The Anatolian Shepherd Dog is a quiet, cool-headed, temperate yet instinctively watchful dog. He is neither shy nor aggressive. When he is provoked, he will preferrably turn his head or stand and leave. He never attacks as the first unless he himself has been attacked. He always first threatens by growling. For centuries he has been used as a fighting and hunting dog, nowadays he is used as a sheepdog as well as a guardian.
Generally he becomes adult at the age of 18 up to 30 months; he reaches full maturity at the age of 4 years.
The Anatolian Shepherd Dog is a tall, strong, mightly built, relentless, skillful and very fast. He is handsome, impressive and not possible to oversee. It is possible to recognize him from the distance according to the remarkable harmonious, noble „lion“walk and a high coiled tail. His coat is medially long, double and in winter it is very dense, which protects him against getting frostbitten, in summer against sunburn and getting bitten by the predators. The standard permits all the colours.
On the market there recently appear robust dogs according to the equation „Turkish dog = big and courageous“, who are attractive yet do not correspond to the prototype of the shepherd dog. i.e. a fast and strong individual able to guard the flock against an intruder. Apart from that, loading of the joints grows in a direct proportionality to the robustness and difficulties with the locomotive organs may occur.
A courageous, good-tempered dog without any trace of aggressiveness, very intelligent and quick to learn. Proud, independent and self-confident. He can be kind and snuggling, however he may also decide not to obey. He is very territorial, he takes almost all familiar to him surrounding as his own and then he can hold on the uphill place watching and guarding for hours.
Anatolian and people
They are very loving and loyal animals, particularly to women and children, yet very proprietary towards their families and home. Adult dogs are stand-offish to strange people. Basic training of obedience will make the life with such a strong dog as Anatolian easier; in order to make him a family companion and pet, it is necessary to train and socialize him from an early age, he must know where his place is. His tendency towards independence requires firm management and discipline from a very early age.
Anatolian and animals
He will get along with other animals very well if he has been taught it since a very young age and at the same time he is provided his own space. He can sometimes be aggressive towards strange animals, e.g. stray cats.
Outside or in a flat?
He is a great compromise between a respected guarding dog and a home pet, however we don´t recommend him for life only in flats. On the one hand he has a very dense coat, which moults twice a year really a lot, and on the other hand it is a very active working breed which needs a lot of motion. He likes running a lot and he is able to move at a high speed; as a shepherd dog he doesn´t mind tiredness or bad weather – he likes living outside all the year round, thanks to origin he is able to resist extreme heat and cold. He likes water; however he gets to like swimming rather exceptionally.
House and garden
The Anatolian Shepherd Dog has been bred to the independence and responsibility for guarding the flock without human help. During the journeys with the flock he learnt to decide independently. In case of attack he left the flock if it was necessary to repel an attacking predator. In practice it means that he likes wandering and must be bred in well-fenced areas.
He loves winter and basking in the winter sun, in summer he hides out from the heat. Female shepherd dogs naturally rake holes for their puppies, seek lying on the fresh clay. As a puppy Ajlin used to make cooling “hare burrows” in the clay. Since we did not have treated terrain in the garden, we could afford it and we watched how they managed to rake a 170 cm deep hole in the clay baulk. One of them raked and the other watched. When the first could not go on, the othe took turns. Then the burrow slided down. Now they are already adult and they don´t rake. Moreover, we have grass everywhere, which doesn´t attract them at all. We fenced the beds for the time being.