Borzoi Saluki - How do they compare

Borzoi vs Saluki

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Upon first glance, the Borzoi vs Saluki seem very similar. After all, they’re both sighthounds with similar body structures.

You may wonder how different these breeds truly are from one another.

Borzois and Salukis are incredibly similar. They are both active, prey-driven breeds that need large, enclosed yards to burn off their energy. Their friendliness and calm dispositions make them great family dogs. 

In fact Borzoi and Saluki are so similar that many people think that there is a dog breed called “Borzoi Saluki.” While there is no Borzoi Saluki dog breed, both breeds do make excellent companions.

However, they’ll need to be socialized around strangers and taught to be alone so that they grow up confident.

The key differences to note are the Saluki’s smaller stature and the Borzoi’s long, high-maintenance double coat.

In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the similarities and differences between Borzois and Salukis to help you determine which breed—if either—is right for you.

Borzoi vs Saluki

As always, the best breed for you depends on what you want from a dog.

Borzoi and Saluki are both hunting breeds with similar builds, exercise requirements, and temperament.

Borzoi are much higher-maintenance in the grooming department. They have long double-coats and need to be combed every 1-2 days throughout their whole body.

Saluki need a simple brushing once every 1-2 weeks. If your Saluki is feathered, you’ll have to comb their longer fur 1-2 times weekly in addition to the brushing.

saluki standing in grass Borzoi vs Saluki
Regular grooming is important

Both breeds are high-energy with high exercise requirements. 

It’s crucial they receive proper training and are kept in line around strangers.

Their stubborn dispositions may make them more difficult to train, but persistence and positive reinforcement will pay off in the long run.

Neither of these breeds are recommended for inexperienced dog owners.

Lifespan9-14 years10-17 years

Borzio vs Saluki Appearance

The first thing you’ll notice in these breeds are their trailing legs and thin waistlines. You might also take note of their long, slender snouts.

One key difference between Borzois and Salukis is their coats. Borzoi dogs have a long double coat. Salukis are short-haired over most or all of their body, but sometimes have long fur on their ears, legs, and tails.

When it comes to coat color, Salukis have more variation. They can be black, white, brown, cream, grizzle, red, tan, or a combination of these colors.

Borzoi can be black, white, brown, or a combination of these colors.

Borzois are the larger breed, standing between 26-32 inches and weighing 60-105 pounds. Compare that to Salukis at 21-28 inches tall and 35-65 pounds.

Borzoi vs Saluki Cost

When adopting from a breeder, purebred dogs of any sort are expensive. Borzois and Salukis are no different, and they’re very similar in cost to one another.

Expect to pay between $1000 and $5000 for either breed, with the middle ground of $2000-$3000 being most typical.

Adopting a rescue pup is almost always going to be cheaper. Adoption fees will likely be around $500 or less, depending on the organization.

Finding a Breeder

Always vet your breeder with a home visit and request veterinary paperwork for the puppies and parent dogs. Never buy a dog without seeing that puppies and parents are kept in a good environment and cared for properly.

Your breeder should be able to answer questions about the breed honestly, including health and behavioral problems to watch for. If your breeder denies that the breed has any common health problems, walk away—this is a lie no matter what breed you’re discussing.

Never purchase a dog online or from a pet store, as these pups usually come from puppy mills. In puppy mills, dogs are abused and bred only for profit. 

Due to poor breeding practices, puppy mill puppies are typically less healthy than those from a reputable breeder, with health problems and shortened lifespans.

Finding a Rescue or Shelter Dog

Of course, it’s cheaper and arguably more ethical to adopt from a rescue group than from a breeder. You can typically find breed-specific rescues in your state.

By adopting an older rescue dog instead of a new puppy, you’ll be saving yourself thousands of dollars. The cost to rescue is typically $500 or less for both breeds.

Adoption also saves you time in many cases, as older dogs have often already been through basic training.

Lifelong Costs

Aside from the initial cost, there are other expenses to consider when it comes to caring for your dog throughout their lifetime.

Both of these are larger breeds, and the cost to feed them is higher than that of a smaller breed. However, they will eat less than many other breeds of similar heights because they weigh less than those dogs.

Every dog also needs routine medical care including spay or neuter surgery, vaccinations, parasite preventative, and regular check-ups.

If you can afford to, set aside an emergency fund in case of health emergencies. These can occur in any breed, and it helps to be prepared when possible.

Borzoi may require regular trips to the groomer, along with combing at home, to deal with their high-maintenance coat.

Borzoi vs Saluki Temperament

Borzois and Salukis have very similar temperaments to one another.

They were both bred for hunting, and thus love to chase prey animals—or moving objects that they mistake for prey.

On the chase, they will likely be single-minded and may not pay attention to their surroundings. Your voice calling them back or cars passing on the street may be ignored in favor of the hunt.

For this reason, it’s important to always keep these dogs on a leash or in a suitably enclosed yard. Fences must be tall so that your dog can’t jump over them and run off.

