The Caucasian Shepherd Dog is a large breed of dog that is popular in Russia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia. It is extremely popular in Georgia, which has always been the principal region of penetration of Caucasian shepherd dogs. The official standard of this breed is fundamentally based on the dogs taken from Georgia.
Because the dog breed was registered by the USR, the FCI standard of this breed indicates that its origin is the USSR. However, the breed is native to countries of the Caucasus region including Georgia, Armenia, and Azerbaijan.
Also known as Caucasian Ovcharka or Baskhan (Karachay) pariy, Caucasian shepherd dogs are strongly boned, muscular, and even-tempered molossers. Plain dogs have a shorter coat and appear taller as they are more lightly built. Mountain dog types have a heavier coat and are more muscularly built. Caucasian ovcharka are large dogs; however, there is no recorded maximum height or weight. The minimum height for females is 64 centimetres (25 in), with a desirable height between 67 and 70 centimetres (26 and 28 in).
The minimum weight for females is 45 kilograms (99 lb). The minimum height for males is 68 centimetres (27 in), with a desirable height between 72 and 75 centimetres (28 and 30 in). The minimum weight for males is 50 kilograms . The Caucasian shepherd is rather intelligent; however, they can be insolent and refuse to listen at times. They also can be fairly aggressive towards people they do not know and with incorrect handling this can be problematic. This can be overcome by proper training.
The Caucasian Shepherd Dog is generally healthy and long-lived, averaging a life span of 10–12 years. Some dogs may have health issues in the form of hip dysplasia, obesity and occasional heart problems, but the majority of these dogs are healthy if taken care of correctly. Good dog breeders use genetic testing of their breeding stock to reduce the chances of diseases in the puppies.
The ears of the Caucasian Shepherd Dog are traditionally cropped, although some modern dogs are unaltered, as many people believe that this practice is unethical and cruel. If brought up by someone with extensive knowledge on the needs of a Caucasian Shepherd Dog, the chances of health problems should lower dramatically.
Exercise and play time are a crucial part of the Caucasian Shepherd Dog's life to help prevent obesity. Outdoor activities such as hiking, chasing balls and retrieving flying discs can be a good outlet of releasing energy.
Caucasian Shepherd Dogs require very specific and detailed training. From the ages of 0–9 months the obedience of the dog has already been formed. It is recommended that an expert begins to train the dog from the ages of 7–8 months old. The training that is involved in this early stage should be light guidance on the teaching of obedience.
Puppy school has been described as a bad option for the Caucasian Shepherd Dog.They do not tolerate other dogs very well and get out of control easily. This can be difficult to manage even if they are still young. After the early stages and training of a Caucasian Shepherd Dogs life, they can move on to learn about how to herd different types of livestock and defend them if the situation arises.
It is important to expose the dog to extensive amounts of socialization to teach it that not all humans are enemies, starting this routine from a young age could be helpful. Caucasian Shepherd Dogs are not recommended to be adopted into families with young children because of their guardian instinct and powerful bodies.
Fédération Cynologique Internationale classification:
· FCI Pinscher and Schnauzer, Molossoid and Swiss Mountain Dog Group
· Section 2: Molossian breeds
· Section 2.2: Mountain types
· Russia: Caucasian Shepherd Dog
· The American Kennel Club include the breed in the working group.
The aggressive nature of the Caucasian Ovcharka makes it one of the most risky dog breeds to own for if not trained properly it will routinely snap at strangers or anyone they perceive as a threat.