The Afghan Hound is a Hound distinguished by its thick, fine, silky coat, and a tail with a ring curl at the end. The breed is selectively bred for its unique features in the cold mountains of Afghanistan. Its local name is Tāžī Spay (Pashto: تاژي سپی) or Sag-e Tāzī (Dari: سگ تازی). Other names for this breed are Tāzī, Balkh Hound, Baluchi Hound, Barakzai Hound, Shalgar Hound, Kabul Hound, Galanday Hound or sometimes incorrectly African Hound. As with other sighthounds, they have the ability to run fast and turn well.
The American Kennel Club (AKC) describes the breed as among the most eye-catching of all. The Afghan Hound is an "aloof and dignified aristocrat of sublime beauty." Despite their regal appearance, the Afghan possesses an "endearing streak of silliness and a profound loyalty."Admired since ancient times for their beauty, the Afghan Hound's distinctive coat has purpose for the breed. Its shag was developed as protection from the harsh montane climate. Their huge paw-pads served as shock absorbers on the rocky terrain.