Caucasian Mountain Shepherd Facts

Read these interesting Caucasian Shepherd facts that will feed your curiosity.

Big, fluffy, and beautiful are words that describe Caucasian Shepherds perfectly. Contrary to popular belief, if trained properly these dogs can turn out to be gentle giants that watch over your family fiercely. They are, however, known for sometimes developing a stubborn and aggressive streak if not socialized properly. Now, as adorable as Caucasian Mountain Shepherd puppies are, angry adults can be very hard to handle and are sometimes even dangerous. This is a reason why they are not recommended for first-time pet owners, or for families with small children. Caucasian Shepherds are a low energy dog who are not known for their running prowess, even though they have been successfully chasing away wolves and bears for centuries. This breed is also a little more susceptible to diseases than most other breeds, so owners need to keep an eye on their health. If cared for properly, they can live as long as ten to 12 years.

If you like reading articles about different dog breeds, please check out our Afghan hound and Russian bear dog facts.

Caucasian Mountain Shepherd

Fact File

What do they prey on?

Meat, vegetables and protein-rich foods

What do they eat?


Average litter size?

5-10 puppies

How much do they weigh?

80-220 lb (50-52 kg)

How long are they?


How tall are they?

26-30 in (67-75 cm)

What do they look like?

Gray, white, yellow, black, brown, and cream

Skin Type


What are their main threats?


What is their conservation status?

Not Listed

Where you'll find them

Steppe and mountain regions


Azerbaijan, Georgia, Dagestan and Armenia





Scientific Name

Canis lupus familiaris





Caucasian Mountain Shepherd Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a Caucasian Mountain Shepherd?

Caucasian Shepherd dogs are a type of guard dog that are native to the Caucasus mountains near Southern Russia. They are a large dog breed that tend to be strong-willed and family-friendly. In fact, they can turn out to be very loving and gentle if raised properly with the right amount of training from puppyhood. Caucasian Shepherd dogs are a highly intelligent animal who have been known to guard livestock for centuries, keeping wolves and bears away. Yet, when trained properly they can even become therapy dogs.

What class of animal does a Caucasian Mountain Shepherd belong to?

Like all other dog breeds, Caucasian Shepherd dogs belong to the class of mammals. This means that they give birth to live puppies instead of laying eggs. Caucasian Shepherds tend to be highly protective of their family and can become quite aggressive if they think that their family is under threat. As they are also known as the Caucasian mountain dog, due to their habitat, they are long-coated animals that can deal with the cold weather of the mountain region very well.

How many Caucasian Mountain Shepherds are there in the world?

It is hard to say just how many of these strong-willed dogs there are in the world, but they are not listed as an endangered species as of now, so it is safe to say that their population is stable and thriving. Owners have to constantly keep a check on their health issues though, as there are quite a number of diseases that this dog breed is susceptible to and these can cut their life expectancy short. This dog breed from the Caucasus mountains was developed to be used as a guard dog, which is why their energy levels tend to increase at night and decrease during the day. To prevent this, owners have to train them properly from the time they are puppies. Exercising is also a key part of keeping their health problems at bay as they can develop bloat.

Where does a Caucasian Mountain Shepherd live?

Caucasian Shepherds inhabit the Caucasus mountain and steppe grassland region spanning the countries of Armenia, Dagestan, Azerbaijan and Georgia.

What is a Caucasian Mountain Shepherd's habitat?

Unlike most other breeds, Caucasian Mountain Shepherd dogs were specifically bred for guarding livestock. As a result, these dogs inhabit the farmlands around the mountain region, as well as the wilderness of the mountains. They have also been used by the USSR government as patrol dogs a few decades ago.

Who do Caucasian Mountain Shepherds live with?

Caucasian Shepherd dogs can adapt to most living situations, but they prefer to live with members of their own kind around them. This dog breed can make very loving family dogs, but owners need to train them properly from the time they are puppies. Otherwise, they can develop an aggressive streak if they are not socialized properly, and at worst, it can be a problem to keep them around small children, other animals, or visitors.

How long does a Caucasian Mountain Shepherd live?

Like most other dog breeds, Caucasian Shepherd dogs tend to live between ten to 12 years on average. Owners have to be very mindful of their health issues as these dogs tend to be more susceptible to health problems than other dog breeds are. So, if owners are not careful the life expectancy of their cherished companion can be cut short. As Caucasian mountain dogs come from a very specific temperature range, they do not do well in extreme heat. Make sure to keep them in a specific temperature zone, so that this cherished guard dog can live a long and healthy life.

