial tomb of a dog was found in the great cemetery west
   of the Pyramid of Cheops at Giza with the following inscription
   recording the ritual burial ceremony, "The dog which was the guard of
   His Majesty, Abuwtiyuw is his name." This was a "Pharaoh Hound" type
   dog. His Majesty did this for him in order that he (the dog) might be
   honored before the great God Anubis.
   It is thought that the Phoenicians took these hounds with them when
   they settled on Malta and Gozo (islands off the coast of Italy), & the
   preservation of the these hounds who have changed so little in 5,000
   years can be credited to the islands inhabitants. They are now the
   National Dog of Malta, where they are bred for rabbit hunting,
   guardians of the homesteads, & known as "Kelb-tal-Fenek" (Rabbit Dog).
   The Pharaoh Hound was first imported into England in the early 1930's,
   then again in 1963 from Malta and Gozo. They were first introduced
   into the U.S. about 1967 by Mrs. Harper & the Pharaoh Hound Club of
   America (PHCA) was founded in 1970. Pharaohs received American Kennel
   Club (AKC) recognition in 1984 & were added to the Hound Group. This
   glorious breed can now be found in most countries in the world.
   The AKC records for the Pharaoh from the time they were recognized
   through the end of 1994, show, there have been a total of 233 litters
   with 1,211 dogs individually registered with the AKC. 465 of these
   dogs have attained their AKC Championship with an additional 53 titles
   having been awarded in Obedience. AKC Lure Coursing Titles have been
   given to 9 Field Champions.
   There are about 1,200 to 1,500 Pharaoh Hounds alive and well in the
   U.S. today. These figures are based on the fact that not all new
   owners of this wonderful breed choose to register their hounds, &
   therefore the figure of 1,211 registered may be misleading. Since
   Pharaoh Hounds have a long life span of 12+ years or more, most of
   those originally registered in 1984 are still with us.
   The Pharaoh Hound is a medium sized hound, (dogs may be up to 25" at
   the withers and bitches up to 24" with weight varying from 40 to 60
   pounds), elegant and of great beauty, showing grace, power &
   intelligence. Elegance should not be translated into fine bone. The
   coat is short and fine in varying shades of tan, ONLY, from quite dark
   to a medium blonde shade. White markings on the dog are allowed on the
   chest (called a star, but may be any shape), on the toes (but should
   not to extend beyond the toes) and on the tip of the tail (this is
   highly desirable, but not required and it should be a tip and not a
   flag). A small white snip is allowable on the forehead between and
   just above the eyes (sometimes called the "kiss of Allah"). This white
   snip should not extend down the face of the dog. White is permitted on
   the throat but not encouraged. White is NOT allowed on sides or back
   of the neck and body.. This is the ONLY disqualification the breed
   standard for the Pharaoh Hound carries.
   The head is fine and sculptured with natural prick ears that are
   medium high set. The neck is long and muscular & flows into the well
   laid back shoulders. The nose and eye rims are flesh colored, along
   with the insides of the erect ears. These flesh colored areas will
   turn pink or red when the Pharaoh is blushing, which they are quite
   capable of. The eyes are always amber colored and oval shaped. The
   gait is smooth and flowing with powerful strides. The top line is
   almost level with a slight slope of the croup to the tail which is
   long, reaching to the hock, and carried up & curved when moving. The
   tail generally hangs between the legs when the dog is inactive. The
   rear legs should be moderately bent at the stifle with well let down
   (short) hocks. The tuck-up on a Pharaoh Hound is not as great as that
   seen on a Greyhound or Whippet, but more moderate. The dog should be
   slightly longer than he is high. This is all left to each persons own
   interpretation of the words moderate or slightly.
   They are essentially a "wash & wear" dog, requiring only a minimum of
   care to the nails, teeth & good brushing of the coat & baths as
   needed. They will shed, but it is minimal. A 25' x 30', 6' fenced in
   yard will suffice for exercise, but they do appreciate a good long
   romp in larger enclosed areas when available. Jogging or running with
   their owner is a favorite pastime.
   General Characteristics can be described as: Aloof; Curious but
   Cautious; Independent, Extremely Intelligent and Strong willed. If
   there is just one thing that holds true for Pharaohs Hounds, it would
   be that there are no two alike. Their one goal in life is to enjoy it
   to the fullest. The Pharaoh Hound has an outstanding personality & is
   easy going & gentle. He stands with the "Aura" of greatness and
   importance & he holds himself aloof & above the average. They are
   quite fun loving and affectionate with their owners, & when quite
   pleased with themselves and/or their actions, will blush as described
   above. This is also occurs when they are smiling. Some owners have
   trained their Pharaohs to smile on command, thus producing the blush.
