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Neither of us were brought up in the ‘dog world’ but 40 years after taking an interest in pure-bred dogs, we continue with our Oasis Boarding Kennels and our canine companions. Over that time we have taken an interest in showing and racing. We have shown Borzoi and bred Salukis and Staffordshire Bull Terriers (Liz and Julian) and Deerhounds, Borzoi, Salukis and Whippets (Julian). Today we live with 7th generation Elarabie Salukis and three retired Lurani Staffordshire Bull Terriers; plus one still active All Breeds Best in Show Stafford- Ch. Lurani Hot Wired - (Billy).

The Elarabie Salukis were founded in 1971 when Julian and I independently bought puppies from the same litter. Salukis were hard to get in those days in Australia and this was the first litter to be born in some time. The litter of three bred by Graeme Adams (Akhelteke) produced my Ch. and Racing Ch. Akhelteke El Bikr (the first Saluki Dual Champion), Julian’s Akhelteke El Amira and Akhleteke El Malika. There were less than 100 Salukis in Australia at that time.

Since 1971 we have owned and titled 9 Saluki Champions not carrying the Elarabie prefix, including three imports, Ch. Amena Quest (Imp UK) , Ch. Qirmizi Emerald (Imp Sweden), (‘Merlin’), and Aust and Am Ch. Enchanted Genii at the Oasis. Without being conscious of numbers or points, our records show that we have also bred 33 Elarabie champions. We co-owned BIS, RUBISS Ch. Taejaan Erin Brokovitch (Julia) – a Merlin daughter with Paula Bockman-Chato. Our Salukis are firstly companions and only secondly showdogs. Their happiness, once they leave us, is of paramount importance and many of "our owners" have never been interested in the show ring.

The first Elarabie litter was born in 1974, from Ch. Krishna Alakazam, who was herself born in 1968 from Australia’s second registered litter. She was mated to Ch. Mazuri Cassalonda (Imp UK). From this litter Ch. Elarabie Ajib Edhkiya and Ch. Elarabie Abdul Krim were successfully shown.

Nejib Dewar was acquired in 1974. She was bred to Krim in 1976, and to Ch. Wildsky of Daxlore and Idleacres (imp UK) without startling results. Harry and Margaret Begg (Idleacres) imported two promising bitches Ch. Idleacres Wildbee of Daxlore (Eng Ch. Yazid Burydown Yehudi x Ch. Wildrose of Daxlore) from whom we got Ch. Idleacres Winter Rose (sired by Ch. Mazuri Cassalonda) and Ch. Roseanna of Daxlore (Eng Ch. Starflight Scimitar x Wildthyme of Daxlore) who was mated to Australia’s first Best in Show winner Ch. Idleacres Autumn Storm (full brother to our Winter Rose from a previous mating). From this we got Ch. Idleacres Desert Rose (Anah).

Although these two were successful in the showring – Rose winning the first Victorian Saluki Parade and Anah winning the second, we were in need of an outcross. Our first choice was Mary Long’s puppy by Eng Ch. Amena Lucifer from Ch. Amena Joy, who became Ch. Amena Quest (Imp UK). The Amena’s were known for their soundness, movement and good temperament. Quest was followed by the bitch Amena Sonnet (Ch. Amena Lucifer x Ch. Amena Morning Glory (a Kafiat daughter), but she was not temperamentally suited to live with other bitches and after much of our property was destroyed in the 1983 Ash Wednesday bushfires, Sonnet and her daughter found their perfect forever home when some of our dogs were farmed out while we rebuilt.

The second useful import for us was the Hargraves/Giles co-owned Multi titled Ch. Srinagar Zanande Sayf Samira, who proved to be most usefully employed as a ‘nick’ with the Daxlore genes behind Anah, giving us Ch. Elarabie Night Moves and his sister Elarabie Night an’day and three more champions from this litter.

