Large, rugged and powerful, the Anatolian Shepherd Dog is a working guard dog, possessing a superior ability to protect livestock. While not a "glamour" breed, the Anatolian's loyalty, independence and hardiness is cherished by breeders and owners. The breed's coat can be short (one inch) or rough (approximately four inches), with all color patterns and markings, including fawn and brindle, equally acceptable.
A Look Back
The Anatolian Shepherd Dog is a guardian breed that originated in Turkey more than 6,000 years ago. Well-suited to Turkey's harsh climate and a nomadic lifestyle, he served shepherds as the frontline defense against predators. Breeders created a dog of the same size and colors as the livestock they guarded so that they would remain undetected by these predators. Anatolians entered the United States in the 1950s.
Right Breed for You?
Instinctively protective, the Anatolian is a calm, reserved breed around strangers, showing his loyal and loving nature only to his family. He enjoys children, but should be supervised around them in case he interprets rough play as a need to guard "his" child. Because he was bred to make independent decisions while working, owner commands may not be followed to the letter, but the Anatolian is trainable. Regular exercise and grooming is necessary.
- Working Group; AKC recognized in 1996.
- Ideal size: Males -- 29 inches tall at the shoulder and 110 to 150 pounds; Females -- 27 inches tall at the shoulder and 80-120 pounds.
AKC Meet the Breeds is a registered trademark of the American Kennel Club, Inc.