Kuri vs Istrian Sheepdog - Breed Comparison | MyDogBreeds

Kuri is originated from French Polynesia but Istrian Sheepdog is originated from Slovenia. Kuri may grow 17 cm / 6 inches shorter than Istrian Sheepdog. Kuri may weigh 25 kg / 55 pounds lesser than Istrian Sheepdog. Both Kuri and Istrian Sheepdog has almost same life span. Both Kuri and Istrian Sheepdog has almost same litter size. Kuri requires Low maintenance. But Istrian Sheepdog requires Moderate maintenance

Basic Information

Group:
Miscellaneous dogs
Working dog
Origin:
French Polynesia
Slovenia
Height Male:
25 - 46 cm
9 - 19 inches
54 - 63 cm
21 - 25 inches
Height Female:
25 - 46 cm
9 - 19 inches
54 - 63 cm
21 - 25 inches
Weight Male:
13 - 15 kg
28 - 34 pounds
26 - 40 kg
57 - 89 pounds
Weight Female:
13 - 15 kg
28 - 34 pounds
26 - 40 kg
57 - 89 pounds
Life Span:
10 - 14 Years
10 - 12 Years
Litter Size:
5 - 8
3 - 6
Size:
Medium dog
Medium dog
Other Names:
Peroor New Zealand Native Dog, Guri
Karst Sheepdog
Colors Available:
White, brown, tan, cream, black - solids and different patterns
Dark and Light shades of Grey
Coat:
Medium length, rough
Long, thick and harsh
Shedding:
Minimal
Moderate, Seasonal
Temperament:
Affectionate, Alert, Cheerful, Courageous, Curious, Energetic, Friendly, Independent, Intelligent, Lively, Loving, Loyal, Outgoing, Playful, Protective, Responsive, Social, Stubborn, 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

Kurī, also known as Guri or Peroor New Zealand Native Dog, is the Maori name for this dog which was introduced to New Zealand by the Maoris when they migrated from East Polynesia around 1280 AD.

They were in fact Polynesian dogs which died out in New Zealand. The Māoris would use the dog as a food source and the skins would be used to make some form of clothing. The bones were used to make items such as necklaces and fish hooks.

Not surprising then that the dog became extinct in New Zealand, with the last known Kuri specimens being found in the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa.

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

The Kuri is extinct now but it was a small to medium sized dog with a thick set neck. He stood between 25 and 46cm and weighed about 13 to 15 kilograms.

He had thick medium-length rough textured hair, small head, erect ears, short legs and a bushy tail. The color of their weatherproof coats varied and some were black, some white or cream and some were a mix of colors and patterns.

An interesting feature about them is that they didn’t bark but instead they howled. They were good at hunting birds.

Temperament:

The Kuri wasn’t considered the brightest breed, but he would have benefited from some training and socialization as this just makes a dog a better pet in every sense – more obedient and better behaved in all situations.

Some Kuris were friendly and able to bond with their human owners, while others were independent and somewhat aloof. Their size would have allowed them to be kept in the city or the country as they weren’t particularly energetic dogs, not requiring much ground to run around in.

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

Dental Disease:

Some Kuri dogs scavenged while others were pets and ate well. The lifestyle they led would have determined their health. In those days they would have suffered with dental disease, common in adult dogs. Left untreated, dental disease can lead to dental tartar buildup with gum inflammation and tooth loss.

Dental disease can also lead to other organ diseases. These days brushing your dog’s teeth with canine toothpaste and toothbrush can help to ward off dental disease.

Ear infections:

Those Kuris that weren’t pets, tried to survive scavenging, and their homeless situation could well have led to ear infections – caused from a wax- and dirt buildup within the ear. He would have been frantic trying to scratch his ears. In modern times, if your dog showed signs of an ear infection, you would need to get him to the vet.

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

Grooming:

The Kuri will have required regular grooming which means a brushing down twice a week. Brushing would have been useful to prevent loose hairs from shedding with the dog. He would have had to have his ears and eyes checked too to avoid infections. Brushing him would have given his owner the chance to check him over for fleas and ticks too.

Exercise:

As the Kuri wasn’t an overly energetic dog, a walk a day would have kept him content and fit.

Diet:

The Kuri was a dog that essentially formed part of someone else’s diet. Those that managed to escape being a meal for someone no doubt had to scavenge for food. Because they were used to help people catch birds, they themselves were used to catching birds for themselves.

As a small to medium sized dog, if you were to keep such a dog as a pet you would have given him a cup or two of dried kibble a day and tried to vary his diet by including some home-cooked food and raw meat.

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

It appears as though some Kuris were kept as pets and that they were able to develop loving relationships with their owners.

We don’t know too much about the extinct Kuri, but scientists are now studying and analyzing the hairs of the dog to find out more about it, and specifically why the Maori dog disappeared some time in the 19th century without a trace.

They will also be analyzing Kuri bones salvaged by archaeologists and which were found on rubbish heaps. These bones can be tested to see whether the diet of the Kuri changed much between the days of Maori settlements and the arrival of the European settlers.

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.

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