Breed group: Unrecognized and Rare Breed dogs
Country / place of origin: CIS
History: The Hortaya Borzaya, also known as the Chortaj, is a rare breed from Central Asia. Similar in appearance to other sighthounds such as the Saluki, the breed is native to the ertswhile Soviet states of Slovakia, Estonia, Latvia, Kazakhstan, Ukraine, and Lithuania.
No prominent international kennel club recognizes the breed. However, the national breed clubs of some European nations recognize the breed.
Details: The Hortaya or the Chortaj is a slender, big sighthound with long legs. Several distinct types can be seen in the same breed. The nose is black. The eyes have a black or dark rim.
Average height and weight (mature size and weight): 25-30 inches, 55-65 pounds
Color / coat variations: The coat is short, smooth, and thick. The colors include white, black, cream, red, sable, and brindle with or without white markings.
Lifespan: 14-15 years
Litter size: N/A
Grooming and shedding:
Food habits: Traditionally, Hortaya dogs were fed a meager diet consisting of oats, bread, milk, and very little meat. Nutritious, well-balanced meals are suitable for this meal. Protein supplements can be avoided.
Climate and environment: The Hortaya Borzaya is a hardy breed that does well in most climates and terrains. The breed is suited to living outdoors and does well in a house with a medium-sized fenced yard.
Behavioral aspects: The Hortaya is a pack animal and a good hunter. It has a powerful sight, and can spot prey from far. Its hunting instincts are quite strong.
With children: Hortayas need to be supervised around children at all times.
With other dogs and animals: Hortayas are likely to attack and kill small animals, and hence cannot be trusted with them. They do well with dogs that have been raised with them.
Training and learning rate: The Hortaya Borzaya needs to be trained with a lot of consistency and patience.
Agility: Hortayas have done well in agility.
Affinity to water:
How noisy are they: Hortayas are usually calm dogs.
Exercise: Hunting is the best form of exercise for them. When hunting is not possible, owners may take their dogs for long jogs and walks. A run off the leash in an open space free of people and traffic is highly suitable for this breed.
Health issues: Owing to healthy breeding practices, the Hortaya is relatively free of inherited diseases. Faulty diet or lack of exercise may affect its health.