Borzois and Salukis both make great watch dogs. They will bark if they notice a disturbance, such as that pesky mail carrier walking onto your property again!

However, their bark is worse than their bite—these aren’t suitable guard dogs, and likely won’t be helpful against a true threat.

Borzoi Saluki Side by Side comparison
Saluki on the Left, Borzoi on the Right

These breeds are sensitive and family-loving. They will love their own, but especially Salukis may be wary around strangers.

Socialization at a young age is important to ensure they are introduced to many environments and people. This helps your dog handle new situations and humans confidently.

Salukis and Borzois can both be clingy. Any breed with this trait should be watched for signs of separation anxiety, and it’s worthwhile to teach them while they’re young that it’s okay to be alone.

When it comes to training, both breeds can be trained with patience and positive reinforcement techniques. Never try to dominate your dog, as those training methods promote fear and aggression.

Salukis and Borzois can be stubborn and independent, so persistence in training is key. Make it fun and offer high-value rewards such as their favorite treat.

Borzoi vs Saluki Exercise

Both breeds are high-energy. They were bred to run, and will need some outlet for this instinct.

They’re the perfect dogs for runners, but you can also allow them to tire themselves out in a large, fenced-in yard.

Always exercise your Borzoi or Saluki on a leash or in an enclosed space.

At least one long walk or run daily is needed. If you’re looking for extra activities to keep your pup active, agility and lure coursing are great options.

borzoi running on sand
Gotta get the zoomies out. Borzois and Salukis were born to run.

Borzoi vs Saluki Grooming

Borzois have a long double coat, meaning they require heavy grooming. They’ll need to be combed daily to avoid tangles, which can turn into painful mats in their fur.

Regular baths can also help to avoid matting.

Because of their double coats, it’s not recommended to shave a Borzoi. This means you’ll be dealing with their long fur throughout their life.

Saluki are much lower-maintenance in the grooming department. Their short fur should be brushed once or twice weekly to distribute oils and promote a healthy coat.

If your Saluki’s coat is feathered, meaning they have longer fur around their ears, paws, and tail, comb these areas a few times a week in addition to their regular brushing.

saluki laying on a dog bed near plants
Salukis are lower maintenance

Both breeds should have their nails trimmed and teeth brushed regularly.

Borzoi vs Saluki Environmental Needs

Borzoi and Saluki are both runners at heart. They were bred to chase prey, and you shouldn’t expect to train that instinct out of them.

It’s important that they get plenty of exercise and time to run, whether in an enclosed space or on leash. These dogs do best in homes with large, fenced-in yards.

Watch that they can’t jump over the fencing, as it may have to be tall to keep them in. Once a Borzoi or Saluki is on the chase, it can be difficult to interrupt their pursuit—and difficult to catch up to them, as they can run up to 40 mph!

Some Borzois and Salukis can live peacefully in homes with smaller pets, but you should introduce them in a controlled environment. They may be fine with other animals until said animal runs, and then their hunting instincts are engaged.

If you’re rescuing an older pup, try to find one that’s been kept with the same kind of pet. For instance, many foster homes may also have smaller dogs or cats in the household.

Borzois and Salukis are great family dogs. Like with any dog, you should never leave them unsupervised with young children.

Train your dog early on to handle children gently, and teach your kids how to interact with dogs appropriately as well. Never allow a child to roughhouse with a dog, as they or the dog could be injured.

Borzoi vs Saluki Health

A notable thing to watch for in Borzois and Salukis is bloat. As deep-chested dogs, they are both prone to this deadly condition.

Knowing the signs will help you to identify the problem early on, and potentially save your pup’s life.

Symptoms include:

  • Enlarged abdomen 
  • Retching
  • Drooling
  • Restlessness
  • Pain in the stomach area, especially when touched

If your dog has bloat, rush them to the veterinarian immediately. Without treatment, they will die within hours.

Of course, there are other health problems to watch out for in these breeds as well. 

Health problems to watch for in Borzoi include:

Some health concerns to watch for in Salukis include:

  • Heart Conditions
  • Cancer
  • Autoimmune and blood conditions
  • Sensitivity to Anesthesia

Borzoi vs Saluki History

Borzois and Salukis have very similar backgrounds. They are both sighthounds, meaning they were bred to hunt using their sense of sight. They’re also fast runners who can move at up to 40 miles per hour.

Borzoi standing in a yard
Keep the leash near these fast runners

These dogs hunted alone because humans couldn’t keep up with their speed. This is why the breeds are so independent even today.

The Saluki breed is at least 5,000 years old. As you can imagine, we don’t know exactly how the breed came to be.

We do know that these dogs were incredibly valued by ancient people in Egypt and throughout the Middle East. They’ve been the subjects of tomb paintings and even found mummified in Egypt.

The Borzoi breed dates back to the 1600s. They were originally a cross breed between the Arabian greyhound and an unknown Russian breed with a thick coat.

Borzoi didn’t typically hunt small game, but instead took part in wolf hunts. These hunts were a big event for the Russian aristocracy at the time.

Further Reading

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