How do they reproduce?

Like all dogs, Caucasian Shepherd dogs are seasonal breeders. They are known to breed only once a year, as is the norm for most giant dogs. The litter size of Caucasian mountain dogs is about five to ten puppies. It is, however, a good idea to get Caucasian Shepherd dogs spayed or neutered as this can help them to avoid specific cancers and other health troubles in the future. This breed is a little more susceptible to diseases than the average dog breed, so it is a good idea to keep a check on their regular behavior. If there is a problem with the health of your dog, chances are you will be able to notice it if you are mindful of their regular habits.

What is their conservation status?

Caucasian mountain dogs are not listed on the IUCN red list of threatened animals, so it would be safe to say that their population is thriving in their natural habitat, as well as around the world where they are bred for various purposes. Caucasus covers a huge mountain range, and as a result, different types of this dog breed were developed. The most notable difference is found in their coat lengths as well as color. Almost all of these dogs are known for heavy shedding though, so it is necessary to brush their fur every so often.

Caucasian Mountain Shepherd Fun Facts

What do Caucasian Mountain Shepherds look like?

In appearance, Caucasian mountain dogs look a lot like Tibetan mastiffs, which is possibly why they were thought to have descended from them. This breed is known for its variations in the length and color of the fur coat. The main reason for this is that the Caucasus mountains are a huge range and the coat of this breed developed according to their needs. Caucasian Shepherd dogs can have both short and long coats of fur. These coats protect this breed from the harsh winters of their natural habitat. The color of their fur also varies tremendously in this shepherd breed. Caucasian mountain dogs can come in colors of gray, white, black, yellow or cream as well as silver and brown. They have a big, round face which is sometimes black in color, earning them the name of Caucasian Shepherd bear dogs. Other names that this breed have been called are Caucasian Shepherd mountain dog, Caucasian sheepdog and Caucasian ovcharka.

Caucasian Shepherd dogs have an incredible history.

How cute are they?

Caucasian Shepherds are very cute. With their fluffy fur coat and adorable grumpy looks on their faces they look a lot like the Tibetan mastiffs. In fact, initially, they were thought to have descended from the latter breed, but that theory did not gain much ground. But, as adorable and loving as these dogs are, owners have to train them from puppyhood so they do not develop an aggressive streak. Angry Caucasian Mountain Shepherds are not only hard to handle, but they can also be quite frightening.

How do they communicate?

Caucasian Shepherd dogs mostly communicate through vocalizations and body language. They use barks and howls to communicate most things, and if trained properly they can even use certain gestures to alert you to dangers as well as their general mood. The key to keeping Caucasian mountain dogs content and healthy is to socialize them from puppyhood and train them to exercise. Although these long-coated dogs have a low energy level, they are independent and strong-willed. So if you are thinking of adopting a Caucasian ovcharka, make sure to lead them with a confident and adamant front, otherwise they can be pretty hard to handle. This is why they are not really recommended for first-time pet owners.

How big is a Caucasian Mountain Shepherd?

There is very little sexual dimorphism noticed in this breed. Female Caucasian mountain dogs tend to grow as tall as 25-28 in (63-71 cm) while male Caucasian mountain dogs can grow up to 26-30 in (67-75 cm) tall. Interestingly, Caucasian ovcharkas are about the same height as a Thomson's Gazelle.

How fast can a Caucasian Mountain Shepherd run?

It is hard to gauge how fast a Caucasian Shepherd dog can run, but the average speed is thought to be somewhere between 22-24 mph (35-38 kmph). They are not particularly fast runners, but as they were developed as guard dogs for livestock, they have been chasing wolves and bears for centuries by using their giant size and loud barks. This is possibly a reason why Caucasian Shepherd dogs are also known by Caucasian ovcharka and Caucasian sheepdog.

How much does a Caucasian Mountain Dog weigh?

Caucasian mountain dogs can weigh anywhere between 80-220 lb (50-52 kg). The females tend to be a little bit lighter than males, while the males tend to stand at the higher end of the spectrum.

What are the male and female names of the species?

