This is a tall dog although of mastiff type. The largest males will measure as much as 81 centimetres (32 inches) and weigh in the true heavyweight range. Prized by the shepherds of his native Turkey for his faithful devotion to his role as a flock-guard, he must present an awesome sight to marauders, whether wolves or men. Despite his purpose in life, he can be a remarkably gentle animal in firm hands.
The breed descends directly from the ancient mastiff and flock-guarding dogs of the Middle East and has a strong scenting power. Tough and long lived, he often works until well into old age.
His relatively short, thick coat is not difficult to keep clean, and in spite of his size he is remarkably agile. A breed that requires sensible exercise and that stands up to variations of weather well.
Vulnerable Native Breed
How much exercise?
More than 2 hours per day
Length of coat
How much grooming?
More than once a week
Town or Country
Type of home
Minimum Garden Size
Over 10 Years
* If you are asthmatic or have an allergy, you should consult your medical advisor before considering obtaining a dog. More information can also be found on
the Kennel Club website
The Pastoral Breed Group
The Pastoral Group consists of herding dogs that are associated with working cattle, sheep, reindeer and other cloven footed animals.
Usually this type of dog has a weatherproof double coat to protect it from the elements when working in severe conditions. Breeds such as the Collie family, Old English Sheepdogs and Samoyeds who have been herding reindeer for centuries are but a few included in this group.