The Borzoi is a sighthound and they originated in Arabia but were later on brought to Russia. They are known as Russian Wolfhounds and were owned by the Russian nobility. Like their name suggests, the Borzoi were used to hunt down wolves.
In Russian, the name itself translates to 'swift', which is a perfect word to describe this particular breed. Long and lean, the Borzoi is a rapid and intimidating hunter, that is both fearless and intelligent. This breed is said to possess some characteristics of a cat as it is quiet and clean.
The Borzoi is a tall, slender dog that is both friendly and affectionate but can be a vicious hunter when called to par. They will do well around children and other dogs, but if there are smaller animals in the house, such as guinea pigs, rabbits, cats, hamsters, etc. they should be monitored well as these can be interpreted as prey to the Borzoi.
Tans, grays, whites, and golds with patches of black are the most common colouring for this breed's coat. This can be either all one colour, or a mixture of any with black.
The Borzoi has a luxurious loosely wavy top coat. It is long and smooth but appears to be thin. Their neck is heavily covered in fur and resembles a mane like that of a horse. The undercoat is thick and smooth but will be shed in the summer to prevent overheating.
The Borzoi is an intelligent loyal breed, that will make a great worker or pet. They are as enthusiastic about hunting and working beside their owner as they are spending time with the family.
Devoted and tireless, these free spirited dogs are an athletic, historic breed dating back to the 1600's. Just like all Hounds, the Borzoi loves to follow scents of past visitors to wherever that may be, so leashed walks and fenced in areas will be needed.
As puppies, the Borzoi should be introduced to many people, dogs, smaller pets such as cats and be brought to various outdoor busy areas to ensure they become stable and well tempered adults. Being minimum 26 inches tall, this breed may be large but they are rapidly agile.
The Borzoi's long coat will need extra maintenance to ensure no mats are created. Daily brushing and monthly trims will be perfect for this breeds coat. They are prone to Bloat, elbow and hip dysplasia, eye problems: one being Progressive Retinal Atrophy, and some cardiac complications: one being Cardiomyopathy. This breed can also be picky when it comes to their diet so keeping one food constant is the best plan.
This breed can be difficult to train as they will need positive yet firm methods. The Borzoi will need to be respected for its original breed purpose which is to hunt. They have a an independent personality and can be more interested in what they want to do rather then what their owner is training them to do.
The Borzoi will need an abundance of exercise, preferably off-leash so they can run freely. When walking this type of dog, a leash is always required as they could spot a small animal and race to catch it. The Borzoi will be able to live in an apartment comfortably as long as they are taken out to exercise daily. A house with a yard would be preferable as this breed will need a closed off space to romp around in.