As is common for any dog, male Caucasian Shepherd dogs are called dogs while female Caucasian Shepherd dogs are called bitches. There is very little sexual dimorphism noticed in this breed of dogs. The females, however, tend to be a little smaller in size than the males.

What would you call a baby Caucasian Mountain Shepherd?

A baby Caucasian ovcharka is called a puppy, like all other dogs around the world. Caucasian Shepherd dogs only breed once per year, like any giant breed of dog, and they are known for giving birth to around five to ten puppies per litter. The pups will have to be trained properly, otherwise they can become pretty hard to handle as they mature. If their owners do not lead them with a confident and adamant front they can develop a stubborn streak and could become really troublesome.

What do they eat?

Caucasian mountain dogs can potentially develop obesity if their feeding is not kept in check. The best thing owners can do for their Caucasian mountain dog is to get a specific amount of food prescribed by their veterinarian in order to make sure that they are not being overfed. The amount of food that they need will change with their age and if any medical issues arise. As for their diet, Caucasian Shepherd dogs are omnivores and they need to have protein-rich food and vegetables to ensure they get a balance of nutrients. Large Caucasian Shepherd dogs can eat as much as six cups of dog food per day on average, but the amount will vary with their size and weight. They also need to drink a lot of water, so make sure to change their water bowls regularly. If owners decide to go on a trek with their adorable Caucasian ovcharkas, they need to make sure to provide them with water at regular intervals.

Are they hypoallergenic?

No, Caucasian Shepherd dogs are not hypoallergenic. Although this breed is at a higher risk of contracting diseases, if they are raised with the proper diet and exercise recommended for them, Caucasian mountain dogs can turn out to live happy and healthy lives. To prevent them from developing diseases their owners can start by brushing out their fur regularly, as this will keep a lot of problems at bay. It will also alert their owners to any kind of parasitic build-up on their skin, and help them to stay healthy. Brushing their teeth regularly, and keeping an eye on their general health and behavior is also essential.

Would they make a good pet?

Caucasian Shepherd dogs are giants among most dog breeds. With their large body and fluffy, thick coat that protects them from the harsh winters of the mountain range, they appear as very large dogs. Caucasian mountain dogs were originally developed to guard livestock for farmers. This is a reason why this breed is more active at night while lazing around during the day. This is a habit that they will need training to grow out of. If Caucasian Shepherd puppies aren't socialized properly, they can develop a serious stubborn streak and become aggressive. This stubborn streak can cause problems in homes with small children.

They can also develop quite a few kinds of health troubles if they are not exercised properly. The best way to go about this is to keep a watch on their regular behavior, as that will clue you in if they have problems. So, in short, Caucasian Shepherd dogs are not really a good choice if you are a first-time pet owner. This is because they need an experienced handler who can keep their impulses in check. They also need a good amount of training and exercise, and as Caucasian ovcharkas are a large dog, they are not suitable for apartment living. However, with socializing, training, and exercise, Caucasian ovcharka can become an extremely lovable and gentle family dog who will protect your family fiercely while providing you with unconditional love and companionship.

Did you know...

They are one of the oldest dog breeds to exist on earth and have been known to be around for more than 2,000 years.

Proof of the existence of the Caucasian Shepherd has been found dating back to the Mesopotamian era. How cool is that!

Are Caucasian Shepherds good family dogs?

Contrary to popular belief, Caucasian Shepherds make amazingly gentle and loving family dogs. The key is to socialize and train them properly when they are puppies. While this breed can develop an aggressive and stubborn streak if not handled properly, under specific care they can thrive and turn out to be perfect lifelong companions who provide their families with unconditional love. In some cases, Caucasian Shepherds have been known to become therapy dogs.

How much food do Caucasian Mountain Shepherds eat?

This breed runs a higher risk of becoming obese than most other breeds due to their giant size. So, if their eating habits are not checked, they can eat more than required and cause serious health problems for themselves. The best thing you can do for your Caucasian Shepherd is to get a specific amount of food recommended by their veterinarian in accordance with your dogs needs. The amount, however, will change as the puppy grows and if any medical condition arises. On average, large Caucasian Shepherds can eat about six cups of dog food per day. They also need a lot of water, so remember to keep changing their water bowls regularly.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other mammals including dogo Argentino, or Yorkipoo.

You can even occupy yourself at home by drawing one of our German Shepherd coloring pages.



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