This breed has its origin in Turkey where they have been used as guardian dogs for property and livestock. The Anatolian Shepherd dog is an ancient breed that is more than 6000 years old. These dogs were famous for their capability of making independent decisions, and also for their ability to survive in harsh climates. This was required for the nomadic lifestyle they were a part of. The Anatolian Shepherd dog is regarded as the national emblem of Turkey.
This breed is a very devoted breed that is also commonly used as guardian dogs. The Anatolian Shepherd dog is very intelligent and highly trainable. They pick up new skills fairly easy, but not appropriate for beginners. The Anatolian Shepherd dog will require an owner that is dominant and able to control the dog. These dogs are very calm, courageous and independent – they are also not aggressive but can be a bit wary of strangers. Seeing that this breed is a natural guarding dog, they can become very possessive. The Anatolian Shepherd dog is also very tough on it self, and can at times be very stubborn. It is important that these dogs should be socialised properly – they are also slow in reaching maturity.
The Anatolian Shepherd dog doesn’t have high grooming needs, and requires a thorough brushing about twice a year when they are shedding. During the rest of the year they do not require a lot of attention. The Anatolian Shepherd only shed heavily on a seasonal basis.
The Anatolian Shepherd is requires an owner with some previous dog ownership experience. The owners should be dominant and take control in training sessions. The best results will be achieved when the training is firm, consistent, and done with a loving approach. Training should be started when these dogs are still young as it is difficult to correct them later on as they are too strong and big. These dogs should be socialised from early on, and should also have basis obedience training. You will find that these dogs will not respond positively toward rough or heavy-handed training methods. The training environment should be one that is fair, firm and consistent.
The Anatolian Shepherd dog usually has a low immunity, and can take a bit longer to develop than some of the other breeds. Some medical conditions that potential owners should be aware of include hip dysplasia, sensitivity to Anaesthesia, inversion of the eyelids and hypothyroidism.