A rare breed that is on the brink of extinction, the Taigan is an Eastern Sighthound breed that originated from Kyrgyzstan. This mountain breed can be mostly found in the alpine areas of the Tian Shan mountain range. It is considered a national treasure of Kyrgyzstan. Similar in shape to the Greyhound and bearing resemblance to the Afghan Hound, it stands at a height of 23.5 to 25.5 inches. It is muscular and has a well-developed bone structure. The head is long and wedge-shaped with a straight muzzle. Its ears are rounded at the tips, hanging anf covered with long, soft and wavy fur. It has large, oval-shaped eyes that are dark brown in colour, a long neck and a wide chest. Its distinctive feature is the ring on the end of its tail which cannot be unrolled or unfolded because of the three joint vertebras on the tip. It has a soft, silky, long and thick coat with a “bourki” or soft and long hair on the ears. Colours include black, black with white spots, red, gray, different shades of sand and white.
Like its cousins, the Azawakh, Sloughi, Saluki and Afghan Hound, the Taigan is well-adapted to the extreme conditions in the mountainous area of Tian Shan. They have a keen sense of smell, high level of intelligence, excellent sight and capable of chasing game for long distances. They are used to hunt fox, marmot, badger and wild cat. When not hunting, it has a calm and docile temperament.