Afghan Hound Times
(Afghan Hound Database and Breed Information Exchange)

Constance O, Miller, May 1967


While doing "The Complete Afghan Hound", Ed Gilbert and I were amazed by the number of statements for which could find no substantiation, which appear in the breed chapter that precedes the Standard in the AKC All-Breeds book. In searching for the source of this chapter we were told by several senior fanciers that they thought it came right over from England, in something like its present form, with the old Standard. Given enough time, cash and cooperation from dog- book specialists, like Gerald Massey, we gained access to the volumes of English dog books of the early 1900's and it soon became crystal clear that many of the postulations regarding the breed before its importation into England just never did appear in English dog books. I recently gained more proof.

In compiling the book data we read every "Gazette" from 1920 to the present, but the oldest AKC All-Breed book that was checked for exactitude, with the modern chapter, was a 1935 edition. Recently the pertinent pages of a 1929 issue have been presented to me by a grateful reader. I consider it a real find, for in that issue I found the present chapter on the breed to be non-existent. This 1929 AKC book contains the expected pre-48 Standard but with the following complete breed description.

"Afghan Hounds are swift hunting dogs, their natural quarry being jackal. They are also used on leopard with great success. Usually working in pairs, the dog attacks the throat, the bitch the hinder parts. Shy to strangers, they are very loyal to their owners, they are gentle, sensitive, and very courageous

The Afghan Hound photo that accompanies the article is obviously (but not actually labeled) , "Eng Ch. Taj Mahip Of Kaf" owned by Evelyn Denyer, whose breed chapter in the English book "Pedigree Dog" (edited by C.C.Sanderson, publ, 1927) undoubtedly spawned the American paragraph quoted above. However, the statements in the paragraph go back directly to a letter written by Major Mackenzie, printed in 1903. It now appears that our current American breed chapter is not nearly so old, or so sacrosanct as we formerly thought it to be

Constance O, Miller, May 1967

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