   They glow with excitement or happiness & can exhibit a great sense of
   humor, in the nature of a first class clown. They don't like the
   feeling of being entrapped.
   Pharaohs have a great tolerance of children and think God created
   these little creatures just for them to entertain. When raised with
   other small animals, they can be quite tolerant of those also. But be
   aware, they can also consider other small animals as "game" as they
   are first and foremost hunters instinctively. They have an innate
   sense of their owners feelings and moods. They know when to dive for
   cover or be on their best behavior. They are generally not high
   strung, but are active and do enjoy running and playing. They will
   entertain themselves for hours on end, and if they can entertain those
   they own at the same time, they are twice as happy.
   They can be quite "cat-like" in their personalities and habits. They
   love to be loved, but only when they want it. With strangers, they can
   be aloof until properly introduced. They will judge each new person on
   what they feel are their merits and decided if they are worthy of
   their attention. Thus they are very discriminating. Given enough time
   most will warm up to any situation or environment. They are not
   generally social butterflies. Allow them their own time to make these
   decisions and never force yourself or others on them. The key is
   proper Socialization.
   With other dogs, they tend of avoid fights, but if challenged they
   will stand their ground & defend themselves. Remember not all dogs are
   the same and these traits may vary from one dog to another.
   Pharaohs are hounds through and through. Thus they can be quite
   stubborn & will try to outsmart you.. They can NOT be forced to do
   anything they deem improper. They feel they have a right to a say so
   about every decision concerning them. With plenty of patience and a
   good sense of humor, they can be trained to do just about anything. A
   lesson once learned if never forgotten. This applies to bad habits
   also. Just because that puppy is so cute doing something, if it is
   something that you will not be able to live with later in his life,
   correct it immediately. Untraining those bad habits is much harder
   than enforcing the good habits, no matter the age. But they are very
   adaptable. Specially if they are led to believe it was their idea to
   do what you are trying to teach them. Mental happiness is also
   House training is usually a snap. They are very clean and therefore,
   great house dogs, never having a "doggy odor", they will clean
   themselves much as a cat does. They are quick and eager to learn,
   though a bit strong minded. With their independent nature, they prefer
   to think for themselves with a very high degree of intelligence.
   Being natural hunters, the "come" command is vital for their welfare.
   When in pursuit of the "game", they can become selectively deaf, and
   being so intent, they will keep going for the thrill of the chase.
   They pay no attention to where they are going & can become lost. They
   hunt by scent & sight and are aided by their tremendous speed &
   agility. The best rule here is never have them off lead except in a
   controlled situation, like totally fenced in areas that are escape
   The Pharaoh demands an Alpha leader, and if he feels you are not up to
   the job, he will try to take over command and train you to his way of
   life. Be Consistent, Fair and Gentle at the same time and you will
   have a wonderful companion. And always keep the training Fun &
   Exciting for both of you. They consider training just another new
   game, keep it that way. They do no handle repetition well.
   Lure coursing - AKC & ASFA Field Trials open to all breeds of
   Sighthounds (11 of them) whereby the hounds attain titles by doing
   what they were originally bred for. At these trials, the sighthounds
   chase "white plastic bags," which to them would resemble a "bunny." No
   live game is involved. 
   Open Field Coursing - The National Open Field Coursing Association
   (NOFCA) is an organization of sighthound fanciers dedicated to the
   common goal of preserving and further developing the natural beauty,
   grace, speed, desire and coursing skills inherent in the sighthound.
   To further this endeavor, NOFCA has established a system to offer
   competitive hunts which allow the sighthounds to demonstrate that they
   can perform the functions for which they were originally bred.
   Obedience Trials - AKC shows where your hound performs his trained
   obedience exercises and attains titles for doing so.
   AKC Dog Shows - Where your Pharaoh would be judged to attain his
   Canine Good Citizens Program - An AKC test to demonstrate that the dog
   as a companion of man, can be a respected member of the community.
   Agility - A competitive sport in which a handler directs his dog over
   a timed obstacle course. Dogs race against the clock, are scored on
   their performance and ultimately receives titles.
   Tracking - A field trial whereby your dog shows his instinct for
   tracking a scented trail. AKC titles are given for different levels of
   competition. Additional Tracking Information
   Therapy Dogs - These dogs visit various institutions or hospitals to
   cheer up the confined patients or elderly. The dogs usually need to be
   certified to become a Therapy Dog.
   More detailed information can be obtained from the AKC. They have
   pamphlets available free for the asking on most of the activities, or
   contact your local All Breed Kennel Club.