While Nightmoves was fun to show, his sister Hannah (Night an’day) mated to Quest gave us our T litter, from which all modern Elarabies descend. Many international kennels now carry this combination through Int, Nord & Am Ch NV-93'95 SV-93, NordV-94 WW-98 Baghdad Globetrotter, top winning Swedish Saluki 1993-6, including Qirmizi, Badavie, Hajji, Shiraz, Timaru, Sadik and Appalacian. Trotter's sire was Ch. Elarabie Thunderbolt, himself a dual Melbourne Royal BOB winner and multiple specialty class winner including Reserve under Ernie Tebbs. Trotter’s dam was the lovely Aust and Can Ch. Afking Baghdads Crimson Gazelle. His sister Ch. Thunderstruk produced the Specialty winner Ch. Aribu Moonglow. His sister Thunderstorm was the mother of Melbourne Royal BOB and Runner-up in Group winner Ch. Shammaraki Antika, We kept a third sister - Ch. Elarabie Thundercloud (Polly) who was also a Melbourne Royal BOB winner, group winner, multiple specialty class in show winner and specialty reserve under Alain Campagne.

In her turn Polly was mated to the third import we found useful to combine with our stock, Ch. Baghdad’s Promise of Gold, a son of George and Sally Bell’s Am Ch. Bel S’mbran Promise of Atallah. They produced a litter of 7 that included Ch. Elarabie Zikr, Melbourne Royal BOB winner, who held the record for some years as top Specialty winner, taking 3 Victorian Shows in a row, all under Hound specialists - Margaret Giles (Kiabe), Frank Keys and Roy Burnell. He also won one Best in Specialty in New South Wales under Norman Huidibro Corbett and one Runner-Up under Erin Brown (Quanmarra). Zikr was a multiple group winner, All Breeds Opposite and Best in Show winner. From that litter there were 3 other male group winners Ch. Elarabie Zahir, Ch. Zeraf and Ch. Zobair and the sisters Ch, Zillah and Ch. Zeila. That mating being so successful we repeated it and kept Ch. Elarabie Casimir, himself a specialty Reserve winner and All Breeds Best in Show winner. He sired one litter from which we kept Elarabie Leander and Ch. Elarabie Leilani. Zikr was twice mated to his father’s sister Baghdad Austral Aliya, giving us Ch. Elarabie Gloryseeker and the Chatos BIS Ch. Baghdad Kiss me Quick. Zikr was also the sire of BIS, BISS Ch. Windstar Total Eclipse (from Ch. Baghdad Azadh Halik). Zillah was mated to Gloryseeker and produced Ch. Elarabie Jordana, National RUBIS under Anne MacDonald (Mabrooka).

Jordana had two litters and was mated first to a young Jordan (now World Int Am Can Mex Americas Aust Grand Ch Baghdad Crème de la Crème). She is the mother of Chs. Elarabie Malik, Mayrah and Mikah. Her second litter was to Merlin and produced Chs. Elarabie Oasis Ethan and Elarabie Oasis Electra, (specialty Reserve under Pauline Kendall and Junior in show for Ute Lennartz, Intermediate in show for Arlene Harris and Australia bred in show for Valerie Hamilton, a group winner under Stephen Wailes. She is also the grandmother of our Multi Best in Show Winner Ch. Elarabie Oasis Madhu. (Maddy) who is by Elarabie Mecca from Jumadabey Celebrindal, a Gloryseeker daughter.

In 2000 Julian and I retired from our bookselling business in Melbourne and bought boarding kennels near Geelong. That was a hectic time for us but we were fortunate to meet Daniel Filipovic, who took an interest in showing some of our dogs. Daniel titled Merlin, Mayrah, Malik, Theda, Electra, Ethan, Maddy, Genii, Danni and the Stafford Billy (BIS Ch. Lurani Hot Wired), with many groups and Best in Shows along the way.

