Kars Dog vs Anatolian Shepherd - Breed Comparison

Kars Dog vs Anatolian ShepherdBoth Kars Dog and Anatolian Shepherd are originated from Turkey. Kars Dog may grow 14 cm / 6 inches higher than Anatolian Shepherd. Kars Dog may weigh 12 kg / 27 pounds more than Anatolian Shepherd. Both Kars Dog and Anatolian Shepherd has almost same life span. Both Kars Dog and Anatolian Shepherd has same litter size. Both Kars Dog and Anatolian Shepherd requires Moderate maintenance.

Basic Information

Group:
Working dog
Working dog
Origin:
Turkey
Turkey
Height Male:
60 - 90 cm
23 - 36 inches
71 - 76 cm
27 - 30 inches
Height Female:
60 - 90 cm
23 - 36 inches
66 - 71 cm
25 - 28 inches
Weight Male:
60 - 80 kg
132 - 177 pounds
45 - 68 kg
99 - 150 pounds
Weight Female:
60 - 80 kg
132 - 177 pounds
41 - 59 kg
90 - 131 pounds
Life Span:
10 - 12 Years
10 - 11 Years
Litter Size:
5 - 10
5 - 10
Size:
Giant dog
Giant dog
Other Names:
Kars Turkish Shepherd, Caucasian
Karabaş (Blackhead), Anatolian Blackhead (Anadolulu Karabaş), Kangal Coban Kopegi • Perro de pastor de Anatolia • Anatolischer Hirtenhund • Chien de berger d'Anatolie • Anatolian Shepard Dog or ASD
Colors Available:
Reddish brown, grey, black - mixed colors
fawn, brindle
Coat:
short or long-haired variety
Double, thick, rough
Shedding:
Moderate
Seasonal
Temperament:
Affectionate, Aggressive, Alert, Cheerful, Courageous, Curious, Energetic, Friendly, Independent, Intelligent, Lively, Loving, Loyal, Outgoing, Playful, Protective, Responsive, Social, Stubborn, Territorial
Alert, Courageous, Detached, Independent, Intelligent, Loving, Loyal, Protective, Quiet, Stubborn, Territorial
Grooming:
Moderate maintenance
Moderate maintenance
Trainability:
Moderate
Easy
Hypoallergenic:
No
No
Kids Friendly:
Yes
No
New Owners Friendly:
Yes
No

History

kars dogThe Kars Dog is found in Turkey, hailing more specifically from the Kars province, after which it is named. He actually has a long history of at least 600 years.

Referred to as a Molosser, the dog is still used to this day for shepherding livestock. There are many varieties and sizes of the dog, with the most common Kars type being similar to the Nagazi variant of the Caucasian Shepherd Dog.

anatolian shepherdUp in the mountains of central Turkey, in the region called Anatolia, a large, strong and rugged dog breed was born and is honored today on a postal stamp. This was the Anatolian Shepard – keeper of the flocks with strength, agility and speed. The Anatolian Shepard is able to pursue and catch any predator that threatens his livestock and they are his livestock. His keen sense of hearing and his excellent sight only add to his prowess as a protector.

The Anatolian is a giant dog, classified as a shepherd by the UKC – Kennel Club of the United Kingdom, while he is classified as a mountain dog or molossus by the Federation Cynologique International. When the breed was created, they were a gift to the farmers in the mountains to guard the livestock from cheetahs. This helped the cheetahs to stop attacking the livestock and prevented the farmers from wiping out the cheetah population by shooting them.

The Anatolian Shepard does have some controversy in his lineage as in some areas he is considered to be either the most closely related or the same breed as the Turkish Kangal Dog. The Anatolian is considered to have a blood line that goes back at least 6000 years.

They are direct descendants of mastiffs and mountain dogs. Yet they have the long legs, agility and aloofness of the sight hounds that are also in their bloodline. Originally called the “Coban Kopegi” or shepherd dog by their Turkish farmers, they were eventually separated into the breed called the Anatolian Shepard. When the breed was first brought into the United Kingdom the line of the Kangal dog was first. Then they were crossed with dogs called Anatolian Shepherds. Many breeders believe that the Anatolian Shepherd is a category that includes the Kangal, Coban Kopegi, Aksaray Malaklisi and the Akbash dog.

