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Central Asian Shepherd Dog

Central Asian Shepherd Dog

The Central Asian Shepherd Dog is a large, powerful breed that originates from, well, Central Asia! They are an ancient breed that hails from modern day countries like Kazakstan, Afghanistan, and Tadzhikistan. They were bred over the course of thousands of years to be an excellent guardian of livestock—usually sheep—and a faithful companion to their owner. While the Central Asian Sheepdog’s bloodline can be traced over a thousand years, they weren’t commercially bred in kennels until the 20th century in the former USSR.

Illustration courtesy of the Swedish Kennel Club

About this Breed

The Central Asian Shepherd Dog is a large, powerful breed that originates from, well, Central Asia! They are an ancient breed that hails from modern day countries like Kazakstan, Afghanistan, and Tadzhikistan. They were bred over the course of thousands of years to be an excellent guardian of livestock—usually sheep—and a faithful companion to their owner. While the Central Asian Sheepdog’s bloodline can be traced over a thousand years, they weren’t commercially bred in kennels until the 20th century in the former USSR.

Because these dogs were bred to work and not to look pretty, they come in a range of different colors and sizes. A few things about them are very distinctive, though. Central Asian Shepherd Dogs have unusual ears. They are traditionally cropped to be extremely short and sort of look like tufts on the side of the head. If that sounds adorable, think again—Central Asian Shepherd Dogs are serious dogs, not suitable for the average owner.

These powerful dogs were bred to guard and protect, and no amount of family living will ever breed those instincts out of them. While fiercely loyal to their family and owner, Central Asian Shepherd Dogs don’t get along too well with strange dogs—any dogs who don’t live with them—and will be wary and even aggressive towards strangers who enter on their property. They are very sweet with children, assuming they’ve been raised responsibly but need to be well supervised with anyone outside of the immediate family. They are very large and very strong, and it takes a strong owner to physically restrain them—and a clever and experienced owner to make sure they receive the proper training and socialization from an early age. First time dog owners might want to look elsewhere—this breed is not suitable for a lot of doggie tasks such as therapy training, playing in the dog park, or going on puppy playdates. Central Asian Shepherd Dogs want to please and protect their owner, and that’s pretty much it.

The Central Asian Shepherd Dog is not a fast breed. While they can run at extraordinary speeds if in pursuit of possible threats, they mostly just mosey along and guard their property. They have a tendency to find the highest point they can access and then just sit there, watching over their domain.

Given their size, temperament, and exercise needs, Central Asian Shepherd Dogs are not well suited to apartment living, or even suburban living. This breed thrives when they have a lot of land to oversee and call their own. And, of course, because they were bred to be working dogs and guardians of livestock, Central Asian Shepherd Dogs will do best if given a job, preferably one that allows them to do their favorite thing: protect those they love.

Central Asian Shepherd Dogs on Embark

Explore some Embark dogs that share Central Asian Shepherd Dog ancestry.

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    Po

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    704 Dar Azii Yuvani

    704 Dar Azii Yuvani

    704 Aiyana

    704 Aiyana

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    704 Legend

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    Vokterhund Nothing Is Hidden

    Zhanna

    Zhanna

    704 Dar Azii Abrielle

    704 Dar Azii Abrielle