Merlin arrived in 2001 and sired two litters for us, the first from Ch. Elarabie Oasis Leilani (Specialty reserve winner under Nick Bryce-Smith), from which we kept group winner and Melbourne Royal winner Ch. Elarabie Oasis Daniela, who had a great puppy career until she had a serious accident with a fence which left her with permanent tendon damage. Nevertheless she managed a comeback in 2006 winning a Sydney Specialty Reserve Challenge under Janet Cottrill (Miskanda), Melbourne Royal Challenge and Hound Club BOB, quickly earning her title. Now retired and waiting for maternal duties, she was described by the last specialist judge, Jean Louis Gruinheid, as being a ‘Very classic red. Excellent in almost all points. Nice head, correct shoulder. Very good angulations (sic). Excellent front. Fantastic mover, covering a lot of ground effortlessly’.

Merlin’s second litter was to Jordana .

Merlin also sired a litter for Molly Rule-Steele producing 5 Taejaan champions including Specialty winner Ch. Taejaan Simply Awesome (Lesley Brabyn) and Runner up Best in Specialty for Julia, (Ch. Taejaan Erin Brokovitch) under Monica Stoner. Julia has also won a Sighthound Club Best in Show.

Two of our veterans are parti-colour singleton pups, mother and daughter Elarabie Lonesome Dove (Sophie), and Ch. Elarabie Oasis Theda who was Best in Show at the Arlene Harris Specialty.

Our interest in Salukis (and Saluki people) has often got us out and about – in 2003 most productively by car from Southern California to New Mexico to see Dottie Grant’s Ch. Anistana Giselle Enchanted (Am Ch. Braemoor Baha Kyzelle x Ch. Zabarre Mata Tamara) and her 4 week old pups by Ch. Shiraz Global Storm (Ch. Baghdad Globetrotter x Ch. Ranesaw Shiraz Kalahari), a repeat of the mating which produced US top 10 Ch. Enchanted Shiraz Dreamcatcher (Sedona) who is still being successful specialled by Mike and Elena Edwards. From a lovely litter we were allowed to choose our latest import – Ch. and Am. Ch. Enchanted Genii at the Oasis.

Genii stayed for a year with Mike and Elena in California, and we can never thank them enough. During her stay she won the 38th Desert Match under Ron Wassenaar (Ranesaw), made her US title and then quickly did the same on her arrival in Australia. In 2003 Genii and her siblings made their parents Sire and Dam of the year in the American Saluki Association competition.

Shown only twice in 2007, Genii was Bitch challenge under Juan Carlos Vasconsellos (Anjal Sahara) at the Canberra Royal and was Best Open in Show at the 30th Victorian Saluki Specialty under Jean Louis Gruinheid (Arab Bahari). Genii has now had her first litter by Ch.Elarabie Ethan, happily rearing 6 pups born in January 2008.

We have breeding plans for Electra and for Daniela. Electra has already produced one litter by Aust Grand Ch. Wahdani Shahab Jamal who is a grandson of Elarabie Leander and has Ch, Amena Quest 7 times in his pedigree. Their cream pups Elarabie Oasis Imena (Kate) and Elarabie Oasis Imran (Khan) (who is co-owned with Anne and Stan Green) were puppy and Opposite at the Saluki Club of Victoria Specialty, and Khan continues to do well in the ring, with many show awards to his credit.

We have both been involved with breed clubs since getting our first dogs. Julian was a founding Vice-President of the Deerhound Club of Victoria, foundation President of The Saluki Club of Victoria, serving for its first 12 years, past President of the Hound Club of Victoria and organizer past President of The National Saluki Council, formed to retain the 1923 English Breed Standard at the time of the controversial 1986 UK Revision and to develop an expansion of the 1923 wording approved by the Australian National Kennel Council (ANKC) for the use of all judges in Australia. I was a founding member of The Saluki Club of Victoria, serving on the first committee with a couple of terms as Secretary and three as President.

In October 2008 I was granted my licence to judge Salukis by the Australian National Kennel Club.

Elizabeth Guthrie