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The Chart Polski, or Polish Sighthound, is descended from the Asiatic sighthounds. This breed was not bred, developed, or reconstructed from the "English" Greyhound or the Borzoi - the Polish Sighthound breed type had been well established long before those breeds were known in the area which included Poland.
Xavier Przezdziecki theorized about the Chart Polski's origin in his book, "Le Destin des Levriers" (1984): (Translation) "At the same time greyhounds in England were being selected and developed for extreme speed on relatively short distances to catch hare, the Poles were selecting their sighthounds to be capable of chasing their prey - hares, foxes, wolves, and bustard - in vast dry steppes."
The Chart Polski was first described in writing in 1600 (Gostomski), and appears in numerous paintings of the 1800's by Juliusz Kossak, Jozefa Brandta, and Alfreda Wierusz-Kowalskiego, and also in sketches by Siemienski and Norblina.
For more details about the history of the Chart Polski, please see Kathy Bentzoni's web page: Early History of the Chart Polski
The Chart Polski has certain features in common with the Saluki - including coat colors, feathering, and patterns (grizzle/domino, black and tan, etc.), as well as certain distinct cranial properties.
Detail from Juliusz Kossak's "October" (1887)
Most Chart Polski were lost in Poland's turbulent past, including WWII. There remained only a few purebred Charts in Poland when Drs. Malgorzata and Izabella Szmurlo (Celerrimus Kennel) began the effort to revive the breed in 1974. We are forever grateful for the Szmrulos' dedication to this marvelous breed, and for all the invaluable information and history they have provide us!
More information and commentary on the modern history of the Chart Polski can be found here: Contemporary History of the Chart Polski
The FCI standard for the Chart Polski (#333) was approved by the Polish Kennel Club Board of Directors on February 23, 1986.
Yovna and Katya
On May 20, 1991, the first American bred Chart Polski litter was born at Elzbieta Kennels in Maryland. The sire of this litter was CH Rosochaty od Charciarza, the dam CH Troska Celerrimus. Below are three grandchildren of this imported pair, Talizman, Husarz, and Iskra:
The Chart Polski hunted hare, deer, and wolves in his homeland, and the Chart Polski of today is only a few generations from the working/hunting hounds of Poland. During the chase, besides being extremely fast with great endurance, the Chart Polski is also very skillful and persistent - reacting quickly, confidently, and displaying great courage under fire.
The Chart Polski is a good-tempered dog - very loyal, devoted, and demonstrative to its family. It should be noted that the breed is also quite protective of its family and territory, and is often suspicious of strangers. This breed requires proper early socialization, firm and fair human leadership, and must never be treated harshly. Like many other sighthounds, the Chart is very intelligent, creative, and can be stubborn. However, they have their own unique breed traits and in many ways are definitely not "typical sighthounds."
The lifespan of the Chart Polski is 12-15 years. This a slow-growing dog taking at least three years, often four, to fully mature - physically as well as mentally. The female Chart Polski should never be bred before she is at least three years old.
The breed is definitely not for everyone, and those people interested in the Chart are strongly encouraged to research the breed thoroughly before acquiring one. Talk to reputable, experienced owners/breeders, as many of them as possible, to acquaint yourself with the unique nature and specific needs of the Chart Polski. We will be happy to provide you with names of people with which to correspond, to help you in your research.
Detail from Kossak painting (Wyjazd na polowanie (Leaving for the Hunt) 1876) showing varied "brush" lengths and ear positions on Chart Polski.
Male Chart Polski are 28-32" (70-80cm), females are 27" to 30" (68-75cm). They have short, wash and wear coats of a fairly hard texture. Any color is allowed and none preferred (red, black, blue, white, light sand to red-fawn, black/tan, blue/tan, tri-color, brindle, sable, domino/grizzle, and parti-color). The hair along the withers and back, and on the underside of the tail, and the back of the thighs is longer than the rest of the coat (but also harsh) forming culottes and a brush.
Husarz & Talizman - photos by Warren Cook
According to the standard, the Chart Polski is clearly stronger and less fine in shape than other short-coated sighthounds. The body is powerful and short-coupled, but must not appear heavy or stocky. The musculature is dry and flat, and the coat is considerably heavier than that of a Greyhound. The Chart Polski has a characteristic movement of the hind legs, which move close together (single-tracking) at a trot. This is typical of the breed, and is not a fault.
Click here to read the FCI Standard (#333) for the Chart Polski: Chart Polski Standard
photo by Warren Cook
Most of the dogs in these photos are multiple conformation ring champions (States Kennel Club, American Rare Breed Association, and International All Breed Canine Association). First and foremost however, they live in our homes as members of our families.
Lynda & Roman Mulczynski with Katya, Fama, Husarz, & Iskra
Lisa Pinto with Talizman, Turkus, and Szafir
Our winners, IABCA Int'l CH, SKC Int'l CH, ARBA CH Elzbieta's Iskra, CGC - "Iskra" - (Best of Breed) & IABCA Int'l CH Elzbieta's Talizman - "Tazi" - (Best of Opposite Sex)
"Tazi" and "Iskra"
Tazi and Iskra offer the outstanding conformation and excellent temperaments that a magnificent breed like the Chart Polski should possess.
Bursztyn and Chessmont strive to maintain the correct, European type, faithful to the standard.
Accept no less.
Iskra and Tazi were bred in June. Their two sons and two daughters were born August 11, 2001. All the pups are spoken for.
Left to right in above photos: Ambra, Arja, Ametyst, and Agat (ages in photos vary)
Arja, Agat, Ametyst, & Ambra with Mark Pinto
Ambra & Ametyst - Agat
More photos soon (scanner on the fritz!)
American Chart Polski Club Specialty Show wins:
IABCA Nat'l & Int'l CH, ARBA CH Elzbieta's Szafir
1998 Best in Specialty Show, San Francisco California
Mrs. Maggie Alhino, Judge * Lisa Pinto, Owner/Handler
Photo by Warren Cook
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IABCA Int'l CH, SKC Int'l CH, ARBA CH Elzbieta's Iskra, CGC
1999 Best in Specialty Show, Lompoc California
Mr. Bo Bengtson, Judge * Roman Mulczynski, Owner/Handler
Photo by Warren Cook
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For More Photos, please click here: Photo Page
Check this page for Charts seeking new homes:
For additional information on the Chart Polski, please visit these sites:
Chart Polski Data Base:
photo by John Santiago