Breeds

Caucasian Shepherd Dog

GROUP 6 (UTILITY)

History

The Caucasian Shepherd Dog (CSD) is considered to be the breed taking its origin from ancient Caucasian dogs. The breed’s expansion covers territories from the Caucasian Range and the steppe regions of Southern Russia.

The evolution of the breed was not only a result of natural selection, but was also influenced by nations that inhabited the Caucasian Region.

Historically Caucasian Shepherd Dogs were used for guarding and safe-keeping of herds, flocks and dwellings from beasts of prey and predators. The first mention of a large molossoid dogs used by the army of Armenian Tsar Tigran the II, dates from the 1st century BC.

Selection work with the breed started in the USSR in the 1920s.

Obligatory qualities such as physical power, self-confidence, fearlessness, sharply developed hearing, good sight, and a dense and waterproof coat have been cultivated in the process of selection.
All these qualities, as well as endurance, allows people to use the Caucasian Shepherd Dogs in all kinds of climatic conditions, including the most severe ones. 1.

Appearance

The Caucasian Shepherd Dog is a harmonious built, large, strong dog with plenty of bone and powerful muscular system; of a slight rectangular format.

Sexual dimorphism is well pronounced. Males are masculine, with well developed withers and a bigger head in comparison with females. They are also more massive, bigger and often shorter in body than females.

In dogs with a longer coat-variety, males have a distinctly pronounced mane.

The body length exceeds the height at withers by 3-8 %. The length of the forelegs averages 50-52% of the height at the withers. The length of the skull correlates with the length of the muzzle as 3:2.

Skin: Thick, sufficiently elastic, without any folds and wrinkles.
Hair: Straight, coarse, stand-off coat with a well developed undercoat.
The length of guard coat as well as the undercoat should not be less than 5 cm. The coat on the head and forelegs is shorter and thicker. The tail is completely covered with dense coat and looks thick and furry. The longer outer coat forms “brushes” on the ears, a “mane” around the neck and “trousers” on the back sides of the thighs.

Any solid colour, piebald or spotted colour. Except for solid black; diluted black or black in any combination or genetic blue or liver brown colour.

Height at the withers:
Males: Desirable height 72-75 cms; Minimum 68 cms;
Females: Desirable height 67-70 cms; Minimum 64 cms.
Larger stature is accepted, as long as conformation is harmonic.

Weight:
Males: Minimum: 50 kgs;
Females: Minimum: 45 kgs. 1.

Temperament & Suitability

Behaviour is steady, active, self-confident, fearless and independent. The Caucasian Shepherd Dog shows a devoted attachment to its master; it is an excellent guard dog.1.

This breed is too big and strong to allow it to think it is the top boss! But if trained successfully there is potential for them to become great show winning dogs.  A key factor of this breed is that it needs lots of early socialisation to become manageable as an adult dog. A Caucasian Mountain Dog that has never met other people and animals as a puppy and young dog, can be extremely difficult to keep under control as an adult. 2.

You must not be a first time dog owner, and you must have seriously considered the implications. In fact, you should be a very experienced dog owner to be able to keep the alpha role for yourself. It is also an advantage to have a strong physique if you want to handle this giant of a dog. You should also keep in mind that this dog requires lots of exercise. If it is not engaged in livestock work, it will need regular walking every day. Remember this dog can easily weigh 70kg or more and be up to 80cm high. Are you strong enough to control one on the lead? This is not a dog to let Granny take out for a stroll! Despite their thick heavy coat, they can manage reasonably well in hot conditions, provided they have plenty of shade and water. The breed is ideally suited to cold conditions, even reasonably extreme temperatures, and are suitable for living outdoors in the garden. Only choose a Caucasian Mountain Dog if you can devote quite some time to this special breed. If you live in an apartment, or even have a small garden, you are not going to be suited for owning a Caucasian Mountain Dog. It really needs a large yard where it is able to roam or run around, but which must be securely fenced to ensure it doesn’t get out. You must train it rigorously and exercise it regularly. All dog owning is a responsibility but do not forget this a truly massive dog, and you must prepared for a massive responsibility in the upbringing of this unforgettable breed. 

In Conclusion

Now you know a little about the Caucasian Shepherd Dog and have decided this is the dog for you, or you would like more information, please make contact with the breed club or your State controlling body for purebred dogs. They will be able to give you information about available puppies and also suggest dog shows where you can see the breed and speak to breeders. In this way you will gain a better perspective of the Caucasian Shepherd Dog and its needs and whether this breed would suit your lifestyle.

References:

  1. Ankc.org.au
  2. www.europuppy.com

    Image: worlddogshow

Breeders

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