So as of January 2012, the Australian National Kennel Club no longer considers the Anatolian Shepard and the Kangal as separate breeds. The UK Kennel Club now recognizes the Kangal and the Anatolian as the same breed. For others they are still clearly separate and distinct breeds with the ASD being their own breed. In fact, the government of Turkey recognizes them as separate breeds and the Kangal Dog as the National Dog of Turkey.

The Anatolian Shepard was already in the United States in when the Anatolian Shepard Club of America came into being because of a young naval officer who had met the dogs in Turkey. They were allowed into the Miscellaneous Class of the American Kennel Club in 1996 after this naval officer had been breeding them in California for years. By 1998 they had moved to the Working Group where they reside today.

Description

kars dog puppyLarge and heavy, the Kars Dog is strong, with a large head and broad chest. The height of the dog at the withers is 60 to 90cm and he weighs in at roughly 60 - 80kg.

At one time the ears were cropped but they are left these days and then they are of medium length and floppy. The coat varies too in terms of length and color - short to longer variety coats. The coat can be a solid color or it can have patterns. You’ll find reddish brown dogs, grey and black dogs as well as dogs with a mix of colors.

Temperament:

The Kars is an aggressive, territorial dog, but with the correct training, socialization and upbringing, it can be a loving, amicable family pet.

Known also as the Kars Turkish Shepherd or Kars shepherd, he makes an ideal guarding dog as he is brave and devoted to those he is protecting. He is cautious and even unfriendly towards people he doesn’t know, and it is thought that because of his robustness, it might not be a good idea to leave him unsupervised with small children.

Nonetheless with training and socialization, the Kars is capable of being a super pet for all members of the family. Training him won’t be that easy as he is large and strong-willed, but the training will provide him with some basic good manners.

He will require a firm, confident owner and will require living in a home with a big garden or in the countryside as he requires a good amount of exercise.

anatolian shepherd puppyComing from the mountains and guarding their flock against cheetahs has led the Anatolian Shepherd to be a muscular dog with broad heads and thick necks and sturdy, strong bodies. Their ears drop and are triangular in shape, while their muzzles are rectangular with tight lips. Their double coat is thick and warm fitting for life in the mountain regions. They do blow their coats with excessive shedding twice a year. The fur on their throat is extra thick for their protection.

Muscular, thin, their rib cage is large while their stomach is small. Their tails can be intact or docked. The Anatolian Shepherd is much like the Kuvasz or the Great Pyrenees in their size, shape and responsibilities. He is more agile and slenderer than those two dogs. Their bite is scissors or level, while their eyes are almonds, set apart in their heads.

Health Problems

kars dog dogThe Kars is generally healthy and long-lived, being able to reach 12 years of age with ease if cared for properly. Every dog, even the most healthiest ones, will have some health issues, and with a large dog like this, it is hip dysplasia, obesity, cancer and heart problems.

Heart Problems:

Coughing is a symptom of different illnesses, with one of them being heart disease. If your dog is still coughing after several days, its time to see the vet.

When your dog hasn’t exercised, you’ll see him battling to breathe or the breathing will be rapid. He’ll be reluctant to walk and play too and may be disinterested in his food. Edema, the swelling of body tissues is also a sign of heart disease.

anatolian shepherd dogThis is a healthy breed without a lot of the issues that plaque other giant breeds. In one recent survey the leading cause of death among the ASD is cancer and old age. Skin issues are more prevalent than dysplasia though it does occur. They have a sensitivity to anesthesia and their immune system does take longer to mature so all young ASD should be discussed with vets before any vaccinations are given. Bloat is not as common among this breed either. They should be screened for eyelid inversion or entropion. They are susceptible to Demodectic Mange or demodicosis which is caused by a mite.

Caring The Pet

kars dog puppiesYour Kars dog can be a wonderful addition to your home, but you need to know how to care for a big dog before you get carried away and add a large puppy breed to your family.

