Polish Tatra Sheepdog vs Greater Swiss Mountain Dog - Breed Comparison

Polish Tatra Sheepdog vs Greater Swiss Mountain DogPolish Tatra Sheepdog is originated from Poland but Greater Swiss Mountain Dog is originated from Switzerland. Both Polish Tatra Sheepdog and Greater Swiss Mountain Dog are having almost same height. Polish Tatra Sheepdog may weigh 10 kg / 22 pounds lesser than Greater Swiss Mountain Dog. Both Polish Tatra Sheepdog and Greater Swiss Mountain Dog has same life span. Polish Tatra Sheepdog may have less litter size than Greater Swiss Mountain Dog. Both Polish Tatra Sheepdog and Greater Swiss Mountain Dog requires Moderate maintenance.

Basic Information

Group:
Working dog
Working dog
Origin:
Poland
Switzerland
Height Male:
60 - 70 cm
23 - 28 inches
65 - 72 cm
25 - 29 inches
Height Female:
60 - 70 cm
23 - 28 inches
60 - 70 cm
23 - 28 inches
Weight Male:
36 - 60 kg
79 - 133 pounds
60 - 70 kg
132 - 155 pounds
Weight Female:
36 - 60 kg
79 - 133 pounds
55 - 70 kg
121 - 155 pounds
Life Span:
10 - 12 Years
10 - 12 Years
Litter Size:
3 - 5
5 - 10
Size:
Large dog
Large dog
Other Names:
Tatra Mountain Sheepdog, Polski Owczarek, Polish Mountain Sheepdog
GSMD, Swissy, Sennenhund
Colors Available:
White
Black, white and rust
Coat:
Medium length, thick
Short and straight to medium length, coarse and wavy
Shedding:
Constant, Seasonal
Moderate, Seasonal
Temperament:
Affectionate, Alert, Cheerful, Courageous, Curious, Docile, Energetic, Friendly, Gentle, Independent, Intelligent, Lively, Loving, Loyal, Outgoing, Playful, Protective, Quiet, Responsive, Social, Stubborn, Territorial
Affectionate, Alert, Cheerful, Courageous, Curious, Energetic, Friendly, Independent, Intelligent, Lively, Loving, Loyal, Outgoing, Playful, Protective, Quiet, Responsive, Social, Territorial
Grooming:
Moderate maintenance
Moderate maintenance
Trainability:
Easy
Easy
Hypoallergenic:
No
No
Kids Friendly:
Yes
Yes
New Owners Friendly:
Yes
Yes

History

polish tatra sheepdogKnown also as the Tatra Mountain Sheepdog, Polish Mountain Sheepdog or the Polski Owczarek, the Polish Tatra Sheepdog comes from Poland.

Shepherds were wanting an excellent guard dog for their livestock, and this dog has a natural instinct for guarding. Apart from being a good protection dog, the dog is also a superb companion.

This is a rare dog breed and not recognized by the AKC. This is actually an ancient breed, and the dog has lived in the Polish mountains for thousands of years. When the breed actually came about hasn’t been recorded. Some people suggest the Tatra Sheepdog comes from the Mastiff dog.

After the World Wars the dog’s number had been reduced and the Federation Cynologique Internationale started breeding the dog in the 1960s.

greater swiss mountain dogHailing from Switzerland, and one of its oldest dog breeds, the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog has a dubious history in that there are a number of theories as to its origin. He is closely related to the Bernese Mountain Dog, Saint Bernard and Rottweiler.

Of all the theories, the one that says he is descended from large, mastiff-like dogs is a popular one. He used to be a herding- and guard dog, but also was used to pull carts of farm produce.

It was in the 1900s that the dog’s numbers started dwindling. In 1908, canine researcher, Albert Heim recognized the dogs as being large members of the Sennenhund type, a family of four breeds that includes the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog.

He wanted to see the dogs recognized as a separate breed and the Swiss Kennel Club listed the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog in 1909.

In 1968 they were brought to the United States and a club for them was formed. The dog was recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1995 with the dog being recognized as a member of the Working group.

Description

polish tatra sheepdog puppyIf you bring a Polish Tatra Sheepdog puppy into your home you might think you had a gorgeous Polar Pear Cub roaming around – that’s how cute they are.

These are large, well built white coated dogs and the average height for them as an adult is between 60 to 70cm, male and female. Weight of the dog is between 36 and 60kg.

The double coat is medium length and thick. The ears are medium length and floppy and the tail is long and carried low when the dog is at rest, but it is carried up and over the back when the dog is alert and watchful.

Temperament:

These dogs have a lot of characteristics that make it such a good guardian dog. He is territorial, bold, protective, loyal and always loving towards his human family.

The Tatra has a loud bark and he uses this when he is wary of anything that he thinks may harm his family. He is an intelligent dog too, and you won’t have any trouble training and socializing him.

greater swiss mountain dog puppySwissies, as they are often referred to as, are large, robust dogs, standing at 65–72cm and weighing anything between 50 – 70kg, with the females being slightly smaller and weighing a little less.

He has big, rounded paws, medium length floppy ears, a broad chest and a long tail. This is a heavy-boned dog, strong while still being agile.

