Monday, August 26, 2013

Rare Breed Monday: Kuvasz

I have been away at BarkWorld. Ironically, attending blogger conferences always make me fall behind on my blogs... My wonderful internet-friend Emma the GBGV stepped up to rescue me: here she is with a post about the Kuvasz! Thank you Emma! =D

The Kuvasz 

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The Kuvasz is a highly intelligent, strong minded, independent Hungarian guard dog, considered a working dog breed. These dogs were originally bred to guard livestock without human direction - a breed that thinks for itself. They were most often used to guard flocks of sheep and do look a bit like sheep with the smaller head and large, fluffy white body. The Kuvasz is a high energy breed that needs either a job or lots of exercise. 

Because the Kuvasz was bred to work independently, they are a bit difficult to teach, and they do need to be taught, not trained. A person that has some training experience and is authoritative is a must. Although they are extremely brave and fearless, they are quite sensitive, so you need to be careful not to use harsh methods with these dogs. If they are going to be a family dog, early socialization is key. They need to learn right away to accept other humans, otherwise they will not let anyone near you or your home.

As a young puppy, the working Kuvasz would be introduced to, and live with the livestock he is to guard in order to create a strong bond. Once they have formed a bond, they will do everything possible to protect their livestock “family”, including running off bears, wolves, coyotes, and any other threats. On the other hand, they can be extremely gentle helping newborn livestock find their mother, or they will help a ewe deliver its lambs. The Kuvasz is able to decide on its own what temperament is needed in each situation. Because of this independent thinking ability, they can be very frustrating dogs as they decide on their own what to do, don’t necessarily do what they are told to do by their handler.

Kuvasz are a large breed ranging from 70-115 pounds. If the dog is going to be a family pet, be aware ahead of time that they shed their white fur 24/7/365. The more you brush, the more they shed. They do have self-cleaning fur, so bathing should not be minimal as it strips important oils which will destroy the self-cleaning properties of the fur. Their coats can be straight or curly but are always white and often times they have a lot of black skin under all that fur. Always keep in mind that the people handling the dog must be in control or the Kuvasz will gladly do as it pleases. They are a very loyal, beautiful and wonderful breed, but also a challenging breed. If you want an obedient dog, or a dog that is easy to train, the Kuvasz would not be a good fit.


  1. I've heard of these before. They kind of remind me of Pyrenese Mountain Dogs.

    1. True. Wonder if they're related somehow...

      I laughed when I read "the Kuvasz will gladly do as it pleases" - sounds like a Border Collie but bigger! XD