Karelo-Finnish Laika vs Istrian Sheepdog - Breed Comparison

Karelo-Finnish Laika is originated from Russia but Istrian Sheepdog is originated from Slovenia. Karelo-Finnish Laika may grow 15 cm / 5 inches shorter than Istrian Sheepdog. Karelo-Finnish Laika may weigh 26 kg / 57 pounds lesser than Istrian Sheepdog. Karelo-Finnish Laika may live 3 years more than Istrian Sheepdog. Karelo-Finnish Laika may have more litter size than Istrian Sheepdog. Karelo-Finnish Laika requires Low maintenance. But Istrian Sheepdog requires Moderate maintenance

Basic Information

Group:
Working dog
Working dog
Origin:
Russia
Slovenia
Height Male:
38 - 48 cm
14 - 19 inches
54 - 63 cm
21 - 25 inches
Height Female:
38 - 48 cm
14 - 19 inches
54 - 63 cm
21 - 25 inches
Weight Male:
11 - 14 kg
24 - 31 pounds
26 - 40 kg
57 - 89 pounds
Weight Female:
11 - 14 kg
24 - 31 pounds
26 - 40 kg
57 - 89 pounds
Life Span:
12 - 15 Years
10 - 12 Years
Litter Size:
6 - 10
3 - 6
Size:
Medium dog
Medium dog
Other Names:
Laika
Karst Sheepdog
Colors Available:
Reddish
Dark and Light shades of Grey
Coat:
Longish and coarse
Long, thick and harsh
Shedding:
Moderate
Moderate, Seasonal
Temperament:
Affectionate, Aggressive, Alert, Cheerful, Courageous, Curious, Energetic, Friendly, Independent, Intelligent, Lively, Loving, Loyal, Outgoing, Playful, Protective, Responsive, Stubborn, Sweet, Territorial
Affectionate, Aggressive, Alert, Cheerful, Courageous, Curious, Energetic, Friendly, Independent, Intelligent, Lively, Loving, Loyal, Outgoing, Playful, Protective, Responsive, Social, Stubborn, Territorial
Grooming:
Low maintenance
Moderate maintenance
Trainability:
Easy
Easy
Hypoallergenic:
No
No
Kids Friendly:
Yes
Yes
New Owners Friendly:
Yes
Yes

History

The Karelo Finnish Laika is a Spitz type hunting dog from the Karelia area of Russia.Some people say the dog developed in Sweden. The dog is from a group of ‘Laika’ breeds and has that typical Spitz-type look – the sharpish face, the erect ears and the tail which curls over the back.

This attractive dog was developed as a hunting dog, and has a thick, weatherproof coat.The Karelo-Finnish Laika breed developed because people wanted a smaller sized hunting dog that could cope well with the weather, and these Laika dogs matched well.

The breed is ancient – centuries old, and after dying out in numbers during the second world war, the breed was revived when Russians imported Finnish Spitzes from Finland and bred them. The dog is similar to the Finnish Spitz, and in 2006 the Finnish Kennel Club and Russian Kennel Federation included the Karelo-Finnish Laika as a Finnish Spitz breed.

Known also as the Karst Sheepdog, the beautiful, medium sized Istrian Sheepdog hails from Slovenia, Yugoslavia in the 1600s, being used to guard sheep. In fact, the Karst Shepherd was recognized as the Illyrian Shepherd in 1939.

The dog is fairly scarce in his own country, but interest in the dog started developing in the late 1970s. The Fédération Cynologique Internationale recognizes the breed and it has also been exported to the United States, being recognized by the United Kennel Club.

It is also recognized by a number of smaller kennel clubs. The dogs numbers have declined at certain periods in its history but fortunately breeding programs boosted its numbers.

Description

With his wolf-like appearance, the Karelo Finnish Laika is a sharp, intelligent dog and is the smallest Laika in Russia used for hunting. He stands at about 38–48 cm in height and weighs about 11 - 14 kg.

His coat is a reddish color and the fur is fairly long and coarse with a dense, soft undercoat. He looks like a red fox with his sharp, bright face, his erect ears, black nose and bushy tail which curls over the back.

Temperament:

The Karelo-Finnish Laika is a sweet dog with a quiet character. Whenever you suggest a game for him, he throws his docile side to the wind and becomes highly energetic and animated. He is an active dog and loves nothing more than a game with his human family members.

He is mistrustful of strangers, he tends to bark easily and he is territorial and all these characteristic go towards making him a good watchdog. He is quite prepared to live peacefully alongside other dogs in the home, more so when he has been trained and socialized.

He makes a great friend and pet for families and is more than ready to be loving and loyal to his human family.

This is a medium sized, muscled, strong dog with an iron-grey coat that has shades of deeper grey. His beautiful coat is long, thick and fairly harsh to the touch, with the undercoat protecting the dog against cold weather.

Around the neck area the hair is longer, forming an eye-catching-like mane. The stomach area has longer hair too. He has a noble look about him with kind, brown eyes and a round skull. The muzzle of the dog is dark, the limbs long and muscular and the tail is long and covered in thick fur.

The dog is slightly longer than its height, and both males and females stand at 54 to 63cm in height and weigh between 26 and 40kg. The long tail reaches right down to the hocks. The ears of the dog are fairly short and are floppy.

Temperament:

This dog has always made an excellent guard dog, being alert and also being distrustful of strangers. He will need to be trained and socialized if you want him to be obedient to you and more amicable around children in the home as well as visitors to the home.

If he is trained and well socialized, he is able to make a good pet. However, he is an energetic dog, used to working and he isn't recommended for life in the city if there is only a tiny garden. He needs space and will require a large garden.

