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    South Russian Ovcharka |Ukraine , Russia|

    South Russian Ovcharka |Ukraine , Russia|

    The South Russian Ovcharka is a large guardian breed, and its instinct to protect is extremely strong. These dogs will identify who their families are (including other family pets) and will defend them rigorously against any perceived threat. They are extremely independent thinkers, as are most livestock guardians, and will make their own decisions. They need excellent obedience training and consistent socialization to fit into family life. The South Russian Ovcharka makes a wonderful guard dog and family companion, but is not suitable for firsttime dog owners.

    History

    One of three Russian Ovcharka breeds—ovcharka means “sheepdog”—South Russian Ovcharkas are most associated with the Crimea in the Ukraine and specifically with the Askania Nova sheep-farming area. Historically these dogs accompanied vast flocks that traveled from Spain to the Ukraine. The sheep were driven on foot over land, protected along the way by shaggy European sheepdog breeds. Once they arrived in Askania Nova, sometimes two years later, the dogs crossed with local stock like the Komondor, Caucasian Ovcharka, and Crimean Greyhound, giving rise eventually to the modern South Russian Ovcharka. Four or five of the dogs were used to protect 1,000 sheep, and by the nineteenth century, they were widespread in the area. The South Russian Ovcharka has been bred for its guarding skills and on occasion aggression, although this is now a disqualification on the breed standard. It takes its duties very seriously and is a superb guard dog.

    Puppies should be placed in their new homes when they are between eight and ten weeks old and socialization should start immediately. These puppies need consistent training and socialization, but they should not be overexercised.

    South Russian Ovcharka |Ukraine , Russia| South Russian Ovcharka |Ukraine , Russia| South Russian Ovcharka |Ukraine , Russia| South Russian Ovcharka |Ukraine , Russia| South Russian Ovcharka |Ukraine , Russia|
    From Dogs Unleashed, Copyright by Tamsin Pickeral, licensed through ContentOro, Inc and used by arrangement with Thunder Bay Press

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