   The Pharaoh Hound is not a dog for everyone. With his extreme
   intelligence, special understanding and care is required. They look at
   each situation presented to them as a challenge & they are always
   thinking up new ways to get the best of you. To date there are not
   really any certified health problems in common through out the breed.
   To keep this in check, conscientious breeders will have all their
   breeding stock checked for problems, such as hip dysplasia. Other than
   those already mentioned above, here are a few others:
   Barking - This is called "giving tongue" when they are hunting. At
   other times it can be called a nuisance. Generally Pharaohs only bark
   to alert their owners of intruders or such. But, those that are bored
   and/or alone for extended periods of time , like while you are at
   work, may become troublesome, and give vent to their voices. A pet for
   your dog may solve this problem. Proper "when to bark/not to bark"
   training is also required. Keep your Pharaoh busy and they won't have
   time to bark or be destructive.
   Coprophagia - A trait that still rears its ugly head. This is stool
   eating. It is NOT because your dog needs something in their diet. This
   breed has not been domesticated for that long a period of time, and in
   the wilds, the dogs had to hide their trails to protect their young.
   As such, they would eat their droppings so that they could not be
   tracked. The only cure is to clean up after your dog immediately after
   it does its business, thus avoiding this becoming a habit. Once it is
   there, it is very difficult to break.
   Allergies - This is a common problem in almost all breeds. Just be
   alert to any problems your dog may encounter. Be sure to check with
   your breeder for any predisposition to allergies.
   Sensitivity - anesthesia being the worst. It is recommended that only
   isoflorane be used when required for surgery. Flea control is best
   handled with products containing pyrethins or d-Limonene.
   Since there are so few of the breed, and hopefully only the very best
   is being bred to the very best, puppies are usually in demand. Even
   so, a good breeder will not produce a litter unless they have deposits
   on secured homes for quite a few of the puppies in advance. So if it
   is your intention to become the proud owner of one of these wonderful
   dogs, you may have to have a deposit made on a pup for up to a year
   before it finally arrives. But it is well worth it. 
   If you are looking for a Pet/Companion, be prepared to accept one on
   AKC Limited Registration only, along with a contract stating you
   understand the animal is not to be bred and that it should be spayed
   or neutered, as it is in the best interests of the health of the
    "The Pharaoh Hound" by P.Block & R.Sacks from Denlinger's Publishers
    "The Ancient Pharaoh Hound" by J.Martin & R.Bullard from Touchstone Press.
    The "Pharaoh Hound - Breed Video" is available from the AKC.
   For additional information I can be contacted at any time at :
   We have been breeding and exhibiting our Pharaoh Hounds for the past
   10 years. We have been the top producing breeders in the breed several
   times during this period. Our foundation bitch Am.Can.Mex.& Intl.
   Ch.Beltara's Twyla of K'Azar is the top producing dam of all time with
   23 champions to date. She is the dam of our own home bred Ch. K'Azar
   Dbl Khanfederate "Rebel", the #1 Pharaoh in the AKC history of the
   breed. He has 4 Best in Shows to date, 100+ group placements and is a
   potent sire of champions. He started his career with a Best in Sweeps
   at our National Speciality in California in 1991 and in 1994 Best of
   Breed at Westminster. We have also imported some of our dogs from
   England and have attended Crufts Dog Show in England. We have produced
   a multi Best in Field AKC Dual & ASFA Field Champion and many other
   field titled dogs. We offer stud service by champions. Puppies or
   young adults as available. We welcome all enquiries about our
   wonderful breed. Our Kennel name is K'Azar, and it is pronounced "Kay
   Azar." Breeder referrals on request.
   My work and writings have been published in the Sighthound Review, 2
   of the Pharaoh Hound publications in the U.S and in the Pharaoh Hound
   Newsletter in England and Australia. I keep up to date statistics on
   all the Pharaohs receiving breed wins and group placements. I also
   maintain an up to date pedigree data base on all Pharaoh Hounds from
   the AKC Stud Books and the AKC Awards Book. My statistics are pubished
   bi-monthly in the PHAST Times in Texas and my year end reports of
   stats on ALL sighthounds is published yearly in the Sighthound Review.
   I was previously the editor of PHAST Times in Texas, our local Pharaoh
   Hound Breed Club, for the first two years of its existence.
   For taking the time to read through this material. I sincerely hope
   you enjoyed reading it as much as I did in preparing it for you.
   Please research any breed you might be interested in obtaining, to its
   fullest, and make a wise decision.
      "An unhappy owner only produces an unhappy dog."


   Pharaoh Hound FAQ
   Kay Durr,

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