Anatolian Shepherd Dog

Karabash, Turkish Watchdog

This large, beautiful dog is used as companion, guarding, herding, and also as therapeutic dog. When properly trained, the Anatolian Shepherd Dog does a wonderful job with sick people and people that have a physical or mental disability. This great canine specimen provides extraordinary help in retirement homes, hospitals and even in prison environment, where he is highly appreciated. The Anatolian Shepherd Dog can perform many functions as long as he is guided by a firm but gentle hand.

Height 71 to 81 cm
Weight 45 to 70 kg
Life expectancy 10 to 12 years
Hair Loss Low
Excercise Need Medium
Home country Turkey

Quick Overview of the Anatolian Shepherd Dog


  • Unparalleled courage
  • Gentle and loving
  • Stubborn
  • Never unnecessarily aggressive


  • Very big size
  • Large and balanced
  • Beautifully built and strong silhouette
  • Powerful look


  • Rarely ill
  • Very robust
  • Generally in excellent health
  • No particular pathology

Temperament of the Anatolian Shepherd Dog

Recognized as the most powerful dog on the planet, the Anatolian Shepherd Dog never hesitates. His courage is equal to his size and his fighting skills are immense. Although he is generally gentle and affectionate, he is also strong and stubborn.

His upbringing must be firm and even authoritative. As he is capable of defeating a lion, it is preferable to train him properly so that he can control himself if needed.

Although he is never unnecessarily aggressive, he is rather distrustful of strangers.

His distrust of strangers should not be exacerbated because his great natural strength can easily become a weapon if used by the wrong hands.

berger d'anatolie personnalité

Breed Appearance

Anatolian shepherd

The Anatolian Shepherd Dog is powerful, very tall and well balanced. His beautifully built and strong silhouette reflects all the animal's power. His vigorous gait leaves the impression of a strong and courageous dog.


Between 74 and 81 cm (29.13 to 31.89 inches) for the male
Between 71 and 79 cm (27.95 to 31.10 inches) for the female


Between 55 and 70 kg (121.25 to 154.32 pounds) for the male
Between 45 and 60 kg (99.21 to 132.28 pounds) for the female


All colors are allowed for his dress.


His semi long or short coat is dense and its length varies according to the climate where he lives. He also has a very thick undercoat.


His strong head is large. His small eyes are well sunken and are rather disproportionate to the head. His medium size ears are triangular and rounded at the tips. They are erect when he is attentive and fall back when he is at rest. His nose is black or brown as the case may be. His tail is low at rest. It is generally erect upwards with the tip slightly curved over the back when the dog is on the lookout, especially in males.

According to the FCI breeds nomenclature, this breed belongs to group 2, section 2 and is #331

Characteristics of the Anatolian Shepherd Dog

Does this dog suit your lifestyle?

Every dog breed has its own characteristics. However, the actual character of a dog can vary from one to another within the same breed.

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Life in an apartment
Good first dog
Tolerates solitude
Tolerates cold weather
Tolerates hot weather
Friendly with children
Friendly with strangers
Friendly with other animals
Hair loss
Drooling level
Easy to care for
Robust health
Easy to train
Tendency to bark
Tendency to nibble
Instinct to hunt
Adventurous spirit
Energy level
Level of intensity
Need for exercise

Price and monthly budget

Price you can expect to pay for a Anatolian Shepherd Dog puppy: between 1000 € / $ 1 / £1 and 1400 € / $ 1 / £1
These prices are indicative and may vary from breeder to breeder
Average monthly budget for a Anatolian Shepherd Dog: 160 € / $ 1 / £1
The monthly budget includes the average expenses for food and hygiene products (grooming, anti-parasite...)

Tips About this breed

Originally used to guard sheep, the Anatolian Shepherd Dog adapts to all situations. Still guarding sheep today, he is highly appreciated as a companion or guardian of the family and their personal belongings.

This beautiful big dog can become everyone's friend but his education must be done at an early age and very firm. The master must remain so at all times. Intelligent and independent, he is nevertheless very docile when his education is done properly. He is gentle and affectionate towards his family and will protect them against all.

He can live outdoors as well as indoors. Despite his large size, it is very easy for him to live in the comfort of his own home. He is compatible with everyone, big and small.

Health of the Anatolian Shepherd Dog

Rarely sick, very robust, this large, beautiful dog usually enjoys excellent health. No particular pathology affects the breed and his life expectancy is nevertheless appreciable.


A good regular brushing is enough. No special maintenance is necessary in his case.

History of this breed

This very old breed would have been used for the first time in the 17th century. An encounter at the palace of the Ottoman Sultan Murat IV, between the Sultan's fetish lion and the Anatolian Shepherd was said to have happened between 1623 and 1640.

The two animals would have engaged in a fierce fight and the Sultan, dumbfounded by the dog's performance, insisted that he be immediately added to the imperial army. Evliya Çelebi, a Turkish historian mentioned that "dogs as strong as lions were used by the Sultan's elite troops as early as the 17th century".

The Anatolian Shepherd Dog is said to have undergone no major changes during the century and was greatly appreciated thereafter to ensure the safety of the people and aristocrats of the Ottoman Empire.

The breed would have subsequently evolved to meet various circumstances and climates. The nomadic populations of the time required the dogs to perform the work of herdsmen and property guardians.

Travelling great distances, the dog evolved with the various climates he encountered. Being outside in all weathers, he acclimatized to the different weather conditions encountered on the Central Plateau of Anatolia alongside the nomadic peoples of the time.

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