Anatolian Shepherd Information
Tags: Anatolian Shepherds, Turkey, Working Dog, Sheep Dog
Anatolian Shepherd Dog Picture
Photo ©2006 Alaturka Anatolians
Standard Anatolian Shepherd Characteristics
About the Anatolian Shepherd
The Anatolian Shepherd, also known as the Karabash, Kangal Dog, Karabas, or Coban Kopengi is of Turkish descent. They were used in the middle ages to defend sheep from dangerous animals like bears, jackals, and wolves. They can be found in Central Turkey though they strongly bear a resemblance to the Eastern Turkish sheepdogs.
The Anatolian Temperment and Intelligence
Still mainly used as a sheep dog, the Anatolian is a dog without parallel with an uncanny ability to safeguard flocks because they are hardy, commanding and impressive, having excellent stamina and agility. Anatolian Shepherds are alert, observant, and intelligent dogs that remain calm unless challenged.
"If a dog's prayers were answered, bones would rain from the sky." - Old ProverbThey are very sensitive to reprimands and crave affection. They are loyal, natural protectors and are possessive of their flock and family. Reserved around strangers, extremely territorial, strong willed and independent, it is not an entirely appropriate companion dog but can adjust to a family environment. If strangers appear, they need to be properly introduced to the dog before they will be accepted into the home. They don’t need protection training because they have such a strong set of instincts that usually appear around a year and a half. When alert, the Anatolian’s triangular ears are carried high.
Anatolian Shepherd Characteristics
The dogs have black lips, a black or brown nose and muzzle, a solid robust neck, and almond shaped brown eyes. The eyes may be outlined with black or brown. Their legs are long and straight with muscular paws and arched toes with diminutive nails. Their tail hangs low and has a slight curl at the bottom. Usual colors of this dog are fawn with a black mask, pinto, white and brindle, though any color is within acceptable limits. The average male dog is 28-30 in. and between 100-150 lbs. The female dogs are about 26-28 in. and 80-130 lbs.
Anatolian Shepherd Health
Anatolian Shepherds are prone to hypothyroidism. Dysplasia does occur, but is not as common as some other large breeds. They are sensitive to anesthesia. Their immune system usually takes longer to develop than with many other breeds and therefore they should be given additional vaccinations against viruses.
Choosing an Anatolian
Though the Anatolian can be easily trained, this is not a dog for beginners. They need an owner that is a true leader because the dogs are often stubborn and try to assert their dominance. Training needs to begin as soon as possible. They are not suited for apartments because of their wariness with strange people and their need for exercise. Therefore they do best in a large, safe, enclosed yard. If these dogs are going to be used as flock guarding dogs, then they should not be used as a pet also. They are best suited to live their lives with the flock but be socialized with people.
More Information on the Anatolian Shepherd Breed:
You can also browse the forums for more information by owners of this wonderful breed. See the following:
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