Too many people buy a cute bundle of fur and get rid of it when he is no longer a cute puppy. Before you bring a giant breed dog into your home, take note of some useful tips to keep him in tip top condition -

Diet:

If you bring a puppy home, he’ll need to be fed 4 times a day with special puppy food. There are excellent commercially manufactured puppy foods on the market and you will need to get the one that caters for ‘large- or giant puppy breeds’, as the Kars is a very big dog.

As your dog reaches adulthood you’ll feed him less. If in any doubt as to the kind of food to give your dog to maintain good health, speak to your vet.

Exercise:

Every dog will need exercise to keep him trim and fit but to also stimulate their minds. Providing your Kars dog with exercise such as walks and ball games will also ensure he doesn’t become bored.

General Care:

Your pet will need a nice quiet, warm, dry place to sleep and rest. If he is an outdoor dog during the day, make sure that he has a place to rest in the shade. Make sure he has a non-stop supply of fresh, cool water too that is placed in a cool, reachable spot.

Grooming:

Your large pet is an average shedder and to keep his thick coat in tip top condition, you want to be sure to brush him at least twice a week.

Feeding

anatolian shepherd puppiesFeed your Anatolian Shepherd a measured amount twice a day and keep him from becoming overweight. It is recommended that you feed her from 4-6 cups of dry, high quality food for the entire day. The more active your dog is, the more she will need to eat. Using treats in training is appropriate but don’t give her too many as these will add to the waist line.

Health issues

As mentioned previously this is a very healthy breed especially when compared with other giant and/or mountain dog breeds. However, they are susceptible but not prone to:

Hip Dysplasia

Should be tested for this condition in which the bones don’t fit well into the joint. Elbow Dysplasia – the same as above except it is the arm bone does not fit well into the joint. Both these conditions can cause arthritis or lameness.

Demodectic Mange

Caused by mites and a weakened immune system it can result in patches of scaly, red skin and hair loss. A generalized version can cover the entire body and can be fatal.

Hypothyroidism

This can result if obesity, hair loss, epilepsy, lethargy and other skin condition. It is easily treatable.

Entropion

Mentioned previously it causes the eyelid to roll inward and requires surgery.

Exercise and games

Your Anatolian Shepherd does not need a lot of exercise despite his size. A large yard with a good fence will do for him as long as he gets a walk daily. If they can run free in a large yard they will be happy. If not, you will need to take them to a dog park, preferable when other dogs are NOT present. You can’t assume he will be ok with other dogs. Never walk them off leash as they love to wander. They need a job to do.

Characteristics

kars dog dogsThe Kars is a large dog and because of his past where he used to guard livestock, he is a dog used to wide open spaces. He will require a home with a good sized garden and a family who exercises him frequently.

With the right kind of care, the Kars is able to strongly bond with his human family, taking his role as guardian and protector very well. He is alert and smart and that is why he will need training and socialization and a firm, fair human owner. He will then become a loving, devoted companion.

anatolian shepherd dogsThis breed is independent, stubborn and strong. They are great protectors of their flocks and people, but they are incredibly challenging to own. They are intelligent, loyal dogs who learn quickly when they want to. They key being “when they want to”. The Anatolian Shepard was bred to be nomadic, following the herd and hunting for the herd’s predators. Microchip your ASD because they will roam if they get the chance.

If you want your Anatolian to get along with other dogs, cats or other animals, socialize them together when the ASD is a puppy. If the animal or child is part of his flock the ASD will protect them with his life. Though he is loving, quiet and calm, the Anatolian is just as demanding and dominating. Never let your Anatolian Shepherd believe that he is above the humans in the pack or you will have a major problem controlling him. He will be especially leery of strangers and will not accept your word that the stranger is part of the family. However, if she understands that humans are above her and you are the leader, she will accept any person you accept.

Even if they accept strangers, they will not allow anyone other than the family into the home when the owner is not there. This is a proud, proud dog that can be stubborn, demanding and bossy. Being such a large dog, you need to be in control. This is not a dog for everyone. Be firm, confident, be loving and consistent when training an Anatolian Shepherd. Do not offer your ASD any additional training in protection. He doesn’t need it and it could be detrimental. They will protect children, but they do not respect them. Therefore, supervise their interactions with children.

Comparison with other breeds

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