He will also need to be exercised and not just left to his own devices in the backyard. Because he is essentially a working dog he doesn’t easily fit into the role of pet and companion. He is a working dog and will need to be kept busy.

Health Problems

Apart from his good looks, the Karelo-Finnish Laika happens to be a pretty healthy breed and there are no known hereditary health problems with him. Diseases which can affect any dog -

Hip Dysplasia:

Many large breeds are prone to hip dysplasia. In hip dysplasia, joint problems cause arthritis and pain and eventually lameness. These days, when buying a puppy, people ask breeders about whether the parents were screened for hip dysplasia.

Obesity:

Any dog fed the wrong diet and who isn’t exercised can become overweight. Obesity in dogs is linked to many health problems in dogs. If you’re in doubt about your pet, consult with your vet on the best food for him.

Cancer:

Many dogs are at risk for certain types of cancer, including lymphoma which is cancer of the lymph nodes. When you are brushing your pet, check him for any unusual lumps so that you can catch cancer early.

Heart Conditions:

Dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) is where the chambers of the heart are stretched out and don't pump blood properly. Sometimes it can go undetected for a while until the dog becomes seriously ill, requiring emergency medical attention. Medications can regulate heart rhythm but there is no cure.

As with many other dog breeds, the Istrian Sheepdog is a healthy dog that, because of history of hard work, is robust and able to stand up well to common dog illnesses.

However there is one dog illness that strikes many dogs and at any age, and it is hip dysplasia. This is a malformation of the hip joints.

You'll notice that your once active dog is lethargic, doesn't want to play so much anymore and battles to get up after lying down. The disease is painful for your dog and it can lead to mobility issues. The disease is diagnosed with x-rays and your vet will recommend treatment options to make life more comfortable and less painful for your beloved pet.

Caring The Pet

The Karelo-Finnish Laika is a most attractive looking dog and his thick, double coat will need to be brushed at least twice a week to keep it free from dust, grass and burrs. He sheds throughout the year so this brushing will keep the loose dog hair under control.

Diet:

Watch your Karelo-Finnish Laika’s diet as a lean, mean dog can live longer than one who is overfed. Dogs which are overweight are likely to develop joint problems and heart disease.

The quality of food you feed your pet is hugely important. Popping chocolates and peanuts into his mouth because you love him so much will be toxic for him. Apart from his top quality dry kibble, add in some cooked chicken, rice and vegetables as a tasty treat and mix in a little bit of raw meat also when you can.

Exercise:

Exercise for your Karelo Finnish Laika is a key component to prolonging his life, and he absolutely loves games, walks and action all the way. It will keep him in shape, keep him happy and prolong his life.

Exercise:

This is a dog that is used to guarding his flock and he will need to be in a home that has a fair sized garden. He can adapt to life in the city or to the countryside, but wherever he is, he will need sufficient exercise. Take him with you on your walks or hikes and give him some rope- and ball games.

General Care:

Wherever you live in the world, when the Winter winds howl and blow in icy rain or snow, a dog is at an increased risk of illness. You decided to have a dog in your home and it is your responsibility to care for him. Winter weather is downright unpleasant and dangerous for most pets.

Bring your pet in during such weather and provide him with a warm, dry sleeping space. During hot weather, make sure your pet has a cool, shady spot to lie down in, out of the boiling sun. Whatever weather you're experiencing, your pet should never ever be without a constant supply of fresh, cool water.

Provide him with excellent food that is full of vitamins and minerals to keep him healthy. Learn to know what human foods can be toxic for him and cause him digestive problems.

Grooming:

Your double coated Istrian Sheepdog will need a thorough brushing at least twice a week because of his dense, double coat. He does shed and isn't a hypoallergenic dog. His thick coat can tangle easily if it isn't properly brushed and maintained.

Clip his nails when and if they grow long. Other grooming aspects for this attractive dog require checking his ears for infection and also checking his teeth as dental disease can lead to a host of serious illnesses in your dog.

Characteristics

The Karelo Finnish Laika is such an energetic dog, full of life and he promises to make an affectionate family dog.

He is a fairly low maintenance dog too and not prone to getting sick easily. Treat this attractive Laika dog like he deserves and you’ll find that he makes a splendid pet.

Your Istrian Sheepdog is a unique, strong-willed dog that is used to guarding, and working and he wants to be kept involved and busy.

He is wary of strangers and makes an excellent guard dog for any family home. Remember that it is never good to invest in a dog purely for guard dog purposes. A dog such as the Istrian Sheepdog is a social creature and he also wants- and needs to be part of a human family that provides him with plenty of interaction with them.

The Istrian Sheepdog is a loyal, loving dog who is capable of forming strong bonds with his human family. With proper training and socialization he makes a good friend of children and the elderly too.

Include him in all your family activities just like any human family member and he will make you a splendid, courageous pet.

Comparison with other breeds

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  27. Portuguese Water Dog vs Istrian Sheepdog - Breed Comparison
  28. Puli vs Istrian Sheepdog - Breed Comparison
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  30. Porcelaine vs Istrian Sheepdog - Breed Comparison
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  38. Istrian Sheepdog vs German Pinscher - Breed Comparison
  39. Istrian Sheepdog vs Aidi - Breed Comparison
  40. Istrian Sheepdog vs Griffon Bleu de Gascogne - Breed Comparison
  41. Istrian Sheepdog vs Borador - Breed Comparison
  42. Istrian Sheepdog vs German Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  43. Istrian Sheepdog vs Canadian Eskimo Dog - Breed Comparison
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