Kangal Shepherd Dog

Description Kangal Shepherd Dog

Independent, courageous, frugal
The Kangal is a livestock guardian dog of imposing size. His country of origin is Turkey. The Kangal is a very old breed of dog that has guarded the flocks of sheep in the mountainous regions of Turkey for many generations. The guard and protective instinct of animals is deeply anchored in their genes. A Kangal needs a confident owner who knows how to deal with the breed-related characteristics.FCI Group: Pinscher – Schnauzer – Molosser – Swiss Mountain Dogs

  • Size: Large
  • Weight: 40-60kg
  • Life expectancy: 13-15 years
  • Coat Type: Medium Hair
  • Colours: light brown, light grey

Character Kangal Shepherd Dog

The Kangal shepherd dog was recognized as a breed by the FCI, the canine umbrella organization, and assigned to Group 2 (Pinscher and Schnauzer, Molosser and Swiss Mountain Dogs).
The Kangal is a dog of impressive size. When fully grown, bitches reach a height at the withers of about 65-73 cm. The males are a remarkable 72-78 cm. Females weigh between 40 and 50 kilograms and males between 48 and 60 kilograms.

Despite its large and imposing stature, the Kangal is muscular, agile, and has amazing stamina. He has dense fur with an undercoat. Depending on the season and keeping conditions, the coat length is three to seven centimeters. According to the official breed standard, the dogs are solid color, with most specimens being light brown to light grey.
The mask drawing of the head is characteristic of the Kangal.

Because of these black markings on the muzzle and ears, the original Turkish name is Karabaş. That means nothing other than Schwarzkopf.
Another typical feature of this breed is the tail curled over the back. The eyes are dark and almond shaped.
The nature of the Kangal Shepherd Dog is independent, self-confident, courageous and frugal.

Its outstanding characteristics include a strong protective instinct and pronounced territorial behavior. He is reserved to suspicious of strangers.
Representatives of this dog breed radiate calm and serenity. But that can change abruptly if the dog, which until then seemed to be dozing, recognizes a threat to its pack. He never attacks immediately, he threatens extensively and only when the supposed threat does not react by retreating does he attack.

If you decide to get a Kangal, you should attach great importance to good socialization. When training, it is advisable to seek support from professional dog trainers who are experienced in training livestock guardian dogs.

Diet Kangal Shepherd Dog

In terms of diet, the Kangal is extremely undemanding. As herd guard dogs in the mountains of Anatolia, the animals usually had a meager supply of food. Considering their size, they require surprisingly little food. Over a long period of time they have developed into a type of dog that has adapted to this meager diet and is able to meet its energy needs with a minimal supply of nutrients.
An oversupply of animal proteins can sometimes lead to allergic reactions.


Optimally adapted to the original living conditions, the Kangal is extremely weather-resistant. This original breed loves to be outdoors in wind and weather and has an easy-care coat. Only during the change of coat can you achieve that less dog hair is distributed in the house by thorough brushing.


The roots of the Kangal Shepherd Dogs are believed to go back to the livestock guardian dogs of the first nomads who roamed Central Asia and Anatolia thousands of years ago. Even then, the dogs were used for those tasks that still determine their breed-typical characteristics today. They lived together with the animals of the nomads in the herd to protect them from invading predators.
The dog, originally called Karabash (black head), owes the name Kangal to an influential, noble family. These nobles began breeding the breed professionally at a very early age.

This dog performed the task entrusted to him, which consisted of guarding the flocks of sheep, completely independently. He was often separated from people for long periods of time. This results in its independent nature.
The Kangal is a loyal and sensitive dog towards familiar people. It is important to have an empathetic yet consistent upbringing so that independent behavior does not become a problem.

Kangal Shepherd Dog Accessories

First and foremost, the Kangal Shepherd Dog needs space and, if possible, a property that it can guard. A Kangal is not the right choice for cramped living conditions.
When it comes to accessories, due to the size and strength of the dog, care must be taken to ensure that the collar and leash or harness are matched to the strength ratios. Being on a leash is extremely important for dogs of this size.

7.9Expert Score
Breed characteristics

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