The Saluki History
Excerpts from Shelley Work at Faridaat Salukis

Other names: Gazellehound, Persian Greyhound
Region & Time of Origin: Middle East approx. 7,000 to 3,000 BC
Group Categorization: (Sight) Hounds
Purpose: Coursing fast game

It is estimated that the beginnings of the Saluki go back as early as 7,000
BC when early man had spread out across the Fertile Crescent also known
as Mesopotamia. Man had observed and desired to utilize the traits
displayed by the native predators and so began the domestication of the
small, local Desert Wolf (C.l. arabis) a lighter, faster variety of wolf than
its northern cousins. This developing relationship enabled man to refine
specific inherent behavioral and hunting traits in the wolf thereby
producing, over time, a canine capable of doing exactly what man needed.
In the harsh climate of the desert man needed a dog that was capable of
coursing (chasing) prey and catching it.

One of the earliest civilizations known to have spread across Mesopotamia
were the SUMERIANS. Recent excavations of ancient Mesopotamia
Sumerian Empire (7000-6000 BC) have unearthed evidence of dogs with a
striking resemblance to the Saluki. The Sumerians kept these canines for
hunting and left various carvings and seals of them. The dating of these
discoveries indicate that the Saluki may very well be the oldest
domesticated, purebred dog in existence.
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