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Akbash is a breed of livestock guardian dogs that originated in Turkey. The breed dates back to at least the 6th century and has been used by shepherds throughout the centuries for its protective nature, strength, and loyalty.

It is not known exactly when or how Akbash was first developed, but it is believed to be descended from ancient mastiff-type breeds.

This article will explore the origin of this distinctive breed and examine its characteristics, temperament, uses, and health issues.

The Akbash dog’s most distinguishing physical feature is its white coat which can vary from pure white to cream or yellowish shades. It usually stands between 28–34 inches tall at the shoulder and weighs up to 140 pounds with males typically being larger than females.

Its long double coat provides protection against extreme temperatures as well as predators such as wolves who might try to attack flocks of sheep or goats under its care.

Origin Of The Akbash Breed

The Akbash is a livestock guardian dog, originally developed for use in Turkey. It has its historical roots in Anatolia – the Asian part of modern-day Turkey – where it was bred from ancient Turkish farm dogs. These early ancestors were used to guard flocks on mountain pastures and often referred to as ‘Kangal’ or ‘Karabash’, meaning ‘black head’ in Turkish.

In 1985, an international standard for the Akbash breed was set by the Turkish Kennel Club based upon qualities such as size, colouration, coat texture and temperament. Since then, breeding standards have been established according to these same criteria with further emphasis being placed on strong protection instincts and guarding abilities while remaining gentle towards humans.

The American Kennel Club officially recognized the breed in 1997 and since then, many other kennels around the world have followed suit. Signs of their success can be found today all over North America, Europe and Australia.

Physical Characteristics

The Akbash breed is particularly known for their white coats and gentle temperament. Their thick fur helps them to withstand cold temperatures; they are a working dog that has adapted to living in tough conditions, often outdoors. They have been bred since antiquity as guardians of livestock, primarily sheep or goats, due to their herding instinct.

Akbash dogs possess many desirable traits:

  • Intelligence/Trainerability:
  • They learn quickly and respond well to commands when trained with positive reinforcement techniques.
  • With proper socialization from an early age, these canines can become very loyal family members.
  • Health:
  • Generally healthy, the Akbash enjoys a long life expectancy if given good nutrition and exercise.
  • Known health issues include hip dysplasia and eye diseases such as progressive retinal atrophy (PRA).
  • Temperament:
  • These animals tend to be calm but wary around strangers and protective of their home and people they know well.
  • A properly raised Akbash will show devotion towards its owner while remaining alert at all times.

Temperament And Personality

The Akbash is a large, white flock guardian that originated in Turkey. It has a calm, patient disposition and an independent nature. An observant breed, they are loyal to their people but tend to be suspicious of strangers – making them excellent watchdogs.

Akbash dogs have some special requirements when it comes to socialization needs and exercise requirements. They need early socialization with other animals as puppies so they don’t become overly protective or fearful later on in life. Additionally, these dogs require regular physical and mental stimulation like long walks and agility training sessions for optimal health and well-being.Socialization NeedsExercise Requirements
Early socialization with other animalsLong walksAgilty Training Sessions

Uses Of The Akbash Dog

The Akbash Dog is a large breed of canine originating from Turkey. The Akbash has been bred for centuries to be an excellent livestock guardian, possessing strong and protective instincts as well as intelligence and loyalty. They are also known to have high socialization needs; the Akbash requires regular interaction with its owner in order to develop into a healthy member of the family.

These qualities make them an ideal pet when given proper training and care. The Akbash can fulfill many roles within a household, including:

  • Serving as a loyal companion
  • Protecting property and children with their guardian instincts
  • Providing security in public places due to their size
  • Offering emotional support through companionship and understanding

This robust breed is naturally suited to both urban and rural environments, making it an ideal choice for families looking for an intelligent, loving dog that can protect their home while also providing love and affection.

With adequate socialization needs met, the Akbash will likely become a beloved member of any family.

Health Issues

Like a finely tuned machine, an Akbash requires specialized upkeep to ensure it remains at its best. To keep them healthy and active, owners must provide their dogs with the proper nutrition and exercise requirements.

Their dietary needs include high quality proteins from animal sources like lamb, fish, or poultry as well as carbohydrates such as grains and vegetables. They also require ample amounts of fat in their diet since they are working dogs.

Additionally, Akbash need daily vigorous physical activity including long walks, runs, hikes, agility training, swimming and playing fetch.

It is important that owners know how to identify any possible health issues with their dog so they can take immediate action if necessary. Common problems within this breed include hip dysplasia and epilepsy which should be monitored by a veterinarian on a regular basis.

Owners who give their Akbash appropriate nourishment paired with enough physical activity can expect years of devoted companionship from these majestic animals.

Caring For An Akbash Dog

When discussing health issues in Akbash dogs, it is important to consider the proper care and maintenance of these animals. In order to ensure a healthy lifestyle for an Akbash dog, owners should be aware of key factors such as socialization and feeding habits.

Akbash dogs are highly social creatures that thrive when they have companionship and human interaction. It is important that they receive daily walks and playtime with their owners so that they can get adequate exercise. They may also benefit from taking part in canine sports or activities like agility training to keep them mentally stimulated.

Socializing an Akbash at a young age is essential for reducing fearfulness around other people and animals.

Feeding an Akbash requires mindful consideration due to its large size. Proper nutrition includes high-quality kibble formulated specifically for large breeds; however, some professionals recommend supplementing dry food with wet food for added nutrition. An Akbash’s diet should take into account its activity level, energy requirements, individual preferences, allergies or special needs.

Owners must make sure their pet has access to clean water throughout the day since they tend to drink larger amounts than smaller breeds do.


The Akbash is a hardy and loyal breed, making them an ideal choice for many purposes. The majestic white coat and powerful physique of the Akbash make this dog a distinctive presence.

With careful attention to health needs, proper training, and plenty of love, owners can enjoy the companionship of their devoted canine companion for years to come.

Known for its strength, courage, and intelligence, the Akbash has earned recognition as one of the top working breeds in the world. This remarkable breed will continue to prove itself as an invaluable asset in protection, herding populations of livestock or providing comfort and security as a family pet.

Valued by those who know it best, the Akbash is poised to remain a beloved part of life for generations to come.