The Borzoi originated in Russia where they were a favorite of the aristocracy. They were used in grand hunting events where several dogs would be released upon a wolf and would have to secure the wolf until the hunter could catch up. Usually, these events were not for the purpose of actually killing and eating the game, but for sport. The breed almost died off after the Russian Revolution, but once they were brought to America, they regained popularity, mostly as a glamour dog for movie stars and models.
The distinguishing physical characteristic of this breed is the coat. They have long, silky coats with flat, wavy locks. Interestingly, the coat can be in any color, from white to red to black. This coat needs brushing several times a week in order to keep it healthy. The long, narrow face resembles the Greyhound, as does the curved topline and deep chest. Depending on gender, these dogs can stand between 26 inches and 30 inches tall and can weigh between 60 and 105 pounds.
Today, Borzois are often seen as companion animals or family pets. They are good indoors because they stay calm, but they need time outdoors to run off energy and remain happy and healthy. Outdoors, they are quite lively and it’s important for Borzoi owners to keep close eye on these dogs as they tend to chase smaller animals such as squirrels. If left unattended or in an unfenced area, they may run off and have trouble finding their way back home.
The main health concerns associated with this dog breed are gastric torsion and heart problems. Gastric torsion, in particular, is a deadly disease where the stomach twists over itself. If not treated immediately, this condition will cause death quite quickly. Treatment is expensive and many Borzoi owners purchase a pet insurance policy to guard against the high cost of veterinary care. In an emergency situation, they are therefore prepared to make decisions based upon what is the best course of treatment for the dog, rather than the cost.
If kept healthy, these dogs are known to live to be between ten and twelve years old.
Heather Rey is a pet lover and internet journalist that strives to provide the best care possible for her pets. For pet-related information, visit this pet insurance site.