His dense, double coat is black, white and tan or rust, with black on top of the dog's back, ears, tail and legs. There are two rust dots above each eye. The coat can be short and straight to medium length, coarse and wavy. The dog sheds throughout the year with a major shedding a couple of times a year.

Temperament:

The Greater Swiss Mountain Dog is a sociable canine, thriving on being part of a loving human family. While he used to be a working farm dog, today he is essentially a family pet, though he loves to still be busy.

He is generally friendly with strangers, but just like with all other dog breeds, he will need to be trained and socialized to turn him into an even-tempered, obedient dog, capable of getting on well with children and pets in the the home.

Health Problems

polish tatra sheepdog dogWhile your Polish Tatra Sheepdog isn’t likely to suffer from any major dog health issues if he is well fed, well exercised and loved, he may well succumb to one or two of some of the typical illnesses there are that plague dogs -

Hip Dysplasia:

This is such a common- and serious problem with dogs, that it bears mentioning. Hip dysplasia is a problem with the hips so that the bones don’t fit- and move properly. The end result for the dog is pain, inflammation and swelling. Your dog is reluctant to play and get up again after lying down. Arthritis can set in which can also be painful. There are treatments to help with managing pain, but in some instances, surgery may be required.

Bloat:

Because the Polish Tatra Sheepdog is a deep chested dog, he is more prone to bloat, which is life threatening. Gas is trapped in the stomach, the stomach twists and the dog has a swollen stomach, is restless and in stress. Immediate veterinary intervention will be required.

Allergic Dermatitis:

This can be debilitating for your dog as he wants to be licking and scratching the whole time. Usually you’ll see this in the paw- and stomach area. There are a range of medications that the vet will suggest.

greater swiss mountain dog dogThe GSMD or Sennenhund, as his name is shortened to, is a fairly healthy dog breed, with very few health issues.

He has an average lifespan of 10 to 12 years, and although not likely, he can suffer from minor problems such as gastric torsion as well as female urinary incontinence. If your female dog is dribbling urine in her sleep, there are a number of reasons that can be causing it - bladder infections, a medical condition or a weakened bladder with spayed female dogs.

It is certainly time to get your pet to the vet who will recommend a urinalysis.

Caring The Pet

Exercise:

polish tatra sheepdog puppiesThe Polish Tatra Sheepdog is an energetic dog and this means he will require a large sized garden to run around in. As a large, active dog he isn’t recommended for city living but would suit a large property where he can be well exercised. Because of its size and energy levels, regular walks will be recommended. Provide the dog with stimulating games that will be mentally and physically beneficial.

Grooming:

This large dog sheds, and seasonally too, so he will need to be brushed at least twice a week to prevent loose hair.

Check inside your dog’s ears for infection.

Trim your dog’s nails.

Check your dog for fleas and ticks and check him over for any unusual lumps.

Diet:

Every pet lover wants their dog to live a long, healthy, active life. That is why it is so important to choose the best dog food.

If you buy commercially manufactured dog food, make sure its the high quality ones to ensure its properly formulated to provide your pet with all the vitamins and minerals he needs.

Home-made food is also an excellent choice for your pet. Boiled chicken, brown rice or pasta and spinach, sweet potatoes and carrots can be very healthy, and you can chop this up and add it into the dry kibble a couple of times a week. This is a super tasty treat. Some raw meat added in occasionally will do him the world of good.

Never leave your pet without a constant source of fresh, cool water.

Diet:

greater swiss mountain dog puppiesThe Greater Swiss Mountain Dog is a robust dog and thrives on a diet of kibble to raw meat to some cooked home-made food such as chicken, brown rice and vegetables.

A serious issue with the GSMD is overfeeding, resulting in uncomfortable digestive problems and of course, obesity.

Exercise:

Your GSMD isn’t a dog that is going to require a lot of exercise like some of the other dog breeds there are, but still his working career of the past requires that he still be taken on daily walks, enjoys ball- and rope games and to go swimming.

Grooming:

Brush your dogs coat at least twice a week to remove loose hears. Other grooming aspects include cleaning the ears to avoid infection, clipping his nails and brushing his teeth at least twice a week.

If you’re not sure how to do all these things, there are useful accessories for dogs that allow you to do all this grooming on your own. Your vet can also show you how as these are all things that will require ongoing attention.

Characteristics

polish tatra sheepdog dogsThese large sheepdogs have always been guard dogs – they were bred to guard sheep and have always spent a lot of time on their own, away from humans.

To many people, he may seem to be somewhat aloof and independent, but for people looking for a guard dog, this particular characteristic is particularly appealing.

Nonetheless, brought up with lots of love and care he makes the most devoted, loving pet.

greater swiss mountain dog dogsThe Swissy is an easy going dog and adapts easily into his human family’s lifestyle. He is big, but agile dog known for his gentle temperament.

While he loves the outdoors, he is a social dog and loves nothing more than coming indoors and being close to his human family.

He loves his family and won’t do well if left outside for days without human companionship. Treat him well and you’ll be rewarded with a loyal, loving 4-legged family member.

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