Anatolian Shepherd Dog (Turkish Kangal, Karabash)


The Anatolian Shepherd Dog breed belongs to one of the oldest, and, according to various archaeological studies, comes from hunting dogs that lived 4000 BC. Their area of ‚Äč‚Äčexistence was on the territory of Mesopotamia, to which part of modern Turkey belongs. Thanks to its outstanding qualities of a protector and guard, thanks to its enormous strength, fearlessness, the ability to resist even large predators, this dog has earned the respect of ancient people.

We can say that the development of the breed took place in a natural way, thanks to the specifics of the activity and the lifestyle that predetermined this activity. These include the protection of livestock in pastures, the protection of households and hunting. Add to this the difficult climate, a large number of dangers and, often, the need to roam along with their owners or herds that moved along the Anatolian plateau. For many centuries of such a life, the breed has become hardened and acquired clear outlines, which are largely preserved today.

The dog came to England thanks to the archaeologist Charmian Hussey – he brought several individuals around 1970. Since then, the Anatolian Shepherd breed began to conquer the western world, having previously conquered the eastern one, over many centuries of serving people.

By the way, these dogs are very much appreciated in Australia, where they appeared in 1985, and today they are very popular along with the Australian Kelpie breed. However, if the latter are used for grazing livestock, then the Anatolian Shepherd Dog performs protective functions directly inside the farmland.

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Now there is a lively debate as to whether the Anatolian Shepherd Dog is an independent breed, or whether this name can characterize a whole family of breeds that are similar to each other and live in the same territory. These include the dog Turkish Kangal, Akbash and others.


These are large dogs with a muscular build. They have long, strong legs, a powerful chest, and a broad head with ears drooping to the front. The tail is fluffy, usually not docked. With a weight of about 60-70 kg, at first glance, the dog does not look as massive as, for example, an alabai (with a similar weight), but this is a deceiving sensation. The coat has an undercoat.


A dog of the Anatolian Shepherd breed has tremendous endurance and strength, and not only external, but also internal, that is, strength of character. It is not recommended to start it by inexperienced owners or people of a timid disposition. If you are just that kind of person, at least hire an experienced trainer to help raise your pet.

This character trait is due to the fact that the breed has grown and developed over several thousand years in conditions of almost absolute loneliness. The dog was required to be on the protection of the herd of livestock, without any special education and socialization. And therefore, in modern conditions, it is socialization and proper education that are necessary.

Nevertheless, the dog will in any case retain its own independence – they maintain a certain distance from strangers and unfamiliar guests of your house, observing what is happening from the side. Sharp intelligence allows them to perfectly understand the owner and his requirements, but remarks or severity must be reasonable and fair.

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This is an excellent guard who can easily stop a large person on the run, and at the cost of his life will protect the owner and his family. They have a tendency towards innate aggression, but along with this there is kindness. If the Anatolian Shepherd is too angry, you may even find it difficult to stop him on command – consider this.

This breed loves walks, and generally loves to spend time on the street, loves activity and games, needs training and communication. The ideal place for keeping it is a private house with a yard, also because it is very territorial. The Anatolian Shepherd Dog treats children and other pets well, including cats. Although the latter should be introduced into the social circle from an early age.


Since this is an ancient breed with tremendous inner strength, it will be very difficult for an owner with a weak character. After all, you need to have confidence in your actions and words, without fear of the animal’s response or disobedience. It is this inner confidence that is the key to the dog’s consciousness.

Training should be started at about six months of age, and first achieve the implementation of simple commands. To do this, you can even help the dog into the desired posture, combining this with the command to form a logical connection. Perseverance and patience are important here – it is necessary to return the pet to the process without anger. After all, in 10 minutes he will want to play and run. In the beginning, this can be combined with games, but gradually it should become a serious occupation. No breaks should be allowed.

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Obedience and obedience to commands always go along with rewarding success and punishing misconduct, this is an axiom. But, remember that the punishment should not be excessive. Many people choose to study with a professional trainer and act very wisely – this will give the best results. Thus, at home you will consolidate the material passed with a specialist.


Thick coat with undercoat requires combing at least 1-2 times a week. It is imperative to trim the claws, and also make sure that the ears and eyes of the animal are clean, cleaning them of deposits. You can bathe your dog once a week or more often as needed.

Common diseases

The Anatolian Karabash dog breed has good immunity and endurance, and is able to withstand most of the known diseases. However, poor heredity and poor pet care can cause the following disorders.

  • dysplasia of the hip joint is a hereditary disease;
  • dysplasia of the elbow – in this breed it is not hereditary, but arises from the improper maintenance and development of bones;
  • gemodecosis – it is caused by the demodex mite;
  • hypothyroidism;
  • entropion.

Also, according to the latest studies, of the 23 dogs tested, 4 died due to cancer in old age.

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