History of the Caucasian Mountain Dog Breed
A breed known by many names, the Caucasian Mountain dog was developed to be mainly a guardian of sheep flocks. It is said that this attractive working dog existed for several hundred years in the mountain regions found between Turkey and Iran and the Caspian and Black seas. However, the Caucasian Mountain dog is said to be most popular in Russia. In fact the word "Ovtcharka" is Russian for "sheepdog." It is commonly found to be a show dog in that part of the world. Extensive breeding programs have evolved in such countries as Poland and Hungary to help maintain the popularity of this breed, but its role as a flock guardian has declined over time. In the 1960s, this breed was used for border patrol around the Berlin Wall in East Germany. When the wall was taken down in 1989, the dogs - approximately 700 in number - were dispersed to families throughout Germany.
Size and Appearance of the Caucasian Mountain Dog Breed
The moderately sized eyes of the Caucasian Mountain dog are deeply set and quite dark. This breed has a black nose that features large nostrils. The ears are insulated with a dense covering of fur, and the tail is feathered with long, profuse hair. The front legs are rather long and quite straight with heavy bone. This breed has large paws with insulating hair between the toes. The heavy coat is resistant to the elements, and it comes in a variety of colors including fawn, white, gray, tan, and brindle.
Caucasian Mountain Dog Temperament
Assertive and brave, the Caucasian Mountain dog is true to its guardian roots. It is important to train and socialize this breed from an early age to avoid overly protective and sometimes fierce personality traits. It is generally distrustful of strangers, but it is protective and respectful of everyone and everything in its family: adults and children, as well as other family pets. This breed should be monitored around children in case play time becomes overly rambunctious. The Caucasian Mountain dog is often dominant over other dogs it does not know.
Caucasian Mountain Dog Recommended Maintenance
Grooming for this breed is quite simple for both coat types. The longer coat requires combing more frequently, paying close attention to the removal of tangles. The short coat should be brushed on a regular basis. While exercise is important for this type of dog, it will often take care of its needs on its own if provided with a large, fenced-in yard. For this reason, the Caucasian Mountain dog is not an ideal choice for those who live in an apartment.
Caucasian Mountain Dog Health
Life span: 10-11 years
Major concerns: none
Minor concerns: none
Occasionally seen: none
Suggested tests: none