Borzoi Dog Breed
- General Appearance:
- Borzois are of medium height and have an outline not dissimilar to a greyhound. They have well balanced and graceful bodies and have a long silky top coat and an undercoat. They have a profuse neck mane, longer thick coat on the tail and back of hind legs. The coat is dirt shedding and resistant to matting, and may be flat, wavy, or curly. They are heavy shedders. They carry their long, narrow heads with pride. Borzois are dogs of beauty and give every suggestion of power, courage and speed. The back should be rather bony and muscular, rising in a graceful curve with a well-balanced fallaway. The curve is more pronounced in dogs than bitches. They are built for speed and can cover large distances in a short amount of time.
- Other Names:Russian Wolfhound, Psowaya Barsaya
- Country Of Origin:Russia
- Dog Group Kennel Club:Hound
- Any colour is acceptable
- The Borzoi is a quiet, sensitive and intelligent dog and belongs to the sighthound family.
Adult dogs rarely bark and are gentle but do enjoy chasing other animals. They do not like intrusive strangers, being rather aloof, distant and even nervous. They are okay, with children but will need to be supervised as they do not like like rough games and will not become their playmates. They must be introduced to cats, and other household pets at an early age as they will always react to the sight of a fleeing animal.
- Long reaching and powerful.
- Care and training:
- Their Coat will need regular brushing with a firm bristle brush and dry shampooed when needed.
Borzois are generally a healthy breed however they are prone to progressive retinal atrophy.
During the moulting seasons they will cast copious amounts of hair, dogs moulting once a year and bitches every six months.
They require basic obedience and socialization. They excel in agility. They do not respond to harsh or heavy-handed training methods. They are relatively easy to housetrain since they prefer to be clean.
- Overall Exercise:
- 2 hours per day. Whilst Borzois are relatively quiet in the house, they do need copious amounts of exercise and large, open spaces to run and walk. However, do remember these are hounds, and they will run off after any prey that is spotted.
- Feeding Requirements:
- Borzois essentially complete their rapid growth period by 9 to 12 months and it is vitally important that the breeder's diet sheet is strictly followed to ensure the correct growth and formation of bones and limbs. This breed can become finicky eaters therefore it is essential they are not spoiled with treats and table scraps. Although they are big dogs, they are lightweight and therefore are not big eaters.
- Personal Protection:Medium
- Suitability As Guard Dog:Low
- Level of Aggression:Low
- Compatibility With Other Animals:Low
- Suitability for Children:Medium
- Often Docked?No
- Average Litter Size:6-7
- Life Expectancy (yrs):10
- Health issues:
- PRA (Progressive retinal atrophy), OCD (Osteochondritis dessicans), gastric torsion. Other possible health concerns include hip and shoulder dysplasia, heart problems, and bloat. Bloat is a health issue to most dogs, being the second largest killer of dogs other than cancer, but Borzois can be particularly susceptible to it because of their deep chests.
- A treasured breed by the great Russian writer Leo Tolstoy, the Borzoi has been around since at least the 1600s. They were almost never bought or sold, almost always given or received as gifts. The Borzoi is said to have been crossed with the Greyhound and Lapp sled dog. Originally there were various strains of the Borzoi including the Sudanese Borzoi, the Turkoman Borzoi and the Borzoi Tartar. Long ago a Russian duke imported several sight hounds from Arabia, but all succumbed to the cold winters of Russia. Soon after he tried again, this time crossing the Arabian hounds with native breeds, possibly the Tartar coursing hounds or the long legged shepherd dogs. In the mid 1800s the breed found its way to Great Britain, and from there was transported to the U.S. in 1889. Joseph B Thomas imported Borzois from Russia in 1903 from the Grand Duke Nicholas Romanoff. The Russian aristocracy was the first to make the breed popular in the 16th century, and the Borzoi often appeared next to royalty. Borzois were originally bred to hunt wolves. The Borzoi was bred to hunt, to track and dispatch the wolf
from its hiding for Russian noblemen. Russian noblemen would take a pair or trio of Borzois, go out to hunt the wolf, and when the wolf was spotted release the dogs. The dogs were supposed to arrive at the wolf at the same time so that a dual attack could be made on the wolf. Borzois were supposed to take the wolf by the throat and throw it, after which either the Russian noblemen would tie up the wolf and then set it free, or they would stab it with a dagger and kill it. Wolf-hunting was a popular sport among the aristocracy. In 1917 during the Russian Revolution the breed was almost driven to extinction, as it was seen as an icon of royalty and therefore was killed. Thanks to the exportation of a few of the Borzois, the breed lives on. Today it is known as one of the most glamorous dog breeds that can be seen alongside celebrities, showing off its elegant shiny coat.