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Anatolian Shepherd Dog Dog Breed Profile

Other Names
Karabash or Kangal Dog 
Dog Group Kennel Club
Breed Classification
The Karabash belongs to the pastoral group. Today it is still used by the shepherds of Turkey to guard flocks of sheep and goats.  
Cost of Ownership
Average Food Cost
£7.50-10 per week
Feeding Requirements
As these dogs are so large they do need a lot of feeding, especially as young dogs, and this can be quite expensive. The adult dog will not eat a vast amount of food once it is fully grown. 
Other Expenses
A puppy will cost between £350 to £500. This is a hardy breed, so veterinary costs should not be too high. 
9 - 15 years
Considering the Karabash is such a large dog, they can live for 12 to 13 years, some live even longer. 
Average Litter Size
Litter sizes are large, between 8 to 14 puppies, but the normal is around 10 or 11. 
General Physical Description
The Karabash is a large powerfully built mastiff type dog. They are best known for their distinctive facial markings, cream to fawn with a black mask and ears. They have a short dense coat which is relatively easy to keep. As a breed they are slow to mature, males can be 4 years old and females can be 3 before they are fully mature.

Height Min Max
Bitch 71cm (28") 79cm (31")
Dog 74cm (29") 81cm (32")
Weight Min Max
Bitch 41kg (90lbs) 59kg (130lbs)
Dog 50kg (110lbs) 64kg (141lbs)
Size Category
Weight Height Range
Dogs measure between 74-81cms at the withers, bitches are between 71-79cms at the withers. Dogs weigh between 50-64kgs and bitches weigh between 41-59kgs. 
The Karabash has been bred over many centuries and because of this is virtually free from hereditary health problems. They can have wry mouths and bad temperaments. Owners should insist on screening for temperament and physical traits, including hips and eyes. 
Common Ailments
Susceptibility To Illness
The Anatolian was once used for hunting lions and horses, now they are used for guarding flocks of sheep and goats in Turkey. They are an ancient breed that is regarded as a national emblem in Turkey.  
A very intelligent and strong willed dog. They have been bred to use their initiative, making training quite hard. They require a great deal of patience when training and, even then, success cannot be guaranteed.< 
Show Characteristics
The head is large with a strong muzzle, males have broader heads than the females. The muzzle has slightly pendulous lips and a black nose. The eyes should be set well apart and be golden to brown in colour and are quite small in comparison to the rest of the head. The ears should be triangular and carried flat to the head. The neck is powerful, thick and muscular. They should be deep chested with well sprung ribs. The forelegs are set well apart and are well boned, the hindlegs are powerful and lighter than the forelegs. The tail should be carried low when relaxed and carried high and curled over the back when alert. The coat should be flat and lying close to the body. It should be slightly longer and thicker at the neck, shoulders and tail with no feathering on the ears or legs. They should be cream to fawn in colour with a black mask and black ears. 
Country Of Origin
Famous Examples
Records Held
Overall Exercise
> 2 hours per day.
The Karabash needs a lot of exercise, lots of long walks. This dog is very active and can endure extremes of heat and cold conditions. They need a large, enclosed and safe area for running around off the lead and so do not do well in cities and towns.  
Distress if Left Alone
Personal Protection
Guard Dog Suitability
Risk of Sheep Worrying
Tendency to Bark
Level of Aggression
Compatibility With Other Animals
Suitable For Children


General Character And Temperament
Anatolian Shepherd dogs are territorial. They are natural guard dogs, independent and very intelligent. They must be socialised from a very early age as their guarding instinct is very strong. They are gentle with children, but must be watched due to their size. They can be aggressive (especially the males) to same sexed dogs in the same household and, because of their susceptibility to fleas, should not live with cats or other household pets. This is not a suitable breed for novice dog owners.  
Coat Length
Grooming Requirement
Once a week 
Requires Professional Groomer
The grooming of this dog is relatively easy. The coat is short and dense with a thick undercoat and will only need brushing once a week. They will shed heavily during the moulting seasons. 
The Karabash comes in a variety of colours including fawn, brindle and white. 
Suffers From Allergies

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