Serra da Estrela Dog

The Serra da Estrela Dog is often used in his country mountains to follow and sometimes protect the herds. He is appreciated by the authorities as a police and security dog, search dog for explosives or drugs, and guard dog for all situations. But he is also an excellent companion dog. He is a multifaceted dog to be discovered.

Height 62 to 72 cm
Weight 30 to 50 kg
Life expectancy 10 to 12 years
Home country Portugal

Quick Overview of the Serra da Estrela Dog


  • Awakened and expressive
  • Calm and balanced
  • Quite obedient by nature
  • Affectionate with his family


  • Rustic and compact build
  • Very well proportioned
  • Hairy
  • Small triangular ears


  • Possible hip dysplasia
  • Generally healthy
  • Rarely ill

Temperament of the Serra da Estrela Dog

Awake, expressive, calm and balanced, this large-sized dog is gentle with his family and hard on those who threaten them, either animals or humans.

His character is well asserted and requires a good and firm hand. However, he is obedient by nature, so his upbringing does not usually cause any issues.

This hound has a sympathetic, friendly and very gentle manner with all members of his family. He is compatible even with young children.

He makes an excellent playmate for the little ones. He is patient and takes good care of them.

He is kind and gentle with his own but very reserved with strangers and as protector and guardian, he has no problem pushing them away when facing potential danger.

However, he is never unnecessarily aggressive. He prefers to dissuade rather than attack. Even though he is gentle, he can become threatening if the intruder forces him to do so.

The Serra da Estrela Dog is gentle and affectionate, but his strong temperament requires appropriate training at a very early age.

The master must be able to live up to his dog's character and must impose himself as the head of the household. Generally, his education is fairly easy because he is naturally receptive.

This hound likes exercise and the great outdoors and can live in all conditions without any problems. He does not mind cold and heat and his temperament allows him to live indoors as well as outdoors. All types of owners are suitable.

chien de la serra da estrelada personnalité

Breed Appearance

serra da estrelada dog

This mastiff-type hound is morphologically optimal. His build is hardy, compact and very well proportioned.

This beautiful canine specimen has a harmonious silhouette showing his beautiful guardian qualities and friendly character towards humans.


Between 65 and 72 cm (25.59 to 28.35 inches) for the male
Between 62 and 68 cm (24.41 to 26.77 inches) for the female


Between 40 and 50 kg (88.18 to 110.23 pounds) for the male
Between 30 and 40 kg (66.14 to 88.18 pounds) for the female


The colors of his coat range from red to yellow, whether or not single-colored.


The strong hair of his coat is a little coarse but not excessively hard. It is either smooth or slightly wavy, but very abundant.

The Serra da Estrela Dog may have long or short hair.


His head is slightly rounded and his stop not very pronounced. His oval dark amber eyes are medium size.

His small ears are triangular, drooping and well pressed against the head while inclined backwards.

His nose is generally darker than the coat color. His long tail almost reaches the hock when he is standing.

According to the FCI breeds nomenclature, this breed belongs to group 2, section 2 and is #173

Health of the Serra da Estrela Dog

Like most large dogs, he can sometimes suffer from hip dysplasia but it is not a pathology directly related to the breed because not all specimens are affected.

The Serra da Estrela Dog is rarely ill. This beautiful large specimen also enjoys an appreciable life expectancy for a dog of his size.


His thick fur requires regular and sustained maintenance. It must be brushed as often as possible to maintain his abundant coat in good health.

No further maintenance is required.

History of this breed

Since the dawn of time, in the Serra da Estrela region in Portugal, this beautiful large canine specimen, of the same name as his region, was found.

He has been around for so long that his early origins are somewhat lost in history. However, it is very likely that he comes from one of the oldest breeds on the Iberian Peninsula.

This superb hound can be found in the first foothills of the mountains up to the highest altitudes, and in all seasons.

This great dog has long been used to follow and protect mountain herds from wild animals and cattle thieves.

This hound received his first standard in 1966 and entered France in 1986. Many specimens can still be found in the mountains as well as in many other places in the country.

He is the ideal shepherd's companion and a faithful cattle herder. He is also very appreciated in his country for guarding farms and houses. He can even act as a draught dog and is ideal for personal protection.

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